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Quote1 The world has changed. None of us can go back. All we can do is our best. Quote2
-- Peggy Carter src
 

Margaret "Peggy" Carter was a British operative acting as a liaison to U.S. Army, specifically the Strategic Scientific Reserve.

World War II

First Avenger - Agent Carter 007

Peggy during the war

Peggy served under Colonel Chester Phillips in the S.S.R. during WWII. She was assigned as a liaison from the British government to help combat against Hitler's top secret science division Hydra.

She first met Steve Rogers at Colonel Phillips' training base and oversaw his and the other potential candidates' training for Operation: Rebirth. When Rogers was selected as the candidate, she escorted him to the U.S. Army's secret base in Brooklyn under a pawnshop. After Dr. Erskine was murdered in after Rogers' successful transformation, she followed the Rogers and the spy into the streets of Brooklyn and fired off several rounds into the car that the spy was escaping in.

Colonel Phillips was given a new assignment to take the S.S.R. to Europe to take the fight directly to Hydra and made Agent Carter and Howard Stark a part of his staff. Agent Carter and Howard Stark helped Captain Rogers get to his destination to the secret Hydra base that allied POWs were held. Peggy soon developed a crush for Steve, though referred to it as "having faith in him".

First Avenger - Agent Carter & Captain Rogers 001

Carter and Rogers

She was along with the company of soldiers led by Colonel Phillips to follow Captain Rogers into Hydra's last base of operations. After defeating Schmidt, Captain Rogers flew the Hydra plane into the Atlantic region. During his descent he expressed his grief about not being able to make his date with Agent Carter to her over the military radio frequency.[3]

In the final days of World War II, Peggy Carter led the SSR and the Howling Commandos in capturing one of Hydra's last outposts in Austria. As the outpost's senior officer, Werner Reinhardt was taken into custody, he reminding her of Hydra's motto - "cut off one head, two more shall take its place.", she retorted that they'll just keep cutting their heads off. As Carter's men boxed up the dangerous devices at the facility, including the Obelisk, she suggested that there should be a peacetime organization dedicated to keeping such devices in their care, and to keep an eye on those who would use them.[4] Werner Reinhardt was imprisoned in a facility known as "the Rat," where Agent Carter would routinely interrogate the prisoner. After several attempts to offer his services to the SSR, Agent Carter informed Werner Reinhardt he would remain in the prison alone for the rest of his life.[5]

After the War

One year after Captain America's disappearance, Agent Carter was transferred to New York City. There she moved in with a another woman named Colleen O'Brien, with whom she developed a close friendship. Unfortunately, Carter also found that her boss, Chief Roger Dooley, and her male co-workers underestimated her abilities because of her sex, and was often given menial tasks.[6]

Defending Howard Stark

Dangerous technology developed by Howard Stark eventually found their way onto the black market, and the industrialist was brought before the Senate on charges of selling these weapons to enemies of the United States. The SSR was tasked with apprehending Stark after he suddenly failed to appear at a hearing. Chief Dooley put Agent Jack Thompson in charge of the manhunt despite Agent Carter's protests that her friend could not be guilty of the crimes he was . Although the other agents dismissed her, Carter would get her opportunity to prove Howard Stark's innocence when he personally asked her to find the stolen technology and clear his name. However, she would have to keep her activities a secret from the SSR lest she be branded a traitor to the United States. To this end, Stark gave Peggy use of his butler and closest confidant, Edwin Jarvis.[6]

During her investigation, Agent Carter discovered Stark's technology was stolen by Leet Brannis, an operative of the mysterious Russian spy organization Leviathan who chose to keep what he took from Stark's vault for himself to sell to the highest bidder rather than turn it over to his superiors.[6][7] However, Peggy attracted the attention of the Leviathan agent hunting Brannis down. He followed her back to her apartment, and killed Colleen before getting into a fight with her. Peggy was able to overpower the assassin, but realized she needed to find a new place to live. She eventually moved into the Griffith Hotel, a women-only boarding house where her friend Angie Martinelli also lived. Peggy and the assassin found Brannis around the same time. Although Peggy tried to keep Brannis alive so he could testify about the stolen technology, a stray bullet from the assassin fatally wounded him. Before he died, Brannis gave her a clue to where he could find the remainder of the technology he stole from Stark, which led Peggy to a boat in New York Harbor. She had Jarvis call in an anonymous tip to the SSR, who managed to recover Stark's technology. While transporting one of Brannis' associates guarding the technology back to the SSR's office, Agent Ray Krzeminski was gunned down by an unknown assassin.[8]

Agent Krzeminski's death weighed heavily on the SSR, especially on Peggy, who blamed herself for what happened to him. Around this same time, Howard Stark returned to the United States to follow up on Peggy's recent discoveries. He had her sneak into the SSR's labs and recover one particular device he called "the Blitzkrieg Button," which, if activated, would destroy New York's power grid. Peggy thought something was off about Howard's information, and she found inside the device a vial of blood which Howard later confirmed to be Steve Rogers'. At the same time, Chief Dooley began to look into the Battle of Finow, a massacre during World War II connected to Howard Stark where German soldiers found a Soviet camp massacred.[9]

The SSR eventually found out about Leviathan, and Chief Dooley sent Agent Thompson to Belarus to look into any possible connection between the organization and Howard Stark. Peggy Carter convinced Chief Dooley to let her go with them when she got the Howling Commandos to participate in the mission as well. In Belarus, Agent Carter discovered Leviathan trained women to become dangerous assassins from a young age, found evidence suggesting Howard Stark had nothing to do with Leviathan, and brought one of their prisoners, Dr. Ivchenko, back to the United States. She also earned the admiration of Agent Thompson due to her bravery.[10] However, her new-found respect among the other SSR agents came to a sudden end when another agent, Daniel Sousa, brought her secret investigation to light. Although Peggy tried to evade the SSR agents, she was eventually arrested when she was poisoned by Dottie Underwood, one of the women living at the Griffith Peggy deduced was one of Leviathan's female assassins.[11]

She was taken back to the SSR's office, where Dooley, Thompson, and Sousa interrogated her. Before she could give them any information, Jarvis showed up at the SSR's office with a fake confession from his employer. Dooley agreed to let Carter and Jarvis go only when Howard Stark turned himself in, and he fired Agent Carter from the SSR. While they were cleaning out her things, Carter and Jarvis noticed Dr. Ivchenko sending a message in Morse code with hand signals to someone in the building across the street. From what they could gather Leviathan was going to attack the office in 90 minutes. Realizing she had little time to work, Peggy gave up everything to the SSR so they would believe her about Dr. Ivchenko. Although Dooley and Thompson were skeptical, Sousa believed her and sent a team across the street to find any evidence of an impending attack against the SSR.

Margaret Carter (Earth-199999), Edwin Jarvis (Earth-199999), and Jack Thompson (Earth-199999) from Marvel's Agent Carter Season 2 10 001

Carter and her team mates, Jarvis and Thompson

While they were gone, Dr. Ivchenko, a psychologist, hypnotized Chief Dooley into isolating Carter and Jarvis, and into giving him access to the recovered Stark technology in their lab. Carter and Jarvis were eventually found by Agent Thompson, who came back to the office after Dottie attacked Sousa's team. Once he let them out of the interrogation room, they found Chief Dooley locked inside his office, asleep and wearing a glowing vest. Jarvis recognized the vest as a prototype thermal armor Howard Stark developed for winter warfare, but the vest's power source was faulty and volatile. Since the armor's circuitry ran throughout the vest, it could not be cut off Chief Dooley without it exploding. Chief Dooley realized he was about to die, and promised Carter to get the people who did this two him before he jumped out of the office's window and exploded before he hit the ground.[12]

Later that day, Carter, Thompson and Sousa investigated a massacre at a local movie theater. Everyone in the film's audience mauled each other to death. They soon realized this was the effect of Item 17, one of Stark's weapons Dr. Ivchenko, which they discovered was an alias for Dr. Johann Fennhoff, stole from the SSR's lab. While they were pondering Dr. Fennhoff's motives, Howard Stark showed up at the office to tell them everything he knew. He developed Item 17, which he called "Midnight Oil," in hopes that it would require soldiers need less sleep, but never used it after he found out about its side effects. However, an American general raided his laboratory during the war, and tested the chemical on the soldiers at Finow. Howard Stark also had a plan to lure Dr. Fennhoff and Dottie out of hiding. He would make a public appearance at a press conference held by the SSR clearing him of all charges.

The plan worked as Howard Stark came under fire from a sniper as he took to the podium. This was, however, a diversion, and in the chaos Leviathan captured Howard Stark and took him to one of his hangars. Dr. Fennhoff, whose brother was one of the victims at Finow, hypnotized Howard, and tricked him into thinking he was flying towards Captain America's signal when really he was headed towards Times Square (which was crowded due to the VE Day celebration) with a plane carrying the Midnight Oil. Agent Carter knew this was Dr. Fennhoff's plan, and she, Thompson and Sousa went to the hangar to stop them. Jarvis, meanwhile, took off in a plane to tail his employer so he could shoot him down in case he could not be freed from Dr. Fennhoff's control. Peggy confronted Dr. Fennhoff and Dottie in the air control room. Dr. Fennhoff managed to escape when Dottie fought back, but Agent Sousa apprehended him before he could leave the hangar. Dottie tried to intimidate Agent Carter with the threat she would infiltrate the SSR, but Peggy kicked her out of control room's window, seemingly to her death. Peggy got on the radio to try and bring Stark back to reality, but had little effect on him until she brought up Captain America. Once she had him accept that Steve Rogers was dead, Stark was freed from Dr. Fennhoff's spell, and turned the plane around. On her way out of the hangar, Peggy noticed Dottie's body was gone.

The next day, Agent Carter was greeted at the SSR's office as a hero; however, her thunder was taken from her when a senator arrived to give all the credit for apprehending Dr. Fennhoff. She wasn't sure if she would return to the SSR, but Agent Sousa assured her there would always be a place for her there. Without a place to live since she was arrested at the Griffith, Howard Stark allowed her and Angie to move into one of his nearby homes. While Angie was exploring the place, Jarvis gave Peggy the vial of Steve Rogers' blood she recovered. Peggy emptied the vial into a nearby river.[13]

Agent Carter

One night while alone in the office, the telephone rang, bringing intel of the location of the criminal organization known as Zodiac. She went to the Zodiac base, took out the Zodiac members single handed and was able to retrieve a serum. After the mission, Agent John Flynn reprimanded her for not going through the proper procedures. However the telephone rang, this time with Howard Stark on the other end. Stark informed Agent Flynn that Agent Carter would co-head the newly created S.H.I.E.L.D. and that Agent Flynn had to personally assist Agent Carter packing her belongings.[14]

By 1953, Peggy had gotten married. Ironically, her husband was a soldier whose life had been saved by Captain Rogers. The two would later have children.

Ant-Man

While Hank Pym was serving as a Research and Development consultant for S.H.I.E.L.D. he discovered what was later called the Pym Particles, which when used with a specialized suit would allow the operator to shrink down.

That discovery came to the attention of Howard Stark and he wanted his agents to use the particle for a covert op to shut down a suspected Hydra outpost in Berlin, but Pym declined, because he didn't trust anyone handling his suit other than himself, in fear that it may end up in the wrong hands. Stark wouldn't let him out on the field, but Peggy Carter changed his mind, after a small training session with Hank. [15]

When Pym returned, he went to talk to Howard and Peggy. Stark expressed his disapproval of Pym's decisions to destroy the technology and told Pym that it would be his last mission, but Pym responded that Berlin had proved there was more good work the Ant-Man suit could do, and only he himself would be allowed to wear it, so he asked for his next assignment. [16]

In 1989, Peggy, Howard, and Senator Mitchell Carson had a confrontation with Pym, when he discovered that Carson had been involved in attempts to duplicate his Pym particles. Although Peggy was shocked at the discovery, when Howard attempted to justify the decision due to the military applications of the particle, Pym punched Carson and walked out of S.H.I.E.L.D., ending his affiliation with them[17].

Retirement

By the 2010's, Peggy, now well into her nineties, was living in a nursing home, and suffering from Alzheimer's disease.

Captain America had been found frozen in the Arctic, having not aged, and joined S.H.I.E.L.D. following the Battle for New York in which he and the Avengers saved the world from an alien invasion. He discovered Peggy was still alive and visited her in the nursing home, she gave Steve advice regarding his doubt to continue working for S.H.I.E.L.D. before forgetting he had been unfrozen and being glad that Steve had returned.[18]

Funeral

Just as the Avengers were informed of the Sokovia Accords- which would bring them under the direct authority of the U.N.- Steve received a text informing him that Peggy had passed away in her sleep, departing the meeting to attend the funeral. As well as serving as one of Peggy's pallbearers, he also met with Sharon Carter, Peggy's niece, who had been assigned to keep an eye on him when he worked for S.H.I.E.L.D. Talking with Sharon after the funeral, Steve learned that Peggy had never been informed about Sharon's role in his life, as Sharon felt that her aunt kept so many secrets already that she didn't want her to have to keep one from Steve[19].

Abilities

Martial Arts: Carter is a skilled martial artist, able to beat trained SSR agents and assassins.

Marksmanship: She was an expert markswoman, capable of a headshot against a target fleeing in a vehicle several dozen meters away, despite being momentarily distracted by a car bomb close by.

Multilingual: Carter can speak and read English and French fluently although her language skills were not mentioned in her SHIELD profiles.[1]

Strategy: Though they were all seasoned war veterans, the Howling Commandos took instruction from Carter on how to infiltrate the Red Room Academy, following her leadership on how to divide the men and what to do in a given situation.

Spy: Carter was able to infiltrate Castle Kaufmann and free Abraham Erskine with her disguise as "Eva". Likewise, she is able to flawlessly mimic other accents. She knows how to manipulate men by exploiting the sexist stereotypes of her time, and by seduction.

Thief: Carter was able to pickpocket an access card from an employee of Isodyne Energy with ease; however, she was not successful in using her Brooch Key to access Daniel Sousa's desk because he was too close to her.

Codebreaker: Carter was able to easily decipher a Leviathan code.

Weaknesses

In her later years Peggy Carter suffered from memory loss due to the onset of Alzheimer's disease.[18]



Transportation

Peggy formerly used a number of vehicles, including an unarmed transport plane piloted by Howard Stark, various army vehicles and even stolen Hydra Cars.

Weapons

A variety of weapons were used by Carter, including standard issued Thompson submachine guns, a M1911 Pistol, a Walther PPK, and stolen Hydra weapons powered by the Tesseract.

  • Peggy was born on April 9, 1919.[2]
  • A deleted scene for Marvel's The Avengers shows Steve looking through some military documents on his fellow comrades in the war. He sees one where Peggy Carter is revealed to be alive, and considers using the phone to call her, but decides against it and continues looking through the documents.
  • Peggy has two bullethole scars on her right shoulder.[10]
  • Peggy doesn't make an appearance in Captain America: Civil War, instead she is revealed to have passed away off-screen, but Atwell was on set during the film's production.[20]
  • Peggy shares many physical and biographical similarities with Cynthia Glass, such as being a friend and love interest to Steven Rogers both before and after his transformation, and being considered his first love.
    • However, Cynthia was a Nazi spy who sacrificed her life to save Steve from the Red Skull. Peggy was decidedly more patriotic.

Discover and Discuss

Footnotes

  1. Marvel's Agent Carter Season 2 4
  2. 2.0 2.1 According to a file in The Avengers Blu-ray extras
  3. Captain America: The First Avenger
  4. Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2 1
  5. Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2 8
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Marvel's Agent Carter Season 1 1
  7. Marvel's Agent Carter Season 1 2
  8. Marvel's Agent Carter Season 1 3
  9. Marvel's Agent Carter Season 1 4
  10. 10.0 10.1 Marvel's Agent Carter Season 1 5
  11. Marvel's Agent Carter Season 1 6
  12. Marvel's Agent Carter Season 1 7
  13. Marvel's Agent Carter Season 1 8
  14. Marvel One-Shot: Agent Carter
  15. Marvel's Ant-Man Prelude #1
  16. Marvel's Ant-Man Prelude #2
  17. Ant-Man (film)
  18. 18.0 18.1 Captain America: The Winter Soldier
  19. Captain America: Civil War
  20. Atwell, Hayley (29 May 2015). Yep, I'm on set. Being REALLY useful. Twitter. Retrieved on 29 May 2015.



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