Anything that puts Hayley Atwell on my TV once a week is a good thing.
It's that time of the year, where we hear all sorts of rumors about what might or might not be happening. This morning, one of the bigger stories concerns another ABC Marvel series, one that would run concurrently with “Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.”, which is well on its way to a second season pick-up.
While I haven't seen anything specific about the approach they're taking to the proposed series “Agent Carter,” it would obviously hinge on Hayley Atwell's character from “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” one of the most interesting female leads they've had in any of the Marvel movies. It sounds like it would essentially serve as a prequel to the series they already have on the air, but is that enough of a change to make this worth the greenlight?
If they do this, then it would obviously be a period show, which would be a radically different thing than what they're doing each week right now on “Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.”, and that's good. Of course, the events that happened in “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” and in the show last week would imply that we'd see some things happen in “Agent Carter” that would be serving a dual purpose. While Carter was part of the formation of S.H.I.E.L.D., we now know that HYDRA was infiltrating that organization right from the start. It would be interesting to watch that process and see just how that cancer got a foothold in what was designed as an organization designed to keep our enemies from every getting an edge on us.
Another story thread that might make things interesting involves Sharon Carter, introduced in “Captain America: The Winter Soldier.” Technically speaking, she's also Agent Carter, and Emily VanCamp is a big name in the TV world now. Could Marvel have introduced her in the film specifically so they can carry her over to the TV show and tell stories set in two different time periods? I haven't heard anyone say that's what they're doing, but it certainly opens up some interesting possibilities for whoever ends up working on the show.
As successful as Marvel's been in movies so far, TV is a very different animal, and so far, the results have been decidedly mixed. I don't hate “Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.” the way so many people seem to, but I definitely think the show has been a mixed bag from the start, and it's still not really focused enough to make it a must-watch. The Netflix series that they're working towards, including “Daredevil,” “Jessica Jones,” and whatever it is they're dong with Iron Fist and Luke Cage, sound to me like they could be exciting, built around great characters, and at the very least, I think the Daredevil series is in great hands.
I'm not sure who they're looking at to be the “Agent Carter” show-runner, but I hope they pick somebody who has a strong take on not only the character but the era in which the show will be set. There are strong possibilities inherent to the premise, and Atwell deserves a strong showcase. If they do use this to keep original programming on the air in the gap between the fall and spring sections of the “Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.” series, then it gives them room to experiment and try something exciting. If Marvel is going to make their shows into the same sort of cultural events that their movies are so far, they're going to have to aim high and put their full energy into each thing. If there's anything that is true about the TV landscape today, it is that okay isn't good enough.
“Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.” airs each week on Tuesdays on ABC.