Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has reached 100 episodes and that is a milestone. It was on the way to cancellation after terrible first season and it’s a spinoff series based on a character that is supposed to be dead in the larger MCU. But it’s grown and evolved since those early days, and now it’s one of the coolest scifi/techy thrillers on TV right now.
While there is a fan movement out there trying to get one last season for the series to finish up everything. Honestly, if written another way, Season 5 episode 12 should have been that ending. In the episode Coulson faces his fear of being unimportant and also his fear of death. He starts to question reality itself, when Mike Peterson shows up explaining that everything he has experienced since the first avengers movie has been a lie. It’s his body stuck between life and death trying to figure out what’s going on, creating these fantastical memories of the adventures that he has been on with the S.H.I.E.L.D. team in his mind/dreams.
In a way, Mike’s explanation is a cool alt-way to defend the series as a whole. Ever since it’s conception, fans have been struggling with the fact that the Avengers never ask for this team’s help, and that this team never helps the Avengers in the movies. How else do you explain away this disconnect? Ghost Rider? The Framework? LMDs? Coulson being alive in the first place? It’s perfect and that reality, the one where none of this was real, will be lingering in Coulson’s mind throughout the rest of the series, so we might still see a form of that ending.
Basically the show could end with Coulson waking up in a hospital room with Tony Stark standing over him, asking him if he’s OK, and you know what? They just might end it that way.
There have been rumors for years hinting that Stark or Captain America could show up on the show. That would be a super series finale, but with the biggest actors in the world right now tied up with the Infinity War movies, that seems highly unlikely.
The S.H.I.E.L.D. team, is clearly planning this to be the last season, despite all the niceties. I’m not sure it has another season left. As Marvel gets more into Space, the metaphysics of Doctor Strange, Time Travel, mind control, and the mysterious Wakanda. This S.H.I.E.L.D. team is not really needed anymore despite Coulson’s pleadings that we need a symbol. in 2019, ABC may decide that the Avengers are enough of a symbol, but there is a shinning light.
Coulson suggested also in the same episode where he questioned reality, that Daisy/Quake lead S.H.I.E.L.D. into a new era, and there already seems to be some fan support for a rebranding on that end. I already have a title in mind for the continuation season: Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Rebranded! There’s also talk among the cast and crew that they like the idea of a Framework spinoff which is always a welcome idea by the producers. Just look at what Star Trek: Discovery was able to do with that alternative universe storyline. As always the tantalizing Ghost Rider is another spinoff that Marvel could explore but with the movie reboot along the way, that could be confusing. With Marvel and ABC’s pitiful track record at getting successful Marvel shows out there, I’m not holding my breath at seeing any of these shows come to light but they are fun to think about. (See Inhumans)
S.H.I.E.L.D. may be ending but it’s framework, the mini-verse that it’s apart of should live on for years to come and with Disney’s streaming service set to launch next year, we could be seeing a lot more from this verse.