ByBJ Ragone, writer at Creators.co
If it's about comics, Star Wars, Star Trek and beyond, I've probably read it or seen it. Follow me @BjRagone
BJ Ragone

Since returning from their winter break, Marvel's " [Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.](tag:722469)" has been setting up some pretty big things in the the Marvel Cinematic Universe. That includes hints of the coming [Marvel: Civil War](tag:2346746) , as well as the introduction of Inhumans. But has a big tease been hiding right under our nose the entire time?

We have heard Agent Coulson, or better yet, Director Coulson, mention the term Theta Protocol. According to an entry on the MCU wiki page, that reference goes all the way back to when the team entered the Kree Temple in Puerto Rico.

Coulson tells Sam Koenig (Patton Oswalt) to go back to Fury's Playground and enact Theta Protocol if things didn't workout.

WTF, Coulson?
WTF, Coulson?

If you remember correctly, Koenig wasn't a big fan of that order. At first as a viewer I was under the impression it just meant the destruction of the city. After Coulson's little meeting with Maria Hill on the most recent episode of "Agents of SHIELD" when he said to call in the Avengers and enact Theta Protocol, it made me realize that he probably meant the Ultron program.

This opens up a whole bunch of other questions about Coulson and Fury:

Excuse me? *Raises hand*
Excuse me? *Raises hand*
  • Did they know about the potential of The Inhumans , or the power of that temple all along?
  • Was Coulson really willing to put Skye's life at risk if he did know?
  • How long has Theta Protocol been an option for Nick Fury?

Obviously Nick Fury has his fair share of secrets. So it wouldn't be shocking if he had been working with Tony Stark on the Ultron program without anyone knowing. Why not let everyone know what the plan is, especially given the fact that SHIELD and the Avengers are now spread so thin? It goes back to Fury's trust issues, and the threats he sees.

"It's called compartmentalization."
"It's called compartmentalization."

After the events of Winter Soldier he needed to bring others in on his plan, so that included Maria Hill, Tony Stark, and Coulson. It's pretty obvious from seeing "Winter Soldier", "Iron Man 3", and " [Thor: The Dark World](tag:206462)" the Avengers aren't exactly hanging out all the time. So even though Fury might be in contact with Stark and Cap, he left Cap in the dark about his plan. I'm guessing that's the tipping point that will drive Cap to leave the Avengers and start an MCU Civil War.

What do you think? Does that all seem plausible to you? Let me know in the comments section.

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