By Natalie Abrams
Updated September 30, 2015 at 02:50 AM EDT
Credit: ABC

In case you had forgotten over the hiatus, the season premiere of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. reminded fans that, when it comes to the world of Marvel, it’s all connected.

In the wake of aliens wreaking havoc in New York (Marvel’s The Avengers) and London (Thor: The Dark World), S.H.I.E.L.D. using airships to rain down fire on American soil (Captain America: The Winter Soldier), and a maniacal sentient robot dropping a country back to earth in Sokovia (Avengers: Age of Ultron), the world has become a bit more wary of people with powers — which is why President Ellis (William Sadler reprising his Iron Man 3 role) announced the creation of the Advanced Threat Containment Unit, or ATCU, to neutralize any superhuman threats.

As if those Easter eggs weren’t enough for the premiere, even the latest film, Ant-Man, scored a big nod when Coulson (Clark Gregg) talks about how Fitz (Iain de Caestecker) thought Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) was reduced to a microscopic size like the Pym technologies disaster — get scoop on what really happened to her here.

Oh, and with the introduction of terrigen-tainted fish oil into the ecosystem, there are new Inhumans popping up all over the world, laying the groundwork for the Inhumans film, slated for 2019. As an aside, Quake (Chloe Bennet) better be in that movie.

Ultimately, these Easter eggs, the introduction of the ATCU and the global fear of superpowers seem to be pointing to the one film that was somewhat tangentially mentioned: Captain America: Civil War. Slated to be released on May 6, 2016, Civil War finds a lot of our favorite heroes divided after an international incident involving the Avengers leads to the potential implementation of an act regulating superhuman activity — Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) agrees with it, Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) does not.

“We’re just trying to paint the picture that there is a change in the world,” executive producer Jed Whedon says of these teases in the premiere. “When we came into the Marvel Universe in the first films, there were very, very few people with powers. Now they are in a new world and the rules are going to have to change.”

As for a more direct tie-in to the next film from the MCU, Whedon plays expectantly coy. “Obviously it’s all one universe and we can’t say much, but we can say that we do have people across the globe who have powers on our show and there would be varying reactions to that,” he says. “A lot of fear, some excitement, some people wanting to use it for good, some people wanting to use it for evil. So, a lot of those same themes will be addressed on our show. How they tie in is a question mark for all involved, but we would definitely be dealing with some of those same themes.”

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.

Episode Recaps

ABC's "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." - Season Three

Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) assembles a team of S.H.I.E.L.D. agents to handle strange new cases.

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