Agent Carter Season 2: “The Edge of Mystery” Recap and Review

The Recap

Agent Carter aired another two-parter this week. Starting the night off was “The Edge of Mystery.” Altogether this wasn’t a bad episode: there were some heartwarming moments between characters, an exciting ending, and a few bits of solid acting as has typified the show throughout. And, now that the season is winding up–this is episode 8 of 10–it appears that the writers of the show have finally committed to its cast of main characters and its main conflict. Better late than never but let’s go over how good what we were waiting for was.

“The Edge of Mystery” started off with a touching flashback to a phone call between Agent Carter and Jarvis. This specific phone call happened during Agent Carter’s series premiere but this time we get to see the phone call from Jarvis’s perspective where before we saw it from Agent Carter’s. This flashback is used effectively to underline the negative effect that Peggy’s presence has had on the Jarvises’ marriage. Not only inspiring jealousy from Ana Jarvis as she does in this flashback, Peggy’s continued interactions with Jarvis have also left Ana with a gunshot wound in her gut and an ambiguous prognosis regarding her likelihood of regaining consciousness. In Ana Jarvis’s hospital room we see an uncharacteristically stubble-chinned Jarvis destroy a radio with his fist, frustrated at being unable to tune into Benny Goodman.

Peggy offers to get a new radio, a change of clothes, and some toiletries for Mr. Jarvis from Howard Stark’s mansion. When she arrives there Agent Carter runs into Chief Sousa, concerned at finding blood in Stark’s driveway. Peggy explains the events of the last episode to Sousa and Sousa tells Peggy that Frost demands the uranium she attempted to steal in “The Atomic Job” in exchange for Dr. Wilkes’s safe return. Peggy hatches a plan to provide Frost with passable fakes, and it’s suggested that they contact Whitney Frost through Joseph Manfredi, Whitney Frost’s psychotic mobster boyfriend, to arrange the exchange.

Checking in on Whitney Frost and Dr. Wilkes we see that Wilkes is being forced to compare notes with Frost on the effects that Zero Matter is having on both of them. Wilkes tells Frost that all he wants is to disappear forever and Frost tells Wilkes that she hears voices calling her. She admits to fearing that she is going insane. This was a pretty good villain/mad scientist scene between Frost (Wynn Everett) and Dr. Jason Wilkes (Reggie Austin).

Agent Carter "The Edge of Mystery"
Psychotic mobster Joseph Manfredi can’t please his nonna.

Peggy and Sousa over a relatively hostile lunch at Manfredi’s restaurant are able to convince him, by way of blackmail, that he should deliver a message to Whitney Frost. The message they send is that Peggy is willing to trade the uranium for the safe return Dr. Wilkes. Frost agrees to the terms of Peggy’s arrangement.

Back in Ana Jarvis’s hospital room, the audience gets to see another touching scene between the Jarvises. Edwin promises Ana a number of things, each one more extravagant than the last until Ana wakes from her coma. The damper on the good news of Ana’s awakening is that the doctor says she’ll never be able to have children. Edwin elects to keep this news from her.

Jarvis feeling his role as righteous husband demands to come along as the driver for the prisoner exchange and the team receives design specifications from Howard Stark for a weapon that may destroy Whitney Frost. Just as they’re about to leave for the exchange, though, Thompson presents Peggy with a redacted file claiming she’s responsible for massacring civilians during the war. Peggy dismisses the file as a forgery placed there by Vernon Masters to discredit her. Thompson, sick of being played, eventually decides to switch sides and confront Masters.

The prisoner exchange doesn’t go well. Frost finds out the uranium is fake and Wilkes turns on the team, holding a shotgun to Peggy’s face and demanding the location of the real uranium–it would seem that Dr. Wilkes has also switched sides. Sousa, unable to allow Peggy to be shot in the face reveals the location of the uranium to Wilkes and Wilkes hops in a car with Frost.

At SSR’s LA branch listening in on a call that turns out to be from Whitney Frost, Jack Thompson learns that Masters has been ordered to retrieve the uranium from the SSR for Frost. Thompson catches Masters in the act but Masters uses the memory erasing device from “The Atomic Job” on Thompson. Luckily, before having his memories erased Jack had written down the rendezvous coordinates given to Masters by Frost and the team is able to track the baddies down. Jarvis leaves a package with Rosie asking her to take care of Ana while he’s gone. Included in the package are a few recipes, some of Ana’s favourite items, and Jarvis’s last will and testament.

Then it’s off to the desert to stop Whitney Frost. Unfortunately, they’re too late to prevent the nuclear detonation and the rift opens spilling Zero Matter out and sucking Dr. Wilkes in. An enraged Frost screams at the hole in space that it should be her who is taken. Luckily the team is able to close the rift with the cannon designed by Stark and after the smoke clears, it appears that Dr. Wilkes is in one piece. Before anyone can stop him, an enraged Mr. Jarvis shoots Whitney Frost in the heart. Unfortunately for Jarvis and the rest of the world at large, Whitney apparently can’t be killed by bullets and survives without a scratch. All in all, an average day at the office.

My Critique

Like I said at the beginning of this article, I thought this was a pretty good episode. It was much better than part one of last week’s two-parter, “Life of the Party,” chiefly because in “The Edge of Mystery” the actions of the characters make sense according to their personalities. “Life of the Party,” on the other hand, was basically a reunion of past characters with little to no logic behind what went on in the episode. “The Edge of Mystery,” instead has a lot of elements of a good story: betrayal, lust for power, blackmail, revenge, and love. It also worked in these elements in a logical and believable manner … for a TV show about a woman who used to date Captain America, of course.

Michael Bedford
Michael Bedford
Under intense scrutiny by the Temporal Authorities, I was coerced into actualizing my capsule in this causality loop. Through no fault of my own, I am marooned on this dangerous yet lovely level-four civilization. Stranded here, I have spent most of my time learning what I can of the social norms and oddities of the Terran species, including how to properly use the term "Hipster" and how to perform a "perfect pour." Under the assumed name of "Michael Bedford," I have completed BA's with specialized honours in both theatre studies and philosophy, and am currently saving up for enough galactic credits to buy a new--or suitably used--temporal contextualizer ... for a friend.