There was good news for fans of Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD today, as ABC announced a sixth season renewal, consisting of 13 new episodes.
The news came Monday afternoon as part of ABC’s preliminary Upfronts announcements. However, it was not revealed if this truncated new season will mark the show’s final episode run.
Last year during renew/cancel week, showrunners Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen offered ABC a reduced licensing fee that secured the show’s season 5 pick up. However, with more networks demanding part ownership and/or reduced licensing fees from studios (Agents of SHIELD is produced by ABC studios, Marvel Television, and Joss Whedon’s Mutant Enemy Productions) show renewals, even for those shows with average to good ratings, are becoming less certain. Until today, Agents of SHIELD was the only show in ABC’s 2017 Primetime lineup whose fate was still unknown.
As in the past, recent episodes of the show have alluded to events in the Marvel franchise, with recent occurrences dovetailing with those in the Avengers: Infinity War movie, and Thanos’ arrival on Earth. Showrunner Jed Whedon told press that the upcoming series 5 finale could have doubled as a series ender if negotiations for a sixth season failed.
“We’re definitely going to make it rewarding either way,” Whedon said.
Starring Clark Gregg, Chloe Bennet, Ming-Na Wen, Elizabeth Henstridge, Iain de Caestecker, Henry Simmons and Natalia Cordova-Buckley, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. airs Fridays at 9/8c.
The season 5 finale airs May 18 on ABC.