Agent Carter 'Time and Tide' Review - Is Dottie Underwood the Mysterious Killer?
After a double feature premiere last week, Marvel's Agent Carter settled into it's normal schedule last night with 'Time and Tide', an episode that shed more light on the struggles of our protagonist and revealed the secretive past held by the normally-chipper Jarvis. This was an episode that, for the most part, sacrificed the thrilling action scenes witnessed in the previous two hours and instead opted to delve deeper into the complexities of the show's characters and their interactions with each other...
This episode continued to reveal the challenges that Peggy faces in her everyday life (the struggles she faces outside of her day job are a whole other matter), and once again she deals with these obstacles in an inspirational manner. Peggy is facing tension both inside and outside of her office at the Strategic Science Reserve (S.S.R), but for the first time it appears this balancing act is starting to take a toll on our protagonist. At work, the misogyny is kicked up a gear as Krzeminski fires off a couple of barbs about Peggy's ability to make it into work on time, something that must sting given everything she goes through outside of the office. But it's Krzeminski's remark that a woman couldn't possibly work a night shift that must have really gotten to her, because let's face it, a night shift with the S.S.R pales in comparison to the type of night shifts Peggy and Jarvis have been putting in recently. I'll admit that I allowed myself a slow fist pump when Peggy opted to rise above it and simply stroll past in the most confident manner possible. Such dialogue isn't subtle in the point it's trying to get across, but the fact that it's trying to get the point across in the first place is refreshing.
Outside of life in the S.S.R. Peggy is struggling to protect Angie from the same fate that befell her old roommate, but in a rare blunder she doesn't deal with the situation as well as she may have hoped. When Angie gets off work and heads to Peggy's room looking to blow off some steam, Peggy rather is uncharacteristically forceful in brushing her friend off. This hurts Angie, and although the strain on their friendship doesn't last, it could be that Peggy's double life won't stay a secret from her best friend for long.
Jarvis's Dark Past
With S.S.R's investigation into the whereabouts of Howard Stark continuing, the case inevitably leads Thompson and co. to Stark's right hand man, Jarvis. As Jarvis is brought in for questioning, a relatively routine interrogation takes an unexpected turn when Thompson reveals that he knows about Jarvis's dishonourable discharge from British military. The unflappable Jarvis is taken aback to hear his past dragged up, but when Thompson mentions his wife, Anna, Jarvis's surprise turns to anger and for the first time we get to witness a totally different side to his character.
From the other side of the mirror Peggy pays witness to this bombshell and she is unable to hide her shock. But this is a man that she clearly admires and what happens next is one of Peggy's finest moments to date. Potentially undoing months of hard work, Peggy enters the interrogation room to admit she made a mistake that allows Jarvis to wriggle out of the intense questioning he had previously been facing. Peggy knows that this will put her directly in Dooley's firing line, and she knows that it will make her progress through the ranks far harder than it had already been, but she sacrifices all of this in order to get her companion out of a sticky situation. A dressing down from Dooley is forthcoming and his remarks suggest that he's starting to doubt having a woman on the team, but Peggy knew this would be the outcome and you get the feeling she wouldn't ever have done anything differently.
After aiding his escape from interrogation, Peggy allows herself to feel entitled to an explanation from Jarvis, who in return reluctantly offers one up. We now learn that Jarvis's dishonourable discharge came about after he forged the signature of his General in order to get the jewish Anna out of Nazi occupied Budapest. To see a man we have come to know so well talk with so much passion about a woman we haven't even seen is fascinating, and it's a ballsy move by the show's creators. We don't need to see a relationship on screen to know that it matters to a show's leading characters, instead the show relies on a brilliant performance by D'Arcy who successfully displays enough emotion to get the message across while leaving the audience with a sense of intrigue as to what this Anna is like.
Back to Leviathan
After all of this background work, the show upped the pace in its second half when Peggy and Jarvis track down a stash of Stark's 'Bad Babies' on a cargo ship. Having met surprisingly little resistance in reaching the stash, Peggy gets ready to call in the find to her colleagues at the S.S.R. That is until Jarvis shows an incredible level of sensitivity and awareness, and suggests that Peggy should not be the one to call it in because it will open her up to a level of cross-examination that would inevitably blow her cover as a double agent. This must be another blow to Peggy's morale because she knows that had one of her male colleagues stumbled upon the stash, they would be treated as heroes and not interrogated as to how they came about finding the goods.
The cargo scene also contains another stellar display of action choreography as Peggy and Jarvis wrestle with a brute of a man who has been charged with guarding Stark's stolen tech. The change in pace, while jarring, is yet another reminder of what a well-rounded show Agent Carter has come to be.
A Mysterious Killer
When the S.S.R arrive after an anonymous tip (from Jarvis), they cart the stolen tech and the defeated guard back to the station. Krzeminski is charged with bringing the guard in for questioning, but his path is stopped when a car rams him from behind on a quiet, foggy street. The driver of the car gets out and executes both Krzeminski and his prisoner with brutal precision.
The reaction to Krzeminski's death is as heartwarming as it is surprising. As Peggy comes into the office the next day, she enters an office in mourning for their colleague. It was nice to see the cold-hearted misogynists of the S.S.R showing some emotion, because after being portrayed as almost comically mean, it showed that these guys do, after all, have a soft side. Peggy's reaction was equally emotional. There was none of the sobbing that we saw when her roommate died, but Peggy's face was painted with grief. Though Krzeminski may have been a bit of an arse, he was still a member of S.S.R and Peggy knows that the Leviathan mystery has claimed another life.
The episode ends with a touching scene of reconciliation between Peggy and Angie, but after Krzeminski's death, we're left with one more question to go with the Leviathan mystery...Who was Krzeminski's killer? My guess has to be the new addition to the Griffith, Dottie Underwood, played by Bridget Regan. I'll admit that I don't have much to go on, but the timing of her introduction and the notably feminine manner in which the killer walks away from the murder scene has me convinced that this is the case.
Agent Carter returns in 2 weeks time in an episode that will feature a guest appearance by Stan Lee.