In the fourth season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., fans got a rare treat. In one of the best “What if?” scenarios ever presented in television, most members of the team got to experience an alternate universe where they have lived through life without their biggest regret. Within the Framework, this alternate universe, they also got to revisit characters to whom we have said “goodbye” over the years.
The experience offered viewers some much-needed closure with characters that might not have gotten the goodbye that fans felt they deserved. For Brett Dalton‘s Grant Ward, it even offered the character some redemption for his betrayal of the team in previous seasons. As the season came to a close, so did the Framework, which was slowly destroyed by Mallory Jansen‘s final character, Ophelia. With the Framework’s destruction, the characters that existed only in its realm also disappeared.
As much as fans enjoyed this foray into what could have been, it makes sense to wonder if we will see this alternate universe again. While Executive Producer Jed Whedon has said that we have already said our final goodbye to Grant Ward, there was still hope that the Framework could make another appearance in season five. In a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, Executive Producer Jeff Bell is also killing hopes of future resurrections via the Framework.
“Everything we do is based on not wanting to repeat our selves,” EP Jeff Bell says. “We’re trying to tell different kinds of stories and show our characters in different situations. The last thing we want is for people to say, ‘Oh, they’re trotting that thing out again.’ If there were a way to tell a fresh story with something else to say, I think all storytelling is on the table.”
SHIELD definitely found a way to tell fresh stories, hitting a groove in season four with the use of three distinct “Pods” which were wrapped up before breaks. But if you are sad that this virtual reality was all created to never be seen again, know that you aren’t alone. In fact, it has won over the heart of the crew working behind the scenes.
“The Framework opened up a lot of ideas and a lot of possibilities, and our head of post keeps reminding us of that, because he’s the biggest fan of the Framework, and he thinks it should be its own spinoff show,” EP Jed Whedon says.
There is plenty of time before we see what fresh ideas the minds behind Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. are cooking up. While the writers room has already gotten to work, we aren’t going to see season five until after the entirety of The Inhumans airs this fall, on ABC. Until then, what would you like to see if they were to re-enter the Framework? Let us know, in the comments!