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'Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.' (ABC)
Premiere Date: September 24
We're anticipating because: It's Joss Whedon, making his triumphant return to TV after "The Avengers" turned him from cult icon and FOX victim to gamma-irradiated cinematic juggernaut. He gets to bring Clark Gregg with him from the various Marvel movies to reprise/resurrect Agent Coulson, and the pilot is filled with the kind of snappy patter you expect from a Whedon joint, big or small screen.
We're nervous because: Joss Whedon is meant to be part-time on this show, while Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen are intended to be the main showrunners, but their talent is untested away from their famous brother/brother-in-law. Already, there have been reports that Joss had to come in to do major rewrites because of problematic early scripts. Beyond that, there appear to be multiple layers of bureaucracy to deal with, between ABC, Disney and the strict and secretive executives at Marvel, and the fact that the Whedon brothers and Tancharoen struggled to tell interesting procedural stories on their last show, FOX's "Dollhouse," and this is designed essentially as "NCIS" with superpowers. And while Gregg and Ming-Na Wen are fun as the veteran agents, the show's younger stars don't make a huge first impression. Most Whedon shows have bumpy creative starts, but the big expectations and different agendas for this one may make it harder to find the sweet spot than on, say, "Buffy" or "Angel."