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It was all connected, until it wasn’t. Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. now sits with most of the rest of Marvel television on Disney+, and we’ve been revisiting the highly underrated series. It began being firmly connected to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but by the end it answered only to itself.
We love the series and we love all of the main characters. A proper series finale gave happiness and closure to all of them. We’re greedy though, and we want more. Not more of the series, we don’t think that we could emotionally take that. What we can take is certain characters from the series jumping into the proper MCU pool. For good. For keeps.
Who seems most primed for this journey? Agent Daisy Johnson, aka Quake, played by Chloe Bennet. She arguably has the most dramatic arc on Agents, beginning as Skye the hacker and then becoming an agent herself. She learned her true name, she awoke as an Inhuman, and by show’s end she was a full-on superhero. She became the “Quake” that many know and love from Marvel Comics.
Bennet is fantastic in the part, giving nuance, gravitas, and vulnerability behind every show of power. Daisy’s particular set of skills is unlike anything any of the current MCU heroes have to offer. She went flying off into space for more adventures at the end of the show, having one of the more open-ended finishes. She has more adventures in store, and we’d really love to see her have them alongside the rest of the MCU roster. Her banter with Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld) and Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh) would be a thing of beauty. Watching her lay waste to hordes of villains alongside them would make it even better.
She could hold her own with the Netflix Marvel roster too, and now we’re thinking about what a scene between her and Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter) would be like. She’s no stranger to the cosmic side of the MCU, so Carol Danvers (Brie Larson) would enjoy her company. Hell, she could hold her own with the Eternals if they needed her.
We wouldn’t want just Daisy, though. Because we are truly greedy, we’d want her to bring a member of her found family along. Her mentor, Melinda “The Cavalry” May (Ming-Na Wen) should come too. We love Agent May, we love Ming-Na Wen, and we love the Daisy/May dynamic. We don’t need any additional reasons. May’s storyline was also left somewhat open-ended, with her becoming a teacher at “Coulson Academy.” Agent May might leap at the chance to return to the field after a few years, especially if Daisy was the one asking her to do so.
Ming-Na Wen made Melinda May into an action hero legend, with her scary-good skillset, deadpan humor, and effortless charisma. She's a hero holding the line between the good guys and, well, nearly every variety of villain superhero-ing has to offer, and she fights the good fight with some walls up. And they are up for good reason. Because every time she tears down one of those walls, a tragedy slips through, and the emotional brick and mortar have to be used again. May seemingly can't catch a break, but that doesn't break her away from doing what is right — even if it means putting herself in harm's way so that others don't have to.
The mentor/mentee relationship that Daisy and May had early on turned into more of a sisterly bond throughout the series, as both characters found themselves all too friendly with grief and loss. Thanks to the actors playing these roles, every loss they endure or small victory they earn, it feels like one of our own. Their on-screen chemistry, coupled with their characters' unique brand of heroism, are strong reasons to airdrop them into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
These characters would thrive on both the big and small screens, canon be damned. And, not that canon matters much anymore, but the “canonicity” of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is still an ongoing topic of debate for some fans. Is the show really MCU canon, or isn’t it? Adding these fan-favorites would settle the matter once and for all.
But for most of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s run, some storylines were tethered to those unspooling within Marvel Studio's blockbusters. We even got a brief mention of Thanos and his unique, doughnut-like ships in Season 5. No character on the show ever got "snapped," however, or seemingly knew of the Blip. No one says in the finale: "Wow, none of us got dusted, we're really lucky, pass the bottle." But, if you listen closely, there is a reference (ish) to Karli Morgenthau.
This disconnect allowed the TV division some considerable leeway to operate outside Kevin Feige's big screen domain, before Feige took over all of Marvel's output across both movies and TV. So Agents didn't feel the need to connect to the bigger picture. But, with all of the MCU now under one roof, Disney+'s, it's not outside the realm of possibility to bring these characters and their adventures into the billion-dollar grossing fold. Adding Daisy and May would give the MCU a chance to potentially explain the shaky (at best) connections between the show and the movies that spawned the show, and it could all be done with a throwaway line or two.
But, we get it. Why would any one care at this point? Because the characters in question here make it pathologically impossible not to care.
Chloe Bennet is already rumored to reprise the role of Daisy/Quake in Secret Invasion. And it kinda sorta feels like that is going to happen, especially in an MCU where Charlie Cox and Vincent D’Onofrio are being re-established. And what a fascinating addition that could be to the MCU; she’s a very human Inhuman who makes mistakes. She also kicks a lot of ass. Why limit her and Melinda May to someone else's series? We'd watch Quake 2 The Cavalry if they made it.
We’d love most of the show’s cast to come back in some way, as well, but that feels unlikely. Though the death of Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) catalyzed the first assembly of the Avengers, most of that team is either dead or on their way out. Coulson himself is now an LMD, so he’d kind of be perfect to work with Nick Fury again on whatever spaceship Fury is current based on. The only characters we’d be worried sort of to see again is the heart-destroying romantic duo known as Fitzsimmons, because they finally achieved something resembling peace and happiness. Do we want to see Iain De Caestecker finally do a scene with a monkey? Yes. Do we want to see him separated from Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) by space/time/death/disease/robots/matrixes/allergies/hunky astronauts once again? No. Kindly, no.
Bring in Quake and The Cavalry. Let them clear the way, plant the flag, and let audiences know what’s what. After that, the doors will be open to bring in anything and everything from the world of S.H.I.E.L.D. and from Agent Carter too.
Do it. Do it for Karli Morgenthau. Bring back Chloe Bennet and put Ming-Na Wen on every Marvel show that Disney+ has. If Daisy Johnson and Melinda May pave the road for the return of Phil Coulson to the MCU as well, and maybe prime the pump for Inhumans 2.0, so be it. Daisy and May are two of the best, and most engaging, characters in Marvel's live-action stable. They could be the stars of their own franchise, or be all-stars in someone else's.
Either way, fans and the characters deserve it.
Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is streaming now on Disney+.