Fall TV Preview: ‘Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD’ has a drawn-out name for slick action

Agents of ShieldIf we are here to talk about some of the most-hyped new series debuting on TV this fall, then there is no way that “Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD” can be anywhere other than near the top of the list. This is a Joss Whedon project that was cloaked like the Invisible Woman for most of the year, until ABC started to lift the veil on footage for it in the past week.

In an age of gambles with ambitious serialized shows, there is no bigger one than this. You’re talking about a brand that is behind “The Avengers,” and hoping that fans will still watch a TV series even though you take away the one thing that made those movies so distinctive: The flashy guys with powers in costumes. At least this new promo, unlike the first one released earlier this week, does a better job of not making the show about characters who have little to no role in it.

The biggest thing that “Agents of SHIELD” has going for it is not the Marvel name, but that it is a Whedon product so we know that he will be producing quality television. While “Dollhouse” was hit-or-miss, everything else the man has produced over the years is TV gold. This is a chance for him to actually do something with a franchise that he does not have to build from the bottom, and he does a great job in this trailer of making characters interesting even when they are not kicking butt (which “Revolution” failed at almost immediately). If he wants to keep viewers beyond the first two or three weeks, the writing and the actors will be imperative more so than flashy effects.

We understand the gamble here by the network, just as we also understand the interest in trying to overtake “NCIS” at 8:00 p.m. Eastern on Tuesdays. Will it work? For the premiere, definitely, but after that, this is all going to be a toss-up. “Spider-Man 3” proved that any hero franchise can have a good trailer, but you need to do something with it afterwards.

Does the trailer make you excited for “Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD”, or do you think this whole ordeal screams “trying too hard”? If you want to see our impressions of some other fall TV shows, along with full schedules, we have a pair of options available for you right away:

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Photo: ABC

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