“Monsters” was another solid episode of Agent Carter, but the show fell back into some bad habits.
I like it when Agent Carter shows us strong females (Peggy, Whitney, and Dottie), and how they must fight the system, instead of telling the audience about how tough this world is for women through lengthy dialogue. Whenever Agent Carter gets on its soapbox, it reads like the writer speaking through the character. Of course writers always speak through their characters but there’s a more artful way to do this. Show us. The second season has done a much better job of doing this than the first.
However, “Monsters” flirted with this pitfall when Whitney Frost fed us long explanations as to the real reason Peggy, Dottie, and Dr. Wilkes were employed by their respective agencies: they were minorities. I say the show flirted with this pitfall because these speeches were halfway between an after-school special and Frost trying to gain someone’s trust, sharing similar struggles. I’ll give Agent Carter the benefit of doubt and go with the latter but I could’ve done with one speech instead of two. Or better yet, the show could’ve reworded and shortened the speeches so it sounded less like a sermon.
The rest of the episode was well paced, complete with action, character development (we gained ground with Mr. and Mrs. Jarvis, Dr. Wilkes, and others this week), and some light comedy. I liked how we saw different combinations of characters and how they interacted with each other. It allowed the audience to see some of these characters through different lenses.
I’m still not invested in the romantic side of Agent Carter. It’s clear Sousa has always had eyes for Peggy, and Peggy, even though she’d deny it, has feelings for Sousa, but the two deliberately place roadblocks between each other like Ross and Rachel in Friends. You know the writers intend for them to get together, but it can’t happen until sometime in the third or fourth season. Why? Because the writers don’t want the relationship to happen until the third or fourth season. Until we reach the magic number of episodes, we’ll get nothing but a tease.
Despite a few bumps along the way, “Monsters” was a strong episode. It even ended with a touch of a cliffhanger. I won’t spoil it here, but it’s a satisfying, if not a little choreographed, one.