Pilot is the first episode of the television series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.. It was shown for the first time at San Diego Comic-Con on July 18, 2013, but officially premiered on September 24, 2013.
Michael Peterson (J. August Richards) is out with his son Ace (Ajani Wrighster), when an explosion erupts from the top floor of a nearby building. He climbs up the outside of the building by punching holes in the brickwork and enters through a flaming window. As the crowd looks on, Peterson jumps from the top floor whilst holding a woman (Shannon Lucio) in his arms. Watching him is Skye (Chloe Bennet), who films him on her smart phone.
Meanwhile, Agent Grant Ward is in Paris, France and pulls off a caper in which he steals fingerprints from a glass, uses them to break into a fireplace/safe and manages to fight off the hostiles that appear and quickly escape on a helicopter. Shortly after, at a secret S.H.I.E.L.D. base, Ward talks with Agent Maria Hill about the presence of beings with supernatural powers, including the Hulk, Captain America, and Thor.
Suddenly, Agent Phil Coulson, whom Ward considered dead, enters the room and reveals that Nick Fury faked Coulson’s death in order to bring a group of superheroes now known as the Avengers together to save the planet. Coulson was sent to a grass shack in Tahiti, where he got a little time off, but he is now more than happy to be back on the job. Coulson welcomes Ward to "level 7", explaining that the Avengers only have level 6 clearance and that the team's mission is to investigate a hacker group called the Rising Tide.
Coulson visits Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen), who had retired from field duty, and convinces her to join the team.
Skye meets with Peterson and warns him about S.H.I.E.L.D., saying that they cover up superhero based events. Later as she broadcasts alone from her van as Rising Tide, Coulson opens the door and arrests her. He takes her back to a mobile S.H.I.E.L.D. base on board a plane called the Bus.
Coulson and Ward question Skye, but she is uncooperative and mentions something called "Centipede" which neither of the agents had heard of.
In order to gain her trust, Coulson injects Ward with the QNB-T16 Truth Serum and allows Skye to question him. With her trust gained, she reveals where she filmed Peterson and Coulson sends Agents Leo Fitz (Iain De Caestecker) and Jemma Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) to investigate the scene of the explosion. Utilizing specialized equipment, they discover an artifact in the debris and take it back to the base to investigate. Peterson returns to the factory he used to work at, and angrily injures his former boss Gary (Bob Stephenson), saying that he was the "bad guy" and Peterson was the "hero".
Peterson visits the woman he saved in the hospital, and it is revealed that she was the doctor who implanted the same artifact into his left forearm. He wants to go public, but she says that her backers wouldn't like that. He claims this is all his origin story and jumps from the hospital window.
Fitz and Simmons investigate the Centipede Device and find that it is a combination of all known causes of super powers including: alien technology, Gamma Radiation, the Super Soldier Serum, and Extremis. Meanwhile they reproduce footage from the crime scene using the flash memory of a video camera and the audio recorded by Skye who had bugged the lab. They discover that the explosion was caused by an angry man (Aaron Behr) exploding due to Extremis. The man had the device implanted in his forearm, which they recognize on Peterson due to video footage of his attack at the factory.
Skye returns to her van with Melinda May to send the audio as the encryption was tied to the geolocation. Peterson abducts her and makes her delete his information from the government's systems. At the same time she hacks into S.H.I.E.L.D. systems to inform them.
Peterson and Skye are tracked down to a train station by Coulson's team and a gunman sent by Peterson's doctor. May takes out the gunman and Coulson talks Peterson down long enough for Ward to shoot him with the Night-Night Gun developed by Fitz and Simmons.
Later, Skye and Coulson are driving Lola, Coulson's hovercraft vintage red car toward what Agent Ward called a “0-8-4,” after Coulson requests that Skye seriously consider joining the team long-term and helping them further their cause.
|AGENT PHIL COULSON||NIGHT-NIGHT GUN||THE BUS||CENTIPEDE GROUP|
|AGENT MELINDA MAY||D.W.A.R.F. DRONES||LOLA||RISING TIDE|
|AGENT GRANT WARD||QNB-T16 TRUTH SERUM||SKYE'S VAN||S.H.I.E.L.D.|
|AGENT JEMMA SIMMONS||HOLOCOM||S.H.I.E.L.D. SUV|
|AGENT LEO FITZ||HOLOTABLE||HELICARRIER|
|SKYE||CHITAURI NEURAL LINK|
|AGENT MARIA HILL||GAMMA RADIATION|
|DR. STREITEN||SUPER SOLDIER SERUIM|
|PLANT SUPERVISIOR GARY|
CONECTING TO THE MCUEdit
Each of the three respective Iron Man films (and the cross-over film The Avengers) have taken cues from the Extremis story arc:
- The origin and armor of Iron Man used in the 2008 film Iron Man closely resemble those introduced in "Extremis". Based on his work on "Extremis", artist Adi Granov was brought on as a producer for the film,and he created the final designs for Iron Man's armor. On the DVD of Iron Man, "Extremis and Beyond" is included as a special feature. In other featurettes, Adi Granov and Warren Ellis were interviewed on the origin, the suits, John Pillinger (the interviewer), and the suit being on a crate, not a briefcase.
- In Iron Man 2, a small plot arc of the story involves Tony trying to find a solution to the palladium poisoning from his Iron Man arc reactor, eventually coming to create a new element for a pacemaker resembling Extremis armor. He also reveals a suit of armor that originates in the form of a briefcase.
- In The Avengers, in order to escape from Loki, Tony Stark uses bracelets as a precursor to the Extremis summoning technology to guide the Mark VII suit to him as he is in freefall.
- In Iron Man 3, the Extremis storyline is largely adapted into the film, as well as Aldrich Killian and Maya Hansen, who are played by Guy Pearce and Rebecca Hall respectively, being included as major characters. In the film, Stark implants himself with microchips, which enables him to suit up in his Mark 42 armor at his will, in any occasion; this is similar to how Stark can instruct his armor to assemble at his own will after undergoing the Extremis process. As with the story arc, Killian and Hansen developed Extremis, although Killian's role in the film was expanded to him becoming the main antagonist, as well as being the founder of Advanced Idea Mechanics, which consists of numerous soldiers he experimented on with Extremis (consisting of Eric Savin, Ellen Brandt and Jack Taggart among others). Killian also subjected himself to the virus, to rebuild himself (he was disabled). When injected with Extremis, the victim is put under immense pain. If the victim's body accepts Extremis, they will be enhanced with incredible abilities. However, if the victim's body rejects it, they heat up and explode in an explosion of 3000°C, which can be used to make the victim a living bomb. Extremis's healing abilities are also shown in greater depth, to the point that those injected with Extremis can regenerate damaged limbs, with the original soldiers regrowing limbs lost in combat prior to being 'infected' with Extremis and Killian regenerating his left hand after Tony cuts it off during a fight (although they are still vulnerable to particularly serious damage; Savin is killed by a blast through the chest from Stark's chestplate, much like Mallen in the original storyline). In addition to this, Extremis victims receive enhanced agility, superhuman strength and exothermic manipulation, allowing them to breathe fire and engage the Iron Man armors in combat (although they are not powerful enough to effortlessly defeat the armors).