A Marvel TV cornerstone and a venerable fantasy series both got good news yesterday.
First, Deadline reported that Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the first Marvel TV series to reach the air since the launch of Marvel Studios and still the flagship for all that has followed, has been renewed for a fifth season. Although the ratings have never been spectacular for the show -- and in fact, hit new lows this past season -- it is, as Deadline says, "important to ABC corporate-wise as a platform for launching other parts of the Disney/Marvel franchise."
Indeed, while that big crossover between the movies and the TV corner of the universe has yet to really happen, AoS has still managed to carve out its own little niche, and the fourth season in particular has won kudos for the "Ghost Rider" and "Agents of HYDRA" story arcs. To be honest, I skipped most of the former but returned and have been riveted by the latter -- this last stretch of episodes is probably the best the show has ever done and points to a thrilling season finale next week.
Also coming back for a seventh year is the fantasy drama Once Upon a Time. With the exit of cast member Jennifer Morrison after the current season ends, the show will undergo what is being described by Deadline as a "reset" that will focus on the characters played by returning cast members Lana Parrilla, Robert Carlyle and Colin O’Donoghue.
They'll be joined by Andrew J. West, who was seen as Terminus leader Gareth on Seasons 4 and 5 of The Walking Dead. West will make his Once Upon a Time debut in this Sunday's two-hour season finale before becoming a series regular in Season 7.
Although Once Upon a Time has been down in the ratings as well, like AoS it benefits from DVR playback and online viewing -- both increasingly important factors in network decisions to keep shows going.
What do you think about Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Once Upon a Time coming back? What changes, if any, would you like to see in both shows?