Marvel's AGENTS OF SHIELD will blend science and magic together

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There’s a certain level of science that occurs in any Marvel movie or TV series, albeit stretched to the absolute limits of believability because IT’S TIME TO WATCH SOME ROBOT SMASHY SMASHY NOW! Thor’s hammer, Tony Stark’s armour and those super duper performance-enhancing super-drugs in Captain America’s bloodstream all have an origin in science.

But the Marvel Universe wasn’t founded on fringe science and theories alone. Like Queen once sang about, there’s a kind of magic present as well. And with Marvel embracing their supernatural side with Doctor Strange later this year and Ghost Rider in Agents of SHIELD, that sorcery is about to collide with fact and reason. “You’ll see this in the movies that are coming,” Agents of SHIELD executive producer Joss Whedon said to CBR.

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In ‘Thor,’ they famously said, ‘Magic is just science we don’t understand.’ The MCU started with ‘Iron Man,’ who is a guy who built a suit — a smart guy built a suit. And then when you put Thor into that world, it started to be like, ‘How are these things going to work?’

And they worked! So they started to open up into the world of the fantastic, and we will be doing that this year in terms of sort of trying to blend the two and trying to see if there are things we don’t understand, why, and then meanwhile we’re building things that we do understand, that maybe we start to lose our understanding of them.

“[How to blend these subjects] is exactly what our team may be asking as they encounter something like Ghost Rider. We’ll basically be trying to science why,” executive producer Maurissa Tancharoen said. “It’s the question we were asking in the room of writers on day one,” Whedon added.

I think that we’re going to slowly start to develop some very advanced technology this season, and maybe — as that becomes more advanced and we have strange people… possessed people — those things somehow merge down the line.

We’ve dealt with normal people who want to… be more than just a man, like Mike Peterson. With Coulson, he has a robot hand,” Tancharoen explained. “Then we meet [Holden] Radcliffe, who’s definitely into body modifications. This is just sort of a progression and extension of that.

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I think with characters such as Ghost Rider, that actually having the how and why of their powerset shrouded in mystery actually benefits the character even more. I mean, nobody questioned how the previous Ghost Rider managed to regrow the burnt-off face of Nicolas Cage back every night, and I certainly don’t want to see any explanation for how current spirit of vengeance Robbie Reyes can transform himself and his muscle car into hell on four wheels.

As for Doctor Strange, early on in the pre-production of that film the idea of the sorcerer supreme being able to tap into the realm of quantum mechanics was discussed. It’s an idea that sort of makes sense, but again I like having something that can’t be explained seen on the big or small screen. A lesson Whedon hopefully learnt from Buffy The Vampire Slayer with that Adam Abomination.

Last Updated: July 27, 2016

Darryn Bonthuys

Word-slinger at Critical Hit. Inventor of the macho Swiss gym chocolate known as Testoblerone. That's...that's about it really.

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