Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Marvel Cinematic Universe: Part 10

So back when I started my Marvel Cinematic Universe posts, ABC was part-way into Season 2 of “Agent Carter”. At that point, I had no way of watching Season 1 to catch up for Season 2. Recently I learned that Hulu had both seasons available. So as I’ve been binging the whole Marvel Cinematic Universe (everything: movies, Netflix shows, network shows, etc.) I worked “Agent Carter” into it all. So now that I’ve watched both seasons, it’s time to backtrack and cover Agent Peggy Carter’s adventures.

Agent Carter: Season 1 (Episodes 1-8)
Season 1 follows Peggy and Edwin Jarvis trying to clear Howard Stark’s name. Meanwhile, Peggy needs to maintain her job at the SSR where she’s constantly undermined. So here we go.
  1. Now is Not the End: In 1946, Peggy maintains her cover while working at the SSR. The SSR investigates Howard after his inventions get stolen. Howard asks Peggy to help clear his name. Jarvis helps Peggy recover Nitramene, ahead of the SSR. Jarvis and Peggy narrowly escape the implosion of Roxxon.
  2. Bridge and Tunnel: The SSR investigates the explosion at Roxxon. Peggy and Jarvis confront Brannis about the Nitramene. He dies in a conflict with a man in a green suit. Peggy finds a new place to stay.
  3. Time and Tide: Peggy meets Dottie Underwood. SSR Agent Thompson recovers Green Suit’s typewriter and discovers its transmitter. Thompson interrogates Jarvis. Peggy and Jarvis track the theft of Howard’s inventions and tip Agents Sousa and Krzeminski off. They get ambused and Krzeminski gets killed.
  4. The Blitzkrieg Button: SSR Chief Dooley investigates Finow. Peggy and Jarvis rescue Howard. Peggy retrieves the Blitzkrief Button, discovering Cap’s blood inside. Sousa investigates the tip. Peggy confronts Howard about Steve’s blood. An assassin comes for Peggy, but Dottie kills him. Peggy hides the blood.
  5. The Iron Ceiling: In 1937, the Red Room trains assassins. Dottie steals Peggy’s room key. The Remote Typewriter leaves a message at the SSR. Peggy translates it and recruits the 107th regiment to help the SSR. The SSR and the Howling Commandos infiltrate the Red Room. They bring Ivchenko back with them. Dooley questions Jarvis about Howard and Finow.
  6. A Sin to Err: Peggy and Jarvis try to track down a Red Room spy. Sousa investigates Peggy. Dottie and Ivchenko infiltrate the SSR. The SSR goes after Peggy. Peggy tries to escape but Dottie knocks her out.
  7. Snafu: The SSR interrogates Peggy. Jarvis brings a fake confession for Howard. Ivchenko steals Item 17 and leaves Dooley in an explosive vest. Dottie and Ivchenko deploy Item 17 at the movie theater, causing a massacre. Dooley dies in an explosion.
  8. Valediction: The SSR investigates the theater massacre. Howard gets captured by Ivchenko/Fennhoff, who hypnotizes Howard to drop the Midnight Oil (Item 17) on New York. Peggy breaks Howard out of his trance. Dottie escapes and Fennhoff is taken into custody.

Random Trivia/Connections:
  • The opening scenes of “Now is Not the End” recap Captain America’s “death” in “The First Avenger”.
  • Soviet scientist Anton Vanko appears in “Now is Not the End”. His son becomes the main villain in “Iron Man 2”.
  • The Red Room appears in “The Iron Celing”, which is where Black Widow says in “Age of Ultron” that she was trained.
  • Armin Zola, who appeared in “The First Avenger” and “The Winter Soldier” appears in prison with Fennhoff in “Valediction”.

The first season of Agent Carter was unsettling for me, but in a productive way. In a smaller way, it was like “Black Panther” and the discussion of racism. Taking place in the 40s, Peggy wasn’t exactly treated well by her male colleagues. It was unsettling (and probably understated compared to the real 1940s). It was a perfect opportunity for me to evaluate how I treat the women in my life. I also liked the mini-series format. About the time I’d start getting bored, the climax of the season happened.

Agent Carter: Season 2 (Episodes 1-10)
  1. The Lady in the Lake: Peggy captures Dottie. Peggy goes to LA to help Sousa with a case. Jarvis, Sousa, and Peggy investigate Isodyne Energy. Peggy questions Calvin Chadwick. The SSR rescues Jason Wilkes.
  2. A View in the Dark: The Council of Nine infuriates Chadwick. Peggy and Sousa investigate Isodyne Energy. Wilkes tells Peggy about Zero Matter. Wilkes and Peggy steal Zero Matter. In a confrontation, the Zero Matter absorbs Wilkes and infects Whitney Frost.
  3. Better Angels: Wilkes is framed as a communist spy by Frost. Peggy tries to spy on the Council of Nine. Thompson tries to bring Peggy back to New York. Sousa discovers Forst is scientist Agnes Cully. Peggy and Howard discover Wilkes stuck in the Zero Matter. Frost sends an assassin to kill Peggy after a confrontation. Thompson meets Chadwick. Frost accidentally kills her director.
  4. Smoke & Mirrors: Growing up, Agnes Cully’s scientific ability is shunned before becoming actress Whitney Frost. Young Peggy buries her adventurous side until her brother dies. In the present, Frost experiments with her Zero Matter power. Sousa and Peggy interrogate Hunt. The SSR gets audited. Frost kills Hunt.
  5. The Atomic Job: Wilkes shows Peggy his Zero Matter powers. Sousa celebrates his engagement. Rose, Samberly, Peggy, Sousa, and Jarvis infiltrate Roxxon. Peggy fights Frost. Violet treats Peggy. Chadwick calls a meeting of the Council.
  6. Life of the Party: Peggy and Sousa try to stop Wilkes from disappearing. They recruit Dottie’s help. Dottie and Jarvis go after Frost, who meets with the Council of Nine. Frost kills half the Council, including Chadwick. Thompson captures Dottie.
  7. Monsters: Frost interrogates Dottie. Peggy and Jarvis go after Dottie. Frost goes after Wilkes, their Zero Matter making Wilkes tangible again. After Frost shoots Ana Jarvis, Dottie escapes and Masters takes control of the SSR.
  8. The Edge of Mystery: Frost observes Wilkes’s powers. Peggy and Sousa meet Manfredi. Thompson investigates Peggy. Jarvis, Sousa, and Peggy use fake uranium to trade with Frost. Masters retrieves the real uranium. Frost creates an atomic explosion, which absorbs Wilkes. Frost captures Peggy and Jarvis.
  9. A Little Song and Dance: Thompson, Samberly, and Sousa steal an SSR car. Peggy and Jarvis escape Frost and steal a truck. Thompson tries to double-cross Frost. Thompson tries to detonate a bomb on Frost. Wiles confronts Frost.
  10. Hollywood Ending: Frost absorbs the Zero Matter. Manfredi teams up with Stark, Peggy, and Jarvis. The team uses the Gamma Cannon to separate Frost from the Zero Matter. Jarvis uses the hovercar to close the rift. In the aftermath, Peggy starts a relationship with Sousa.

Random Trivia/Connections:
  • The Zero Matter is related to the Darkforce, involved in the powers of Daniels in “The Only Light in the Darkness” and Krupin in “Parting Shots”.
  • The Darkforce Dimension (where Zero Matter originates) is part of the Multiverse introduced in “Doctor Strange”.
  • Sousa’s fiancée Violet was portrayed by “Sarah Bolger”, who also played Princess Aurora on “Once Upon a Time”. Aurora was similarly caught in a love triangle.
  • Though the series ended with Sousa and Peggy in a relationship, it is unlikely that Peggy married Sousa. As stated in “The Winter Soldier”, Peggy’s unnamed husband was saved by Captain America in “The First Avenger”.

I enjoyed Season 2 less than the first. Maybe it was because of the extra two episodes? Maybe it was less action? I’m not sure. There was also less of Peggy forcing herself to be assertive as a woman. Other than an episode with her backstory, there was less development with Peggy’s character.

Thoughts on Agent Carter? Probably would have been good to have the series wrapped up a little nicer, but at least each season was a self-contained story. As a result, other than Peggy’s husband, I don’t see any loose ends to be concerned about. Overall, good mini-series.

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