Peggy Carter, Focal Point of the MCU Lineage.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe is rapidly expanding. Because of the ever growing roster of characters, it can be a little overwhelming at times. Sure, Captain America and Iron Man are easy enough, but how many casual fans recognize the names Harold Hogan, Darcy Lewis, Alexander Pierce, and Mike Peterson right away? Far fewer I’d guess. That is why it’s so interesting that given the huge stable of characters to choose from, Marvel has opted to make Peggy Carter such a linchpin.
There has been a lot of talk recently about DC beating Marvel to the punch with the Wonder Woman movie set to release ahead of the Captain Marvel flick, signaling the first female lead superhero movie of the modern era. DC also claims a win on the small screen, with Marvel’s Jessica Jones premiering nearly a month after Supergirl popped up on CBS. But the truth is, Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell), though neither bulletproof, nor in possession of extraordinary strength, is super in her own right. She is the quiet, mostly unheralded, architect of the MCU, and we love that.
No, I’m not overstating it. Without Peggy, Steve Rogers never becomes Captain America, Tony Stark is never born, and there is no S.H.I.E.L.D. Without Peggy, WWII is likely lost to Hydra, Phil Coulson never grows up to idolize Cap, and the Avengers, at least as we know them, are never formed. Odds are by the time Banner becomes the Hulk, and Thor visits Earth, things are too far gone to turn around. Thank you Peggy.
Agent Carter was trained as a spy during WWII, but went on to do so much more post war, proving to the doubters that she is so much more than just Captain America’s girlfriend. We’ve only seen glimpses of her post-Cap life so far, but we know that she saved Howard Stark’s life (making it possible for him to later father Tony) and helped to form S.H.I.E.L.D. We know that she played a part in convincing Hank Pym to become Ant-Man, and we know that she is related to Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp), whom played a pivotal role in Captain America: Winter Soldier. The exact relation hasn’t been made confirmed yet, but is likely to follow the comics, where Sharon is the great-niece of Peggy. Hence the line about talking to her aunt.
Perhaps one of the most moving moments in the whole of the MCU thus far was in the second Cap movie, when Steve visits Peggy, now in her 90s and suffering from what seems to be Alzheimer’s Disease. It’s not often that we see our superheroes grow old…
It would seem however, that I’m not the only one with such an affinity for Agent Carter, the following video was posted to Facebook by UPROXX and echos many of the same points I did.
So here we are, four episodes in the sophomore season of ABC’s Agent Carter, a show we weren’t sure was going to get a second year, and we’re soaking up everything we can. Lots of groundwork being laid here that will set up stories 60 years into the future of her timeline, and Peg doesn’t know just how important she already is. Kudos to Marvel, ABC, and showrunnners Tara Butters, Michele Fazekas, and Chris Dingess.
Images: Marvel Studios, ABC