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ABC has not ordered any new pilots for Marvel-related shows this season

Things are not looking very super for Marvel-related programming over at ABC, as we've recently learned that the network has no plans to order any additional Marvel pilots for this season.

During ABC's panel at the TCA executive session yesterday, ABC president Channing Dungey spoke on Marvel's future at the network, and although a sixth season of AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. looks likely, newer programs appear as if they won't be seeing the light of day - for the moment. In looking at Marvel's ABC slate, it's almost a sure bet that INHUMANS will not be making a return to the network after the show was lambasted by critics and fans alike, which led to an abysmal return in ratings for the modestly-budgeted mutant-alternative program.

In commenting on the sustainability of AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D., Dungey stated that, “Creatively, this season I honestly think is the strongest that it’s ever been, and we’ve been really excited about what the producers are talking about for the second half of the season." Obviously, this bodes well for fans of the long-running Marvel television series, which has seen its share of ups and downs since its 2013 debut. For what it's worth, I think S.H.I.E.L.D. has gotten progressively better each season, with the latest being the show's best by far.

Now, if you'll kindly follow me over to the smoldering dumpster fire that is Marvel's INHUMANS, we can hear what Dungey had to say about the show being a complete disappointment to the network. “It didn’t perform for us at the level that we would have wanted,” Dungey said. “We haven’t made any official decisions yet but I will say the numbers were less exciting for us as we hoped they would be,” offered Dungey.

For the moment, AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. looks to be the only Marvel series returning to ABC next fall as none of the projects Marvel has cooking have received pilot orders thus far. “We developed a couple things this season that we don’t think are going to end up going forward, so we’re going to look really carefully about what we do next,” Dungey admitted.

It sounds to me like ABC and Marvel are being a bit more cautious about giving the green light to projects that don't have a built-in fanbase. Which is a real shame, because it would great to have other Marvel-related TV shows worth getting excited about - but not if the effort to create them is going to be half-assed. In my opinion, INHUMANS is a fantastic property that was squandered by Marvel's lack of confidence in the material. I also believe that, if it were not rushed and short-changed, ABC could have ushered in a whole new fanbase with the mutant-free property.

Oh well, I suppose we'll just have to ship Lockjaw over to a Ms. Marvel show, down the road. After all, a show centered around Kamala Khan would serve to diversify Marvel's TV line. Don't sleep on that opportunity, Marvel, and make sure that you bring G. Willow Wilson on as a creative consultant.

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