This is it, the season finale of “Marvel’s Agent Carter,” with – according to the hype – everybody vs. Whitney Frost. After the end of that last episode, what new powers does she have, and can anyone stop her? Will the ending of this season be more satisfying than much of what went before? Meet me on the other side for my thoughts on “Hollywood Ending.”
The State of the Agency
Now we’ve talked before about Hayley Atwell’s upcoming series, “Conviction,” and between the showrunners’ other projects, new and old, and low ratings this season – this might just be the end of “Agent Carter.” We might be looking at a series finale tonight as opposed to just a season finale. Apparently that may not be a sure thing in either way.
First, ABC has neither officially canceled nor renewed “Agent Carter,” at least not yet – although how good a gauge this last episode’s ratings may be airing on Super Tuesday is a coin toss. Second, Hayley Atwell has stated she wouldn’t be against working on two series next year. “Agent Carter” is after all a limited run series, and she loves the character.
We open sixty seconds before we left last week. Thompson was about to blow up the bad guys’ lair with a gamma bomb, Whitney Frost was about to eat Masters zero matter style, and Wilkes was about to just blow up real good. Before Thompson can do the deed, Wilkes goes first, expelling all the zero matter from his body when he does it.
When the good guys investigate, they find Wilkes, emptied of all the otherworldly black gook, which is all over the place. All over the place and oozing toward Whitney on the floor until she’s absorbed all of it. Then she drunkenly lunges after the good guys like Carrie White on ‘ludes. Luckily Jarvis and Stark show up and run her down. In the words of the embattled butler, “Don’t worry, she’s resilient.”
Manfredi and the Machine
After a spat with the madly plotting Whitney, and a heart to heart with his wonderfully charismatic Mama, Joseph Manfredi, bless his evil maniac heart, pays a visit to the Stark mansion. He wants them, his (and her) enemies to help save Whitney. Apparently he and Howard Stark are old buddies. Of course they are.
Through a bit of distraction they connive to get inside Whitney’s room and take pictures of her scattered plans to take back to Stark. The plans are for a rift generator, for which Peggy gets naming rights. She’s almost as good at that as Cisco on “The Flash.” The machine will open a permanent portal between our world and the zero matter world, presumably Dormammu’s Dark Dimension.
The Smartest Men in the World
Once Stark and company have reconfigured the gamma cannon into a rift generator on the evacuated Stark studio set of the Kid Colt movie, they wait, because sooner or later, Whitney Frost will know it’s there and come a-calling. With the machine on, and a portal to the Dark Dimension open, all Howard Stark can think to do is hit golf balls into it. Way to wake the dread one, Howie.
Whitney Frost does arrive, with little to no fanfare and their plan works as designed, mostly at least. The zero matter is sucked right out of her, no problems, all solved, no fight, no sweat. So disappointing. The only tension is Sousa trying to save the day shutting the portal and some momentary joy at seeing the first prototype of the standard S.H.I.E.L.D. flying car.
It’s just too easy. It’s all just too easy, much like the dumbing down of the series this season, the ending of “Hollywood Ending” is like far too many real Hollywood endings – bad. Peggy finally made her romantic mind up, and went for the safe option as opposed the hard but passionate one. I don’t know about the rest of the audience, but I certainly preferred Wilkes over Sousa.
No Dormammu, despite the loose ends of both Frost and Wilkes hearing voices from the other side. I had really hoped for more of a connection to the upcoming Doctor Strange film but I guess it just wasn’t in the cards. With her closer, Frost is certainly on her way to becoming Madame Masque, I wonder if we will actually see it or not. The murder of Thompson and the theft of the files certainly leave things open for a third season. As much as I like this show as a whole, this episode left a lot to be desired, so I’m not sure I want it… What did you folks think?