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S02.E05: The Atomic Job 2016.02.09

Three observations

1) I'm not a nuclear physicist but I don't think that is what atomic bombs look like inside.

2) Uranium isn't nitroglycerin.

3) When Sousa told Jarvis he'd have to remove the bomb from the crate I was thinking great, I don't see a block and tackle or crane in the room. Jarvis's workout regimen has born fruit!

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Something about the way Violet was carrying the bat around made me think she's not just a nurse. She might not be a bad guy though she could a spy for another agency like the CIA (or its 1940's equivalent) or even another friendly government that's investigating the SSR or Zero Matter. Either that or she played professional baseball during the war.

 

One note I liked was the guys all gathered round to congratulate Sousa on his engagement. It looked very similar to the scene from last weeks episode of Peggy showing of her engagement ring  Yet the language being used was very different.  Its showing that women and men do have the same sort of relationships s but we often express ourselves differently.  They also didn't hit you over the head with the parallel in fact I wonder if TPTB even realize what they did.

 

Although I have to agree the production values on the show have suffered. We had better fake brick chipboard in my house growing then that refrigeration place did in the start of the episode.

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Something about the way Violet was carrying the bat around made me think she's not just a nurse. She might not be a bad guy though she could a spy for another agency like the CIA (or its 1940's equivalent) or even another friendly government that's investigating the SSR or Zero Matter. Either that or she played professional baseball during the war.

 

 

Unlike the SSR the real life OSS was disestablished after the war and the War and State Departments went back to running their own spy shops. It was with the Department of Defense which is about to happen in the Agent Carter time that a CIA was established. I think the Soviet equivalent of the SSR and the Red Skull wing of Hydra,  Leviathan of which Dottie is the local agent was in on the Arena Club being something they should check out and the promo monkey 

suggest the wartime allies may aid each other as Peggy recuperates from her wounds

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I want the dressing gown Peggy was wearing at the end.

Ray Wise looked like he was having fun getting zapped by Peggy.

Totally. And he revealed it judicously so as to just barely break the fourth wall and let us laugh too.

Ray Wise made the memory zapping scene. AFAIK he's done nothing wrong except properly secure and store nuclear weapons, so for Peggy to over-zap him with the memory thing knowing that there might be long term effects was a little alarming. But Ray kept the scene funny with his perfect timing.

I think he got extra zaps for his seemingly unstoppable lecherous advances. Maybe high levels of testosterone prevent the brain damage effect of the device. ;>)

The problem with Rose the gate guard being so awesome is that when every speaking woman can do something it lessens the awesomeness of Peggy, Dottie, May, Bobbi and even Natasha. There isn't just one per generation anymore every potential has become a slayer.

I was feeling that too, and even though the lineup of the women, the geek, the butler, and the guy with the crutch was amusing because of the music and the rag-tag-band effect, it also seemed almost offensive. IDK. But then I read this and felt better about it:

To me, the point of this is that Every Woman is a slayer in some way or other, but she's always under the radar, overlooked, underestimated, never given the opportunity to show it....

As was noticed in the previous episode, they are trying really hard to be feminist and race conscious and otherwise champion the disenfranchised, but that mark is being missed more often than hit.

The proposal-breakup-triangle was the one of the clunkier bits of writing/story-telling, and I think that's why mileage varies on what went down--IMO, of course.

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There's been a kindly discussion of the powerful women in this episode.  I loved it, and I was not at all reminded of some 1970s show.

 

What made this unique to me was the division of labor after they found the bombs. Jarvis is trapped in the bomb room, so Sousa has to talk him through the disassembly process.  And Samberly goes to work on opening the door.  So what do the women do?  They head out to be the muscle, to protect the men.  When's the last time you saw that?

 

In a typical action show, even one set in present day, the women would be acting as lookouts, reading instructions, possibly even playing science girl solving a tech problem.  But the women going out to beat up on the bad guys?  It simply isn't done!

 

 

 

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One note I liked was the guys all gathered round to congratulate Sousa on his engagement. It looked very similar to the scene from last weeks episode of Peggy showing of her engagement ring  Yet the language being used was very different.  Its showing that women and men do have the same sort of relationships s but we often express ourselves differently.  They also didn't hit you over the head with the parallel in fact I wonder if TPTB even realize what they did.

 

 

Of all the otherwise-totally-unconnected things it reminded me of, it was the baby shower scene in Disney's Lady and the Tramp in which the women are cooing over how beautiful Darling looks while the men in the other room are joking about ugly Jim Dear is. 

 

The only way I could forgive this love triangle business is if it's a double-twist from the writers, and Sousa does end up with Violet, while Wilkes ends up being Peggy's future husband. 

Edited by Ravenya003.
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What made this unique to me was the division of labor after they found the bombs. Jarvis is trapped in the bomb room, so Sousa has to talk him through the disassembly process. And Samberly goes to work on opening the door. So what do the women do? They head out to be the muscle, to protect the men. When's the last time you saw that?

In a typical action show, even one set in present day, the women would be acting as lookouts, reading instructions, possibly even playing science girl solving a tech problem. But the women going out to beat up on the bad guys? It simply isn't done!

On Agents Of SHIELD where Daisy holds the big stick and is not an Avenger. Agent May made her cavalry reputation as Agent Coulson's bodyguard and when a tactical team was killed and she assumed their mission alone and in the season 3 halfway finale Bobbi went out on her own to protect the specialist waiting at the porthole
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I just find it kindof funny that we're supposed to be all worried about Peggy being killed, when one presumes that anyone watching this show has seen the first Captain America movie and knows Peggy lives until old age.

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...What made this unique to me was the division of labor after they found the bombs. Jarvis is trapped in the bomb room, so Sousa has to talk him through the disassembly process. And Samberly goes to work on opening the door. So what do the women do? They head out to be the muscle, to protect the men. When's the last time you saw that?...

I am glad you pointed this out and appreciate it.

But now to play Devil's advocate for a moment:

Your question made me reflect on some more primitive cultures in which women actually do carry the water, plant the crops, and forage for food while men spend most of their time smoking around the campfire.

The only way I could forgive this love triangle business is if it's a double-twist from the writers, and Sousa does end up with Violet, while Wilkes ends up being Peggy's future husband.

I can't seem to stop myself from imagining Jarvis' wife gets killed, he mourns, Peggy comforts, wedding bells ring...

No one else?

Edited by shapeshifter.
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Love this show.

But, can we please stop this trope of folks crawling into buildings thru a vent. Not only are they rarely weighted enough to carry the weight of a person but two?. Lol. Plus, they are never that clean inside after regular use. Lastly, they are rarely the same size from end to middle. Just no.

I cracked up at the memory loss device.

Whitney's eyes turning black would be enough to send me running.

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But, can we please stop this trope of folks crawling into buildings thru a vent. Not only are they rarely weighted enough to carry the weight of a person but two?. Lol. Plus, they are never that clean inside after regular use. Lastly, they are rarely the same size from end to middle. Just no.

Why were they even in the vents? Were they planning on lugging the (contagiously) frozen body back out that way?

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Violet telling Peggy to stay with her also made me think she was with the Counsel. I'm paranoid on Peggy's behalf.

Glad to see I am not the only suspicious one. When she said that I hollered I knew it soon we are gonna find out she's shady!

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Why were they even in the vents? Were they planning on lugging the (contagiously) frozen body back out that way?

I thought they were going to bring the body back to Wilkes because he thought if he absorbed the dark matter out of the corpse he would become corporeal again. But since when is Wilkes confined to the house? He could surely have just walked/floated/however he moves fastest to the cold storage facility. Phased through the walls to the body and absorbed what he wanted before Whitney got there. I couldn't understand why there was any need for Peggy and Jarvis to break in.

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I thought they were going to bring the body back to Wilkes because he thought if he absorbed the dark matter out of the corpse he would become corporeal again. But since when is Wilkes confined to the house? He could surely have just walked/floated/however he moves fastest to the cold storage facility. Phased through the walls to the body and absorbed what he wanted before Whitney got there. I couldn't understand why there was any need for Peggy and Jarvis to break in.

Of course if it worked, Wilkes would then be stuck inside a super secret facility where a lot of people would want to take advantage of his power. Better for a super spy to deal with that part of it.

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I love Tom and Lorenzo's reviews(especially of Mad Men) and even though they still enjoy the show I think they're right in their review about what's been missing this season:

 

To reiterate, before we get into the whining and complaining: Hayley Atwell is still a treasure and the scripts still sparkle with a quick, screwball-comedy wit not normally reserved for network television. There are still plenty of reasons to watch and enjoy the show. It’s just that the show isn’t quite as good as it was last season and we finally figured out why. First and foremost, Peggy has no life and no real obstacles in her way. She has nothing standing in her way nor does she seem to have a personal life of any sort.  Last season, one of the biggest thrills of the show was watching Peggy astutely and blithely navigate the heavily chauvinistic if not downright misogynistic world she was operating in. Her power came from her self-knowledge and self-confidence in the face of withering indifference if not downright hostility from all of her co-workers.

Now, with the exception of Jack Thompson, with whom she barely interacts and at whom she’s free to spew the most righteously outraged invective, thereby cutting him off as a viable threat to her, there are a string of men who have crushes on her and upon whom she entertains crushes if not outright attractions, but in the cases of Sousa and Wilkes, the attraction is framed in a way as to make Peggy look so heroic and wonderful that it’s impossible not to love her. In other words, these attractions give us no hint of what’s going on in Peggy’s head and heart. They’re designed to do the opposite; to show you how other people think about Peggy. Last season, she and Jarvis had an amazing chemistry that was partly bound by a shared country of origin, partly fueled by a mild sexual tension, and largely built on the love both characters have for witty repartee. This season, he’s little more than comedy relief to her. We thought the casting of Lotte Verbeek as Mrs. Jarvis was going to give Peggy someone to bounce off, but she’s been largely sidelined since her introduction.

 

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I thought they were going to bring the body back to Wilkes because he thought if he absorbed the dark matter out of the corpse he would become corporeal again.

 

That's a very good point. Have we seen Wilkes hold any objects? Like, was he holding a pen while working on his calculations? I don't remember, but yes, I thought the same thing: Why didn't Wilkes go with them? Maybe he needs someone to open doors, coffins for him? No idea.

 

It's like whenever you see in Star Trek, a character is phased/an energy being/whatever so they can walk through walls and doors, but they never seem to fall through the floors.

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That's a very good point. Have we seen Wilkes hold any objects? Like, was he holding a pen while working on his calculations? I don't remember, but yes, I thought the same thing: Why didn't Wilkes go with them? Maybe he needs someone to open doors, coffins for him? No idea.

It's like whenever you see in Star Trek, a character is phased/an energy being/whatever so they can walk through walls and doors, but they never seem to fall through the floors.

I'm surprised Galaxy Quest didn't take those scenes on.
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That's a very good point. Have we seen Wilkes hold any objects? Like, was he holding a pen while working on his calculations? I don't remember, but yes, I thought the same thing: Why didn't Wilkes go with them? Maybe he needs someone to open doors, coffins for him? No idea.

There was a scene where Jarvis was writing calculations on the chalkboard for Wilkes.

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I'm surprised Galaxy Quest didn't take those scenes on.

 

Or Star Trek!

 

There was a scene where Jarvis was writing calculations on the chalkboard for Wilkes.

 

I thought so! So that tells me, that Wilkes could have accompanied Peggy and co to "suck" the "energy" or whatever it is, out of the corpse.

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I thought so! So that tells me, that Wilkes could have accompanied Peggy and co to "suck" the "energy" or whatever it is, out of the corpse.

 

In fact, he could have walked unhindered -- possibly unnoticed -- into the facility, right through any locked doors, walls or fences that stood in his way, then "sucked" the goodness right out of the corpse.  

 

Of course, if that normalized him, he'd have had some trouble getting out again... 

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I just find it kindof funny that we're supposed to be all worried about Peggy being killed, when one presumes that anyone watching this show has seen the first Captain America movie and knows Peggy lives until old age.

 

Are we supposed to be worried about Peggy being killed, though? There wouldn't be much of an Agent Carter without Agent Carter!

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Are we supposed to be worried about Peggy being killed, though? There wouldn't be much of an Agent Carter without Agent Carter!

Or a MCU but the promo monkey from ABC doesn't know that
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A few notes, many of them things already said:

 

I'm really enjoying the humor, especially centered around Rose's formidability. But I also like that they're not afraid to occasionally go broad with the humor, such as repeatedly flashy-thing-ing Jones.

 

Whitney is growing on me, mostly due to the flashbacks from preceeding episodes, and the motivation they give the character. She's not just a mustache-twirling badguy, and we can even sympathize with her to a degree.

 

One thing that is bothering me is the constant flow of devices which are impossibly high tech even by modern standards, let alone for 1947. I realize SSR is supposed to be ahead of their time, but these things are so common on the show that it's interfering with my suspension of disbelief.

 

And tv shows really need to stop doing this: "Yes, something pierced entirely through his/her body, but miraculously missed everything of importance!" Just falling that far onto cinder blocks should have put Peggy in the hospital for a while, even without the impaling. 

 

But to repeat, I am enjoying the show despite these gripes. 

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Super late to the party, but I wanted to add my $0.05 to the discussion about Rose. For me, that was one of the best parts of this episode, not for the humor (which certainly was fun), but for the importance of such a step. It is so easy for people to buy into that "she's exceptional" narrative and use it to keep other women from attaining equal opportunities. Peggy is indeed amazing, but she's amazing because she's an exceptional agent, period, not because she's a good agent while being female. While Peggy's circumstances, grit, and drive put her in a position to be respected and have influence, she would be (and was) the first to point out that there were plenty of women who had the ability to be good agents and only needed the opportunity to do so.

I was actually pretty moved that the show had Peggy advocate for Rose since a big part of workplace equality for women lies in mentoring and establishing networks outside of the "old boys' club" (a point emphasized by the time we've spent with a shadow organization that is so sexist it meets in a "no girls allowed" establishment). Honestly, I hadn't even realized that Rose is a trained agent, as opposed to a secretary with mad levels of discretion, until Peggy pointed it out. And while Sousa's BS about field experience was irritating, it was also accurate to the mindset that holds women back. It was Peggy's field experience that gave her a slightly higher position in the NY office (she got to be inside, with a desk!), as well as the contacts she used in the process of proving her worth (most notably Howard/Jarvis and the Howling Commandoes). Unfortunately, as we saw with the mission to Leviathan last season, the assignments that generate experience and contacts are given based on how much your boss believes in your abilities. So, outside of wartime situations where all hands are needed on deck (and maybe not even then), a sexist boss will not give a woman the chance to prove herself and gain the experience she needs to move up in the organization. Contrast this with Thompson who, while I think that he has shown that he is a quality agent, has repeatedly benefited from having the "man's man" style that Dooley and FBI guy can relate to and appreciate.

So Peggy, in advocating for Rose, is laying the ground work for Romanov, Hill, Carter, and all of the present-day agents who are able to be taken seriously, gain field experience, and move into leadership positions. Bravo, Ms. Carter! (Sorry for the rant/lecture, but this is a topic that hits pretty close to home for me.)

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It was just brought up but I was coming here to say that Carter's impalement (and really any other time she is in mortal peril really) lacked a lot of drama for me, and anyone who has seen Winter Soldier, because we know she lives to a ripe old age. For that matter we have a pretty good idea when and how Howard dies. Now just about everyone else on the show is fair game.

 

Carter wiping the Council guy's memory over and over again was hysterical. I'd like to see the bloopers from that, because I have to imagine between Ray Wise and Haley Atwell they must have the crew in stitches.

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Sousa moves to LA to get a fresh start, which means he's given up on Peggy.  He meets Violet and I can't believe he isn't at least somewhat in love with her, because who isn't?  Then Peggy comes back into his life, but then she meets someone else -- Sousa has certainly seen her interacting with Wilkes.  So he decides to put Peggy behind him and go forward with Violet.  I suspect he had every intention of being a faithful and devoted husband.  But yeah, he doesn't feel for Violet what she feels for him.

 

The thing I liked about Rose in the field is that I really believe her punches landed with power.  And yes, that the girls kicked butt while the boys fiddled with stuff.  (Although it would be nice to see Sousa get in on a fight some time.)

 

Not only are they rarely weighted enough to carry the weight of a person but two?

 

I've had a ten-pound cat in the air duct at home.  It was not quiet.

 

"Yes, something pierced entirely through his/her body, but miraculously missed everything of importance!"

 

The torso is full of important things; that's why the rib cage is there.  Minimum damage would be at least one broken rib and punctures to the small intestine, which carry the risk of peritonitis.  Surgery would be required.  And speaking from experience (although not of the rebar kind), having a hole poked through your abdominal wall HURTS.  For several weeks.

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Sousa moves to LA to get a fresh start, which means he's given up on Peggy.  He meets Violet and I can't believe he isn't at least somewhat in love with her, because who isn't?  Then Peggy comes back into his life, but then she meets someone else -- Sousa has certainly seen her interacting with Wilkes.  So he decides to put Peggy behind him and go forward with Violet.  I suspect he had every intention of being a faithful and devoted husband.  But yeah, he doesn't feel for Violet what she feels for him.

I think that is exactly what happened. Sousa genuinely felt he'd put Peggy behind him and that he was in love with Violet. And if Peggy had stayed in New York, I believe Sousa and Violet would be perfectly happy together. But the easiest person in the world to fool is yourself and denial isn't just a river in Egypt. 

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Minimum damage would be at least one broken rib and punctures to the small intestine, which carry the risk of peritonitis.  Surgery would be required.

 

Yes, that injury was not realistic and should have required a hospital stay.  I don't even know how Sousa got her off that rebar. He certainly couldn't ask anybody else for help as his allies had left the building and I don't think Cal and Whitney were going to help. Normally, you'd try to take the rebar with you, but he didn't have time, tools or access (there is was no gap between her and the cement). So, he had to cleanly lift her straight up off the rebar which has ridges. Shudder.

 

When I saw him walk her into Violet's house, I just figured this was a cartoon and Peggy was the Wile E Coyote. They should have skipped the rebar and just had her fall on the concrete - the rebar makes it completely unrealistic.

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Sousa moves to LA to get a fresh start, which means he's given up on Peggy.  He meets Violet and I can't believe he isn't at least somewhat in love with her, because who isn't?  Then Peggy comes back into his life, but then she meets someone else -- Sousa has certainly seen her interacting with Wilkes.  So he decides to put Peggy behind him and go forward with Violet.  I suspect he had every intention of being a faithful and devoted husband.  But yeah, he doesn't feel for Violet what she feels for him.

I agree that he had every intention of being a faithful and devoted husband. But I think this episode showed pretty clearly the limitations of intention. When you cannot respect your fiancée enough to keep a lid on your feelings for another woman you're in love with when you're in your fiancée's house, where you've brought the other woman for your fiancée to fix up, and you know she's standing there and can see/hear...yeah, that speaks volumes about how really prepared you are to actually follow through on your intentions of being faithful and devoted. Violet could see the writing on the wall and she was right to give him the boot. He's not ready to be married.

 

But, as has been pointed out, people's denial about themselves can be pretty powerful, so I'm not going to berate Sousa for going through with his proposal to Violet while simultaneously giving longing looks to Peggy as she interacts with Wilkes. I can accept he was in denial. What will do him in for me is if he shows up at Violet's door again and convinces her he's committed to her and then leaves her in the end for Peggy. He only gets to play the denial card once. Violet's called him out on his feelings for Peggy and why he moved to LA, so he has no excuse for further denial.

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When I saw him walk her into Violet's house, I just figured this was a cartoon and Peggy was the Wile E Coyote. They should have skipped the rebar and just had her fall on the concrete - the rebar makes it completely unrealistic.

A wizard did it! Oh, wrong universe. A mut-- oops, lawsuit . . . An Inhuman did it?
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A wizard did it! Oh, wrong universe. A mut-- oops, lawsuit . . . An Inhuman did it?

But of course. They can change her name to Chrysanthemum and then she'll be _awesome_

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I loved last season, I'm loving this season, and as much as I love the Netflix series, and while flawed I still enjoy Agents of SHIELD, this is my favorite slice of MCU tv.

 

Favorite piece of the episode was that action movie cool slow-mo walk...the music made it.

 

I'm also team Peggy/Sousa since last season.

Edited by CyberJawa1986.
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Ray Wise and Ken Marino were so much fun this episode. I mean, they always are, but I'm still glad they were cast.

And that Marino is going to be sticking around for a good chunk of the season.

But there were laughs and chuckles even putting them aside. This is the Agent Carter I like. I don't think it needs to be light all the time but they do well when they balance things out with humor since the writing on the large plots is kind of shaky.

 

One thing I will say for the flashbacks last episode (which I didn't really enjoy) is that it gives a depth to the performance from the actress playing Whitney Frost/Agnes. Now I'm always second guessing her when she's smiles... especially at a man. Though I do find it slightly distracting that when we show the "scar" it's huge but then in another scene she can easily hide it with her hair. Which is it?

 

I love having Rose in play.

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One thing that is bothering me is the constant flow of devices which are impossibly high tech even by modern standards, let alone for 1947. I realize SSR is supposed to be ahead of their time, but these things are so common on the show that it's interfering with my suspension of disbelief.

But this isn't the real world. This is the MCU where the flying car was actually invented in 1942 (along with the super soldier serum). You have guys like Stark, Erskine and soon Pym inventing stuff and things like vibranium and the tesseract are being used. So I have no problem with the crazy tech. In fact one of my complaints about the MCU as a whole, is that the flying car was invented in 1942, and yet in modern times technology still for the average person still looks like what we have. I don't expect them to show everyone having flying cars, but at the same time they shouldn't be driving around in the same cars or have the same computers/phones that we do.

The love triangle bugged me for two reasons. First off I think you can still be in love with someone and still have residual feelings for the one that got away/never really worked out. If you couldn't people would only ever marry their first love. Now I think Daniel should have just said that to Violet.

The bigger reason it bugs me is that the show presented it as Daniel doing something wrong by being with Violet while still having feelings for Peggy. But that seems kind of unfair to me since we know Peggy went on to marry someone and have a happy life, but I am not sure she ever got over her love for Cap. I wonder how her future husband felt about that?

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Something about the way Violet was carrying the bat around made me think she's not just a nurse.

 

She's a woman living alone in the 1940s. Firstly, she's probably played baseball her whole damn life. And secondly, of course she has a weapon handy that she knows how to use. There's no evidence she's anything other than what she is.

 

Honestly, for me the red flag on Sousa's relationship with her wasn't that he still had feelings for Peggy, it was when he was talking about her being with him in physical therapy. That's an emotional place to meet someone and mostly those relationships don't survive in the "real world".

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