It turns out sending SHIELD into outer space may have helped draw some lapsed viewers back into the fold.
The two-hour season five premiere of Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD, titled “Orientation,” was watched live by an audience of 2.5 million viewers. That’s the largest audience for Agents of SHIELD since the episode that aired on January 10, 2017, which was season four’s midseason premiere episode "Broken Promises," which had an audience of 2.1 million.
Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD also remained steady in the key demographic, scoring a 0.7, which is the same as the score for the season four finale episode, “World’s End.”
Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD will move to its new, regular time slot with next week’s episode, “A Life Spent.”
“Orientation” contained multiple twists that leave the state of the Marvel Cinematic Universe timeline in question. There was also a notable reference that should leave fans wondering if the Avengers have some involvement in the state of the Agents of SHIELD universe.
It will be interesting to see how these ratings compare to Agents o SHIELD’s upcoming 100th episode, which Marvel Television head Jeph Loeb has teased will be an episode fans won’t want to miss.
"Look, this is not going to come as a surprise to anyone that's ever seen a 100th episode, that there will be a significant event,” Loeb told ComicBook.com. “That's all I can tell you. They gotta get home from space!"
With Agents of SHIELD moving into outer space with Avengers: infinity War just over the horizon, some fans wonder if the Avengers could finally learn that Phil Coulson is alive.
“It is an ever-present theme,” Gregg told ComicBook.com. “It's really touching to me how much the fans stay obsessed with the idea of when the Avengers are going to learn Coulson's alive. It's something that...I don't know, I find that so touching! I think the Avengers have moved on, they're busy."
And there’s also that still outstanding debt that Coulson owes to the Ghost Rider.
“What I would say is the deal he made with Ghost Rider at the end of season four, that debt will come due at some point and I think it just raises the stakes on everything going forward,” Gregg said.
Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD airs Fridays at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.