Violet recaps the Season 1 finale of Agent Carter, titled Valediction, where Howard Stark returns to help the SSR track down Dottie and Dr. Ivchenko, and prevent a major catastrophe! Following the recap, both Violet and Josh share their thoughts about the episode.
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Episode Recap of Agent Carter, Season 1 Episode 8: Valediction
The season finale of Agent Carter begins with another Captain America radio program.
Thompson, Sousa, and Carter go to the movie theater to investigate the tragedy that Dottie caused last episode. Carter takes a look at the bodies and concludes it wasn’t a monster that killed the people, they killed each other. Sousa looks inside the auditorium, and finds the canister, which lets out a puff of steam in his face. When Thompson approaches him, Sousa goes crazy and attacks him. A policeman knocks Sousa out with his night stick.
Meanwhile, Dottie and Dr. Ivchenko are driving away, and gets pulled over for running a traffic light. Dottie plays ditzy, and the cop nearly lets her off. That is, until he hears a transmission over the radio broadcasting their license plate number and description. Dottie hears it too, and greets him at gunpoint.
Sousa wakes up strapped to a hospital bed. Sousa vaguely remembers wanting to kill everyone. He’s fine, and shows up to work the next day, along with Carter.
Thompson reports that Ivchenko has 10 canisters of the gas from the movie theater. Just then, Howard Stark shows up at the SSR. They promptly place him under arrest and question him in the conference room. Stark tells them that the gas is called Midnight Oil. It was supposed to keep soldiers awake for days at a time, but failed. His lab in Fennel was raided and everything was stolen. Then the gas was dropped on the Russians. They take a look at the files Stark has brought, and discover that Dr. Ivchenko’s real name is Dr. Fenhoff, and that he is a psychiatrist who specializes in hypnosis. Howard realizes that he is what Fenhoff wants, and he’s willing to act as bait.
Dottie and Dr. Ivchenko drive to an airfield, but while Dottie is busy killing a guy that works there, Dr. Ivchenko hears a radio bulletin that Howard Stark is in New York and will be holding a press conference that afternoon. Ivchenko says they’re going back to New York.
Back at the SSR, Howard asks where his stuff is, and Peggy brings him to the lab. He is upset at the way his inventions are being mishandled. He finds a bulletproof vest to wear. While Peggy isn’t looking, he takes Steve Rogers’s blood.
At the press conference, which takes place outside, someone begins shooting at Howard from a window in a nearby hotel. Jarvis safely gets Howard into the back of a waiting police car, which drives off. We see that the driver is the cop that had stopped Dottie the night before. He tells Howard that Dr. Fenhoff would like to see him.
Thompson and Carter check out the hotel room, but no one is there. They discover that the rifle was rigged to fire itself, and was aimed well above the podium. Just then, they get the message that Stark has been taken.
Carter and Thompson try to figure out what the next target is. They realize that it’s VE Day, and that Fenhoff is going to hit Times Square.
Meanwhile, Sousa finds the police car that took Stark. The cop is there, knocked out, but the back seat is empty. We see that Howard is in the back seat of another car with Dottie pointing a gun at him. She reminds him that the two of them spent a weekend together recently, but he doesn’t remember her name.
Sousa gets a tip that a witness saw a blonde forcing Howard into the back of a car, and they were last seen heading toward Lincoln Tunnel. Carter wonders why they’re trying to leave the city. Thompson reports that they are unable to stop the VE Day celebration. But since the gas was designed to be deployed by air, they did shut down all the airports and private airfields in the area. Jarvis knows where Fenhoff is headed – to a vault where Howard keeps some planes.
We see a flashback to 6 months ago, to when Howard was spending time with Dottie. He brought her to his plane vault. Cut to the present, Howard is strapped to a chair, and Dottie is slapping him across the face, since he still can’t remember her name. Fenhoff then tells Stark that he was only spared from Midnight Oil because he had a gas mask, but that his brother was not so lucky.
Fenhoff talks to Howard and makes him think about his guilt, then begins to hypnotize him, telling him there might still be a way to atone for his sins. Howard goes into a vision in which Captain America’s signal has been found, and Peggy tells him to bring him home.
In real life, Howard gets into his plane and flies off just as Peggy and the others show up, too late to stop him. Peggy says she needs someone to take one of the other planes up to shoot Howard down in case she is unable to talk him down. Jarvis is the only one who knows how to fly a plane, so the duty falls to him.
Peggy approaches the radio room with a rifle. Fenhoff and Dottie are inside, and Fenhoff is still encouraging Howard to “focus.” Dottie kicks the gun out of Peggy’s hands, and they fight. Dottie orders Fenhoff to leave. Then she beats Peggy with a baseball bat. However, Peggy is able to kick Dottie out of the window, and she falls to the wing of a plane far below, with a pool of blood around her head.
Peggy radios to the others that Fenhoff escaped the radio room. Then she tries to tell Howard what’s going on. Thompson checks out the plane vault, but Fenhoff knocks him out from behind. Sousa walks in just then, and walks toward Fenhoff. As he approaches, Fenhoff tries to hypnotize him into shooting Thompson. However, Sousa knocks Fenhoff out with his gun. It turns out Sousa was wearing earplugs and didn’t hear anything Fenhoff was saying.
Howard gets to about 1 mile from land, and Peggy has still been unable to get through to him. Jarvis asks if he should take the shot. She tells him to wait, and continues to try to talk Howard down. Peggy tells Howard that they have to let Steve go. Suddenly, Howard snaps out of it, and Peggy tells Jarvis to stand down.
Peggy finds that Dottie is missing. Thompson and Sousa gag and arrest Fenhoff. Stark and Jarvis arrive back at the hangar safe and sound, though Stark tells Jarvis he wouldn’t have wanted him to shoot him out of the air, and gives him orders not to shoot or otherwise hurt him. Howard remembers “Dottie’s” name – “Ida.”
When Carter returns to the SSR, she enters to a round of applause. However, she says she hasn’t decided if she’s coming back yet, she’s just there to pick up her paycheck. Thompson is confident she’ll be back though. Just then, Senator Walt Cooper comes in looking for Thompson. He personally commends Thompson for saving so many lives. Sousa doesn’t understand how Carter can just stand there and take that, but Carter says it doesn’t bother her. She says she knows her value, and that anyone else’s opinion doesn’t really matter. Sousa asks Carter to go out for a drink after work, but she declines, saying she has to meet a friend.
Jarvis shows Angie and Peggy one of Howard’s residences which he has offered up for them to stay in. While Angie takes a look around, Jarvis tells Peggy that he would be honored to help her if she ever needs his assistance. Jarvis also gives Peggy the vial of Steve’s blood. Howard believed that it was lost when he was under Fenhoff’s control.
Peggy takes the vial of blood up to the Brooklyn Bridge and empties it into the ocean.
In the final scene, Dr. Fenhoff is brought to his prison cell, and is wearing a device on his head which prevents him from speaking. It turns out that his cellmate is Dr. Zola from the Captain America movies. It seems like they are going to get up to some trouble.
Violet’s Thoughts on Season 1 Episode 8 of Agent Carter: Valediction
This was an exciting episode to end an amazing first season of Agent Carter! The entire episode kept me guessing at what would happen next. Of course Peggy saved the day, how could it go any other way? The end of the episode, when Thompson takes credit for Peggy’s actions, and Peggy’s reaction to that, was really inspiring. It looked for a second like maybe Thompson would give at least some of the credit to Peggy. But of course not. This was the 1940s. It was a man’s world. So it was admirable of Peggy to take the high road, personally knowing her value, and not needing a man to validate her. At the same time, it was really frustrating how Thompson acted, and I wish Peggy’s involvement would have been acknowledged in some way.
All season I was really impressed by the quality of Agent Carter, and thought that giving it a limited run of 8 episodes was a great idea. It made it feel like it was a long movie, and made it a self-contained story, connecting one episode to the next, that didn’t feel like it dragged on for too long, like some shows with 22+ episode runs can feel like. As a result, I was kept interested and invested in the series throughout its entire run. The bad side of the short run was that it felt too short, and we had to wait a long time for the next season! Peggy Carter was such an inspiration to me that I ended up cosplaying as her for one of my first ever cosplays.
Well now the time has finally come for Season 2, and Peggy has made the move from New York to Hollywood this year! I can’t wait to see what’s in store this season.
Josh’s Thoughts: Agent Carter, Season 1 Episode 8: Valediction
Scenes from Agent Carter, Season 2 Episode 1: The Lady in the Lake and Season 2 Episode 2: A View in the Dark
Here are scenes from the double episode Season 2 premiere of Agent Carter:
What did you think of the season finale of Agent Carter, titled Valediction? Let us know in the comments below!