Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. returns to Channel 4 in March

News Louisa Mellor 8 Jan 2014 - 13:35

UK fans of Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. will have to wait until March for the rest of season one's episodes...

The short lag-time between the US and UK airings of Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D., which began within days of one another last September, was an initial boon to UK viewers. No, it wasn't quite as timely as Netflix releasing new Breaking Bad episodes over here mere hours after they'd aired in the states, but it was fun to be able to stay legally up to date at the beginning.

The problems of course, kicked in when trying to mesh a US TV schedule, with its mid-season finales and hiatus periods, with one in the UK. S.H.I.E.L.D. returned to ABC in the US this week, but there was no sign of it on Channel 4's January schedules.

We asked Channel 4 when UK viewers could expect to see the next episode of S.H.I.E.L.D. (which received a full 22-episode season order back in October), and here's their reply:

"SHIELD will be returning to Channel 4 most likely in March (exact date tbc). This is so that we can air the remainder of the series at one episode a week with no more breaks in between episodes."

We'll bring you an exact date as soon as one is confirmed.

Read our spoiler-filled reviews of the first season so far, here.

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Don't bother. Give us more John Snow and Peep Show. Rhyme.

it makes sense to show the remaining episodes without breaks but they will lose viewers because a lot of people will just watch it online after it's aired in the US.

Did you accidentally omit the end of the sentence?

This is so that we can air the remainder of the series at one episode a week with no more breaks in between episodes...but to lower viewing figures and advertising revenue as those that want to watch it asap after US transmission will download it instead."

I personally would rather have it asap with breaks.

Oh well, unlucky Channel 4. Looks like I'll be downloading it to watch. Bet it gets lower viewing figures precisely because of the way you're showing it.

I'm in the States and just watched the new episode of SHIELD last night.
Yaaaaaaawwwwnnn! NOT worth the wait

Channel 4 smells of poo and wee!

Back before the torrents, SKY used to wait until they could show all of Buffy/Angel in a full run without breaks.

Does anyone know how well Shield has been doing for Channel Four? If people are losing interest at the rate they have on this site then I wouldn't be surprised if we see a very late start to the run and then a quick (ie two episodes in a row) burn through the remainder. Talking of late starting seasons, and reminded by the picture above, when is the new season of HIMYM starting on E4? I'm getting sick of (out of sequence) repeats.

The show will lose viewers as those who really like the show will just download it while those who just watched out of curiosity will probably just not bother with it anymore, then no doubt it will get moved in the schedule before it ends up in a 1am graveyard slot on a Sunday night while Channel 4 continue to show programs like "Benefit claimers are scum of the earth" and "My wife has a 10 foot penis"

The problem for Channel 4 is they're dammed either way. Some people will complain about the breaks, but others complain if it's held back... Personally I wouldn't mind it with the breaks, but I'm okay with waiting.

I'm firmly in the "no breaks" camp. It's really annoying never knowing whether it's on or not in any given week and it really screws up Sky+ (other PVRs are available) which is not good for folks on shift work.

This extended break means we don't get an answer for the whole "What happened to Coulson in Tahiti?" mystery for a little while longer. This is a welcome postponement of a potentially-underwhelming revelation that removes our nice notions that Tahiti is a magical place...

Yes, and some people made a nice little business selling VCD disks of the downloaded US episodes on Ebay... -_-

Would be better to have it soon after US, but really, this is the fault of the US September-May format.

obviously then-- you know to stay off of US based/US fan filled message & discussion boards re: SHIELD, since we FINALLY got the answer to the Coulson mystery last night--FYI: for what its worth--I didnt find it underwhelming

*Nods then shields his eyes, puts finger in his ears and repeats the distracting mantra "Tahiti is a magical place!" over and over and over until March...*

Morons. You took a TV show based on a single hanging question, then you leave us with 2 months between the cliff-hanger and reveal while the US waits 2 WEEKS?! You realise the spoilers will be everywhere by then? And that this automatically destroys the viewing experience for us? Channel 4, please take note that in this day and age, this sort of thing is inexcusable, you should be factoring the existence of the internet nowadays and how it affects your viewers.
I'm disappointed, now I'll have to try, deeply in vain most likely, to avoid the spoilers until march, or to just look them up, as I have had the information at my fingertips from the moment the episode was shown anywhere.
I would say that this is yet another screw you to overseas viewers from the US, (this delay is completely unjustified now in the days of online forums) but it isn't, it's down to Channel 4 this time, who fail to understand exactly why we watch shows like this and why they bother showing them to us, and to follow a story as it happens is one of the main reasons.

can't you use 4od?

It's either that or air like two episodes, then take another two week gap, then air another episode, then a three week gap, then two more... Channel 4 understands that the best way to air a TV series is with some sense of regularity, not airing twelve episodes spread out over 6 months.

Now, if the American networks would just go ahead and air their episodes weekly without inexplicable gaps we wouldn't be in this mess. Channel 4 are making the right decision to maintain their viewing audience over the course of the run.

The people who download it would likely have downloaded it in the 3 day window between broadcasts anyway. Channel 4 want to keep their viewers over the 12 week run, and British viewers are used to a show airing weekly from premiere to finale (I know, fickle, right?).

I watched it. Agent Coulson... is BATMAN.

I am on this side of the world and I can tell you that I wish yous guys had it. Sorry, mates.

Haaaaaaaaaaaaa! ............... oh you!

Ok, so that might not have been the most mature of critiques, but I laughed.

aw..i don't have full time internet so i have to wait, witch makes me sad, as i love the show. :(

People weren't prepared for the short wait anyhow, even though it was a couple of days.

Does anyone know when it'll be available on iTunes in the UK? It's usually the Saturday after it airs on Channel 4 but wondering if this is going to impact it.

Well, that just suckes for the British. It's a strong rumour that the last 3 or 4 episodes of season 1 will be linked to "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" which will premiere at the end of March/beginning of April. The series just might not be up to speed then.

Maybe, maybe not but they definitely wont be waiting 3 months

Which would be more annoying, waiting 2(!) more months, or not knowing when a new episode would air?

Waiting 2 months, i used to wait a year for Dexter when it was on Fx then i decided whats the point when you can watch them online now, the last season was only one week behind the US and i didnt mind waiting a week but id happily put up with the gaps as at least you know youre not that far behind

UK television has bad experiences of trying to mirror US hiatus scheduling. A couple of years ago Sky bought Glee and promised to show it all 'just days after the states'. The whole thing was such a calamity that by the mid-season break they'd given up and just went back to what Channel 4 is now choosing to do.

No sympathy for Sky. I used to watch Glee and Lost before they snaffled them from C4.

They paid lots more than C4 and got less viewers. Sky lost out, viewers lost out and so did the tv production companies with ultimately less merchandise, lunch boxes etc.. sold.

The majority of people who watch it on television will be people who don't download anyway, and likely are more casual viewers who don't keep track of American broadcast schedules. Therefore, the best way for them to watch it will be to start with the first episode of the run and tune it at the same time every week for the next 11 weeks.

Most of the people who keep track of the broadcast dates online will be people who download/stream anyway. This is the best way to keep up viewing figures for Channel 4 for the duration of the run (although I expect 4od will see a loss; again, the people who watch online are more likely to be the people who are fine streaming illegally instead).

Ridiculously stupid. I didn't mind the breaks. I knew I was in time with the story with the U.S. viewers and I didn't mind watching it as it aired. I'll be online now. I love how Channel 4 think that they're doing us a favour by saying 'they'lll air the episodes with no breaks' like that's the issue.

Not the issue. They'll be losing viewing figures. They're not maintaining a lot of us viewers. I'd rather be caught up and wait then be unable to discuss it but watch it week after week.

can only speak for myself obviously but if its in same week i wont download it as i try to support the better transmissions dates, but now its such a long break then im gonna watch sooner

Well, that's obviously the gamble they're taking. I know quite a few people (less internet bound) who watch the show on Channel 4 but don't tend to keep track of it online. For them, this is a much better system.

So true it hurts :D

Seriously? Jesus, and they wonder why people turn to torrents. There's a reason it's called the worldwide web. it's because it connects the world and makes the time you used to have to wait, due to there being no alternative, pointless.

I was quite happy to deal with a couple of days lag, but this is ridiculous. I've already been spoilered (which is how I realised it had started up again in the US). I really don't want to download, to be honest I probably will end up not watching and just reading the fic summaries.

Really, really angry with Channel 4 right now. When I heard it was coming out in the US I purposely didn't get too excited because I thought it wouldn't come to us at all, and then of course was delighted when it did. Avoiding twitter for a couple of days,and fandom, wasn't too hard after all, but this-! Better they'd just never bothered showing it in the first place.

Oh I have zero sympathy for Sky either :P I was just trying to say that the only time I can think of a British broadcasting channel attempting to mirror US scheduling ended badly. While tech-savvy people are bound to find other ways to watch it, the majority of them probably weren't watching it on Channel 4 in the first place.

at the cost of ruining the Coulson plotline for us, we now need to go 2 months without stumbling across it online, which when you have an interest in the marvel movies is nearly impossible, I've already half ruined for myself it by reading an article on iron man 3.
I'd rather they actually paid attention to the storyline and scheduled the gap (if there absolutely must be one) so that it doesn't negate so much of the show.

RTÉ Two in Ireland resume airing the series on January 19th at 20:10

But the problem is, as I said, the American networks broadcast it with the gaps. Channel 4 don't want gaps in their broadcast run (I'm not at all sure why America does), but if you look at drama seasons in America it's common for them to air maybe half a dozen episodes in January, February, March and April, only resuming regular runs in May. Channel 4 are obviously allowing for that, and so are delaying the premiere accordingly, so that the finales will likely air at the same time.

Again, they're banking on most of their TV audience being people who don't download anyway, and so this is a safe bet for them. I only know a few people who watch the show, but they all watch it on Channel 4 and none of them keep up with the show's information on the internet, so this is the best scenario for them. This way when it does come back they'll know where to find it every week.

It doesn't screw up Sky+.
Some channels have the series link setup properly and can handle gaps in the schedule. So it is possible,

I would much rather have them soon after the US.
If you want to watch them without breaks then just record them on Sky+ and watch them whenever you want.

Then why not use their online player, 4 on demand, to release the episodes as they air in real time, while also showing the episodes in a row when they can be back to back? that way everyone's happy, they did early releases for misfits last year.

Can someone explain in English why this happened? What's a "mid-season finale" and "hiatus period" when they're at home? I've read the article above and it tells me nothing. If the remainder of the episodes are available and are now being screened in the US why don't C4 have them as before?

It's a shame really. I prefer the higher quality and by the looks of the comments here I was in the minority of people who waited for the C4 broadcast to watch in HD now with this news I will be joining the others and watching online. Good work C4...

Ugh, all this wait for my favourite series, shield, doctor who, under the dome, atlantis.....its killing me,

Mid season finale is like a finale, but halfway through a season. It ends on a cliffhanger with many unanswered questions then its not on again for weeks to a few months, to air other things. Thats what c4 might be doing, they planned on using their friday slots for something else till march

I knew it......

You do know iron man 3 came out in uk a week before it did in the us right?

Channel 4 are idiots. Normally me and the missus use Sky to record each episode, as it's easier than torrenting, but this is screwing UK viewers over seriously hard. Feck off, Channel 4, I'm downloading it, a two month wait is ridiculous.

you do know that waiting one week for one film is not the same as two months for one episode, also did you know that in the UK we need to wait on average 3 months for a series to debut, sometimes even up to a year? oh, and also you get all our BBC and ITV programs in the same week as over here if not the same night. And since it's an American production you have no one to blame for Iron man 3's release than your own industry?
it's a massive double standard that we shouldn't have to put up with over here.

Ok cool - thanks Kyle. So totally C4's fault then. I watched Ep11 on a streaming site last night so C4 have already lost out.

This is why TV on demand is so important. So many people will just torrent this now. Then viewing figures will look lower and the papers will shout about how its becoming a flop

My industry? Yes! Lets blame a UK industry, seriously, you assumed im from the US, lol. I agree its unfair that we have to wait for their programs when they get ours at the same time, also they took a step further when they decided that torchwood should be americanized and strip it of its british tv series status.......and we had to wait in the uk for yeah, the industry over there are morons, and so is ours at times

To be fair, the tv series should not go on about what happens in the films, it kind of nearly spoiled thor for me, and ive still yet to see it

Love the fact your all saying that people who want to watch the series will download it, making ratings go down, therefore the programme not been made anymore?

We can't win in situations like this. We just have to wait it out so they make more episodes

I have not spoken to one person who has said they are prepared to wait for Channel 4 to get their act together. Everyone I know who watches it has decided to download it so they can keep up with the discussions and avoid any spoilers. In this digital age it is a complete joke that we are expected to wait so long. Channel 4 are being so vague that I do not even have confidence that they will ever show it! If I wanted to watch it with no breaks I could save it on my Sky+ or Tivo I do not need them dictate this too me. Their excuse is lame.

Wish I had checked DoG first...just spent 20 mins mucking around on 4OD to try and find Ep11 having thought my V+ had messed up :(

well seeing as their NOT broadcasting it for fans who r sick of waiting for t.v excecs to get the finger out and broadcast programmes that actually produce ratings, like marvel agents of shield, i'm jumping the gun an watching u.s t.v online. why wait!!!!!!

Does anybody know when it coming on google play ?

These Tv delays for the UK have gotten so ridiculous I watch all of my shows on the internet the day after they are aired in the US. Most shows are nearly finishing in the US before we even get a sniff of them

This show will loose its viewers because its thus far been a major flop. everyone expected much bigger things. i will continue the season but its not atall worth the download

I initially was frustrated by Channel 4, all the way up until 20 minutes ago, but now having realised that currently we're only 3 episodes behind (and the first episode aired on January 7th!), I'm more okay with it. The breaks have been HUGE. So long as they air the episode coinciding with Winter Soldier fresh, I don't believe I will have anymore problems with this.

I just wish Channel 4 communicated this reason better with us!

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