Jeremy Likes TV

I like TV. Probably more than any human should.

Posts Tagged ‘One Tree Hill

Marvel’s Figured It Out

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Agent Carter

Marvel is on a hot buttered roll right now, with its tentacles touching everything from movie theaters, television networks, and even on-demand giants like Netflix. The world’s arguably foremost comics company is currently in the midst of a near-unprecedented, sprawling journey that sees it bringing its characters to screens everywhere in an interwoven narrative, and ABC’s Marvel’s Agent Carter is the latest offshoot on this voyage.

Taking the Peggy Carter character from the Captain America series and building a show around her, Marvel’s Agent Carter stars Brit Hayley Atwell as the titular Carter. As the central personality, Atwell has a strong screen presence that allows her to anchor a cast of familiar faces that that includes Dominic Cooper returning from the films as Howard Stark (AKA Iron Man/Tony Stark’s father), Shea Wigham (Boardwalk Empire’s Eli) as her superior at the S.S.R. (Strategic Scientific Reserve), and One Tree Hill’s Chad Michael Murray and Dollhouse’s Enver Gjokaj as fellow agents. The thrust of the series sees Stark enlisting Carter to clear his name after he’s accused of treason by way of selling weapons to enemy organizations, thus putting the S.S.R. on his tail and Carter in a number of precarious positions as she hides her clandestine mission from her co-workers. There’s also a twist near the end of the first episode that puts allegiances in question in an interesting manner as the narrative moves forward.

What sets Marvel’s Agent Carter apart from the Marvel series that it’s replacing in the ABC lineup – Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – is that is has style to spare, which is evident almost immediately with the shot of Carter walking to work in her bright red hat and lively blue suit, the only hint of color in a sea of drab gray commuters. It also feels – at least in its first two hours – less like a television show and more like a Marvel film that’s been chopped into eight equal parts, as the first season will run only eight episodes. That, along with its production values (which are high), already make it feel more like a true Marvel project than Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. does, though I’m admittedly only halfway through season one of that show and have heard that there was a quality uptick. Its fight sequences are also impressively staged, making Atwell potentially the next in a long line of strong female television action heroines.

With more Marvel television shows on the way as a part of the company’s deal with Netflix – which includes April’s Daredevil as well as series based on the Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist characters – Marvel’s Agent Carter stands perhaps as the template for the quality that we can expect in future series that promise to bring all of the fun of Marvel’s big-screen adventures to the comfort of your couch.

Episode 1.01/1.02 Grade: B+

Stray Thoughts:

*Shea Wigham just can’t stay away from period pieces, apparently, as his Roger Dooley has more than a little Eli Thompson in his DNA.

*In addition to the actors listed above, other TV vets like Lyndsy Fonseca (Nikita) as Carter’s new neighbor, Andre Royo (The Wire) and Ray Wise (Twin Peaks) as notable guests in the first two episodes respectively, and Costa Ronin (Oleg from The Americans) as Howard Stark’s future partner Anton Venko are all present in the first two hours. Agent Carter apparently has one hell of a casting director.

*As someone who’s only familiar with the majority of these stories via the films, the fact that Howard Stark’s assistant Edwin Jarvis shares a name with the butler/OS software that Tony Stark uses in the Iron Man films and in The Avengers isn’t a coincidence, is it?

Where to Watch: Marvel’s Agent Carter on ABC.com / Marvel’s Agent Carter on Hulu

Morning Links: 2/1/12

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Welcome to the Morning Links. Each weekday, I’ll provide you with some interesting television-related news items culled from the various TV websites I frequent on a regular basis with a slight bit of commentary attached. Pretty straightforward – no fuss, no muss. New day, new month. Let’s get to it:

*In today’s bit of good news, Hitfix’s Alan Sepinwall reports that HBO has renewed their Michael Mann/David Milch collaboration Luck for a second season following its debut outing on Sunday night. Granted, its premiere ratings weren’t the best, but the show’s really damned good and HBO has a history of renewing its series after their debut outings regardless of what their ratings are. Plus, since Milch’s last series, the inscrutable John From Cincinnati was the rare HBO series not to earn a second season, this was almost a fait accompli as I’m sure they want to stay in the David Milch business and didn’t want to risk his ire again. I’ll have a review of Luck up later this week but a quick preview: it’s a very impressive – if challenging – debut for the show.

*Since Tuesday night is Justified night, why not spend the morning after reading two Justified-centric interviews (after reading my review of episode one and two, which will be posted later today, of the third season, of course). Todd VanDerWerff of The AV Club sits down with Boyd Crowder himself, Walton Goggins, to discuss the evolution of the Boyd character as well as reminiscing on his days on another top-shelf FX drama, The Shield. Meanwhile, Danger Guerrero over at Warming Glow (an honest to God hero of mine – the guy’s a Phillies fan, TV fanatic, and possessor of one of the best Twitter feeds in the world) interviews one of Justified’s writers, Jon Worley.

*If Kristen Bell is going to be absolutely adorable on a talk show, you’re damn right I’m gonna link to it. Or if she’s on a talk show at all, really. Here’s her appearance from earlier this week on The Ellen Show via The Hollywood Reporter where she recounts the surprise she received for her birthday (from her boyfriend Dax Shepard, who’s my mortal enemy).

*Speaking of adorable, The AV Club reports that Natalie Portman is developing a series for CBS based on a Judith Krantz novel. Seeing as this is not only Judith Krantz material but a CBS series, NATALIE PORTMAN STARS IN IT OR GTFO.

*The UFC’s second outing on Fox Saturday night did decent ratings for what turned out to be a boring card. I love MMA and I know good fight cards and you, Saturday night’s card, turned out to be very, very bad. I feel sad if that was some people’s introduction to MMA because I promise you, the quality of fights on Saturday night was not representative of a majority of the UFC’s events. But at least Michael Bisping lost.

*From The Hollywood Reporter, The CW picked up three pilots on Tuesday, including one that’s a collaboration between JJ Abrams and One Tree Hill creator Mark Schwahn. Seeing as it’s coming from those two, I can guarantee you that I will watch the hell out of that show against my will. One of the others is also described as a “time travel musical.” Uh… yeah, good luck with that one, CW.

*Again from The Hollywood Reporter, ABC also picked up a handful of pilots and since all of them look like varying degrees of garbage, I’ll have no more to say on the subject.

*On the subject of The CW, via The AV Club they’ve cast the lead of their Green Arrow adaptation with this guy from The Vampire Diaries and Hung. <shrugs>

*A bunch of people got axed from The X Factor but we don’t care, right? Right.

*Finally, RIP Mr. Pitt. Hopefully your accidental Hitler mustache doesn’t hurt you in the afterlife.