Genre Talk

Genre Talk: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D Open Thread


Did you watch ABC/Marvel’s new venture, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D last Tuesday? Not only were Marvel fans anticipating the premiere, but so were fellow Joss Whedon fans as this represents his first return to TV since Dollhouse, as well since his success with the Avengers movie.

Being a Whedon fan I promptly put butt in chair at 7PM CST and was prepared for a treat. Unfortunately, I missed the first 5 seconds or so, which totally threw things off for me. I try not to imbibe any hype, but I couldn’t help but know that Agent Coulson was in the cast–this made me assume the timeline was before the Battle of New York. And since I missed the first bit, I didn’t realize that my assumption was wrong until later and it had me scrambling and confused. From there it made it difficult for me to get into it and follow the plot. I enjoyed the references I caught, though not being a comic book reader, I’m sure I missed tons. Anyway, at the end I was feeling a bit underwhelmed and was disappointed that was the case. But, I told myself this is Whedon, his series are always character-driven and it takes a while for that to build, so I planned to stick to it.

I planned to rewatch it, to see if that made a difference, but assumed it wouldn’t and my initial plan for this post was to discuss the danger of paying too much attention to inside jokes in genre and not enough to character development and plot. See, I’d read reviews after, and a lot of Marvel fans were saying they giggled the whole way through at all the references. This is great for them, but if it doesn’t help make it accessible to those ‘not in the know’ and just makes it Marvel-porn. (Wait, wait, don’t get your panties in a twist, stay with me).

So I rewatched it and am relieved to say that this post will not be about that–I really enjoyed it. The plot was engaging, as were the characters, and I had a smile on my face the whole time. So really, the lesson is simple really: get in front of the TV a few minutes early. I’m usually really strict about this–I won’t go see a movie if I miss the beginning. And I really was in my chair with TV on at 7 on the dot, but that crucial 5 seconds made a difference for me.

So did you watch it? What did you think? What were your favorite in jokes? Will you be tuning in tomorrow?

10 thoughts on “Genre Talk: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D Open Thread

  1. I wasn’t as impressed as I hoped. I’m not a follower of the comics, but I had an issue with the ages of genius Fitz,Simmons and Skye. Even just a few years older (or older looking) would have sat better with me. I will however continue to watch for at least a little bit longer.

  2. My daughter has been waiting all summer for SHIELD, so the whole family sat down to watch the show. It was better than I expected, although the main point of the pilot–bringing together a group of (sometimes reluctant) misfits–pretty much followed the standard cliches. Still the humor was good. The only question is whether they can keep this up for an entire season or if the pilot marks the beginning of a downhill slide.

  3. I’m glad you enjoyed it more the second time around. 🙂

    I talked to my parents about it yesterday, as they’d finally watched their recording of it. To give context, they’re not geeks or comic book or paranormal/sci-fi people at all. 🙂

    My mom enjoyed it, especially the banter (that’s her favorite thing about Sleepy Hollow as well, especially with the time(fish)-out-of-water aspect). My dad…not so much.

    Me, knowing my dad as I do, guessed immediately that he didn’t enjoy it because he’s half deaf WITH his hearing aids on and missed all that lovely banter. So I told him one of my favorite lines–when Coulson came around the dark corner and commented about a bulb being out. He laughed and realized what he’d missed.

    I might suggest to my mom that she turn on closed captioning for the poor guy. 😉

    • You know, I think that was part of my issue too–I didn’t catch the bulb line the first time either. And even the second time I was like ‘what?’ and rewound to hear what word he said. That night I just felt like I was having major problems with comprehension.

      • Yes, I don’t think I’ll be able to watch it live tonight. 😦

        a) I’m training the WANACon moderators right up to when it starts, and as you said, you don’t want to miss the first bit. 🙂
        b) After *another* night of 5 hours of sleep, I don’t know that I have the comprehension skills necessary either. LOL!

  4. Loved it. I get to watch every episode twice (which makes this Joss Whedon fan very happy) – once to make sure it’s okay for my youngster to watch and then again with her. There’s no such thing as too much Joss Whedon! 🙂

  5. I’ve watched all 3 (I think it’s now three) episodes and unfortunately I’m not completely hooked. I loved the first episode because of the hidden humor and the characters, but I agree with what’s been said; it was getting a bit cliché but also that the character development is slow going. The lightbulb joke was hilarious. One of the best opening scenes I’ve ever seen.
    It was really cool to see some other characters from Avengers in the 1st episode.
    But I was kind of sad because I expected there to be more people with ‘powers’ on the team.
    I think I’ll give it some more chances though. I won’t give up on it yet. 🙂

  6. Pingback: Syfy’s Two Power Hours: Being Human & Lost Girl — open thread | Paranormal Unbound

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