Episode 5 – The Atomic Job
Humor found its way into the core of the fifth episode, The Atomic Job. Riffing on classic heist movies (such as The Italian Job), for the most part it was a lot of fun.
Agent Carter has found its niche in mixing stakes with light-hearted characters. And in this episode we got to initiate another episode into the fold, Rose. You may remember Rose, as the woman who compliments Peggy on her hat in the first season, and as the receptionist protecting the West Coast branch of the SSR, but tonight she showed that her Krav Maga has showed off and that she is a true agent herself.
Comedy is often talked about in entertainment as the hardest thing to write, but Agent Carter does it so well. They fit in lines such as, “I see Daniel Sousa, but I hear Jack Thompson talking,” and “your pie is in me?” flawlessly. The Marvel Universe as a whole us usually loaded in emotional storylines, that may not always be present on the surface, but definitely hit a note with fans. Marvel knows its characters are the heart, and where there is humor, there is sure to be some hurting.
This episode didn’t have a whole lot of hurt, but after the charming opening of Sousa proposing to his girlfriend Violet, the ending stung when Violet realized Sousa was still in love with Peggy. Interestingly, Violet only criticizes Sousa, and doesn’t berate or knock Peggy’s character. This is an example of intelligent writing, and for a show set in the 1940’s it is so far ahead of itself.
Another comedic highlight was the back and forth when Peggy went undercover at Roxxon to find Hugh Jones’ key. Peggy uses a disguise and an American accent, but it’s not good enough for Jones who apparently always remembers a face. Each time Peggy zaps his memory with the inhibitor and Ray Wise, who plays Hugh Jones, wakes up to her straddling him, is a comedic blessing. But things change.
The emotional gutting continues just as Peggy is settled into her bed at the Stark mansion after impaling herself to avoid being killed by Whitney Frost. She flips on the radio and the song ‘I Want to Be Loved’ plays, to which Peggy tells Wilkes their song is on. Just as he’s going to tell her something important, and probably very romantic, Wilkes falls victim to his current Zero Matter state and disappears, leaving a very distraught Peggy.
The part that doesn’t work for the episode is the timing. While almost the entire episode runs solid in its light aspect, things quickly, and too quickly take a dive when Peggy chooses to fall on the cement bricks and rods instead of getting crossed off by Frost. The emotional parts are squeezed into a give minute period, and while you still get the impact, it feels awkward and rushed.
In this episode, we also learned a bit more about Zero Matter. It calls to both Wilkes and Frost this episode. Wilkes believes it is the answer to bringing him completely back after he comes into contact with a tiny bit of it, Peggy, Jarvis and Howard had kept at the mansion. He automatically knows he needs to find the body of Jane Scott, the girl who was found dead in the first episode. When Peggy and Jarvis come upon Scott’s body, Frost and Cal had beaten them to it, but that’s where they get the key information that Frost seeks an atomic bomb, and not just any one, but one where she will absorb it’s Zero Matter properties. Zero Matter is so far the strongest link we have to Doctor Strange in the series, but it isn’t 100% clear if it is the link the show wants to fool us with or wants to present us with. Either way, Wilkes calls it very dark.
Overall, it was a great episode, fun yet continuing to display the cold and brutal Whitney Frost. She has her husband on edge the entire episode, until he breaks down and tells her he can’t do it anymore. He resolves this in calling an emergency council meeting. We’re left in the dark on to what he has planned, but Frost may just have another thing to worry about.
- Funny, progressive and leads with interest
- Rose showing off
- Awkward pacing
- No Bernard