TV Review: Marvel’s Agent Carter is snazzy, retro, and super-cool

Anyone who questions the necessity of Agent Carter should know that in the show’s first episode, there’s a scene where Hayley Atwell—playing Strategic Scientific Reserve agent Peggy Carter—dons a blond wig and a glamorous gown, struts through a club playing hot jazz, plants a knockout kiss on a sharp-dressed gangster named Spider Raymond (played by The Wire‘s Andre Royo), then uses a special tricked-out wristwatch to crack Spider’s safe and retrieve a secret formula. Judging by its first two episodes, this is what Agent Carter is going to be: retro-cool pulp thrills in fabulous outfits. Think The Rocketeer or Raiders Of The Lost Ark, but with a dame instead of a dude.

It’s easy to be skeptical about the trends in movies and television toward superheroes and “universes,” where everything is ultimately a commercial for something else—something sold separately. But thus far …

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