Marvel has been leaving their unique mark on television in recent years, from telling spy adventures through Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Carter on ABC to spotlighting their street level heroes on Netflix. Now the House of Ideas is expanding their presence on the small screen with comedy. It was announced today that ABC has given a put pilot commitment for a half-hour, single-camera sitcom. Currently titled Damage Control, the project has Modern Family’s Ben Karlin as an executive producer alongside David Miner and Marvel’s head of television Jeph Loeb.
Like the group from the comics, Damage Control will follow the cleaning crew that specializes in tidying up after battles between superheroes and their adversaries in the Marvel universe. Variety colorfully described the team as the guys who are stuck with doing weird tasks, including returning lost ray guns to their rightful owners and other oddball activities.
Damage Control made their comic book debut in 1989’s Marvel Comics Presents #19, and have led three separate miniseries in years following. Most of the company’s employees are average, non-powered citizens, although heroes like Hercules and Speedball have briefly worked for them. In addition to the main clean-up crew, there is also a Search and Rescue Division. Damage Control is still early in development, so it’s unclear whether it will be live-action versions of the employees from the comics or if it will be comprised entirely of original characters.
Although it is an intriguing concept, Marvel isn't the only company jumping into the comic book comedy game. In August, DC Comics announced their own half-hour comedy Powerless, which will air on NBC if ordered. That show will follow employees at a substandard insurance office that envy the heroes in the DC universe. If both projects move forward, it will be interesting to see which one handles the sitcom format better.
Damage Control is the third future network project Marvel has on their slate. After originally being scrapped, ABC is moving ahead with the Mockingbird-led spinoff Marvel’s Most Wanted. Then there’s the mysterious superhero show being drafted by 12 Years a Slave writer John Ridley. On top of these, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. kicked off its third season earlier this week, and Agent Carter Season 2 will begin airing next January.
We’ll keep you apprised of any developments on Damage Control in the coming months. In the meantime, Marvel fans can currently get their TV fill with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Tuesdays at 9 p.m. EST on ABC, and on November 20, Netflix will release all 13 episodes of Jessica Jones.