Fine, I’m willing to admit I thought this show had a great chance of sinking like Namor drunk on Jager Bombs. I’m a lifelong comic book reader and collector, so, huge surprise, I’m an “entitled” nerd who has certain expectations for things like this. By “entitled”, I simply mean the comic movie industry owes the readers some street cred. We all know the success of movies like The Dark Knight trilogy or Iron Man requires a delicate respect for the source material that spawned them. As fans, we also know comic book characters are often tweaked or rearranged to account for logical ways to present a film that appeals to both comic book fans and the those who haven’t read the books, but like the films enough to see every new offering. Well, it’s been over four hours and my nerd boner is still going, I better consult a physician and get on with the rest of this article.
The premise of S.H.I.E.L.D is pretty simple. This group makes up the infrastructure of the Marvel Universe, providing epic scale funding and tactical support for groups like The Avengers, all sixty-four public and secret versions. They track the unregistered heroes and potential villains that haven’t pinged Captain America or Spider-Man’s radar, but still stand as threats to the public, possibly exposing to truths we aren’t ready to deal with. Think of this as a kinda of Fringe meets The X-Files amalgam, but with the very alive, Agent Phil Coulson! Level 7 – faking awesome deaths since ever.
Phil is putting together his handpicked team to police the superpowers, and he has the typical cast of aggro jerks and cool characters to add a little tension among the group. They add a spunky former enemy to round things out and bump the collective badassery up a notch. Tonight they tracked a newly emerged hero who’s also being touted by a villain group as well as his own frustration and conflict. The show has a nice balance, something essential to the success of the hopefully long running series. The Marvel mythology was honored and often referenced, even nodding to books like Journey into Mystery, titles the general movie public isn’t aware of. I’m never going to get sick of Coulson and Hill or shit like mentions of Helicarriers. Make mine Marvel, er, ABC, whatever, just build this show into a hit; the raw materials are plentiful.