“I’m excited about the show because it’s a very hopeful show,” Whedon told TVLine Sunday at the 2013 Streamy Awards, where he was nominated for best guest appearance (in Husbands). “It’s not about murder, and it’s not about crime, and it’s not people looking into their own belly buttons. It’s about people who are trying to help each other, and that’s one of the things I loved about comic books. They had costumes and the villains were cool [but] they stood for something, and I like doing a show that does that.”
In addition to being very hopeful (and “very Joss,” as ABC boss Paul Lee has said), Marvel’s S.H.I.E.L.D. — not surprisingly — will very strongly evoke its source material. “We’re trying very hard to be true to [Marvel’s] ethos and also to the structure of their universe,” Whedon shared. “So it is definitely a Marvel show.”
That said, Whedon says to expect “not a ton” of familiar faces from the Marvel-verse, though “there’s a little bit of talk of that” for any possible future the project has in primetime. “Right now, I want to involve people in the characters that we’ve created for the show,” Whedon said, “and then we’ll worry about [the other stuff].”
Currently, the cast for S.H.I.E.L.D. — which wrapped filming on the pilot last week and is being fast-tracked by ABC — includes ER alum Ming-Na (as former soldier Melinda May), Clark Gregg (reprising his big-screen Avengers role as Agent Phil Coulson), Nashville’s Chloe Bennet (playing superhero culture-obsessed Skye), British beauty Elizabeth Henstridge (science expert Gemma Simmons), Scotsman Iain De Caestecker (tech whiz Leo Fitz) and Brett Dalton (rising star Agent Grant).