Marvel announced exciting details about its new show Agent Carter and confirmed a variety of guest stars for the second season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. in front of a packed Ballroom 20 crowd at Comic-Con. Jeph Loeb, head of Marvel TV, revealed that they’re bringing back in-house favorites to direct the first four episodes of Agent Carter’s eight-episode run, which debuts in 2015. Louis D’Esposito, who directed the Agent Carter one-shot, will direct the first episode, while Captain America: The Winter Soldier directors Joe and Anthony Russo are tapped to helm episodes two and three. Joe Johnston, the director of Captain America: The First Avenger, “wants to do episode four if his schedule allows,” Loeb said.
Hit the jump for more on the Marvel TV panel from Comic-Con.
Back in the modern day, Loeb and S.H.I.E.L.D. co-creators Maurissa Tancharoen and Jed Whedon and executive producer Jeffrey Bell confirmed that Lucy Lawless will be appearing on the show “as a longtime S.H.I.E.L.D. veteran,” a character who has “a knife always by her side, named Isabelle Hartley,” said Tancharoenn. Lawless will be joined by some characters who may be familiar to comics fans: Lance Hunter of S.T.R.I.K.E. will be played by English actor Nick Blood. Bell describes him as a mercenary and says that with S.H.I.E.L.D. in tatters, “Coulson is reaching out everywhere he can — under rocks and in dark corners” for help. Meanwhile, actor Reed Diamond, who will be familiar to Joss Whedon fans from his work on Dollhouse, will be a new threat to Coulson’s team as Hydra agent Daniel Whitehall (a.k.a. — in the comics at least — the Kraken).
A video made exclusively for the panel featuring Patton Oswalt as two more Agent Koenigs also teased the character of Bobbi Morse, alias Mockingbird, who had a message for the newly-promoted Director Coulson: “If he needs her, she’s in.” Whether or not this means Morse will actually appear on the show remains to be seen. The video also appeared to — again, possibly non-canonically — answer questions about the relationship between the Agent Koenigs: the two in the video were Sam and Billy Koenig, apparently brothers to the deceased Eric Koenig (and not, per fan theory, life-model decoys or clones). We’ll see.
The first episode of Agent Carter has not begun filming, although Loeb confirmed that it opens in 1946 and star Hayley Atwell revealed that she has read the script. “I was locked in a room and couldn’t leave till I finished,” she said. Atwell said she was excited about the show because she feels that so far Peggy Carter’s appearances in the Marvel universe “haven’t touched the size of the adventures she could have.” She thinks the show will be an “incredible opportunity to develop her as a human being and as a spy” and that we’ll get to see the “psychological cost” of the work Peggy has to do.
A teaser trailer was aired, made up mostly of voiceover by Peggy and footage from previous films, although there were also flashes of documents and newspaper pages, including two with the headlines STARK INDUSTRIES UNDER INVESTIGATION and HOWARD STARK — TRAITOR. This suggests intriguing things surrounding Dominic Cooper’s character, although Loeb said it would “be fantastic” if Cooper could be on the show, implying that an appearance by Tony Stark’s father has not been confirmed.
Besides revealing parts of its guest star line-up, the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. half of the panel mostly focused on the emotional fallout of team member Grant Ward being revealed to be a Hydra agent. Brett Dalton’s presence on the panel and the general atmosphere of the presentation confirm that Ward will definitely still be a major part of the show, with the implication that a redemption arc is likely for the character. Filming for season two had begun “literally yesterday,” Loeb said, so there was no new footage, but they debuted the season one blooper reel, which will be on the Blu-rays/DVDs released September 9th. Season two premieres September 23rd at a new time of 9 pm with the newly-minted Director Coulson’s team on the run from law enforcement and Hydra agents alike.
When asked for both his own and his character’s reaction to learning of Coulson’s promotion, actor Clark Gregg said, “Coulson and Clark have been merging over time and at that moment both of us said, very loudly in my head, SQUEE.”
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