When it comes to Marvel television, it could be argued that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was the biggest accomplishment.

While it might not have seen the rave reviews that Netflix offerings like Daredevil or Jessica Jones did or have the ultimate connections to the MCU movies like WandaVision or Loki, the fact that it lasted seven seasons and aired 136 episodes of television might mean it has the most long term staying power as it aired for almost nine months out of the year for seven years straight.

It was the first Marvel television series set in the MCU, managed to outlast the entire Netflix Defenders Saga, and ended right before the Disney+ era series started. It truly kicked off the era of live-action Marvel television fans are still enjoying to this day.

Focusing on a group of S.H.I.E.L.D. agents led by Agent Phil Coulson (Clark Greg) following his death and mysterious resurrection in The Avengers, the series gave viewers a chance to delve more into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, even though the film division never really acknowledged the show.

It introduced a whole new host of original characters that have now become beloved fan favorites, like Agent Melinda May, Jenna Simmons, and Leo Fitz. It also featured plenty of characters from Marvel Comics. While audiences might not have gotten guest appearances by major Avengers, the series dipped its toe into many corners of the Marvel Universe, including the Inhumans, the supernatural, and HYDRA. Here are the ten best Marvel Comics Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. adapted.

10 Madame Hydra

Created by Bob Harras and Paul Neary, First Comic Appearance: Nick Fury vs. S.H.I.E.L.D. #3 (August 1988)

The revelation of HYDRA being inside S.H.I.E.L.D. in Captain America: The Winter Soldier was a major game changer for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. that drastically altered the series early in its first season.

While the threat would fade into the background following season 2’s midseason as the Inhumans storyline took center stage, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. brought back one of the best elements from the comics in the form of the Madame Hydra persona in season 3 by merging the character with Aida, an artificial intelligence character from the comics (created by Mark Gruenwald and Bob Hall and introduced in Squadron Supreme #1.)

Aida was initially introduced as an artificial intelligence assistant for the character of Holden Radcliffe, voiced by Amanda Rea, before getting a physical body, played by Mallory Jansen, who in the series is revealed to be the Life Model Decoy of a woman named Ophelia, a former lover of Radcliffe.

While initially an ally, studying the Darkhold made Mallory go rogue and create an artificial reality known as the framework where she rules under the identity of Ophelia/Madame Hydra.

Madame Hydra is a name that has been held by many in the comics, including this version’s original namesake, Ophelia Sarkissian (who appeared as her original Viper persona in 2013’s The Wolverine), and even Contessa Valentina Allegra de la Fontaine, who now appears in MCU played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

Yet, combining these three different elements, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was able to deliver a classic version of the Madame Hydra persona that neither The Wolverine nor it looks like future MCU films Thunderbolts* will be able to provide.

9 Lash

Created by Charles Soule and Joe Madureira, First Comic Appearance: Inhuman #1 (June 2014)

Shortly after Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. premiered, Marvel began making a big push for the Inhumans in the comics as a replacement for the X-Men, given they did not have the film rights to the characters.

This is why Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. seasons two and three heavily feature Inhumans as part of their story, as it was laying the groundwork for the planned MCU Inhumans movie that was canceled and then turned into an ABC series.

One of the new characters to emerge from this Inhuman push in the comics was Lash, who debuted in the season 3 premiere in September 2015, a little over one year after his comic debut.

In the comics, Lash’s identity is not revealed, but the creators of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. revealed halfway through season 3 that the character was Andrew Garner (Blair Underwood), who was brought into season 2 and was the ex-husband of the character Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen).

Both comic book and television show versions of Lash search for and kill every unworthy Inhuman without prejudice, but the series deals with the duality as Andrew is not in control of his other persona, making him a tragic character. Matt Willig plays the physical form of Lash in a very impressive prosthetic suit.

In an age where most massive characters are brought to life with CGI, seeing an old-fashioned guy in a suit done well makes Lash one of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D’s best adaptations.

8 Absorbing Man

Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, First Comic Appearance: Journey into Mystery #114 (March 1965)

Absorbing Man is a classic Marvel villain and has been both a foe of Thor and The Hulk. Carl “Crusher” Creel has the power to absorb and become any material he touches and is loosely adapted in 2003’s Hulk, mixing the character of Brian Banner with The Absorbing Man. When Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. returned for season 2, it kicked off its premiere by featuring Absorbing Man (Brian Patrick Wade) to showcase that the series could feature some beloved classic Marvel villains.

While Absorbing Man is traditionally depicted as a villain, he did undergo a journey to become an anti-hero in the comics that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. follow. While originally a villain working for HYDRA and was subject to experiments by the organization, it is revealed he was brainwashed into working for them. He breaks from his brainwashing and defects to the U.S. government, becomes a bodyguard for Glenn Talbot, and tries to go on the path of straight and narrow.

While he is used by HYDRA in season 5, he does break free from them and saves Phil Coulson’s life, giving this character who entered as a villain a heroic ending before he dies.

Related: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Cast: Where They Are Today

7 Graviton

Created by Jim Shooter and Sal Buscema, First Comic Appearance: The Avengers #158 (April 1977)

Graviton is one of the most powerful villains in the Marvel universe, one often associated with the Avengers, and even was the first villain the team fought in the animated series Avengers: Earth Mightiest Heroes. Franklin Hall was a scientist who gained the ability to control gravity, becoming the villainous Graviton.

He was introduced all the way back in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.‘s third episode, played by Ian Hart (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone), with the episode ending with Hall being stuck inside a substance known as gravitonium.

Apart from a brief scene in season 1 showcasing the gravitonium, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. moved onto other storylines and villains, and it appeared this would be a plot point that would remain unresolved until they merged the character of Graviton with another character from the series.

Another long-term recurring antagonist/ally on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.was Colonel Glenn Talbot (Adrian Pasdar), who is mostly associated with the Hulk comics and was previously played by Josh Lucas in the 2003 Hulk film by Ang Lee.

In the fifth season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., which was written to be the final season if they did not get renewed, Talbot infuses himself with the gravitonium and gains the consciousness of Hall. Talbot adopts the person of Graviton, and from the facial hair he had been sporting since his first appearance to the outfit, he looks more like Graviton than Hart’s depiction did, and his powers possibly being able to stop Thanos is a great showcase of how powerful he is.

Had Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. ended with season 5, it would have gone out by having the final villain be a plot point they set all the way back at the beginning of the series.

6 Hive

Created by Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev, First Comic Appearance: Secret Warriors #2 (May 2009)

Season 3 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was where they went full force into the Inhumans story, and they revealed a drastic change to the MCU mythology. They revealed that HYDRA was not, in fact, started in World War II by the Red Skull, but instead was an ancient society that worshiped the Inhuman being known as Hive, evolving over the years to become HYDRA.

While this is a tweak from the comics where Hive was an experiment created by HYDRA, both characters are infected HYDRA agents. In the case of the series, the show finally upgraded Grant Ward, who was originally part of the series’ main cast before being revealed to be a secret HYDRA agent, into the show’s big bad and gave his storyline a proper ending.

The Hive storyline was unfolding on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 3, which aired from 2015 to 2016, and the season finale aired May 17, 2016, ten days before the release of X-Men: Apocalypse. Hive very much seemed to be modeled on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to be the Inhuman version of Apocalypse, and the similarities between the two are hard to ignore.

Both are ancient beings who have been worshiped for years, transferring consciousness from host to host and are able to corrupt individuals, which then turns them into loyal followers. This certainly was the most blatant attempt of grafting the Inhumans onto an X-Men story, but when compared to X-Men: Apocalypse, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. did an almost identical storyline better but on a television budget.

5 Yo-Yo

Created by Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev, First Comic Appearance: The Mighty Avengers #13 (July 2008)

Yo-Yo Rodriguez, who also goes by the name Slingshot, is a Columbian woman who possesses super speed that, when used, returns her to the place she started. In the comics she was a member of the Secret Warriors, a S.H.I.E.L.D comic book that was adapted into season 3 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Here, the team was reimagined as an Inhuman-led team backed by S.H.I.E.L.D., where Yo-Yo was introduced, played by Natalia Cordova-Buckley. Another significant development from the comics was that she got both of her arms cut off and then replaced them with cybernetic arms, a storyline that unfolded in season 5.

While originally only a guest star for season 3, Cordova-Buckley’s Yo-Yo performance proved so popular that she became a recurring character in season 4 before being upgraded to a full-season regular from season 5 onward. Fans loved her romantic relationship with Mack (Henry Simmons) and her mischievous personality.

There was also the great development of her not being able to speak English when she was first introduced, slowly learning it to ground the fantastical series in that not everybody would naturally speak English. In 2016, the character was given her own web series, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Slingshot, in a six-episode story that took place before season 4. Yo-Yo is a great Marvel hero who should be reintroduced into the MCU.

4 Bobbi Morris/Mockingbird

Created by Len Wein and Neal Adams, First Comic Appearance: Astonishing Tales #6 (June 1971)

While Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. premiered with a team based on original characters, season 2 decided to introduce fan-favorite S.H.I.E.L.D. agents with Bobbi Morse, aka Mockingbird, played by Adriane Palicki. Mockingbird was one of Marvel’s most famous heroes, having been a member of the Avengers, a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, and for many years in the comics occupied the role that Black Widow fills in the movies.

Palicki’s performance as Mockingbird was so well regarded there were plans to give her and the character of Lance Hunter (her ex-husband in the series) their own spin-off titled Marvel’s Most Wanted, but the series sadly never got picked up.

She never appeared on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. again, and while fans have been hoping to see Palicki reprise her role as Bobbi Morse in the MCU in the future, the reveal that Clint Barton’s wife, Laura Barton (Linda Cardellini), was, in fact, a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent known as Agent 13 (another alias of Morse’s),, could complicate matters.

3 Ghost Rider (Robbie Reyes)

Created by Felipe Smith and artist Tradd Moore, First Comic Appearance: All-New Ghost Rider #1 (March 2014)

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 4 wanted to shake things up a bit, having just wrapped up their major HYDRA and Inhumans storyline that had been running for three years. They decided to dip their toes into the Marvel supernatural world ahead of the release of Doctor Strange, so they decided to bring in one of Marvel’s most famous heroes: Ghost Rider.

Yet it would not be the popular Johnny Blaze version that was previously played by Nicolas Cage in the two Ghost Rider films. Likely due to wanting to save Johnny Blaze for a feature film, Marvel Television instead brought in the Robbie Reyes version of the character in the series Ghost Rider, played by Gabriel Luna.

Since Robbie Reyes was a new character, having been introduced two years before he made it onto television, the series instead uses the basics of the character’s backstory of being a Mexican-American mechanic taking care of his brother and whose main vehicle is a car while giving him a more traditional Ghost Rider background.

In the comics, Reyes is not possessed by a spirit of vengeance but instead by the spirit of his uncle Eli Morrow, while in the show, he got part of the Spirit of Vengeance from Johnny Blaze, and his uncle is one of the main villains in season 4. Also, the series gives Reyes the traditional Ghost Rider burning skull, whereas, in the comics, it is a helmet.

However, taking the basic elements of Robbie Reyes and giving him the traditional Ghost Rider hallmarks makes him the best live-action depiction of any Ghost Rider.

Related: Which Ghost Rider Should be Featured in the MCU?

2 Mister Hyde

Created by Stan Lee and Don Heck, First Comic Appearance: Journey into Mystery #99 (December 1963)

The mystery of Skye/Daisy Johnson/Quake’s father was teased in the season 1 finale of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. A shadowy figure with blood dripping from his hands showed he was a villain, and this sent fans into rabid speculation. Kyle MacLachlan joined the cast as a mysterious character known as “Doctor” who was then revealed to be Calvin Johnson, a reimaging of Calvin Zabo aka Mister Hyde, the father of Quake in the comics.

Named after the novel Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jeykll and Mr. Hyde, the character in both the comics and the series is a scientist who takes a special formula that transforms him into a super strong and powerful individual.

While Mister Hyde might not be one of the biggest Marvel villains, the depiction of him in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is an adaptation at its finest.

Similar to Spider-Man 2 transforming Doc Ock from a classic Silver Age comic book villain into a complex character, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.‘s version of Mister Hyde keeps the basic tenets of the character while giving him new levels of depth as his transformation is motivated from feeling he let down his wife and daughter. In the end, he ends up showing that his love for his daughter truly is his biggest motivator and will do anything to protect her, even at a major cost to him.

This is all wonderfully played by Kyle MacLachlan, giving Calvin Johnson warmth and vulnerability while the Mister Hyde person a sense of dangerous and over-the-top scenery-chewing performance in the best way possible.

1 Quake

Created by Brian Michael Bendis and artist Gabriele Dell’Otto, First Comic Appearance: Secret War #2 (July 2004)

One of the greatest tricks Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. ever did during its entire run was pulling off the trick of doing a stealth superhero origin. Introduced as Skye in the series pilot played by Chloe Bennet, the mystery of her birth parents was something many fans speculated about. This led to the assumption that she was going to be revealed as another Marvel character.

This mystery was finally answered mid-way through season 2 when the show revealed her birth name, Daisy Johnson, which made her the MCU version of the hero Quake, and shortly after, she got the powers that allowed her to create powerful vibrations that can produce effects resembling those of earthquakes.

Since Daisy Johnson is the narrator in the pilot episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the series is very much her personal journey, acting as both an origin story for the character, her learning her powers and adopting her Quake persona, and finally becoming one of the strongest heroes in the Marvel Universe.

The fact that Marvel was able to misdirect audiences for so long, hiding a fan-favorite character under the guise of an original character for so long, was an incredible accomplishment, but what is even greater is how much Daisy Johnson was developed as a character.

Her role on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was the most attention the character had been given, and due to the popularity of the series, many elements from this version of Quake later bleed into the comics, like changing her into an Inhuman. Fans have been hoping to see Quake return to the MCU movies, and she could appear in plenty of projects.

“}]] Agents of Shield adapted plenty of characters from Marvel Comics, and these were the best ones all 7 seasons.  Read More