Why Agent Carter Is So Much Better Than Agents of SHIELD

Greeting or salutations! You can't have both. You can, however, learn the biggest potential shocker of the upcoming season of Game of Thrones, why Tron is a miracle, and everything you could ever possibly need to know about dead blue Jedi. It's a bargain either way!

Get Carter

Alison D.:

Agent Carter > Agents of SHIELD. True or false? (It's true, I just wanted to check to see if you knew the correct answer.)


True. Although Alison sent this email before last night's SHIELD episode, which fixed some of the problems the mid-season premiere had, and also gave Coulson and the crew a new objective to work towards, as opposed to just hanging around keeping secrets from each other.

Which is another part of the reason Agent Carter is better than Agents of SHIELD. When half your show's conflicts could be instantly solved if your characters would just be honest with each other, that's not nearly as interesting as a conflict with external forces. Part of it is that In Agent Carter we're only really supposed to be rooting for Peggy, while in SHIELD we're supposed to be rooting for the whole team, which is difficult when everyone in it seems hell bent on self-sabotaging themselves.

The other reason is that Agent Carter was just so damn much fun. Agents of SHIELD is trying to keep the stakes high, and I get that, but everyone on the team is always anguished about something. Agent Carter was refreshing in that Peggy had plenty to be anguished over — namely the fact that all the male agents at the SSR treated her like a secretary — but instead of moping, she was annoyed and decided to kick unholy ass. I'll take a positive attitude over Inhumans any day.


Hate the Game

Darth Badguy:

What's the biggest surprise that hasn't happened in the books that will happen in [Game of Thrones] season 5, postman? I'm assuming you've seen it already, right?


I vaguely recall watching Game of Thrones back when I was a wee post-baby, before this strange, completely undefined apocalypse that ruined my world. I was very young, so my memory is a bit hazy, but I'm pretty sure season 5 is the one where Cersei dies.

I should probably give a "SPOILER WARNING" as I have some book info to back up my conjecture. We know this season has flashbacks to Cersei's childhood, and the dark prophecy she receives. It would make a good deal of narrative sense for this season to begin with her receiving the prophecy, and it coming true by the end of the season. Now, I'm not 100% certain the prophecy will be exactly the same as the one in the books — which states a few people need to die before Cersei does, and also gives a pretty major hint to how she dies — so I think the show will have some flexibility there.


Basically, if Game of Thrones is determined to wrap this thing up in three more seasons, they're probably starting at least some of their end game in season 5. Honestly, of all the major characters remaining, it seems like Cersei has the least narrative purpose to me.


Bring It Tron


Can you explain to me why anyone is excited about Tron 3? Tron 2 was terrible. And the first movie was only good because of the CG, which looks terrible now. Tron has always been crap!!! So why are they making another one?!!


Oh, my sweet summer child. Sit a spell and let me tell you a story.

It's a story about a little giant media conglomerate named Disney, who took a chance on an unknown property named Tron and turned it into a movie with some of the earliest computer-generated graphics in the medium. This movie was a bit silly, but it was fun, and had a few striking set pieces like the light-cycle game. It would probably be too much to say it became a cult hit, but it was fondly remembered by a lot of children of the '80s, including myself.


But then, 30 full years later, Disney decided to make a sequel to this movie. And not just a movie, but a big budget movie that took the incredibly silly, dated concept of "What if programs are actually people that live inside computers?" and took it completely seriously. It took this ludicrous setting and recreated it for modern audiences as if the first Tron had been a massive, universally beloved hit, which it wasn't (it didn't even do that well back when it was released). And somehow they get Jeff Bridges back to reprise his original role as a dude who gets sucked into a computer, despite the fact he'd become one of the most respected, acclaimed actors since starring in Tron. They got the world's most famous electronica duo to do the soundtrack! They made a CG version of young Jeff Bridges, just to be the villain! They had Michael Shee playing a weird computer version of 1971-era David Bowie!

I'm not saying Tron Legacy was brilliant, but the fact that it got made at all delights me to the core of my being. The possibility of Tron 3 makes me equally as happy. These movies shouldn't exist on just about any level, and yet they do! Although it would be nice if Tron the character actually played a role in the new movie. I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to the possibility of CG version of young Bruce Boxleitner.


Devil in the Details

Drew K.:

The new Daredevil show looks great except for Daredevil's outfit. Why didn't Marvel put Daredevil in his awesome horned red suit?


Ostensibly, it's because Daredevil shows Matt Murdock in his early days, before he adopted the Daredevil persona. He's just a regular blind dude with enhanced senses who goes out at night and beats up bad guys, not a superhero. I imagine the name and the suit is something he evolves into.


However, I imagine the bigger reason Marvel is forgoing the suit for at least season one is that there's no way to make it look substantively different from Ben Affleck's suit in the Daredevil movie, and they'd prefer to keep people's thoughts as far away from that stinker as possible, which is tough to do when the share the same name and main character. Basically, they want to set their show apart.

Now, this doesn't really explain why they're using an almost exact version of Daredevil's outfit from the Trial of the Incredible Hulk TV movie from 1989, but you certainly can't say that people will conflate those two Daredevils, other than a few older nerds like myself.


Toying With Your Emotions

Tim B.:

Hey, hey, Mr. Postman!

I'm a pretty consistent reader of your Apocalypse, and I don't remember seeing anything written about this, so here it goes.

Now that Disney owns Marvel, Star Wars, Indiana Jones and what not, does that mean we could see TOYS from those series and franchises showing up in the new Toy Story 4? How cool would it be to have Iron Man and Han Solo team up with Buzz and Woody for some adventures! Or am I just not seeing something that could not be cool about it?


We certainly could, but I wouldn't hold my breath. Toy Story is a massively popular franchise with equally popular merchandising of its characters; they don't really need to resort to a bit of "stunt casting" in order to sell movie tickets or toys. I'm also pretty sure that Pixar in general and John Lassiter in specific would frown over such a crass, commercialization of their products, but they they've also made like 18 Cars movies so maybe they don't mind that much.

Even if they do show up in a future Toy Story, I doubt you'll see Buzz and Woody partner with Luke Skywalker and Iron Man. I think the best you can hope for is a cameo or an easter egg by some classic '70s Star Wars Kenner figures in one of the future movies. Buzz can swat away a tiny ¾-inch Darth Vader figure that keeps trying to pick a fight with him. But I wouldn't expect anything more.



You Remind Me of the Babe

Kevin A.:

Dear Postmaster General,

Have The Walking Dead writers thoroughly thought-out the issues that having 'toddler Judith' will pose? It is hard enough keeping a toddler alive in a normal world, let alone one infested with zombies. Toddlers climb on everything, scream for fun, throw tantrums for no reason, do the opposite of what they're told, and can be fast as lightning. How are Rick, Carl, and company going to keep Judith alive? I don't think it's possible.

I have 2 1/2 year old twins. If world war Z hits I'm locking them in an attic for the next 5 years.


I guarantee the writers have thought out the Judith issue, Comic spoiler — Baby Judith is very much not alive in the comic, so the TV show writers have had to actively make the choice to keep her alive on the show. Now, whether that's because they have a strong narrative reason for wanting to do so, or because they think killing a baby on-screen might be too disturbing even for Walking Dead fans — and thus could potentially alienate some of the show's massive audience — is unknown.

However, now that Rick and the group are in the Alexandria Safe Zone, Judith's ability to commit toddler suicide have diminished considerably. Oh sure, she could technically wander into the armory and start juggling handguns, but narratively that's unlikely. It appears that neither zombies nor bad guys can enter the town, and the biggest threat inside Alexandria is Rick. So even it turns out Not Staying in the House is the genetic gift of the Grimes children, she can probably run around and wail and be a brat to her heart's content. For now.



Ghost Stories


1) Would anyone really want to become a force ghost? 2) And what are the physics of being one? We've never really seen a force ghost (that I'm aware of, and I'm only talking about the films and animated shows) be able to interact with the physical world on a tactile level. You could argue of course that they may or may not have the ability to speak. Perhaps they project their voices directly into the mind of the intended audience instead of actually having a voice that creates sound waves. In RotJ we see Obi Wan's force ghost "touching" Yoda's force ghost so we can assume that fellow force ghosts can and do interact "physically" with one another. 3) This brings me to the very important issue that I am trying to resolve; can force ghosts have force ghost sex? 4) I mean using an ancient Jedi technique to turn yourself into a non-corporeal entity in the event that your physical body fails is a pretty good second fiddle to normal existence but at what cost? 5) Is there force ghost food you can eat? 6) Are there any force ghost drugs or alcohol?


I numbered your questions for my convenience. Hope you don't mind.

1) Well, if you're going to die anyways, your options are to go to "The Netherworld of the Force" or become a Force Ghost and hang out on the material plane for a bit. There's not a lot of detail about the Netherworld, but l imagine like most afterlives it's pretty dull, so if I had the option to stick around and give cryptic messages to impressionable farm boys from Tatooine, I'd probably do that myself.


2) The rules of Force Ghostery are some of the most contradictory in the Expanded Universe, but according to the Star Wars wiki, you actually got the physics pretty right. Force Ghosts can appear anywhere in the galaxy, and to anyone. They can interact physically with other Force Ghosts, and they can interact with the material plane very slightly, although this may be a gift of Dark Side users.

3) If they can interact physically with other Force Ghosts, I don't see why not. I would think, however, that the Jedi's stupid "no love" rule extends to death.


4) Well, the cost is death, but again, if you're going to be dying anyways you really don't stand to lose anything.

5) I was going to say no, there is no Ghost Food, but this is Star Wars. There's an animal that somehow emits a bubble that prevents the Force from working, despite the fact that the Force is the spirit of the entire universe or something. So of course there has to be ghost food on some planet somewhere.


6) See answer #5.

Do you have questions about anything scifi, fantasy, superhero, or nerd-related? Email the postman@io9.com! No question too difficult, no question too dumb! Obviously!

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