With the sixth season renewal coming through but the new season not set to premiere until well after the fourth “Avengers” opens, the big question going into ABC’s “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” fifth season finale on Friday was if it would incorporate the events of the ending of “Avengers: Infinity War”.
SPOILERS FOR BOTH FILM & SERIES AHEAD
The last few episodes have seen references to Thanos and his ship arriving in New York, but as events in these episodes were essentially unfolding in real time and in a different city, it’s not clear how close to the events of ‘Infinity War’ that the ones in the “SHIELD” finale were happening.
The finale essentially ignored ‘Infinity War’, the final scene being a dying Coulson and Agent May standing on a Tahitian beach. Fitz was dead but a past version of him is floating in space and so will be back (albeit missing some memories). Whether Clark Gregg’s Coulson also returns isn’t clear.
Executive producers Jed Whedon, Maurissa Tancharoen and Jeffrey Bell spoke with EW who asked them why we didn’t see any of the events of ‘Infinity War’ in the finale:
JED WHEDON: There’s some of that we can’t answer.
JEFF BELL: Part of what happened was, they changed the release date, and we move at a different schedule than they do and so suddenly everything was a week earlier, and so we had to make some adjustments and that’s how we end up with our story.
WHEDON: Right. And the other thing is that there’s certain story points that are so – there would really be no way for us to address it and keep our show intact. Given that there’s another movie coming out, and there’s gonna be constant repercussions of their universe, so what we felt was that the safe play for our story, and for the integrity of our universe, was to operate outside of it.
BELL: To acknowledge it was happening, but that we had our own problems and we’re dealing with that.
WHEDON: Right, and also the timeline is a little bit fudged in that we assume that the last couple of episodes of our show take place during Infinity War. We’re running in a lot of real-time at the end of the season.
MAURISSA TANCHAROEN: The last four [episodes] all in real-time.
WHEDON: Yeah, so we sort of thought of it as these events are still ongoing as our season ends.
“Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD” is expected to return to ABC in the second half of 2019 with a shortened sixth and likely final season.