‘Agent Carter’ opens up possibilities for Marvel

In the season two premiere, Peggy Carter moves to California to follow leads on a mysterious case.

Courtesy of ABC

In the season two premiere, Peggy Carter moves to California to follow leads on a mysterious case.

Tess O'Brien, Editor in Chief

An action, comedy, and mystery show all in one, Marvel’s “Agent Carter” does not seem like it could get much better. Throw in the fact that it’s set in the post-WWII 1940s, centering around Captain America’s love interest and one of the greatest agents in the Strategic Scientific Reserve (SSR), and the show becomes one of the greatest works that the entertainment powerhouse Marvel has produced.

Peggy Carter’s story begins after Captain America’s death and the war’s end. When her friend, the genius inventor Howard Stark, is framed for selling his dangerous weapons to Russia, it is up to her to clear his name. With the help of Stark’s butler Jarvis and her own proficiency as an agent, Peggy proves herself as a fully capable member among the sexist agents of the SSR.

By the end of the first season, Peggy had gained her coworkers respect, if not their total acceptance, and solved the case.That is, until the second season premiere on Jan. 19 revealed that there is much more to this mystery than it originally seemed.

The show does a great job of not only building suspense and curiosity, but character development as well. From our hardcore heroine to the sociopathic villains, every persona is fully fleshed out and unique. And while audiences are able to connect to the personalities and motives of each character, there is still a lot of secrecy behind each person’s background, which keeps the show intriguing.

Marvel’s strength has always been their extraordinary, yet relatable, characters. The Hulk, a gigantic monster, remains a soft-spoken scientist. The X-Men, with their various mutations and the resulting discrimination against them, represent those who are ostracized by society. The humanity of Marvel’s creations is what truly grows the fanbase because people are able to realize that even though they may not have superpowers, they can still be like their favorite heroes.

People are able to realize that even though they may not have superpowers, they can still be like their favorite heroes.”

That being said, “Agent Carter” is even more impactful because it allows a new audience to connect to the superhero genre: women. Although we do have characters like Black Widow and Rogue, there has not been a superhero movie about a female hero individually. Black Widow can be seen in “Iron Man 2,” “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” and both of the “Avengers” movies, but we have yet to see her featured in her own. Meanwhile, even less popular comics, such as “Guardians of the Galaxy” have gotten their own movies before her.

With “Agent Carter,” Peggy opened up the door for new female fans to find a character to relate to. She is tough and strong, which are typically male traits, but she uses her femininity to her advantage- her poisonous lipstick, for example. Not to mention, one of the central plot points is her battling the sexist attitudes of her boss and fellow agents in the 1940s. Peggy further demonstrates that being a superhero is not an exclusively male attribute.

This role of Peggy’s paved the way for Marvel, who then released the successful Netflix series “Jessica Jones” in late 2015. And while the more recent movies in the lineup only includes male leads like “Black Panther” and “Doctor Strange,” we still have “Ant-Man and The Wasp” coming in 2018, marking the first movie title featuring a female hero’s name.

Even though there remains a wide gender disparity in Marvel’s movies, they are working to resolve the issue. Furthermore, regardless of the hero’s gender, their movies are spectacular. Each one has elements of seriousness and tension, but with comic relief, unbelievable victories, and extraordinary talents, Marvel brings audiences the true experience that a superhero movie should provide.

Shows like “Agent Carter” demonstrate Marvel’s capacity to adapt, allowing a more diverse fanbase to develop, but at the same time they remain true to their superhero style. Peggy is not just an amazing hero in the comics, but a hero for girls around the world.