Strong women? Self-aware dialogue? We ID the geek auteur's signature moves to look for in ''Agents of SHIELD''
Whedon often gets lumped together with J.J. Abrams, since both über-creators rose to prominence on television with geeky properties (and both have since gone on to take the reins of neo-geek mega-franchises.) But whereas Abrams generally tries to ignore old genre tropes and replace them with faster-and-more-intense action storytelling, Whedon tends to explore and even radically expand those tropes, making their subtext explicit. People used to describe Star Trek as a space western…so Firefly literalized that conceit, imagining a spacefaring culture that resembled a John Ford movie.
But Firefly also explored notions of frontier civilization and the individual-versus-society in ways that the original Star Trek only glanced at. Likewise, Buffy played with a whole host of horror clichés, but also used the parade of monstrosities as an opportunity to construct a semiotics-class-worthy study of contemporary sexuality. Likewise Whedon co-wrote Drew Goddard's Cabin in the Woods, a film which pointedly assumes the structure of a vintage horror movie while asking pointed questions about the psychological roots of the horror genre.
Image Credit: Diyah Pera