Agent Carter: Thoughts on the Finale and the Future

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By: Haylee Fisher (@haylee_fisher)

I have a confession to make: it took me a solid week to watch the season finale of Agent Carter.

I tend to do this with shows I really love. I want to savor every episode and I’ve been known to not watch the finale of a series because I don’t want it to be over. For example, I still haven’t seen the series finales of Chuck or Pushing Daisies. (I know what happens, so spoilers don’t matter.) It’s like I always want there to be something to look forward to and when I watch the final episode, that means it’s truly, finally over.

That brings me to Agent Carter. I want with all my might for it to get a second season. However, its ratings were pretty low and that typically means cancellation. In this case, I hope that’s wrong.

The show has just begun to scrape the surface of Peggy’s life. One of the last scenes of the finale showed her pouring Captain America’s blood over the Brooklyn Bridge and into the river. Though he will always be a part of her life, a second season and beyond could show how she is coping after truly letting Steve go.

One way we’ve already seen Peggy take control of her future is by moving out of the Griffith and into one of Howard’s houses with Angie. In doing so, she will now be able to come and go as she pleases and perhaps Angie will even be pulled into the spy world fray and use her acting skills. After all, it will be even harder for Peggy to keep secrets from her now that they’re roommates. Angie knows Peggy is more than meets the eye, but I would love to learn how she reacts when she finds out the whole truth.

When Agent Carter was first announced, critics described it as Peggy’s story and mentioned the possibility of the beginnings of SHIELD. While we already know that does eventually happen, it would be fascinating to learn about how she and Howard actually started the organization. It would also give the show more opportunities for tie-ins and Easter eggs with ABC’s other Marvel property, Agents of SHIELD.

The show is just brilliant in its portrayal of feminism in the 40’s and demonstrates just how different – or in this case, the same – things are today. When the show started, Peggy’s coworkers were sexist, one-dimensional jackasses. When it ended, they were still sexist jackasses (except precious Sousa), but they were two-dimensional. More was revealed about their backstories and when the chief jumped out of the window and sacrificed himself in the penultimate episode, I got emotional. Thompson was making baby steps toward redemption, but seemed to fall back into his old ways in the finale after a thank you from a US senator – and the president himself. But that didn’t bother Peggy, who told Sousa, “I know my value. Anyone else’s opinion doesn’t really matter.” That’s a good lesson, especially for young women. Know your own worth. And who better to teach that lesson than Queen Peggy Carter? The only way for that to happen is if the show gets a future.

Elsewhere in the finale, it is revealed Stark created the gas involved in the Battle of Finow. It was originally made to keep soldiers awake for days at a time but instead had deadly ramifications, namely that it made them want to brutally kill each other. That’s why revenge is such a big deal for Dr. Ivchenko (whose real name is Fenhov). He saw his brother die in the battle and wants to punish Howard.

He and Dottie kidnap Howard and, in a heartbreaking sequence, try to get him to fly a plane over Times Square and release the gas over people there for a VE Day celebration. Ivchenko hypnotized him and made him think he was really going to save Captain America’s crashed plane. Peggy tried to reason with him through the radio connection from the hanger to the plane and Jarvis even flew after him in his own plane, ready to shoot him down if needed. But Peggy finally got through to Howard and I shed a tear when she told him they had to move on from Steve’s death. The fact that it mirrored the sequence in Captain America: The First Avenger where she was talking to Steve as he actually went down made the scene all the more emotional and impactful.

Before she could do so, though, Peggy and Dottie had a pretty amazing fight sequence where we were treated to her “Peggy smash!” fighting style that ended with her kicking Dottie out a window.

Thompson and Sousa manage to capture Ivchenko and throw him in jail. And who does his cellmate happen to be but Arnim Zola. In my eyes, their meeting paved the way for their future in the Winter Soldier program and cemented Agent Carter’s role as a show to be a bigger part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe than most people probably originally thought it would be.

For as many ends that were tied up, there were a few left loose that a continuation of the series would resolve. For example, Dottie managed to survive her fight with Peggy. I, for one, would love to know what happens next in her story.

Though the finale was called “Valediction,” which means the end of something, I truly hope this is not the end of a show that’s so relevant in today’s world, though it’s set 70 years ago. Peggy’s role in the overall MCU is a significant one and it deserves to be seen more.

Finale rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars


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