Earlier this month, I wrote a one shot concerning Agent Carter‘s season two ratings, and the possible future of the series. At the time, many believed it was too early to suggest that the series wouldn’t return for a third season, and that, given that it was a Marvel show, it was highly likely that ABC would continue to air the series, even with the continual decline of viewers. (As noted in the one shot, the second season hasn’t even been doing great in delayed viewings – an area where Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. succeeds, as did the first season of Agent Carter.) However, as I stated, with the terrible ratings (both live & delayed), it seemed improbable that ABC would bring the series back for a third season, despite it being a Marvel series. After all, while they’ll continue to air the rest of the second season as it has already wrapped production and is currently filling S.H.I.E.L.D.’s time-slot until March, it’s more than likely they’ll make an announcement in May that they will not be bringing the series back for a third season. Something that seems far more likely with reports that series star Hayley Atwell has just been cast in a new ABC pilot titled Conviction.
Deadline has reported that the actress has just been cast in the lead role as – ironically – a character that also happens to be named Carter and works as the head of the Conviction Integrity Unit. Even more interesting? There’s a small Marvel connection! The series was created by Liz Friedman (Marvel’s Jessica Jones), who wrote the pilot script, and Liz Friedlander (The Following).
Now, along with the news that Atwell was cast in the pilot, Deadline has reported that should Agent Carter be picked up for a third season, they’ll be able to work it out so that Atwell can do both shows without issue. Although, as Deadline notes, a season three pick-up does not look likely at the moment.
Agent Carter, now in its second cycle, is drawing pretty modest ratings and does not look likely for a Season 3 pickup. In case of a series order for Conviction and an improbable renewal of the Marvel drama, ABC sources indicate there is a scenario in which she could possibly do both shows, potentially both as limited runs. But Atwell’s casting as the lead of a new project by the same network and studio indicate that Agent Carter is probably going away, and they want to keep its star on its roster of leading ladies.
Does this mean a third season is still possible? Well, even though the trades are reporting it’s possible for Atwell to do both shows should Agent Carter score a third season renewal, it is looking unlikely for now. Unlike other networks, ABC generally doesn’t like to announce renewals and cancellations prior to May, so even if they do cancel the series before then, it’s highly doubtful they’ll confirm it until then.
One possibility I mentioned in my previous one shot was that, should ABC decide not to pick-up Agent Carter for a third season, it’s possible the show could end up on Netflix. Now, this isn’t saying it’ll happen, of course, but it’s something that could be considered by the network. After all, they have a working relationship with the streaming service, as they produce the Marvel Netflix shows for the service, and ABC Studios head Paul Lee has hinted that there’s a possibility of shows in development finding a home there should the network decide to pass on them.
For now, while we await an official announcement from ABC regarding the show’s future, we can enjoy the rest of the fantastic second season when the show airs Tuesday nights on ABC.