Well, of course they are.
Entertainment Weekly broke the news that Jonathan Frakes will be directing an upcoming episode of “Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.” that will directly connect to the events at the end of “Thor: The Dark World.”
That’s all you need to know if you don’t want to be spoiled at all for the upcoming movie or for the TV series, or both. You can stop reading and just know that Marvel and Disney and ABC have made one of the most profoundly obvious decisions in the history of corporate synergy. They are going to use their TV show that exists because of their big hit movies to lay some expository pipe between one of those big hit movies and the rest of those big hit movies, and the show will promote the movie while the tie-in promotes the show and the new movie promotes not one but two or even three new movies and where does the commercial stop and where does the movie begin at this point can you even tell me?
Frakes is a busy director for television, and he’s done features as well of course. He’s worked with Joss Whedon behind the camera before, and he’s got Peter MacNicol aboard as a professor whose fate is somehow connected to the events we see in “Thor: The Dark World.”
Here’s where things get a little spoilery. Without saying what happens, there are two different after-the-movie moments. One is early in the closing credits. One is at the very, very end.
The one in the middle is, I’m fairly sure, a direct connection to both “Guardians Of The Galaxy” and, if I’m guessing correctly, “The Avengers 3.” I think that long game is already in motion. I think the last shot of the first “Avengers” was all about the third film, not the second. I think the second is all about testing and fracturing the original team in a very deep way. They’re not doing “Civil War,” but they need to break the original group in that deep a manner. They have to earn their way back together to face the threat that will be in the third “Avengers” film.
“The Well,” which is the episode that will air November 19th on the show, Coulson and his team go after something that was left behind by the film. There are many things that could be. If it’s the thing we see at the very, very end of the film, I’m curious to see how they handle it. If it’s technology from the Dark Elves that were in the film, there’s a weapon of theirs that would be a very, very dangerous thing in the wrong human hands. Or in any human hands, frankly.
We’ll see. I write about “Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.” each week when it airs, and right now, I’m still figuring out how to write about TV shows each week. It’s a very different skill, something our incredible TV team does all the time. I’d like to start unpacking whether this show is built to last or not, and digging in deeper with each episode, and especially if Marvel’s going to introduce pieces for us to start to put together like this.
“Thor: The Dark World” opens in theaters everywhere in the US on November 8th.
“Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.” airs Tuesday nights on ABC at 8:00 PM EST/PST.