When Does ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ Return to ABC?

Many Marvel shows on Netflix and elsewhere have continued to bite the dust while ones on commercial TV hang by a thread. ABC has a couple of shows that are doing well, and we even see ones designed for Millennials when you include Freeform’s Cloak & Dagger. ABC’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D is the longest running Marvel show on network TV with five seasons so far.

Most fans think this show has become better as it’s gone along. Critics also remark this last season had some of the best storytelling so far, despite ratings slipping to alarming numbers. What’s the latest on the possibility of Agents returning soon? Fans may hope it doesn’t become another show that lands on the chopping block before its time.

Why is ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. unique?

Expectations were nearly beyond what fans should have expected when Agents first premiered on ABC in 2013. Ratings were through the roof based on the concept alone. Even so, critics were initially harsh because they thought the show couldn’t possibly create enough of a movie-quality connection to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

The show wisely started to create its own identity to avoid this problem. What made it a sure bet; however, was true Marvel fans would tune in to catch the details of a plot line they could connect to the MCU.

Writers for the show acquiesced by providing a lot of small plot lines and characters within the Marvel dimension. In a few cases, the show even saw direct tie-ins with the movies, like in the famous Thor crossover episode “The Well.” They’ve done numerous others as well, making it one of the few shows effectively able to balance with its movie counterparts.

Why didn’t ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D’ return this last fall?

Those of you who’ve watched Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D since the beginning probably noticed it was missing on the 2018-19 fall schedule. No doubt one reason for this is the cast changes it underwent, which everyone would expect with dozens of superheroes and other sideline characters from Marvel.

It’s also one of the most fluid shows when it comes to narrative changes, which was the intention all along. For more casual viewers, this might be off-putting if they’re not familiar with the Marvel comic books and the movies.

Characters like Ghost Rider have become new regulars, mainly because we know we’ll never see another Ghost Rider movie again based on the previous two cinematic disasters. On top of this, the show dipped to #133 out of all shows last season with only 1.88 million viewers. These numbers are a bit of a misnomer, though.

Many fans watch the show on DVR or online

Reports are Agents is one of the most in-demand shows, meaning much more social media chatter than a typical series. For ABC, this means a lot since it creates more buzz in cyberspace. Plus, with news it’s the most popular of any Marvel show currently going, ABC wisely didn’t give it the axe.

Besides, just look at the epic story that unfolded last season. With Ghost Rider’s help, the main characters literally saved the world and now need to find their way back to earth after being whisked away in a mysterious spacecraft.

Rather than do a typical 20-something episode commitment, the show will broadcast 13 episodes through the summer. Season Six starts May 10 in their time slot from last season: Friday nights. Now it’ll be on at 8 p.m. rather than last year’s 9 p.m. Friday isn’t necessarily a good time slot, yet better than the more competitive Tuesdays where it was before.

Fans will also be glad to know ABC committed to a seventh season as well with Seasons 6 and 7 being filmed back-to-back for cost reductions.