It’s been called the first network superhero show to rival Arrow, which was a surprise success in its own right. That’s right, Agents of SHIELD debuts tonight on ABC, taking place after the monumental battle that left Midtown Manhattan in ruins at the end of Marvel’s The Avengers.

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Joss Wheldon is the executive producer of the show

Perhaps the most important thing to say is that Joss Whedon is very much involved, in fact, he directed the first episode, which has received warm reviews so far. The show, while carrying on from the last Avengers movie, is totally separate from the films; it exists in the same universe.

Fans of Whedon and his creations will have trepidations, and rightly so. The ever-popular Firefly was cancelled despite vocal uproar. What’s to stop this happening again? Well, spoke to Joss back at ComicCon, and he’s intinated that ABC – with their new Marvel Television partnership – will be a lot easier to work with.

"There's no free ride, we've jumped through all the hoops to make this work," he insisted. "The network has dealt with us as they would with any show. The only difference is they really did know what we were giving them and what they wanted." He went on to add, "We've had a real feeling of support."

If you’re a super fan, you probably won’t be reading this article. You’ll have soaked up all your SHEILD info a long time ago. Luckily for newcomers to the franchise, you don’t have to be totally clued up to realise what’s going in. There’ll be in-jokes and insider references that might go over your head, but you can tune in tonight knowing you’re being included.

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Ming-Na Wen will play agent Melinda May

Fans: You’re watching because no matter how much they throw at you, you can’t get enough of the Marvel universe. Newcomers: don’t be put off by the rich tapestry already in place; this is set to be an exciting super agent thriller.