Iron Man 2
|TV series||Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.|
|Marvel One-Shots||The Consultant|
A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Thor's Hammer
|Comics||The Avengers Prelude: Fury's Big Week|
|Portrayed by||Clark Gregg|
Phillip J. "Phil" Coulson was a high-ranking agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., and a friend to director Nick Fury. As an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., he was closely involved in the debriefing of superheroes like Iron Man and Thor.
Coulson was notably involved in debriefing Iron Man after his escape from Afghanistan and aided him in his efforts against two of his notable enemies. He also later discovered the arrival of Thor and his hammer Mjølnir on Earth, and later made an alliance between S.H.I.E.L.D. and Thor.
Still later he was integral in bringing together several of the Earth's mightiest heroes aboard S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Helicarrier, who would later form a team known as the Avengers. However, Coulson did not live to see the team overcome their differences, as Coulson was killed by their enemy Loki during an attack on the Helicarrier.
Debriefing Tony StarkEdit
- Pepper: "We've been approached already by the DOD, the FBI, the CIA..."
- Coulson: "We're a separate division, with a more specific focus. We need to debrief Mr. Stark about the circumstance of his escape."
- ―Pepper and Coulson talking about debriefing Tony Stark.[src]
In 2009, billionaire entrepreneur Tony Stark, CEO of Stark Industries, escaped from captivity by the Ten Rings terrorist organization in Afghanistan. Coulson was sent to a press conference Stark requested upon his return to the United States to debrief Stark on the circumstances of his escape. Coulson spoke with Stark's assistant, Virginia "Pepper" Potts, to arrange a date for the debriefing.
Coulson later attended one of Stark's parties where Coulson spoke with Tony Stark in person, proposing a date to him for the debriefing. Tony, distracted by his assistant, nonchalantly agreed and left Coulson.
Arriving at Stark Industries at the planned date, Coulson caught Pepper on her way to leave the building, and he was told that they were going to have the meeting right now. Pepper informed Coulson of Tony's business partner Obadiah Stane's plans to have Tony killed and to take over Stark Industries. Coulson and Pepper took a team of S.H.I.E.L.D. agents and went to confront Stane at Stark Industries' arc reactor facility. Using explosions to open the door to Section 16 of the facility, Coulson, Pepper and the team eventually discovered Stane in his own mechanical suit. While most of the S.H.I.E.L.D. team was wiped out by Stane's suit, Tony Stark managed to defeat his former business partner in his own Iron Man suit, and was later expected to make a statement about the events at the facility. Coulson handed Tony a statement to give to deny his involvement in the events, before leaving Pepper and Tony to prepare for the conference.
Discovery at Stark's mansionEdit
- "I have been authorized by director Fury to use any means necessary to keep you on premises. If you attempt to leave, or play any games, I will taze you and watch Supernanny while you drool into the carpet."
- ―Phil Coulson to Tony Stark, about keeping Tony in his mansion.[src]
Several months later, director Nick Fury assigned Coulson to the Tony Stark's mansion in Malibu, California, with the task of keeping Tony Stark in the perimeter of his mansion while he would reinvent an element found by his late father Howard Stark years earlier. Coulson and other S.H.I.E.L.D. agents set up various terminals and screens around the mansion, with which they quickly found out about several extraterrestrial flares hitting Earth's atmosphere, which allowed Tony to sneak out of his mansion without the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents noticing. Eventually, Coulson concluded that the flares were indicative of an Enstein-Rosen Bridge, and arranged a meeting with director Fury to discuss his findings. Fury reassigned him to New Mexico, where the flares hit Earth, and Coulson returned to the mansion to say his goodbyes to Agent Natasha Romanoff and Stark. Before leaving the mansion, Coulson found an old prototype of Captain America's shield in Howard Stark's belongings, and utilized it by using it to bring one of Tony's coils to level.
Coulson arrived at S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Roswell facility, 473 miles from Puente Antiguo, where he prepared a battalion of S.H.I.E.L.D. soldiers. Not too soon afterwards, Mjølnir hit Earth near Puente Antiguo, and Coulson left to observe the crash site. On his way there, he tanked at a Roxxon gas station and bought some snacks, when a pair of robbers entered the station. While the robbers did not notice Coulson, he purposely got their attention and notified them of him having a gun. He kicked the gun towards the robbers, and when the robbers turned around towards the cash register, Coulson threw a bag of flour at the robbers and took them out, before paying for the gas and the snacks and continuing his way towards Mjølnir.
Business in Puente AntiguoEdit
- "You made my men, some of the most highly trained professionals in the world, look like a bunch of minimum-wage mall cops. That's hurtful."
- ―Coulson interrogating Thor.[src]
Coulson arrived at the site, and confirmed the presence of Mjølnir. The S.H.I.E.L.D. team rolled in towards Puente Antiguo and set up a makeshift base at the crash site to study the hammer, where Coulson was soon joined by agent Clint Barton. Coulson and a number of agents also confiscated the possessions and research of astrophysicists Jane Foster, Erik Selvig and Darcy Lewis, who had been researching the flares for several weeks.
Thor, the banished son of Odin - King of Asgard - and the owner of Mjølnir, arrived at the site to retrieve his hammer, taking down several S.H.I.E.L.D. agents in his path. Coulson allowed Thor to reach Mjølnir to see what would happen, but when Thor discovered that he could no longer wield it, he was captured by S.H.I.E.L.D. and later questioned by Coulson in an interrogation room. Unsuccessful in retrieving information from Thor, Coulson was advised by Barton to release Thor and tail him, realizing that the people he got mixed up with would leave information behind. Coulson was later visited by Erik Selvig, who tried to persuade Coulson that Thor was his colleague Donald Blake and that he was drunk and distraught after hearing that their research was taken, and that he was on steroids when he broke through S.H.I.E.L.D. security. Coulson agreed to release him, but had both of them tailed.
Sif, Fandral, Volstagg and Hogun later used the Bifrost Bridge to transport themselves to Earth and find Thor, causing Coulson, Jasper Sitwell and other agents to research the site where they landed on Earth. As they were doing their research, Loki - Thor's adopted brother and the temporary King of Asgard - sent the Destroyer to Earth. The Destroyer attacked the agents, but it eventually ceased its attack and made its way to Puente Antiguo, where Coulson and Sitwell followed him to and saw Thor regain possession of Mjølnir and his powers, with which he swiftly defeated the Destroyer. Coulson approached Thor and told him that he hadn't been honest with them, but Thor interrupted Coulson and said they could count him as their ally if they returned the items they took from Jane Foster. Coulson agreed to the terms, and Thor and Jane flew off right before Coulson wanted to debrief Thor. Agent Barton found the Destroyer's body, and Barton and Coulson both joined the convoy transporting it at the Roswell facility, where it was brought for study.