Skip to main content

How Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. Will Change In Season 4

ABC has had lots of bad news for the Marvel TV universe lately what with the cancellation of Agent Carter and the nixing of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. spinoff Marvel’s Most Wanted, but it seems that there’s plenty to look forward to with Season 4 of S.H.I.E.L.D. The series is being bumped to a later timeslot on Tuesday nights, and ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey has revealed that the new time will allow for some exciting changes in the fourth season.

[It will] go a little bit edgier, a little darker, and take some risks.

Channing Dungey’s reveal to TVLine that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will be getting darker in Season 4 makes a lot of sense considering the progression of Season 3. Gone are the days of happy hijinks and practical jokes between Coulson and his merry band of operatives. The agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. have had a rough ride in Season 3, and the finale is set to feature a big death that will likely leave some of the good guys in an emotionally bad way over hiatus. S.H.I.E.L.D. either had to go darker in Season 4 or start getting a whole lot lighter sooner rather than later.

Season 3 hasn’t been without its risks, so it should be interesting to see what happens in Season 4 for the show to become even riskier. The changing dynamics within S.H.I.E.L.D. as the agents take sides over how to deal with the new Inhuman variable could lead to some in-fighting among friends. Marvel certainly managed a civil war on the big screen to great success; perhaps Season 4 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will be the small screen equivalent of Captain America: Civil War.

Depending on how Season 3 ends, a big part of Season 4 could revolve around the repercussions of the big death. The second half of the third season has already been darker given that the first half ended with Coulson crushing a man’s chest with his robot hand, and Hive has been experimenting on innocents to turn them Inhuman. The good guys are arguably at fault for a lot of what has gone wrong over the past twenty episodes or so; further fallout in a later timeslot in Season 4 could definitely take the show in the darker direction that the show needs in order to make sense.

Hopefully, S.H.I.E.L.D. won’t be entirely dark in Season 4. I’m holding out hope that Bobbi and Hunter will be brought back to the rest of the team now that Marvel’s Most Wanted has been cancelled. They’ll be absent from any tragedy that may have built over the final episodes of Season 3, and they could supply some levity to stop the show from crossing from dark into downright depressing.

Season 4 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will air at 10 p.m. EST on Tuesdays on ABC. The Season 3 finale hits the airwaves tonight at 9 p.m. EST in a two-hour event. To see what shows you’ll be able to watch over hiatus, check out our summer TV premiere schedule.

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel, but will sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation.