Agent Carter, Season 1 Episode 4 Review: “The Blitzkrieg Button”

(Beware, spoilers below!)

In some part of the city, Jarvis is making a deal with two rather shady looking men. Smuggling comes up but the deal goes sour when the men start asking for more money. As more of the lackeys show up Peggy kicks their asses and it turns out that the smugglers have been helping Howard Stark all along. Peggy chastises Howard for coming back into town, especially as all the SSR are after him for the death of one of their agents. Out of options, she smuggles him into her housing complex because there’s no way anyone would look for him there. This leads to a hilarious conversation with one of the matronsΒ about men in the building: Howard’s slick enough to avoid detection, however

In the SSR they’re digging further, with the Chief going to Germany so he can interview a war criminal suspected of being on the case. He leaves Thompson in charge until he gets back. In the morning he pep talks the team into working hard Souza wants to go into action but Thompson stops him for the time being and sends Peggy to get lunch orders. She pops to the lab and takes photos of the work using the camera pen Howard gave her.

At the waterfront, Souza finally gets to investigating more about what happened at the waterfront. He manages to disarm one of the men by the waterfront, despite being on one crutch. Somewhere else in town a man named Mr Mink is angry with the aforementioned smugglers for not getting as much money as he wanted. He kills the goons with a hi tech gun just after being told about someone called Peggy being on the case.

Souza is being teased for bringing back a waterside lowlife but he’s convinced the man knows something. In an interrogation room he confesses an old story about he limp, but the man isn’t breaking. Thompson is convinced Souza’s wasting time but the latter tells him to keep at it. Thompson eventually persuades him to tell by offering food and alcohol, and the lowlife confesses that he saw a man and a woman with dark hair leave the boat before the cops came.

Back at Peggy’s apartment complex, she’s smuggling food for Howard whilst he looks through the photos of the SSR seized inventions. He tells her she needs to steal back on called the Blitzkrieg Button which is no more than a glorified light switch that can’t be reversed. She goes off to steal back the inventions, butΒ she’s being trailed by Mr Mink. In the car she notices something is up with Jarvis.

In Nuremberg the Chief interrogates the war criminal about the Battle of Finnau, offering to help the man escape in exchange for information. He gives the man cyanide and tells in exchange he’s told that the people killed in the Battle of Finnau weren’t killed by the Germans but by massacred by someone else.

Back in the office, Peggy presses the Bilzkreig Button to confirm her suspicions: that it’s hiding something more. Inside the device is a vial of red liquid. As she’s trying to hide she comes across Thompson who tells her than no man will ever consider her an equal. As she makes her way back into her apartment she asks Howard what is in the vial and he tells her it’s Steve Rogers’ blood. She punches him and they get into a fight. Howard tells her that he’s kept the blood so that he can cure people with Steve’s blood but Peggy tells him that she can see who he is: a man out for his own gain.

Peggy tells him she has to leave as she storms outside. What she doesn’t know is that Mr Mink has come after her, but her new neighbour is definitely not what she seems, and takes Mr Mink out. In the morning she’s nothing but annoyed, and it seems like she’s not the only one. The Chief finally returns and Thompson gives him more info: that a plane out the day after the Battle of Finnau had Howard Stark on it.

In the Office, the typewriter suddenly starts typing as Peggy seals away the Biltzkreig Button in her wall… not knowing the dead Mr Mink is lying under the bed next door.

The show continues to deliver the goods, not just as a period piece but also as a brilliant example of unstoppable intriguing television. Halfway through the season we’re no closer to unravelling this puzzle – if anything, we’re only drawn in deeper. You can’t help but get the feeling that Souza (shading in the hair from that picture), is going to suss her out sooner or later, and it was fun to see Stan Lee pop up so soon. It was also a welcome return to the show from Dominic Cooper, who plays against both Hayley Atwell and James D’Arcy perfectly, making his short moments very much worthwhile. You can see straight away how he’d be Robert Downey Jnr’s dad. There was also some fun character development: Thompson apparently able to give Souza some credit (albeit after a damned long while), whilst still completely overlooking Peggy. Also, whatΒ isΒ up with Dottie? Who’s side is she playing for and how or why did she simply take out Mr Mink? Is she a bigger villain or is she an ally (I suspect not the latter)? The past hour may not have been so much action focused as it was revelatory, but even with all the character manoeuvring and puzzle slotting we’re left on the edge of our seats, and it’s always more than rewarding for the viewer when a show manages to achieve that. We’re left full of questions and I for one am very much looking forward to the next episode.

(photo credit: vixenvarsity.com)

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