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This week’s Agent Carter left some of the humor behind for a more dramatic third episode titled “Better Angels.” The episode gave us a closer look at just what kind of villains we’ll be dealing with this season.
The episode opened with Peggy investigating Dr. Wilkes’ residence with Detective Sousa. They immediately found $50,000 in cash and a Russian passport, but Peggy wasn’t fooled. She knew right away that Wilkes was being framed by Isodyne so they could report that Wilkes was a communist who just wanted to blow up an advanced United States lab. Since the rest of the detectives and media were easily swayed by this theory, Peggy went to Howard Stark for help.
Jarvis and Peggy visited the set of Stark’s latest film, which led to the most entertaining part of the whole episode. It started with the pair trying to sidestep out of the frame and ended with Stark remarking that Peggy should be in his next film as a barmaid. She immediately responded that she would rather be a cowboy and continued by criticizing his latest film that is based on a comic book. It was the kind of snark and self-aware humor that I love so much about this show.
Once they had Stark’s full attention, they continued trying to figure out what really happened to Wilkes, eventually making a connection to an exclusive club called the Arena Club. They set up a mission to get in, using Stark’s notoriety. Even though the club is made up of “pale males,” Howard brings in a group of women, giving Peggy the perfect way to sneak in a get a look around. While looking around, Peggy discovers that this group has a lot of control when it comes to manipulating things, particularly in the government.
Of course, this whole mission was off the books and when her boss, Jack Thompson, found out, he wasn’t too happy. I don’t really understand what he was doing in California, but I could have done without him. He is so easily manipulated by Vernon Masters that it’s hard to tell what he actually stands for. All he manages to do is butt heads with Peggy. I hope he gets on the next plane back to New York.
While working on the case, Peggy realized that objects have started floating around her. They think it is because she has been contaminated by zero matter, but it’s really because James Wilkes is somehow hovering around her. This reveal was pretty cool until you think too much about it. How long has he been around her? What would he have done if they never noticed and didn’t know Stark, who had that magic spray that made him visible again?
This discovery launches a whole new project: make Wilkes a physical being again. I was happy to see Wilkes return, but the science stuff always goes right over my head. I hope they figure out a way to make him a tangible person again soon. The most he’s able to do right now to continue to sassily flirt with Peggy (which I am okay with).
After they talked to Wilkes, they learned that Whitney Frost was also at the lab incident, so Peggy paid her a visit. Whitney was immediately threatened and ran to her husband to hire a hit man to kill Peggy, which he did. The hitman sneaked up on Peggy while she was beating the crap out of a punching bag. If I were that hitman, I would turned around at that point, but he decided to try and strangler her instead. Jarvis, luckily, came to help and the two of them manage to take him down. It was mostly Peggy, but it was nice to see Jarvis get in on the action. I love that those two are truly a team. They both have their strengths to offer.
At the very end, we got another scene with Whitney talking to her manager. He told her she was going to be replaced, but he stopped it from happening, so he made a move on her, thinking he deserved some kind of payment. She was uncomfortable and suddenly zero matter shot out of her hands and engulfed him. That was pretty awesome to see, but it also worries me that those powers are literally in the wrong hands. We also learned this episode that Whitney is actually the mastermind who created Isodyne. I wasn’t sure about Whitney last episode, but now I’m thinking she’s a worthy villain for Peggy.
This season is really captivating so far. I love the diverse characters and that everything is linked in an intelligent way. I also love the commentary on sexism and racism throughout each episode. This show does a pretty good job of combining social commentary, humor, action and an engaging storyline in a fairly neat package.