Agents of SHIELD and the Rise of Ghost Rider

We’re still playing catch up from the firehose of news known as San Diego Comic Con. We ran through the Superhero Soup of Marvel on Monday. But that wasn’t Marvel’s only major panel. After all, they also have the entire line on Netflix, including Daredevil, and Jessica Jones, plus the upcoming IronFist, Luke Cage and Punisher series.

And then there’s ABC, which at this point is back down to just Agents of SHIELD, despite the MCU and Disney’s push to force the network to be fruitful and multiply their shows. The truth is, Marvel’s Agent Carter, Marvel’s Most Wanted and the disappeared down the memory hole Marvel’s Damage Control were all victims of Disney oversaturating ABC with properties that weren’t getting off the ground, The failure of The Muppets (which never recovered from those first disastrous weeks) was far too close in alignment to the way Agents of SHIELD originally kicked off, with a full six weeks of marketing bombardment, and then a complete fizzle as those first few episodes failed to live up to the hype.

MARVEL'S AGENT CARTER - “Smoke and Mirrors” - Agent Carter and the SSR learn there’s more than just a pretty face behind Hollywood star Whitney Frost, Peggy’s most dangerous foe yet, on “Marvel’s Agent Carter,” TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 2 (9:00-10:00 p.m. EST) on the ABC Television Network. (ABC/Richard Cartwright) HAYLEY ATWELL

To be fair, the only thing Carter had going for it was Hayley Atwell, and once ABC decided to give her a new vehicle, that was it for the rest of it. For some, the idea of Mockingbird and Hunter getting their own spin-off was a joy, but just as many fans I’ve spoken too seemed perplexed that anyone thought they could hold a series aloft by themselves, or that SHIELD was somehow better off without them. As for Damage Control, that it was even suggested that people might want to watch a show about the janitors who clean up after Iron Man might just sum up everything wrong with the shows that wind up on ABC to begin with.

With SHIELD the last show standing on network, and the Inhumans movie it was supposed to tie into next dropped from the Marvel slate completely during the bumping down of movies to make room for Spiderman and the Ant-Man sequels, the production has been freed up to go do its own thing for a while. As we saw post-Winter Soldier, this is probably for the best for the show, since the movies have a tendency to crimp their style. And with the Inhumans storyline now backburnered, the show has decided that they’d rather bring in….Ghostrider.

Now most non comics people think of Ghostrider and they think of Nic Cage playing Johnny Blaze. In order to avoid the comparisons, SHIELD will do a different character version. Instead the storyline will be pulled from the comics where Ghostrider’s real name was Robbie Reyes,  and they’ve cast Gabriel Luna in the title role. Supposedly the reasoning behind this is that Reyes has a mentally disabled brother and this will give the emotional family tie in that the show does so well. But as one audience member asked, what fans really want to know is how long until hunter and Bobbi are given their jobs back.

Over on Netflix, the Luke Cage trailer is also now out, and the production promises this will be, and I quote: “the Wu-Tangification of the Marvel Universe.” You’re welcome America.

Jessica Jones didn’t put out any news (slightly worrisome), but Daredevil Season 3 is a go. Likewise there wasn’t much about Punisher or IronFist, other than the suggestion that the spin-off from IronFist will be The Defenders, with a badass new set of logos for both.

iron-fist-logo the-defenders-logo

Agents of SHIELD comes back to network on September 20th. Luke Cage will upload all episodes to Netflix on September 30th.


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