ABC has finally confirmed series renewals for Marvel shows Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D and Agent Carter, but the announcement comes as something of a mixed bag. Few were surprised at the commitment to a third season of Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D – particularly given that recent episodes have begun to lay the foundation for Marvel’s planned Inhumans movie, currently due to arrive in 2019. Audiences were less sure of a return for Agent Carter, although that fledgling show attracted a not insignificant number of viewers, and built itself a very loyal fan base in a short space of time.
While the quality of Agent Carter has never been questioned, it is the status of its broadcast outside of the U.S that had fans worried about a series renewal. While the UK’s Channel 4 snapped up Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D almost immediately after it first began to air in the U.S, the broadcaster has repeatedly stated, categorically, that, “We don’t have any current plans for Agent Carter,” despite the fact that it is a natural companion piece to Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.
For her part, Agent Carter star Hayley Atwell recently addressed the issue while attending the 2015 Jameson Empire Awards in March.
“I think it will [air] later on in the year. There is a really good chance that the U.K is going to get it. There must be a slight bidding war for the channel at the moment. Fingers crossed it won’t be too long.”
This bizarre broadcasting situation has yet to be adequately explained, but fans on both sides of the Atlantic will take comfort in the confirmation that Agent Carter will return for a second season, regardless – not least because it means that when it does finally arrive in the U.K, there will be more episodes to enjoy. Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D, meanwhile, will continue to build its international audience with its third season – which will undoubtedly tie into the Civil War storyline being created in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.