All season, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has co-existed alongside the Marvel cinematic universe with very limited character crossover into the television realm. Continuity was handled mostly in allusions, with a few brief visits from characters such as Nick Fury and Lady Sif. Fans that have been clamoring for more will get their wish during the April 29 episode “Nothing Personal” when Maria Hill, portrayed by Cobie Smulders, returns to Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
After the events of Captain America: The Winter Soldier changed everything we thought we knew about S.H.I.E.L.D., it’s difficult to imagine that the show could go on without an appearance by the highest ranking agent that didn’t go over to the dark side, die, or disappear on purpose.
With Fury off the grid and S.H.I.E.L.D.’s infrastructure toppled, there are few high ranking agents remaining. Though by the end of Winter Soldier, it’s implied that Hill has made a very different choice than Coulson about how to move forward in the aftermath of Hydra’s resurgence.
AoS Executive Producer Jeffery Bell provides some insight about what to expect from a Hill and Coulson reunion.
I think, Maria being the high level person she was, takes the long view. I guess she’s very pragmatic, or [at least] playing pragmatic. So when she shows up and we know that she’s [working] for Stark Industries, in a certain way I think she’s looking for a fresh start and a new way for her to help [the world], a new way for her to be involved, a new way for her to do good. But I think it’s a great opportunity for her and Coulson to be in some conflict because he’s the guy who doesn’t want to let go, and she’s the one that’s clearly moved on.
The pair likely don’t see eye to eye about the future of the agency and how best to counter Hydra. Add to this that Coulson will be facing another person he considered a trusted friend, who also knew about T.A.H.I.T.I. but kept the truth from him, at a time when loyalties are being tested all around him.
There are few other details about Maria Hill’s role in the episode or in the remaining Marvel movies of her nine film contract. The character was given a larger presence in Winter Soldier, and her particularly close ties to the show make her a logical choice to be a recurring link between the television and cinematic worlds moving forward.
With How I Met Your Mother coming to an end, Cobie Smulders has freed up some space in her schedule too. The producers have been vocally optimistic about the possibility of Hill as a recurring guest star, provided the show is renewed for a second season.
The post-Winter Soldier episode made a compelling case for the fully realized potential of this show when it’s playing to its strengths, so a series renewal looks better than ever. With a few more solid episodes and -SPOILER!- at least two more anticipated cameos (next week we’ll meet Coulson’s cellist and Samuel L. Jackson confirmed he’ll be returning in the May 13 season finale), we hope to see more Maria Hill in season two.
Check out the gallery below for a preview of Hill in “Nothing Personal,” which will air on April 29.
Maria Hill Returns to Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
MARVEL'S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. - "Nothing Personal" - Just when there's no one left to trust, Agent Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) -- from "Marvel's The Avengers" and "Marvel's Captain America: The Winter Solider" -- returns to team up with Coulson as S.H.I.E.L.D. is being destroyed around them, on "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.," TUESDAY, APRIL 29 (8:00-9:01 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network. (ABC/Kelsey McNeal) COBIE SMULDERS, CLARK GREGG