I’ll admit that Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD left me so unimpressed when I watched the first several episodes that I never went back to it, nor have I watched any of the Marvel films save the first two Iron Man ones of which the first was quite brilliant and the second middling at best, and The Guardians of The Galaxy which is absolutely great. Oh but this show set in the same universe is really, really great.
As always I watched them after purchasing them off via iTunes so they were commercial free which is precisely why I prefer DVDs and iTunes as sources for my video consumption sources. The first two episodes, ‘Now is Not the End’ and ‘Bridge and Tunnel’ form the eighty four minute pilot though actual content sans opening and ending credit, plus a recap of episode made it a bit less in running time. Please note that if you had watched it on the ABC network, there were thirty six minutes of commercials!
Marvel’s Agent Carter is centred around Peggy Carter, girlfriend of now entombed in ice Steve Rogers aka Captain America. (A running gag in the series apparently will be a terribly bad radio serial about Captain America rescuing his helpless girlfriend, not Peggy Carter, who’s a nurse in a combat unit from evil Nazis. Needless to say Agent Carter hates the show.)
Agent Carter after being a field agent in Ww II is now attached to the Strategic Scientific Reserve in 1946 New York City where the male agents think she’s only capable of secretarial duties such as filing papers away and making tea. Agent Carter as played by Hayley Atwell is of course is a kick ass agent who is far more capable of solving cases than the entire bunch of male operatives in that office will ever be. She can shoot superbly, crack a safe, overpower nearly anyone in hand to hand fighting and she’s skilled at disguises as well.
Her first case done behind the back of her mostly sexist male co-workers is clearing Howard Stark of charges of having committed treason by selling weapons of truly mass destruction to the enemies of the USA. Stark is perfectly played by Dominic Cooperas is Jarvis, his butler, as played by James D’Arcy. Not a single one of her male co-workers left much of impressions on me — not quite ciphers, but damn close. Jarvis by the way is her reluctant helper, very similar to Lady Croft’s Butler in the Tomb Raider films.
There’s a short film featuring Agent Carter that should be online somewhere, so let me see if it is. Yes, here it is. Go watch it now and I’ll wait for you to come back. Damn good, isn’t it? If you like that look at Agent Carter, you’ll love this ten episode series. Given this pilot, I’m guessing that this entire arc will involve Agent Carter seeking out these terrible weapons and destroying them while running circles around her sexist male not really co-Len workers who may or may not know a clue if it bit them on any of their asses.
There’s an interesting bit at the beginning when Carter asks Stark why he invented these weapons. Because I’m an inventor he says. In Simon R. Green’s Secret Histories series, the Drood Family has a history of having a Chief Armourer who has created weapons far too deadly to use so they’re locked away in the Armageddon Codex. Stark did the same here. Unfortunately his vault was as secure as he thought.
It’s well-grounded science fiction crossed with The Great Game of keeping countries safe by doing things in the shadows that most of us are better off not knowing are happening. Highly recommended!
(ABC Studios, 2015)