The Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. are going cosmic.
A new set photo posted by Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. transmedia producer Geoffrey Colo teases a look at the setting our heroes will explore following their kidnapping at the end of the season 4 finale, "World's End," where the super spies were frozen, taken into custody, and whisked away to outer space.
The S.H.I.E.L.D. team's intergalactic adventure was also touched on in the first season 5 poster released earlier this week, with a tweet teasing a season that "will be out of this world...far out of this world." Little is known about the forthcoming season for the moment, but we suspect the show could be introducing the Sentient World Observation and Response Department (S.W.O.R.D.), an intelligence and counter terrorism agency focused on handling extraterrestrial threats — essentially, S.H.I.E.L.D. in space.
The move could also serve as a means to intersect Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Inhumans, Marvel's newest television series, part of which takes place off-world. The concept of "Inhumans" — beings granted superhuman powers by means of Terrigenesis — have been a large part of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s DNA since season two, and the core cast of Inhumans do live in a community on the moon. Despite the connection, Inhumans showrunner Scott Buck says the show "stands completely alone and separate" from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., which was renewed for a fifth season despite standing as a source of friction between ABC and Marvel.
In the Marvel Comics, the "All-New, All-Different Marvel" Captain Marvel relaunch saw Carol Danvers leading S.W.O.R.D., and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. sending its crew to the far reaches of space could be some way of loosely linking or introducing the two IPs: Danvers will make her Marvel Cinematic Universe debut in her own movie, out March 2019, in a cosmic adventure facing off against the shape-shifting aliens known as the Skrulls before joining the wider Marvel Universe in Avengers 4.
Marvel and ABC will reveal more Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. during the show's presence at New York Comic Con. Marvel TV head Jeph Loeb will join the cast for a Q&A session and the premiere of never-before-seen footage Saturday, October 7 at 2pm in the theater at Madison Square Garden. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. returns to ABC Friday, November 24.