Between Marvel’s big-screen releases and the unveiling of their Phase 3 plan, as well as the development of the TV side of its Cinematic Universe, with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., 2014 was a big year for studio. Now, Marvel is kicking 2015 off early with the two-hour series premiere of its second television show, ABC’s Agent Carter (along with the debut of the Ant-Man trailer) on Tuesday. The series is giving new life to Agent Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) and reuniting her with fellow Captain America: The First Avenger costar Howard Stark (Dominic Cooper).
In addition to the elder Stark, Agent Carter will allow fans to witness how Peggy is dealing with the aftermath of The First Avenger - in which she lost Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) - as well as her working relationship with Stark’s butler Edwin Jarvis (James D’Arcy). Atwell discussed these relationships (Iand one viewers may see in the future) in a recent interview.
While talking to IGN, Atwell revealed that her character’s time and relationship with Steve Rogers a.k.a. Captain America will have an impact on how she carries herself in Agent Carter. Early and more detailed synopses for the series revealed that Peggy would be dealing with the grief of losing “the love of her life” and Atwell said it will give her character motivation in the show’s first season.
Read Atwell’s full quote:
“Well, this is one of the beauties of this show and how it grows through the season. It’s only been a year and she’s grieving him and I think what keeps her going is he was the greatest person she ever knew - even before he took the serum and became Captain America. She knew his character and she saw a kindred spirit in him. So I think she’s grieving the loss of him but she’s also determined to make sure that his work wasn’t in vain. That gives her a tremendous amount of determination to carry on despite the obstacles that she comes across. You see the personal struggles and the sacrifices that she had to make and you see her grief and that’s wonderful because you see the vulnerable side of Peggy. She becomes infinitely more relatable and more human because of that.”
Though viewers have seen how the events at the end of The First Avenger affected Steve in The Avengers and Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Agent Carter will show fans how Peggy dealt with the loss. Even if Steve Rogers doesn’t appear in Agent Carter, it seems his presence will be there in Peggy’s character development.
As for new relationships that will be featured on the upcoming series, Peggy will be working with Stark’s butler Jarvis on the mission that he assigns her. However, according to Atwell, there will be a little push-and-pull in Jarvis and Peggy’s working relationship.
Read Atwell’s full quote:
“I think it’s kind of… they’re forced together. He’s been told that he has to work with her and be available to her. But I think, from her point of view, she doesn’t need any help. But she needs someone who is in contact with Howard to help kind of run this mission. So they have this very witty banter back and forth where she’s constantly having to go, “Look, dude, I don’t need your help! I am fine.” But it’s a lovely dynamic between them because they’re both British. They both have that wit and that satire. Their language is a game of chess back and forth. It’s a great game that they play and I think they get tremendous enjoyment out of it. And their relationship grows over the season. They become very close. They also provide the comic relief of the season. You see the serious aspects of what they have to do but then you have these great moments of comedy between them. He becomes like her comic sidekick.”
While Peggy’s grief over Steve may give Agent Carter more serious character development, it seems her relationship with Jarvis will provide some more-lighthearted entertainment for viewers. Though, as Atwell said, their relationship will progress over the course of the first season.
One of Peggy’s relationships that remains more of a mystery, though, is between the character and her husband, who has been hinted at on the film side of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe. Atwell didn’t reveal what she knows of Peggy’s life that was mentioned when Steve visits an older incarnation of the character in The Winter Soldier. But, Atwell did say that Agent Carter gives them a chance to explore Peggy’s life more should the series continue after season 1:
“That’s what’s great about the situation we have now, is that we have an opportunity, if the show does go into second and third and fourth and fifth season, we know that we can explore all of these aspects of her character because we know she lives such a long life and she’s had a fulfilled life. I think what’s going to start happening in Season 1 is seeds are going to be planted as to what happens in her personal life - and yet it’s still open to the possibility of new men coming into her life, deepening relationships with the men that we discover in Season 1. Obviously, the era is 1946 but in the second, third, fourth, fifth season - if it goes onto that - we can explore different time periods.”
From Atwell’s comments, it appears viewers won’t learn too much about Peggy’s personal life in season 1. However, with only eight episodes in which to deal with Peggy’s grief over Steve, her working with Jarvis, and her mission for Stark, it may be best that the series doesn’t tackle too much. Additionally, the relationships teased by Atwell will certainly offer plenty of insight and character development for viewers of Agent Carter.
Agent Carter premieres January 6th, 2015 on ABC @9pm.