After a great premiere, Agent Carter followed up with some much appreciated story reveals, as well as the return of the one and only Howard Stark.
Seriously, this episode showed just how zany Stark can be when he’s in his “comfort zone” and not on the run. He’s absurd, and hilarious, and juvenile, but lovable all the while. It’s hilarious to see him, Jarvis, and Peggy all in the same room interacting with each other, as each has a vastly different personality. These three are a big reason Agent Carter works as a show. They’ll all incompatible, yet totally compatible.
Speaking of which, the true crux of the episode was the reveal that Wilkes was alive, in a manner of speaking. The Darkforce, or Zero Matter, turned him invisible and intangible. But Stark made him visible again, and thus the challenge now is to make him truly whole. Watching Wilkes and Stark work together was fun, as it showed the true science that this show brings. And who knew Jarvis was so smart? Add another later to the great character.
Wilkes return also brought out another layer of depth to Peggy, who was furious (before she saw him again) that he was being made a Patsy, dubbed a communist and traitor, even by the SSR. Her fury and anger was very justified, and just like the epic woman she was she wouldn’t let it stand without a fight.
Then there’s Whitney Frost, who also got some great spotlight in “Better Angels” as her powers, and powers of persuasion was put to good yes. It’s becoming a little clearer how she might evolve into Madame Masque, albeit a very different version, but it’s clear her powers make her the true threat this season.
On a down note, Thompson’s arrival in LA marked a serious low for Season 02 so far. His downright refusal to accept any Peggy said was a direct contradiction to how they ended things last year. Yes, he stole her credit, but he still trusted her to do the job. Here, he treated her like the beginning the first season. Even forging her signature to make the Wilkes matter go ahead. I clapped when Peggy made the “bury the nasty truth” line, as it showed she hadn’t forgotten what he told her last year.
That being said, I think they’re trying to shape him into a good guy based on his interaction with Sousa, and the reveal to him at the end that Peggy was indeed right about the conspiracy. How it’ll play out though is anyone’s guess right now.
“Better Angels” was a funny and very thought out follow-up to the season 02 premiere. The shortened seasons Agent Carter has allows for tight storytelling, and that’s truly the case here.