One of the highlights of my time at San Diego Comic-Con was hitting Ballroom 20 for the Marvel TV panel. The hall was jam-packed with fans (including several amazing Peggy Carter cosplayers), and bustling with excitement for upcoming announcements from both Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Carter. Executive Producer Jeph Loeb hit the stage to moderate the panel, donning Peggy’s hat–which, of course, prompted Hayley Atwell (Peggy Carter) to pop out on stage to steal it back from him. The panel’s time was split between the two shows, with Agent Carter up to bat first.
Agent Carter show runners Chirs Dingess, Tara Butters, and Michelle Fazekas came out and were followed by James D’Arcy (Edwin Jarvis), and of course Hayley Atwell.
To kick off the panel, Jeph asked James about any important questions he had after being given the script for Jarvis. “I was slightly worried because in the pilot, Jarvis is making a souffle, and I can’t actually make a souffle.” James revealed. “So my apprehension mainly revolved around souffle making. I can do a perfect spotted dick,” which he explains is an English Pudding. “So we basically had a long conversation about that, where they explained to me what acting is.”
On playing playing Peggy, what it takes to take the character from the big screen to our homes, and why she took the role, Hayley responded, “I think, first of all, the quality of the writing. It was very clear in the script that we’d seen aspects of Peggy in The First Avenger, but on this show in particular, there was so much nuance in character. She was dynamic and resourceful, fun, sexy and vulnerable. All of these qualities that I really enjoy playing. So, I jumped at the chance to do it. I’d also known the Marvel team for five years and loved them dearly. She’s quite fearless and when I have moments of doubting what I’m doing, she wouldn’t… It’s changed my life.”
They then opened the floor up for fan questions. The first question up was whether or not it was right for Peggy to throw away the Captain America super serum at the end of the season. Hayley said, “I do think it was absolutely the right decision. She’d been holding on to him and grieving [for] him. It was her way of letting him go. I think she was concerned if it got in the wrong hands, that someone would have used that power and keeping him alive in the memory she has of him [was better].”
Atwell’s favorite line from the season? “Everyone knows the line that defined Peggy and has touched people, ‘I know my value and anyone else’s opinion doesn’t matter.'” She continues, “It’s been amazing going to conventions and having young girls and boys go, ‘I know my value too!'” Atwell continues, “At the same time there is that wonderful scene where Jarvis says ‘You can’t run away from people who want to help you.’ I think he has some pretty fabulous lines too.”
Loeb and the producers then discussed the fact that Peggy is headed to Los Angeles circa 1947 for the second season. The show will pick up two months after the first season ended, leaving the audience with characters that are no longer in New York and are no longer talking to each other, and things are just different in general. Amidst all of this, Peggy gets called out to L.A. to investigate a murder. The producers made sure to point out the fact that the famous Black Dahlia case happened in 1947. I’m not sure if that’s a spoiler for the case she’ll be investigating, but we’re assuming the same film noir vibe will be present in the season. As for Jarvis, he’s already out in Los Angeles helping Howard Stark set up his new estate. He’ll be opening up a movie studio, and, according to the showrunners, will finally get to meet his wife.
After the fan Q&A, the Carter crew left the stage and Loeb segued into the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. part of the show by bringing out Coulson’s new fake hand. Similar to the beginning of the panel, Clark Gregg (Coulson) hit the stage to reclaim his hand before sneaking backstage. Following this, “new kids” Luke Mitchell (Lincoln), Henry Simmons (Mack), Nick Blood (Lance Hunter) and Adrianne Palicki (Bobby Morse) took their seats. The rest of the cast, including Ian de Caestecker (Leo Fitz), Elizabeth Henstridge (Jemma Simmons), Ming-Na Wen (Melinda May), Brett Dalton (Grant Ward), Chloe Bennett (Daisy Johnson), and Clark Gregg came on stage soon after. The producers for this show were busy with production in Los Angeles, so unfortunately, they couldn’t make it. With so many people on stage, it’s not like they’d fit up there anyways.
When asked about joining the show, Luke Mitchell joked, “It’s bloody scary. I just kind of wanted to slip in unnoticed.” Loeb brought up the fact that not many people know the actor is from Australia and made him say something in an American accent for the audience. Swoon.
Continuing on the theme of being new to the show, Nick Blood told the audience that he joined the cast two days before they started shooting. He went from working on something in London one day to flying out to Los Angeles the next day, apparently without even getting a chance to shower. “The next thing I knew I was upside down in an SUV with Xena Warrior Princess.” On her entrance into the show, Adrianne Palicki said that with such awesome people, “there was a lot of pressure coming in.” Fortunately, the cast and crew were incredibly warm and welcoming, and it’s really become like a family.
After explaining how serious all of the actors were, Loeb completely undermined the previous sentiment by playing a hilarious blooper reel which showed the actors getting up to all kinds of shenanigans. While you’ll have to wait to see if the gag reel is released, but trust me when I say this one is even funnier than the ones from previous seasons.
After the gag reel, the mics were opened for a fan Q&A. When an 8-year-old fan asked whether or not they’d have room for an agent of her age, Clark told her, “What we’re most proud of at S.H.I.E.L.D. is that anyone can run S.H.I.E.L.D. and we have a number of very strong women who might be running S.H.I.E.L.D. at some point. Just from the few moments we’ve spent with you today I think, someday, you could run S.H.I.E.L.D. ” To top it off, he added, “As long as you stay away from Ward.”
Speaking of Ward, when Chloe was asked what she thought when she found out he was Hydra, she revealed that while she was reading the script with fellow cast mates, she exclaimed in shock, “I kissed him! I..” but then Brett stopped her from also stating that she “slept” with him. There were innocent ears in the audience!
Clark revealed that he “loved Chloe from the moment I met her,” when the cast was asked about their impressions of their fellow characters. Elizabeth reflected on how she thought both her character and Ian’s were emotional messes. Ming-Wa quipped about Brett, saying, “[Our relationship] was out of necessity. He was there. We were stuck on a bus for months on end. He was flexing his muscles all the time and I had to help him flex.”
Towards the end, the cast showed off a behind-the-scenes (and totally scripted) look at producers Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen brainstorming about the show. We learned that Daisy will now be known as Quake and the new plane will be called Zephyr One. It was reiterated that Coulson and Daisy’s new team would be called the Secret Warriors. Actor B.J. Britt (Antoine Triplett) then crashed the session and asked the show runners, “Who should we bring back?” Ooh!
Loeb then dropped the bomb that Inhuman’s Lash would be coming to the show. Also, a very confused Elizabeth seemed concerned about the fact that during the video that was just shown, it said “Already very dead” next to her character’s name. Uh oh. With both the room and the cast in an uproar over the possibility of Simmons getting killed off, Loeb ended the show.
What was your favorite announcement? Let us know in the comments below.