The Avengers aren’t the only Marvel Cinematic Universe heroes headed to space. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. also made an intergalactic leap in its Season 5 finale — or so it seemed. The season ended with a quick scene of S.H.I.E.L.D Director Phil Coulson waking up alone on some kind of mechanical rig; he rose to greet the day by opening the windows, only to reveal the deep expanse of space. This shocking cliffhanger has left fans abuzz since it aired back in May, but — despite appearances — it may take place a little closer to home than we originally thought. In fact, it’s possible that they never even left our solar system… and that might have something to do with Inhumans.
Before we delve into that idea, let’s talk Inhumans. Inhumans is Marvel Television’s latest enterprise, but it took shape in a far different way than previous projects. Unlike Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Carter, Inhumans debuted in theaters, with its first two episodes formatted for IMAX. Inhumans as a people are no strangers to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, as they have been the focus for two and a half seasons of S.H.I.E.L.D., but the Royal Family is. As such, Inhumans provides a fresh start in the Inhumans’ isolated kingdom Attilan, which means that new audiences are welcomed in without the baggage of four seasons of another show. However, because of that, the stories and characters featured on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. likely won’t have a major impact on the proceedings of Inhumans. After all, per S.H.I.E.L.D. executive producer Jed Whedon, Inhumans “will have its own world, just as we tried to start our own world.”
However, that doesn’t mean there won’t be any crossover at all. (Marvel’s motto is “It’s all connected,” remember?) One of Inhumans‘ sticking points is that new Inhumans are popping up all over Earth, thanks to a Terrigen leak that contaminated the ocean in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2. This Terrigen leak kicks off a central conflict in the Inhumans series after King Black Bolt risks sending his cousin Triton to Earth to help these “NuHumans,” only for Triton to disappear. Nevertheless, it’s highly unlikely we’ll see characters like Coulson and Inhuman S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Daisy “Quake” Johnson — who, at this point, have a lot of MCU history — on the freshman series.
But Inhumans could always cross over into Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Since its debut season, S.H.I.E.L.D. has reacted to the events of the MCU films, without really impacting the MCU films themselves. For instance, the team cleaned up Greenwich after the events of Thor: Dark World, battled Hydra agents following Captain America: The Winter Solider, spared a helicarrier for the Avengers during Age of Ultron and were forced to sign the Sokovia Accords in the wake of Captain America: Civil War. What’s more, S.H.I.E.L.D. has often involved Agent Carter, whose characters founded the covert government agency. As such, it certainly wouldn’t be out of place for S.H.I.E.L.D. to respond directly to the events of Inhumans.
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