It came down to the wire, and while the series hasn't done great when it comes to ratings, it does very well on DVR and on the international market for ABC Studios. Plus, it is a marketing platform for Marvel, which didn't have much luck with its Marvel's Inhumans series. SHIELD took a hit ratings wise, averaging 1.2 in the 18-49 demo, after being moved from Tuesday to Fridays. This season has been extremely well received by critics, however.
The series' writers said that they were unsure of the fate of the series and planned the season finale to double as a series finale if need be. That's going to be even more interesting now as the life of Agent Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) hangs in the balance, plus there is that pesky Avengers: Infinity War ending they'll have to address in some way.
The show was originally crafted around Agent Coulson after fan reaction to his death in the original Avengers movie. The series has always been tied to the MCU and has been affected by or at least made reference to a lot of the things that happen in the films.
No word if the shortened season is meant to be a final one for the show. The series stars Gregg, Ming-Na Wen, Chloe Bennet, Iain de Caestecker, Elizabeth Henstridge, Henry Simmons, and Natalia Cordova-Buckley. The season 5 finale airs Friday, May 18th at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.