One of my favorite panels that I attended over New York Comic Con weekend was the Marvel TV Panel. I originally didn’t plan on attending at all, but something told me that that we might get a bit of exclusive news. While it wasn’t blatantly obvious at first, the presence of several men dressed as S.H.I.E.L.D. agents in the room pretty much confirmed my suspicions that we’d get some news about the upcoming S.H.I.E.L.D. television show.
The panel began, however, with Jeph Loeb (head of Marvel TV) giving us a bit of news on the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon, which will be back for season 2. The new season will boast more classic villains such as the Sinister Six: Lizard, Rhino, Craven, Beatle, Electro and a secret sixth member.
Among other old friends who will be back is Clark Gregg, who, in addition to playing the beloved Agent Coulson in the Marvel movie-verse, provides the voice for Principal Coulson in the Ultimate Spider-Man series. And as a surprise treat, Clark Gregg himself showed up to the panel, greeted by raucous cheers and chants of “COULSON!” A girl a few rows ahead of me was even prepared with a “COULSON LIVES, FURY LIES” sign.
After a lot of teasing about Gregg’s most recent projects (Ultimate Spider-Man, Joss Whedon’s modern take of Much Ado About Nothing and The Avengers, of course), we were all treated to what was essentially an “In Memoriam” video for Coulson, comprised of all of his appearances and best moments in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
But this was nothing but a fantastic ruse, as not long after said video, and an almost tearful “thank you” from Gregg, we got a video from Joss Whedon himself announcing that Gregg, and by extension, Coulson himself, would be headlining next year’s S.H.I.E.L.D. series. “There was never going to be a S.H.I.E.L.D. show without Phil Coulson,” Whedon said.
The question, however, is HOW will Coulson be back? Is Marvel going to give us Coulson as The Vision as people have been hoping for? Or will the S.H.I.E.L.D. series itself just end up being a prequel to the MCU films?
The rest of the panel promised a fantastic line-up of animated Marvel shows to come, including Hulk and the Agents of Smash which will feature the voices of both Seth Green and Eliza Dushku, Marvel Avengers Assemble, with Adrian Pasdar (NBC’s Heroes) as Tony Stark, and a straight to DVD film, Iron Man: Rise of the Technovore, which looks fantastic.
But let’s face it, the best and most important thing to come out of this panel was that COULSON LIVES.