The television side of Marvel's shared universe has been much slower to start than its big screen counterpart: where DC currently has three shows on the air and more in development, Marvel only has Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. - a series most agree didn't find its footing until halfway through its first season, but has since proven itself a crucial part of the MCU.
Marvel's next foray into television will be the miniseries Agent Carter. Airing in January while Agents is on its mid-season hiatus, Agent Carter will follow Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) in a post-WWII, post-Captain America world as she struggles to continue working as a field agent while constantly being tasked with paperwork and desk duty.
Check out a new, extended preview for Agent Carter above, highlighting the connections to Captain America: The First Avenger, and what troubles led Agent Carter to take a more... direct role in establishing a new era of espionage.
Both Atwell and Dominic Cooper are returning to their First Avenger roles, with the two characters reunited when Howard Stark is framed for selling military-grade weapons on the black market. With no one else to trust, it's up to Peggy - and Stark's butler, Edwin Jarvis (James D'Arcy) - to hunt down the missing cache of weapons.
This mission, however, is separate from her work at the Strategic Scientific Reserve (S.S.R., the organization that will go on to become S.H.I.E.L.D.), where she's found herself repeatedly passed over for work in the field. This marginalization of Peggy - and women in general - will be a theme seen throughout Agent Carter's short season, echoed in the stories of Peggy's roommate, Colleen (Ashley Hinshaw), her neighbor Dottie (Bridget Regan), and friend Angie Martinelli (Lyndsy Fonseca), an aspiring actress.
Agent Carter premieres with a two-hour episode, likely its first two episodes aired back-to-back (and why the series was shortened from eight to seven episodes). Yet, a shorter season may be all the better for the series - which will focus more heavily on espionage than the supernatural - and likely help with avoiding the all-too-often overused "villain of week" formula.
Still, it's nice to see that the showrunners have been giving the option of putting the events (and characters) of The First Avenger to use in their own continuation. Peggy was never shown to be the kind of woman who would fall to pieces because of a man, but this preview shows that the loss of Steve Rogers won't be dismissed entirely (he isn't just any man, after all).
Are you excited for Agent Carter? Do you expect the series to be another fine addition to Marvel's ever-growing shared universe? Drop us a line in the comment below!
Agent Carter premieres January 6th, 2015 at @9pm on ABC.