ABC Network Chief Says Marvel's AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Tested Well
ABC upfronts are happening at this very moment but we've wrangled a few quotes from the network's president about Joss Whedon's Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Continue on if you're curious about episode count, network competition and other minutia.
Per Deadline, we have a quote from ABC president Paul Lee who said, "Last year, we had very similar comedies airing agaist each other. Now we have a blockbuster show at 8PM as (ABC comedies are tackling) areas nobody is."
Per Televisionary [The Daily Beast], we have word on a possible episode count for not just Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (M.A.o.S.) but all new, original ABC shows as well as talk about inevitable hiatuses. "Originals are being run in batches of 12 [episodes] with a gap," said the network president. The site goes on to report that Lee stated that limited series will fill those gaps. From that report, it appears that M.A.o.S. will have a run of somewhere in the neighborhood of 24 episodes with at least one hiatus after the ~12 episode. But of course, television depends on ratings and if any of the original shows underperform, expect them to be ended during its first batch of 12 episodes.
Expanding more specifically on M.A.o.S., Lee stated, "We don’t normally talk about testing, but [Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.] tested so well in all four quadrants [of the television demographic]. Joss Whedon knows how to create great television with great relationships at the heart of it. It has relationships and humor but also the promise of the Marvel franchise… We think it’s driven by character and will bring a wider audience to us."
As far as competition from other network stations in that same Tuesday, 8 PM timeslot, Fox is airing a new comedy Dads, and NBC will be airing The Biggest Loser but CBS will be airing ratings juggernaut NCIS. Said Lee on the competition with NCIS, "Every single hour on the schedule is up against competition. We think it’s going to recruit a whole new audience coming in [and] we think it has a built-in audience… We don’t think it has the same audience as NCIS and we have high hopes for it on Tuesdays at 8 p.m.” NCIS regularly commands upwards of 18-20 million viewers each week.
Clark Gregg reprises his role of Agent Phil Coulson from Marvel’s feature films, as he assembles a small, highly select group of Agents from the worldwide law-enforcement organization known as S.H.I.E.L.D. Together they investigate the new, the strange, and the unknown across the globe, protecting the ordinary from the extraordinary. Coulson's team consists of Agent Grant Ward (Brett Dalton), highly trained in combat and espionage; Agent Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen), expert pilot and martial artist; Agent Leo Fitz (Iain De Caestecker), brilliant engineer; and Agent Jemma Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge), genius bio-chemist. Joining them on their journey into mystery is new recruit and computer hacker, Skye (Chloe Bennet).
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Marvel’s first television series, is from executive producers Joss Whedon (Marvel's The Avengers, Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Jed Whedon & Maurissa Tancharoen, who co-wrote the pilot (Dollhouse, Dr.Horrible's Sing-Along Blog). Jeffrey Bell (Angel, Alias) and Jeph Loeb (Smallville, Lost, Heroes) also serve as executive producers. Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is produced by ABC Studios and Marvel Television.
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