Molly Jackson: Huggles to Agent Carter!
With only one episode left (as of this writing), Marvel’s Agent Carter is sadly coming to a close. This exciting, entertaining and funny show is Marvel’s first serious foray into spotlighting a leading female hero.
Yes, that’s right. I called Peggy Carter, brought to life by Hayley Atwell, a hero. Her deductive skills and intuition border on superhuman and her desire to search for the truth. If that doesn’t sell you, her willingness to help another human being should.
So if you haven’t been watching Agent Carter, then you have been doing yourself a serious disservice. Carter brings a whole new look to the SSR and SHIELD while delicately laying ground work and clues for the future. Marvel shows how well they excel at long-term planning in these episodes. They have episodes tying into TV and movie properties and adding backstory to popular characters.
Peggy Carter’s story played second fiddle to Captain America in the movies but Atwell’s portrayal always resonates with me. She is a character who I could see as a strong female role model, as well as a hero. The conviction of this character translates beautifully to an expanded story, adding more depth to the character. We get to see Peggy deal with an unhappy workplace while wanting more from her life and missing her lost love. She spends her days with friends and enemies, and still manages to support those around her. Even though this show takes place over 50 years ago, this is still a character almost everyone could relate to.
This show also acknowledges the misogyny of the times. In last week’s episode, Peggy points out to her colleagues they only see her as the helpless woman in their midst. They all see her as they want to see her rather than as a peer. I admit, sometimes the near constant criticisms of women make me cringe inside. Still, it brings a sense of reality to an otherwise unreal world. Superhero or not, every woman has had to deal with “gender discrepancies.”
Agent Carter took a major step for comic fans by showcasing a female lead. We need to show Marvel our thanks so they and other companies see this is what we want. Strong female characters, not women in refrigerators. Thank you Marvel. Keep Peggy Carter in mind when you write for fans, and you will keep bringing in all types of fans.