Joss Whedon and the talented crew behind tonight’s premiere of “Agents of SHIELD” have maintained the show won’t be loaded with Easter eggs – sneaky references to the greater Marvel movie/TV universe – but we know, we just know, that plenty of such tidbits will sneak in during the course of the season.
Heck, tonight’s premiere had a few.
Tonight’s pilot episode was fun stuff, with the newly assembled SHIELD team working under Agent Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) trying to protect a man (Whedon vet J. August Richards) with super strength and invulnerability whose act of heroism exposes him to the outside world.
Along the way, Whedon – who directed – included some nods to the Marvel movies.
Of course, there are several references to the events portrayed in “The Avengers,” specifically the Battle of New York. Those don’t really count as Easter eggs.
Neither do the references to Iron Man, Captain America, Thor and Hulk.
That being said, there were a few others:
At one point, a character refers to “Our journey into mystery.” “Journey into Mystery,” of course, was the long-running Marvel comic that was, for decades, home to Thor.
There’s a wisecrack about “Cosplayer groupies at Stark Tower.” Now you just know that if anybody is attracting groupies, it’s Tony Stark.
The Extremis procedure to make ordinary humans into superbeings – yeah, the same process that makes them explode – from “Iron Man 3” figures into the plot here.
Other known ways of gaining superpowers are also name-checked: Gamma radiation, Dr. Erskine’s Super Soldier serum … I’m surprised they didn’t cite being bitten by a radioactive spider. Wait. They can’t cite that one. Wrong studio.
And of course there’s Lola, Coulson’s vintage red Corvette. It’s mentioned that Lola dates to the days of old-school SHIELD spy stuff, a set-up that pays off when the car flies away at the end.
Here’s a real stretch, but is it remotely possible that the vintage super spy status of the car might be some tip of the hat to the red Corvette’s earlier owner? And no, we don’t mean Prince. What’s the possibility that the car might have been driven by Nick Fury back in the day? And what if that connection proved that Fury – as in the comics – has been subjected to the same anti-aging treatments as in the comics? (In the comics, that explained why a World War II sergeant was still kicking ass a half-century later.)
While big-screen Fury Samuel L. Jackson has said he’s open to appearing in the series, I wonder if the series might not let us in on the possibility that the old-school Nick Fury is still around?
Anybody seen David Hasselhoff lately?