Previously on Agent Carter, ‘A View in the Dark’
Starring: Hayley Atwell, James D’Arcy, Chad Michael Murray, Enver Gjokaj, Dominic Cooper, Wynn Everett, Reggie Austin, Currie Graham, Kurtwood Smith | Director: David Platt
IN THE DOSSIER
Agents Carter and Sousa continue to learn more about Isodyne Energy and the mysterious Arena Club. In the meantime, Peggy and Jarvis get an assist from Howard Stark to discern the origins of zero matter and the energy field surrounding Carter. Whitney Frost keeps attempting to cover her black scar of death with bangs and The Council continues with their plans for complete control over the United States. Lastly, who we didn’t really think was dead is proven to be alive. Thank goodness.
HOW DO YOU SPELL ‘JACK THOMPSON’? B-L-O-C-K-H-E-A-D
Where to begin with this numbskull… It’s obvious Chief Thompson is supposed to be the man fans are meant to hate. Three episodes into the second season and it’s almost assured that 99.9% of viewers want this guy dead (or severely injured, or beaten up by Peggy… again, but even harder next time). Wherever Jack was from it’s clear he never had a mother or sisters because his demeanor to women is supremely offensive. Lest we forget about his views on the disabled and minorities. Thompson is fittingly intended to be the rogue element, the fly in the ointment to Sousa and Carter’s exceedingly effective investigation on the Council. Howbeit, the writers have managed to make Jack an even worse human being than he was during the whole of season one!
It’s bad enough that he’s an insecure, hostile chauvinist that doesn’t believe in giving anyone their personal space but now he may be a patsy for HYDRA the Arena Club too? Good friggin grief! It seems Thompson does have some semblance of a brain and formed an idea that his superior Vernon Masters (Kurtwood Smith) is up to no good. Sadly, the wheels are turning too slowly for him to put things together… or he does have a clue and cares more for his prospective ascent in the government? It would be very interesting if in future seasons the reason for the SSR’s closure and the founding of SHIELD was due chiefly to Thompson’s negligence and compliance in destroying evidence. In the meantime, Chad Michael Murray does manage to drop tiny scraps of empathy for Thompson, like when he practically pleads with Sousa (Enver Gjokaj) to have a drink with him before returning to New York.
Too little too late, Jack.
You’ve burned too many bridges.
A FROSTY DISPOSITION
While one government agent is slowly ingratiating himself into the all boy’s club, another is attempting to strike out on her own after years of belittlement and discrimination.
Whitney Frost (Wynn Everett) affirms that her temperament is as frail as her will is strong. Sousa reveals to Peggy Whitney’s true identity and background as a prominent scientist in the Allied war effort, establishing her as the true brains behind the operation at Isodyne Energy. Her acumen for physics and mathematics is second to none; though her sex and age has shortened her acting career and obstructed her elevation among the Council of Nine.
Unlike Peggy, who radiates a confidence and regularly exhibits a tenacity that unsettles most men, Whitney is a woman that desperately relies on the approval of others despite her intellectual prowess. It appears to be a dismal existence, knowing one is the smartest person in the room but is forced to acquiesce to the demands of men who’ve such narrow vision. At best, Frost has adapted to her confining lifestyle by occasionally catering to the ego of her husband, the future Senator Calvin Chadwick (Currie Graham). In saying a few choice words and crying some crocodile tears, Whitney is able to get her way even though the risk of upsetting the Council is a certainty.
Their potential discipline by the old fogeys is nothing compared to the severity of her secret “blemish”. The zero matter is coursing through her body and apparently cannot be controlled, as viewers witnessed Frost’s interdimensional stowaway essentially consume her creepy, disturbingly aggressive director (Randy Skylar). It appeared to be an excruciating way to die, however it couldn’t have happened to a grosser man. Regrettably for Whitney’s looks, the mark on her temple grew ever so slightly after taking in some extra mass. No amount of concealer can fix that, love.
While all that was occurring, Howard Stark (Dominic Cooper) made an extended appearance, portraying the comedic relief in “Angels”. Now cutting his teeth in directing films (oh I noticed that Rawhide Kid easter egg… you’re sly, Marvel), Stark has everything he’s even wanted in life: fame, fortune, more women to fondue with and everyone on set ready to do his bidding. Well, everything save for one thing: a perplexing mystery only his genius could solve. Stark seizes the challenge and manages to make Dr. Wilkes (Reggie Austin) visible again in our spectrum (though his tangibility leaves a lot to be desired).
Atwell and Austin do imitate a genuine rapport between Peggy and Jason, as though the two had been fond friends for years rather than oh, a week. Their romance is the sort of offbeat tone needed in Agent Carter from time to time; Peggy isn’t naturally inclined to stoicism nor content with the perpetual combativeness from foes and allies alike. Jason shares the same assortment of characteristics that first attracted her to Steve – humility, empathy and selflessness – however he is able to perceive and appreciate Peggy’s femininity while not placating to her as though she’s a woman that needs protecting. That written, Dr. Wilkes doesn’t want to risk her life or those of his new friends for his benefit, which speaks volumes to his already reputable character.
Agent Carter S2E3
This was one of the better episodes in Agent Carter’s entire run as every character had at least something to do and were given another dimension to their respective personalities. The only fault in it would be the schlocky attitude of Howard Stark, who couldn’t even recall the woman who kidnapped and framed him last season, not without remembering what she wore. He was lucky enough to have Jarvis there to drop a few hints. Though Stark has diminished in quality somewhat, the layering of the other supporting roles through their personal strifes – Thompson’s predicament with Masters, Frost’s fears about the zero matter – has been provided greater depth to rather peripheral characters.
The only person missing was Dottie Underwood (Bridget Regan) who will most assuredly find her way to La La Land and make quite an entrance. Between her and Whitney Frost, Peggy is going to have her hands full for the entirety of the season.