The latest season of Marvel's Agents of SHIELD provided some major twists, turns, and returns, rewarding longtime fans of the series while propelling it toward an exciting direction.
A lot of the fourth season's best developments transpired due to the inclusion of the Framework, the artificial reality in which Hydra ruled in place of SHIELD and a lot of deceased characters showed up. It allowed the showrunners to look at how far the show has come in its four years, while ramping up the stakes in the face of a new threat.
The final moments revealed that the rogue LMD known as AIDA had began shutting down the Framework, with parts of the virtual reality vanishing in quick succession as the characters attempted to escape before they were erased.
And despite being one of the most popular and well-received storylines in the show's existence, it doesn't look like the Marvel Television show will be returning to that alternate reality anytime in the foreseeable future.
"Everything we do is based on not wanting to repeat our selves," executive producer Jeff Bell said to Entertainment Weekly. "We're trying to tell different kinds of stories and show our characters in different situations. The last thing we want is for people to say, 'Oh, they're trotting that thing out again.' If there were a way to tell a fresh story with something else to say, I think all storytelling is on the table."
But that doesn't mean hope is lost, as showrunner Jed Whedon revealed there are people behind the scenes who want the alternate reality to show up once again.
"The Framework opened up a lot of ideas and a lot of possibilities," Whedon said, "and our head of post keeps reminding us of that, because he's the biggest fan of the Framework, and he thinks it should be its own spinoff show."
While it would be fun to revisit the Framework and see how it's changed (if it even survived) after AIDA's demise, it would have to be done organically or else it would feel cheap. The Framework itself was a clever way to revisit a lot of past concepts and characters without diminishing the stories that already occurred.
Agents of SHIELD has been riding high after an excellent fourth season, and we only want to see that continue when it returns for Season 5.
MORE AGENTS OF SHIELD NEWS: Season 4 VFX Breakdown Featuring Ghost Rider / Agents Of SHIELD Season 5 Underway / Gabriel Luna Talks Agents Of SHIELD & SWORD Tie-In To Avengers: Infinity War/ Gabriel Luna Wants Norman Reedus To Play Ghost Rider's Johnny Blaze
The regular cast features Clark Gregg as Agent Phil Coulson, Ming-Na Wen as Agent Melinda May, Chloe Bennet as Daisy Johnson, Iain De Caestecker as Agent Leo Fitz, Elizabeth Henstridge as Agent Jemma Simmons, Henry Simmons as Agent Alphonso "Mack" MacKenzie, and John Hannah as Holden Radcliffe.
The fifth season of Marvel's Agents of SHIELD will debut this coming Winter, consist of 22 episodes, and is shifting from Tuesday to Friday nights and airing at 9 p.m -- taking over The Inhumans timeslot.
Marvel's Agents of SHIELD was co-created by Joss Whedon (The Avengers, Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Jed Whedon & Maurissa Tancharoen (Dollhouse, Dr.Horrible's Sing-Along Blog), who also serve as executive producers along with Jeffrey Bell (Angel, Alias) and Jeph Loeb (Jessica Jones, Daredevil). Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is produced by Marvel Television and ABCStudios.