Hayley Atwell’s ‘Agent Carter’ series ended too soon

Since the inception of Disney+, Marvel has taken the television world by storm. WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, HockeyAnd Logic All expand on the secondary MCU characters with different levels of success. It’s a welcome change from about five years ago when Marvel’s television efforts had little connection to the ongoing cinematic universe.

Agent CarterStarring by Hayley Atwellis one of those series that got lost in the shuffle of the MCU’s early TV run. Christopher Markus And Stephen McFeely – Longtime MCU writer credited for writing the first two Captain America Movie – create series. Unfortunately, the show was swept under the rug, only lasting two seasons due to low viewership, and ended with a huge cliffhanger that wasn’t resolved. Yes, the alternate version of Agent Carter gets another chance in the MCU series if…?, but that does not resolve the cancellation of this show. For what it’s worth, the show deserves a chance to end, not just for the great performances, but also for the over-the-top entertainment espionage mixed with the joy of sci-fi, which represents a unique period for Marvel.

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What is ‘Agent Carter’ about?

Hayley Atwell in Agent Carter
Image via ABC

The series centers around agent Margaret “Peggy” Carter after World War II. She also serves the United States working for the Strategic Reserve (SSR), a war agency that later becomes part of SHIELD. The first season has Carter grieving the loss of Steve Rogers, trying to prove that Howard Stark (Dominic Cooper) is innocent of betrayal with the help of his butler, Edwin Jarvis (James D’Arcy), and showed himself a worthy representative to the sexist SSR brass. The second season has Carter traveling to Los Angeles to investigate scientific anomalies and a large corporate conspiracy involving actress, Whitney Frost (Wynn Everett), and secret organizations of the wealthy elite.

Agent Carter Successful because it created a unique identity within the Marvel catalog as a post-war spy movie from the late 1940s. This period is not covered much in the MCU, apart from Howard Stark being filtered through some flashbacks and Toby Jones’ monologue in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. World War II was an important period in the history of the United States, and that is the nature of it The first Avenger. But the period directly after that is fascinating within the MCU because this is where they planted the seeds of SHIELD and Hydra. These organizations shape the politics of the United States in the MCU, and Agent Carter Start creating these threads. This is shown in the cameo of Jones at the end of season 1; That little scene, with him explaining why America is the land of opportunity even for villains, speaks to Hydra’s rise through SHIELD as shown in Winter Soldier.

yes, Agents of SHIELD Dealing with the behind-the-scenes actions of the government in the world of heroes, however Agent Carter Engage with the pre-Avengers landscape that is still figuring out how to deal with superheroes. Yes, there is the possibility of creating another special soldier, but this series focuses on other heroes behind the scenes keeping the world safe before Iron Man and Captain America enter the scene. Not to mention, representatives of the SSR helped form the government for years to come. Seeing their successes and failures helps flesh out the rise and fall of SHIELD and the existence of figures like Bucky Barnes/The Winter Soldier and Alexander Pierce.

‘Agent Carter’: The Rare Woman-Led Marvel Series

Actors of Agent Carter
Image via ABC

That starts with Atwell, who is undeniably great on the series. Performance, along with Jessica Jones, was one of the few MCU features led by a woman at the time, and Atwell did the MCU justice. She rolled into the leader from her Captain America: The First Avenger Acting deftly, give Carter the edge and wit she wants to go toe-toe with the big baddies and her hot head, misogynistic industry. At the same time, Carter also emphasizes that she wants to do the best for the people and tries to follow the morals of Steve Rogers, sometimes to a fault. With that, she gets to resent Rogers because she doesn’t have time to defeat him, because she’s fighting to save the Stark legacy, gain the trust of the SSR, and, oh, deal with the fallout of World War II. like WandaVision after that, Agent Carter Spend a lot of time dealing with grief, and Atwell handles this perfectly.

The show also has an excellent supporting cast around Atwell. Shea Whigham — who does a good job at almost everything he is, by the way — is SSR Chief Dooley, who indicating the pressure of dealing with their work and family life and Carter’s growth in trust. Enver Gjokaj is excellent agent Daniel Sousa, an employee of the SSR who was wounded in the war and supported Carter. Chad Michael Murray Sell ​​the brutal, cold, tough side of Agent Jack Thompson, while also portraying the character’s tragic qualities; He had a great monologue with Carter about his failure during World War II. On the lighter side, James D’Arcy is delightful as Jarvis, acting as a foil to Carter in many cases, while also being a useful assistant (he deserves to come in. Avengers: Endgame). In season 2, Reggie Austin Enter Dr. Jason Wilkes, a charming scientist who helps Carter in her investigations and serves as a brief romantic interest and conflict after he comes into contact with the center (which will be explained soon).

‘Agent Carter’s Fantastic Villains

Wynn Everett in Agent Carter
Image via ABC

In addition, the show has pointed out some interesting villains. The first season introduced Leviathan, a Russian organization that fought the Cold War. They are represented by two figures: first, Dotty Underwood (brilliantly played by Bridget Regan), is a sleeper agent who originally moved to Carter’s side while watching her and the other SSR was psychiatrist Johann Fennhoff (Ralph Brown), who tricked Carter and the SSR into trusting him to access Stark’s weapons, hypnotizing several agents. The sequences when Fennhoff tricks several people are some of the most captivating scenes in the series, taking the characters into these dreamlike places away from the cold and dark reality of the situation.

Season 2 introduces Whitney Frost, the alias used by Madame Masque in most of the Marvel comics. Frost is an actress and a genius scientist (her story is based on that). Hedy Lemarr). She comes into contact with Zero Matter, a dangerous substance that is described as “more dangerous than anything we’ve ever seen.” Frost is taking control of her life for the first time after years of working in the background, showing up to movies with a fake smile. It’s just a shame that she was stripped of her powers at the end of the season, but Everett made the most of her character.

So, why not ‘Agent Carter’ last?

Hayley Atwell as Peggy Carter in the crowd in Agent Carter
Image via ABC Studios/Marvel Television

So why isn’t the show attracting more viewers? Well, the series is confusing at the point of trying to explain each character’s history and tie all the moving parts together. And to an extent, the show tends to move in circles before getting to the exciting part of the plot. Each season works through several villains who manage to die within the episode of their introduction. There is also variety over the course of the series, from Peggy’s fellow actress Angie (Lyndsy Fonseca) with sloppy agent Krzeminski (Kyle Bornheimer) that forced talented actors into forgettable 1940s roles. Not to mention that some of the hand-held action was shot and edited too quickly, and some of the sets look cheaper than the MCU movies and later series.

Yes, the show has some flaws, but overall Agent Carter It is also a special package. It holds an interesting place in the history of the MCU that may not have gathered the audience it deserved, but forever provided a space for Peggy Carter to shine.

Agent Carter Seasons 1 and 2 are now streaming on Disney+.

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