We're going to talk about a big moment in "Captain America: Civil War", so there will be spoilers. You have been warned!
Everybody knows that breaking up by text is a douche move. But killing someone? That's too much, Marvel.
"Civil War" is great -- a thrill-packed Marvel-flavoured roller coaster ride of superhero super-fun. But there is one moment in the film that made me choke on my popcorn, and it involves Peggy Carter.
Peggy, played by Hayley Atwell, is the no-nonsense spy who shared a close bond with Steve Rogers in the "Captain America" films and headlines her own TV series, "Agent Carter". She's also popped up in her own short film, in TV show "Agents of SHIELD", in "Avengers: Age of Ultron", and in "Ant-Man". She's one of the most loved characters and possibly the most prominent woman in the whole Marvel universe.
In "Civil War", Steve Rogers receives a text informing him that someone he knows has died in their sleep. That someone, we learn a few moments later, at the funeral, is Peggy Carter.
One of the most popular characters in the Marvel universe just died -- and it happened offscreen? And we learn about it in a frickin' text message?
That's some shabby treatment for such a beloved figure. A character of Peggy Carter's stature deserves better than that.
Even worse, her death is merely a plot point to further the moral dilemma that's got Rogers' eyebrows in a twist. The heroic and independent Agent Carter is killed off just to give Captain America something to think about.
Wives, girlfriends and daughters are forever being kidnapped or killed or generally put through the wringer to motivate their husbands, boyfriends or fathers. The trope even has a name, woman in a refrigerator syndrome, after the time Green Lantern found his girlfriend dead in the fridge.
Now certainly, Peggy lived a long life and died peacefully rather than being violently offed by some bad guy. But to casually kill off a major female character offscreen and then present her funeral as being about someone else -- that just adds insult to injury.
As the lady herself said, "I don't need a congressional honor. I don't need the president's approval. I know my value."
So do we, Agent Carter. And it's certainly more than a text.
"Captain America: Civil War" is in theatres in the UK and Australia and US now.