Agent Carter > Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
With the start of Agent Carter last week, it’s safe to say that we have the show we should’ve gotten last year when Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. premiered. Believe me, I’m just as surprised as you are. To be fair, I was going to watch Agent Carter regardless of its quality. I figured it would be an all right show to watch, but nothing that would be appointment television (much like how I feel about AoS). However, I was not expecting the show to be as phenomenal as it was, and to be this enthralled by it.
For those of you who don’t know, Agent Carter follows the post-Captain America: The First Avenger exploits of Peggy Carter (played again by Hayley Atwell), who’s now relocated to New York City and working for the Strategic Scientific Reserve, the secret agency that existed before S.H.I.E.L.D. Of course, Peggy is constantly undermined by the men in the office, and since she’s more than just her desk job, she decides to help Howard Stark clear his name after being charged with selling weapons to enemies of the United States. What follows is some awesome old school spy work done in amazing 1940’s period set pieces, and some really entertaining ties to the Marvel cinematic universe, including an awesome take on Jarvis, Howard Stark’s butler who serves as the “Q” to Carter’s “Bond”.
But Agent Carter isn’t just about spying. There’s a ton of action in it as well, and it’s incredibly kick ass. Peggy is second probably only to Black Widow in the kick ass women department of the MCU, and Hayley Atwell really does an incredible job in these scenes. It’s worth watching this show for her fight with a goon on top of a moving truck in the second episode.
I agree that Marvel needs to have some more female starring projects. However, I’m not the type to immediately overlook a show’s faults and recommend it simply because it has a strong female lead. Thankfully, Agent Carter’s faults are minimal, it’s really fun, and it has a super strong and compelling female lead. Honestly my only gripe with Carter is that it uses the same “My name is” intro that Arrow and Flash use (give it a rest guys). Unlike Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s opening episodes, Carter not only establishes the tone and drive of the show, but also looks like a Marvel made production. With the exception of some shoddy CGI explosions, Agent Carter looks like it actually has a workable budget, something that AoS has only recently started to show.
I know the big trend right now is to write off Marvel’s TV projects since AoS meandered for 16 episodes. I also know that there’s a large majority of people who don’t think a Peggy Carter led TV series would be very compelling. But seriously, give Agent Carter a shot. You might be surprised at how much you like it. I know I was.