Double-Edged S.H.I.E.L.D.

This spin-off has no Thor but lots to say about secrets

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Bob D'Amico / ABC/Getty Images; Whedon: Jason Kempin / Getty Images

In a world--to steal a phrase from blockbuster-movie trailers--where superheroes body-slam aliens in Manhattan, do you feel protected or terrified? In a world plagued by dastardly demigods, are you O.K. with giving unlimited power to omniscient, secretive superspies who are--probably, as far as you know--the good guys keeping you safe?

These are a couple of the questions that throb like a radioactive spider bite within the slick entertainment of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Co-created by Joss Whedon (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and spun off from his colossal 2012 movie The Avengers, it's unsurprisingly the most anticipated TV drama this fall. What...

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