Review: Agent Carter 1.8 - Valediction

Holy shit. This episode of Agent Carter gave me everything I wanted from the finale of this fine show. Just finished watching it and I’m all hyped up, I want to watch both Captain America movies, the One-Shot and then re-watch the whole series again. We’ll have to see when I come down if it still deserves the perfect score but right now, man, it feels like the perfect ending. As an individual episode this gets a solid 4 but as the end of the story I feel it’s elevated to a higher score. I can’t think of anything I would have done differently as a finale.  I can barely think of anything I would do differently as an episode. The story offers quite a bit, Howard Stark finally comes back to clear his name. Dominic Cooper has always been great as Howard Stark but he’s never been this… on point before. His usual good performance is replaced by a great performance that really makes you see where Tony got his personality. He’s Tony Stark enough to know they are related but different enough that he doesn’t feel like a carbon copy. He’s cocky, funny, brilliant and tortured all at the same time and he can move from one to the other effortlessly when he needs to. Stark's big moment in the episode really delves into who he is and what he thinks his biggest failure is and how that affects him.

Agent Carter 1.8

I don’t want to spoil too much for you because if you've been following the series you deserve to get the payoffs in real-time. I’ll just rundown a couple of moments that I liked. Peggy and Black Widow have the fight they’ve been teasing since the reveal of Dottie. It doesn’t disappoint in the slightest. Jarvis gets both funny and touching moments with Howard and Peggy separately. Jarvis has been a great addition to the cast of this series making a lot of good stuff out of what could have been lackluster writing. I don’t know if anyone else could pull off what James D’Arcy did with Jarvis, he has excellent chemistry with both Howard and Peggy.

Peggy and friend Angie finally get some payoff for having their lives and homes disrupted by the SSR. Finally, maybe I’m over sensitive, maybe I’m just not cynical enough but there were two moments that made me a little emotional. The first was a call back to the end of the first Captain America movie and the second was when Peggy gets to say her final good-bye to Steve Rogers. Both excellently paying off all the Captain America references strewn throughout the series, both a little heartbreaking. They were great moments for the character of Peggy Carter that were emphasized by the acting of Haley Atwell.  Of course, this being Marvel, we get what is essentially an 'after credits scene' that was quite unexpected.

The series ended on kind of a down note but with Peggy standing un-credited but a self-confident, self-possessed woman. It didn’t really set up the One-Shot but after experiencing everything I’m okay with that for now. I really liked the full series, it had its bad moments certainly but for the most part it was a good ride. I hope it comes back next year as a midseason replacement, it’s better than watching 8 weeks of SHIELD reruns or 8 weeks of network nonsense for that matter. The fact that SHIELD has just disappeared for as long as it has makes me look forward to its return next week even more.

Agent Carter 1.8 - Valediction Score: 5/5