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10 Things Agent Carter Did Right


The seven tests that Agent Carter passed in two hours, and the three it thankfully failed. (Spoilers)

1. Passes the Mako Mori Test:

  • The Test: “The show has a) at least one female character, b) who gets her own narrative, c) that is not about supporting a man’s story.”
  • Peggy Carter isn’t kicking butt because she’s trying to prove herself to anyone, she’s doing it because she wants to help people. That’s why she joined the SSR back in WWII, it didn’t change when she met Rogers, and it hasn’t changed since she lost him.

2. Passes the Bechdel Test:

  • The test: “The show has a) at least two women; b) who talk to each other; c) about something besides a man.”
  • This is the lowest bar for female representation and not only does Agent Carter pass, but an entire sub-plot is nothing but two females talking to each other about everything but guys.

3. Passes the Oracle Test:

  • The Test: “The show has a disabled character who a) is not there ‘to be fixed’; b) whose narrative does not revolve around the disability; c) does their job while having a disability, not in spite of having a disability.”
  • Sousa is a wounded war vet who may not be able to chase down bad guys, but he has a voice in the group and does his job. He’s not trying to prove anything, nor does he have something to prove. You might even forget he’s disabled because it’s simply a part of who he is, not what he is.

4. Passes the Phryne Fisher Test:

  • The Test: “The show has a female character who a) has a traditionally masculine job; b) does not masculinize herself for the sake of the job; c) uses her femininity to her advantage; d) is not sexualized in the narrative.”      
  • Peggy is allowed to be herself, and that means wearing whatever makes her comfortable. She wears skirts, has her hair done up, and her makeup is on point, for her, not for an audience who might want to sexualize her. And when she needs a day off to go hunt down bad guys without her boss knowing, she has no qualms in using his chauvinism against him. She even threw out that line about ‘until I’m married’ to convince the land lady to rent her an apartment. 

5. Passes the Sexy Lamp Test:

  • The Test: “Can you replace the female character with a sexy lamp? If so, then you’re a hack.”
  • Just because Peggy is the title character doesn’t mean she can’t be overshadowed by her male counterparts. In Agent Carter, Peggy is more likely to hit you with a sexy lamp than be the sexy lamp. Angie also passes the sexy lamp test as the supporting character.

6. Passes the Lottie Test:

  • The Test: “The show has a) character(s) who rival the main character’s job or love interest; b) have reasonable skill in the job or allure for the love interest; c) are likeable or at least respectable.”
  • This fails when a rival is made either a complete idiot or horribly unlikable, but only to make the main character look good. In Agent Carter, Jack is chauvinistic but no more than expected for the time period. He’s intelligent and stays only a few steps behind Peggy who had an advantage over him because Stark confided in her. But this only gave her a head start, Peggy has to use her smarts and wit to keep ahead of him which only showcases how clever she is.

7. Passes the Brittle Sword Test:

  • The Test: “Even a warrior’s sword has to be able to bend, otherwise it becomes brittle and breaks.”
  • Peggy is certainly very strong but when her friend is killed, she first kicks a lot of butt, and then takes a moment to mourn and cry. Peggy is not made to look cold and heartless in order to make her appear to be a strong character, she’s allowed to have emotions.

8. Fails the Pantomime Test:

  • The Test: “The female character can be swapped with a male character, with little to no edits, and the narrative still makes sense.”
  • Peggy’s character does follow several tropes typically seen in male led storylines, but her characterization and personal plot points are uniquely feminine. Her fighting blatant chauvinism, her difficulty in finding a safe place to live, and other aspects of her story would not make sense if Peggy was Peter.

9. Fails the Moonlighting Test:

  • The Test: “The main character a) is given a partner or work rival; b) this character is immediately set up to be the love interest; c) and they may be instantly despised by the main character in order to force sexual tension.”
  • Peggy is given a partner, Jarvis, and a rival, Jack. Neither are set up as the love interest. This means that her interactions between them are not meant to further a ‘will they, won’t they’ sub-plot, but to actually further the plot. This serves to give Peggy, Jarvis, and Jack their own identities.

10. Fails the 9 to 5 Test

  • The Test: “The female character a) has no female friends outside of work; or if she does a) she spends over half the time talking to said friend about work and/or relationship; b) the friend does not help to further character development; c) they are only there to bounce exposition off of.”
  • While there is mention of Peggy’s job at ‘the phone company’, she spends most of her time talking to Angie about customers, apartments, and other girls. Peggy’s reluctance to put Angie in danger shows character evolution. Angie gives Peggy an existence outside of her work environment and offers more facets to her character.
Reposted bynobodylikesyouvoydp856rinkanicapicellaaren
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