**Warning Spoilers Ahead for Captain Carter #2**
The titular woman out of time has returned for her second issue in her own limited series. After sacrificing herself to thwart the villainous Hydra organization, Captain Carter has been recovered from an iceberg decades later. With the hero of Great Britain recovered, the Prime Minister is already pushing for Peggy to reemerge as the face of the nation before she can even get her bearings.
Awakening to a changed Britain, Peggy Carter is barely able to establish herself within the modern age before Hydra emerges from the shadows. With the surprise return of Hydra, Captain Carter decides to team up with S.T.R.I.K.E., Britain’s special emergency response team, to find out why.
Writer Jamie McKelvie, penciler Marika Cresta, color artist Erick Arciniega, and letterer VC’s Clayton Cowles have kicked Captain Carter back into gear. Now on the hunt for answers as to how her old enemy has returned, Peggy needs to be sure she can trust what she’s being told. Is Peggy Carter fulfilling her personal mission, or is she merely a high-profile pawn in a game she’s still trying to learn the rules of.
Captain Carter’s limited series has been swept up in controversy since its announcement. Although it was created to target the excitement around the What If series of Disney+, many avid comic fans simply didn’t want the book. Regardless of the book’s quality, unwanted products shall go unsold. Many Marvel comic fans find Peggy Carter’s main continuity counterpart to not be a fun character, and the constant advertising of her MCU counterpart is rather negligent to the wants of customers.
Marvel readers and movie fans alike also hold issues with the pushing of Captain Carter’s character as it places actress Haley Atwell at the forefront of the MCU’s marketing. Haley Atwell, much like her character, has been surrounded by controversy. This controversy mainly concerns Atwell’s treatment of Emily VanCamp, actress for Sharon Carter, when she was introduced into the MCU.
Now that Haley Atwell has been cemented as the MCU’s Peggy Carter, it seems that the stigma surrounding her treatment of her colleagues will follow her character for the foreseeable future. In the here and now, however, this book will be instantly met with disdain from the core comic reading audience. A problem within this issue particularly is the heavy focus on dialogue. Whilst it aims in furthering Captain Carter’s character, it ends up minimizing her agency within her own series.
Following a raid on a trafficking group run by Batroc the leaper, Peggy is berated by her neighbors for her actions. They reveal the British border forces no longer allow refugees to claim asylum when entering the country. Though this moment allows Peggy to stand up to the Prime Minister and appear more righteous, she ultimately comes off as on the back foot. This feels like Mckelvie taking the ‘woman out of time’ premise in the wrong direction.
With Peggy’s past in British intelligence during the second world war, it seems odd that she wouldn’t look into modern legislation the British government passed. Again, this segment of the issue is good for character drama, however, it is the drama that comes at the expense of Peggy’s characterization and agency within her own story. Another reason the focus on dialogue detracts from this issue is due to the fact that the small instances of action throughout are lackluster. By no means are Cresta’s illustrations poorly done. The issue is with the new design of the Captain Carter uniform.
Peggy’s redesigned costume no longer has the Union Jack plastered across her torso, it has now been moved to fit within a small strip on her side. With this rework of her costume, a majority of Captain Carter’s upper body is a flat navy blue and the key part of her symbology is no longer easily recognizable. With this in mind, the book has now lost the eye-catching focal point needed for readers to latch onto throughout action scenes. The action scenes now hold no main visual flair from which every effect and dynamic movement can stem, ultimately making them feel disjointed.
Unfortunately for Marvel Comics, the issue failed to offer any piece of writing or art that could overshadow the controversy surrounding this book’s inception. Whilst neither scripting nor illustrations are in any way bad or offensive, they are just surrounded by poor creative decisions that bring down the book. Captain Carter issue two is not a terrible book, it is merely unremarkable.
Captain Carter #2 is available now at your local comic book shop and digital platforms.
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