Having just finished watching the first (double) episode of Agent Carter (aka Marvel’s Agent Carter) I thought I should start a thread to discuss the show.

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The first episode went by very quickly. It seemed like half an hour instead of an hour. Hayley Atwell held the screen as a strong lead actor. I enjoyed Howard Stark and Jarvis. James Frain’s appearance was welcome. I like the idea of the Strategic Scientific Reserve being the precursor to SHIELD in the same way that the Office of Strategic Services was the precursor to the CIA. There was obvious footage from the first Captain America movie in flashbacks. Was the footage of Captain America going down in the plane while talking to Peggy from the movie? I need to watch that movie again. The second episode of the two-hour block was also very well done, including the special effects.

I just got around to watching this last night, and thought it was a blast.  It's definitely getting off to a stronger start than Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. did.

After only two episodes, I find Peggy to be far more compelling than most of the cast members of its companion series, as Hayley Atwell seems to have far more charisma and screen presence than almost anyone on the S.H.I.E.L.D. cast.

Hayley Atwell has charisma to burn. And that gold party gown was really something, too. They can work that into future episodes as far as I'm concerned.

I saw the pilot episodes but haven't watched this week's yet. I liked it mostly for Atwell and the guy who plays Jarvis.

Mark Sullivan (Vertiginous Mod) said:

Hayley Atwell has charisma to burn. And that gold party gown was really something, too. They can work that into future episodes as far as I'm concerned.

And she rocks that red hat with the blue suit, too!

Yeah, the red hat/blue suit is awesome. As I've said before, Hayley Atwell was born to wear '40s fashions.

And, yes, she's a strong lead, and stronger that the S.H.I.E.L.D. folks. But I have to respect S.H.I.E.L.D. because it deliberately went against type in espionage tropes by having the James Bond character the traitor, and the unassuming guy as the lead. It hasn't always worked, but it was a daring narrative choice. And had it been Grant Ward, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., it would have been stuff we'd seen a million times before. S.H.I.E.L.D. takes a lot of knocks on this board, but they are really creating new space in the espionage genre beyond the tired James Bond stuff.

As to Agent Carter, though, no complaints! My wife and I are enjoying it immensely. One thing I'm pleased with is that they aren't treating the gender roles -- i.e., the limits on women -- as wallpaper. It's a serious problem for Carter, and a serious danger if her freelance activities become known to her employers.

I even like many of the supporting characters. Jarvis is perfect, and Carter's boss is born to play period characters, as evidenced by his role in Boardwalk Empire. I really like the waitress; she carries the '40s motif off perfectly, and is a welcome upbeat presence on an otherwise grim show. She plays off Carter really well, and their scenes together are always strong. I sure hope they don't kill her off!

I also like that Carter is growing and changing, too, as witnessed by her response to Jarvis lecturing her on cutting herself off from the world in order to protect it. He was right that she shouldn't, she recognized that, and now she's gambling by moving into the rooming house/hotel. Of course, she's gambling with other people's lives to an extent, but we'll see how it goes.

Another thing: The writers have recognized how hard it was to get a gun in the late '40s! They're common as squirrels nowadays, but in 1946 if you had a handgun you were law enforcement or a bad guy.

Altogether they're doing a very convincing job!

I'm sucked in.

Agent Carter will be a rerun on January 20.

January 27 will be a new one.

There's one thing I'm curious about: If the Agency that Peggy & her mostly unhelpful co-workers are employed by is the Strategic Scientific Reserve, why don't they seem to have any in-house science guys of their own--all we've seen so far is Howard Stark, who they don't seem to have ever trusted, and doesn't seem to have had a formal relationship with them yet, Prof. Venko (doesn't he become one of the Crimson Dynamos?), who seemed more connected to Stark than the SSR, and whoever the Big Bad is/or is using for fancy tech.  Considering that we've only seen Peggy use any special tech so far (the wrist watch/safe cracker & the "Sweet Dreams" lipstick), we don't even know if that sort of thing is standard SSR equipment, or just stuff she got from Stark.  Sure, the guys knew they had a vita-ray detector packed up somewhere in the basement, but that only made me wonder what other gadgets they're just storing and ignoring.  Where's all that cool "retro" Howling Commandos tech that Trip brought to the Agents of SHIELD?

I'm really enjoying Agent Carter, too -- and Kathy, who begged off of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. after a few episodes, is back on board for this. I'm glad the run is short -- I think more TV dramas should have shorter runs to keep stories moving and in focus -- but I sure hope we get a second helping next year!

 

Vanko was the first Crimson Dynamo, I believe. But in the TV/movies universe, he's the father of Whiplash in Iron Man 2. Whiplash believed that Howard Stark ruined his father and stole all his ideas, but we don't know that for fact.

Dave Elyea said:

There's one thing I'm curious about: If the Agency that Peggy & her mostly unhelpful co-workers are employed by is the Strategic Scientific Reserve, why don't they seem to have any in-house science guys of their own--all we've seen so far is Howard Stark, who they don't seem to have ever trusted, and doesn't seem to have had a formal relationship with them yet, Prof. Venko (doesn't he become one of the Crimson Dynamos?), who seemed more connected to Stark than the SSR, and whoever the Big Bad is/or is using for fancy tech.  Considering that we've only seen Peggy use any special tech so far (the wrist watch/safe cracker & the "Sweet Dreams" lipstick), we don't even know if that sort of thing is standard SSR equipment, or just stuff she got from Stark.  Sure, the guys knew they had a vita-ray detector packed up somewhere in the basement, but that only made me wonder what other gadgets they're just storing and ignoring.  Where's all that cool "retro" Howling Commandos tech that Trip brought to the Agents of SHIELD?

Has anyone read Operation SIN yet? I bought it a couple weeks ago, but I haven't read it yet.

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