“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” is bringing back a familiar face. Cobie Smulders will return to the show after she wraps “Avengers: Age of Ultron.” This confirmation comes right after Lucy Lawless was announced as a guest star.
Smulders appeared as Agent Maria Hill in the pilot episode and in episode 20 of the drama’s first season.
"We have plans to bring her in and see her," executive producer Jed Whedon confirmed to E! Online.
Last time viewers saw Agent Hill, she was working for Tony Stark and being followed by the U.S. government (because S.H.I.E.L.D. had been deemed a terrorist organization). She helped the team take down Hydra, but don’t expect her to permanently join Coulson’s team. She seemed pretty content working for Stark.
Check out a clip of what Maria was doing when the S.H.I.E.L.D. team last ran into her:
When Maria visits, expect her to spend some time with Coulson. Executive producer Jeffrey Bell said, "She fits really nicely on the show and has good chemistry with Coulson and the others."
Hill might be helping Coulson deal with his new position as director of S.H.I.E.L.D. After all, Hill was Director Fury’s right-hand woman. Executive producer Maurissa Tancharoen teased that the new position won’t make Coulson’s life any easier. “As director, he'll be faced with some tough decisions, harder decisions than he had to make as an agent," Tancharoen told TV Guide. "We'll see the emotional consequences of that and we'll see the shifts in dynamics between the characters because of that."
Coulson’s emotional stress might be due to more than just a new position. No one knows how the alien serum that brought him back from the dead, GH-325, is going to affect Coulson. Agent Hill will likely be another set of eyes for Fury to watch Coulson’s behavior. That doesn’t mean Coulson will trust her, and fans can't be sure he even wants her back. Phil will have a lot of issues trusting people after Hydra’s infiltration, and he might be looking for agents who have never been affiliated with the agency before.
If Coulson does trust Maria and lets her join the new S.H.I.E.L.D. organization, what will she tell Tony? Will an Avenger finally learn that Coulson isn’t dead? Hoping for an Iron Man guest appearance might be a stretch, but it’s always a possibility.
“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” will return to ABC on Tuesday, Sept. 23, at 9 p.m. EDT.