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January 6, 2015 10:21 AM   Subscribe

Who Is Agent Carter? A brief history of the starring character of Marvel's latest TV show - and now also a comic.
posted by Artw (76 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
 
guess who's excited
posted by The Whelk at 10:24 AM on January 6, 2015 [5 favorites]


I have a two-hour block of nothing planned tonight and am so bitter that I can't get ABC over-the-air so I have to wait for some other time to watch the thing on Hulu.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 10:29 AM on January 6, 2015


And now I have to set my DVR because I have evidently planned to have Agent Carter and Nicole Curtis on Rehab Addict at the same time in my time zone....strong women knocking down over things...whoop, whoop.
posted by OhSusannah at 10:33 AM on January 6, 2015


My stupid children have bedtime smack in the middle of this which means because of the stupid children I will miss the premiere and have to wait until Hulu tomorrow because the children are stupid.
posted by middleclasstool at 10:33 AM on January 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


"Hey, Kids! NyQuil Shots!"
posted by robocop is bleeding at 10:36 AM on January 6, 2015 [23 favorites]


most unexpected result of following the show's production? Hayley Atwell's twitter stream is a delight
posted by The Whelk at 10:42 AM on January 6, 2015 [6 favorites]


It surprises me this article doesn't say the obvious thing: she's a great female lead character. She's smart, independent, feminine, tough, and looks great in a tailored blazer. (At least, the TV version of her in Agents of Shield is.) And she fights Nazis. I have a feeling the Marvel video program is overextending itself now and a spin-out is the last thing the franchise needs, but I am looking forward to seeing her.

Does classic Marvel Comics really have no equivalent of Wonder Woman?
posted by Nelson at 10:44 AM on January 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Outside of Captain America, and I guess Namor and the Human Torch, Marvels Golden Age characters really weren't as iconic as the DC ones. Marvel as we know it now is really more a product of the 60s.
posted by Artw at 10:51 AM on January 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Seriously, if the show is half as entertaining as Hayley Atwell's twitter stream (which seems to be 60% shenanigans and 40% accidentally injuring poor stunt men), I will be hooked.
posted by dinty_moore at 10:52 AM on January 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Does classic Marvel Comics really have no equivalent of Wonder Woman?

Depends on what you mean by "classic". The Golden Age Timely Comics had Miss America, but the Silver Age Kirby/Lee era was pretty strongly gender segregated.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 10:52 AM on January 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


If they want to do a America Chavez film or television show I am down with it. Or just get someone to pick up the Young Avengers again.
posted by Artw at 10:59 AM on January 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


It'd be like sliders, but with a thousand times more punching. I'm for it.
posted by dinty_moore at 11:05 AM on January 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


I hope this is going to be as fun as it looks and sounds. Atwell really nailed the character in Captain America.

If so, it would be great if the currently elderly version of herself could take/do/whatever youthful rejuvenation thing that a certain evil doctor took in Agents of Shield(without killing an innocent), then she could do kick ass stuff in the current Marvel timeline.

Fingers crossed!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:10 AM on January 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Yay! I can't wait, except I won't be able to see it until tomorrow because tonight I have plans. Fooey.
posted by suelac at 11:15 AM on January 6, 2015


Or better yet, the de-aging doesn't totally take, so she's younger, so in her 40s, and is a sort of elder states person, teaching younger agents and giving Fury crap about how things are different.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:16 AM on January 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


Yay! I can't wait, except I won't be able to see it until tomorrow because tonight I have plans. Fooey.

Yeah, Mrs. Mosley and I have been eagerly anticipating this for months. Then my Facebook feed told me this morning that there's going to be an "American Experience" on Robert L. Ripley tonight at the same time.

Somebody is seriously fucking with me.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 11:19 AM on January 6, 2015


My ABC affiliate is rebroadcasting the first hour on Saturday at 9pm EST.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 11:23 AM on January 6, 2015


I just devoured all of Young Avengers over the weekend and GIVE ME AN AMERICA CHAVEZ MOVIE/TV SHOW RIGHT NOW I DEMAND IT seriously she's great.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:27 AM on January 6, 2015 [5 favorites]


It's time like this that I briefly hate that I don't have cable.
posted by Kitteh at 11:30 AM on January 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


I'm in a sort of state of heady, delirious joy about Agent Carter. Ever since it was announced, I haven't quite been able to believe it's actually happening. I honestly thought it was just fannish wishful thinking when the cries for an Agent Carter show rang out after that Marvel One-Shot, but then it actually got made! I am so, so happy about it.

It's almost enough to make my other wild Marvel demands seem more reasonable. Give me a Marvel One-Shot of Bucky Barnes wreaking extensive vengeance on HYDRA bases while learning how to be a person again! Give me a Howling Commandos miniseries (prewar, during war, post war, I DON'T CARE)! Give me literally any filmed version of Kamala Khan as Miss Marvel!
posted by yasaman at 11:43 AM on January 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


Does classic Marvel Comics really have no equivalent of Wonder Woman?

Marvel wasn't really the sort of entity we think of now back in the days when Wonder Woman first appeared.

As for this show -- I'll watch it. I have hopes for it. But I had high hopes for AoS, too, and that turned out to be a continual exercise in disappointment. I really hope Peggy's show turns the Marvel TV train around.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 11:44 AM on January 6, 2015


Not having the X-Men and Spider-Man to lean on like a crutch may be the best thing that ever happened to Marvel/Disney. Have to check this out on Hulu in a couple days!
posted by davros42 at 11:49 AM on January 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


Not quite as exciting as the debut tomorrow of the Unbeatable Squirrel Girl comic written by Ryan (Dinosaur Comics/To Be Or Not To Be/Adventure Time comics/O.M.F.G.) North, but pretty good.
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:02 PM on January 6, 2015 [6 favorites]


Give me literally any filmed version of Kamala Khan as Miss Marvel!

I really wouldn't be surprised if this is coming. They've started laying the groundwork for the appearance of the Inhumans, and they must know how popular the character is, and especially how broad her appeal is across many demographics. If they made her movie it would just print money for them.
posted by Sangermaine at 12:04 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Groundwork schmoundwork, both some pre-existing Inhumans and the Terrigen Mists actually showed up in the Agents of SHIELD cliffhanger. Given that they have basically no choice but to escalate from there I'd be very, very unsurprised if the season ended with a mass Terrigenesis.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 12:08 PM on January 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


mass Terrigenesis

No one move a muscle as the dead come home.
posted by The Tensor at 12:32 PM on January 6, 2015 [8 favorites]


I'm thinking the mass terrigenesis is going to occur in Avengers: AoU.
posted by entropicamericana at 12:44 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'd be very, very unsurprised if the season ended with a mass Terrigenesis.
Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish

A friend suggested that this would be how they set up Civil War. Everyone's been saying that there are too few characters to pull it off, but what if it's not about existing characters fighting, but a reaction to the emergence of huge numbers of Inhumans? A registration act is proposed, a faction forms in opposition...
posted by Sangermaine at 1:03 PM on January 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Wait, mass Terrigenesis?

[SPOILER WARNING]





OMG what if they're setting up an Earth X movie dear lord?! make it so. I love Celestials.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 1:35 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm thinking the mass terrigenesis is going to occur in Avengers: AoU.

Yeah, i think the "explosion" in the first few seconds of the Age of Ultron is Terrigen bomb. Just a hunch though.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:40 PM on January 6, 2015


"Does classic Marvel Comics really have no equivalent of Wonder Woman?"

It also has no equivalent of Superman. The closest they get is Captain America. (of the Sentry we shall not speak.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 2:01 PM on January 6, 2015


I love Celestials.

me too i was glad i already finished most of my soda when the celestial showed up in guardians
later i forgot and took a sip and was all like 'hey who put salty popcorn in my drWHAT HAVE I DONE'
posted by robocop is bleeding at 2:27 PM on January 6, 2015


/RAISES KIRBYTECH THUMB TO CELESTIALS.
posted by Artw at 3:21 PM on January 6, 2015




I'm actually making roast game hens and parsnip/carrots to match up thematically for a show about A 1940s female super spy.

What has my life become
posted by The Whelk at 3:26 PM on January 6, 2015 [5 favorites]


But I had high hopes for AoS, too, and that turned out to be a continual exercise in disappointment.

Did you watch the second season?

I always enjoyed the first, but totally got why a lot of people didn't. But I felt like season 2 has totally vindicated my affection for it!

Obviously everyone has their own tastes, but if you WANTED to like it but didn't get past season 1, it's definitely worth a revisit.
posted by flaterik at 3:35 PM on January 6, 2015


Season 2 was closer to a watchable show, but I wouldn't go as far as saying "good" exactly.
posted by Artw at 3:44 PM on January 6, 2015


What has my life become

REALLY AWESOME, that's what it's become.

Ugh, I just remembered that I'd originally planned to have a drink list and a watch party scheduled for this night, but it's a tuesday and I just had a dental appointment and now have to finish up work and can't be drunk.
posted by dinty_moore at 3:47 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Good point - what is the correct cocktail for this show?
posted by Artw at 3:59 PM on January 6, 2015


Season 2 was closer to a watchable show, but I wouldn't go as far as saying "good" exactly.

Quite true. IT'S FUCKING GREAT.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:06 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Did you watch the second season?

I tried the first episode.

Many times, I decided I'd had it with Season One, and then people were all, "Hey, it's so much better now!" Yet over the course of Season One, I had to sit through:

*Routine abuse of captives, including torture. I never saw an "interrogation" that didn't involve physical threats and/or violence.
*Clark Gregg on an amphibious landing while wearing his suit for no goddamn reason at all.
*Literally no effort made ever toward giving the science nerds any basic field agent training, even just for the sake of fucking firearms safety.
*No evidence that anyone in the creative department ever did the slightest research in law enforcement or espionage agencies beyond what they'd seen in other bad TV shows.
*Bad directing and fucking awful writing all around.
*Agent Ward mind-control raped and nobody cared. At all. Nobody batted an eye.
*Skye. Done.
*That season finale episode was just awful TV in practically every way possible.

So, yeah. I tried the premiere of Season Two. I thought it was great that they had Lucy Lawless on, and then they killed her. Pointlessly. And they had the Absorbing Man and did...well...nothing interesting with him.

Ming-Na Wen is a wonderful actress. Clark Gregg is great in almost anything else I've ever seen him in. The guy playing Triplett routinely put in the best job of any of them every time he turned up (and, naturally, they totally underused him). And yes, occasionally the show had its moments. But overall, AoS has been an obscene waste of talent and resources.

AoS, at this point, has become the television equivalent of Lucy holding the football and swearing she'll totally let Charlie Brown kick it without pulling it away this time, no really.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 4:16 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Quite true. IT'S FUCKING GREAT.

I really, really wouldn't go that far. I did get pretty excited that Crusher Creel showed up. And I watched more episides of S2 less grudgingly than I did S1 before getting bored and giving up.
posted by Artw at 4:21 PM on January 6, 2015


Good point - what is the correct cocktail for this show

I'm having a bottle of Brooklyn Brewery to stand in for the missing Steve


( oh god what is wrong with me)
posted by The Whelk at 4:23 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Will it be on ice?
posted by Artw at 4:24 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


....that would be mean.
posted by The Whelk at 4:25 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Bucky's representative drink would be a zombie or memory-eraser shot of course
posted by The Whelk at 4:27 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


I agree with a lot of scaryblackdeath's points re Agents of Shield, though I do actually love Skye, and the flicker of interest I maintain in AoS is thanks to it basically being her superhero origin story. But I just couldn't forgive the show the way it treated Mike Peterson. Plus, one of the surefire ways to get me to stop watching a show is when I perceive there to be a baffling gap between what the narrative wants you to think is Good and Right and what actually is Good and Right. The SHIELD that AoS presents does not seem worth saving to me, and the show's insistence that it is, that these are the Good Guys, just doesn't sit right with me.

I'm actually worried about how Agent Carter will handle this, because Captain America: The Winter Soldier made clear that SHIELD was compromised from the start, more or less. And I think that says some fascinating and difficult things about post-war America and the Cold War, but I wonder how or if that will be addressed in Agent Carter.
posted by yasaman at 4:36 PM on January 6, 2015


I mean , really the story the miniseries should tell is how the transition from SSR to SHEILD was completely fucked up and infiltrated from the start, right! That's the worthwhile chunk of story missing, right?
posted by The Whelk at 4:44 PM on January 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Plus, Hiward a meeting Maria, obvs. And it obviously should go like this
posted by The Whelk at 4:45 PM on January 6, 2015


It also has no equivalent of Superman. The closest they get is Captain America. (of the Sentry we shall not speak.

Carol Danvers Captain Marvel is their Superman. I am far from the first to note it, but their Superman is in fact a woman.
posted by middleclasstool at 4:55 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Mike Peterson

Oh. Right. I forgot to include him. So, so much of what they did with him was stupid, too.

Really, I felt like the whole show was just written by following a flow-chart of bad tropes somewhere on the internet.

And yes, even Skye had her moments. I genuinely enjoyed some small bits of what they did with her. But overall, just...UGH.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 5:04 PM on January 6, 2015


Not to live tweet but I AM SO ON BOARD RIGHT NOW
posted by The Whelk at 5:08 PM on January 6, 2015


Carol Danvers Captain Marvel is their Superman. I am far from the first to note it, but their Superman is in fact a woman.

This depends on what we're looking for in a Superman analogue.

Moral paragon whom everyone looks up to? Steve Rogers. No question. Even Wolverine and the Punisher look up to Steve's Captain America. I have no clue what they're gonna do with Sam Wilson as Cap, but that's all new (and who knows how long it'll run). Regardless, as it stands, Steve is that standard.

Flying powerhouse badass? Yeah, Captain Marvel. They've built her in that direction, at least. I dearly hope they continue in that vein. I have loved Carol ever since she was Binary. But I don't think Carol will ever have the giant grab-bag of better-than-everyone-at-everything powers that Superman has, and in truth, I hope she never does. She also just plain doesn't have the Superman personality, which I also think is a good thing; far as I'm concerned, Kelly Sue DeConnick can write Carol forever.

Marvel doesn't need a Superman. They're better off without.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 5:10 PM on January 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Agent Carter might be their Superman, hee hee
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:25 PM on January 6, 2015


My impression of Agents of SHIELD Season 1 was that they were in a deliberate holding pattern until Winter Soldier happened and let them take the veil off their actual plot, except their holding pattern was so obviously nothing that they were in serious danger of getting cancelled early and once the ratings came in the writers started to throw every random thing they could think of at the wall -- thus, Mike Peterson: DEATHLOK. So we went from boring to transparently stupid (but sometimes entertaining) to "holy shit, there's an arc!" The second season has benefited so much from being put together from day one.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 5:30 PM on January 6, 2015


OMG what if they're setting up an Earth X movie dear lord?! make it so.
BlackLeotardFront

I don't mean to burst your bubble here, but they're not. The "mass terrigenesis" is something from a recent storyline that lead to people around the world manifesting as Inhumans and, spawned the new Ms. Marvel. There's been a lot of speculation that Marvel is going to replace the mutant concept that they can't use right now with Inhumans, and this is how they're going to do it.

However, you can get a taste of celestials in Guardians of the Galaxy if you need a hit to stay cool until they show up in a Thor movie.
posted by Sangermaine at 5:48 PM on January 6, 2015


My stupid children have bedtime smack in the middle...

For kids at least, smack is a morning-time drug. For shame.
posted by Lemurrhea at 6:13 PM on January 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


Aaaaaah this is the over the top comic book version of the 40s I pove aaaah
posted by The Whelk at 6:42 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yeah, that and Ant-Man trailer were pretty much pitch perfect.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:04 PM on January 6, 2015


Is this where we're flailing (with all 6 legs) over the Ant-Man trailer? Because I could use a good flail.
posted by nicebookrack at 7:07 PM on January 6, 2015


I'm just glad there's a Cassie Lang. One of the YA are finally in the MCU! (I can dream)
posted by dinty_moore at 7:13 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


The SHIELD that AoS presents does not seem worth saving to me, and the show's insistence that it is, that these are the Good Guys, just doesn't sit right with me.

There has been SOME tension there, but I definitely think it's been a wildly under explored theme. I really ENJOY the show, but it doesn't really transcend the gap from enjoyable to great for me and that's a big part of why.

A lot of the other criticisms I also appreciate, but we all weigh things differently and they haven't kept me from increasingly looking forward to watching it.
posted by flaterik at 7:15 PM on January 6, 2015


Quite true. IT'S FUCKING GREAT.

I really, really wouldn't go that far.


Well, you should Art, YOU SHOULD. Season 2 has been one of the most focused and tightly plotted action series in recent years. It's not perfect, the stuff with Simmons and Fitz is being dragged out and the show gets a tad fantastical at times. But otherwise, it's fucking great.

Season 1 was a bit unfocused, but I'd argue that spent a lot of time setting up things that could pay off further down the line.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:26 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Quite enjoyed the first episode. Three points:

-While the modern tea bag was invented in 1944, it wasn't really popularized until the '50s, when Tetley's introduced them in England. I'm not sure why Peggy wouldn't be making tea the normal way.

-While her hair looks fantastic, her hairstyles are somewhat too loose for 1946. The hats, however, are excellent.

-If the SSR is meant to be an analogue for the OSS, most of the agents should be Ivy League men, some with military service, some without. If anything, they would be even more condescending to Agent Carter, but in less of an "ey yo" kind of way. The OSS, and the CIA after it, incorporated many of the class prejudices of its members into its early institutional culture.

Other than that, the episode was highly entertaining, and Hayley Atwell was terrific.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 7:30 PM on January 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Glad it was good! I hope everyone please avoids spoilers; perhaps Metafilter Fanfare will be a good place to have post-viewing discussion.
posted by Nelson at 7:44 PM on January 6, 2015


Not to step on Fanfare's toes (let's see post soon!) but in total non-spoiler terms I think Peggy was making tea with a tea-bag as a reference to the biases of the modern viewer that's she's Not In England so it reads to the audience while being also anachronistic.
posted by The Whelk at 8:25 PM on January 6, 2015


I am happy to have Enver Gjokaj back on my TV schedule!
posted by flaterik at 8:47 PM on January 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


I enjoyed the hell out of Agent Carter, as it turns out, except for the interrogation scene...which, granted, was part of the whole "these guys are meatheads" package. I hope.

Past that? Great show. Will watch again.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 10:11 PM on January 6, 2015


It was literally a stick or a carrot. I wonder if that's going to come back.
posted by The Whelk at 10:23 PM on January 6, 2015


Bubs!
posted by Artw at 10:35 PM on January 6, 2015


Fanfare threads are now up for Episode 1: Now is Not the End and Episode 2: Bridge and Tunnel.
posted by inturnaround at 3:23 AM on January 7, 2015 [1 favorite]




yasaman: one of the surefire ways to get me to stop watching a show is when I perceive there to be a baffling gap between what the narrative wants you to think is Good and Right and what actually is Good and Right. The SHIELD that AoS presents does not seem worth saving to me, and the show's insistence that it is, that these are the Good Guys, just doesn't sit right with me.

That's pretty much my issue.

Also, I've never liked Coulson. I didn't dislike him specifically in his first appearance, but I was rather annoyed that they had the chance to bring some diversity into a universe that sorely needed it and went for another bland white guy. Then he showed up in Thor and was a smug authoritarian dick at Jane and I've hated him ever since. So a show that is all about how awesome Coulson is and how everyone admires him and when he does shitty stuff it's the Right Thing just was never going to fly.
posted by tavella at 10:57 AM on January 7, 2015


I love the guidance at the bottom of every Fanfare page, right below the posting box. "Be nice. It's just TV." Also Metatalk's "Everyone needs a hug."
posted by Nelson at 12:36 PM on January 8, 2015 [1 favorite]


[Folks, please keep this about the topic and not about other users. Thanks. ]
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 3:39 PM on January 8, 2015


Never mind!
posted by tavella at 4:03 PM on January 8, 2015


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