As you know, we Whimsies are big fans of Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD, and even though we no longer sit down here and have a weekly roundtable discussion about it, we still watch and enjoy the show. What you may not know is that some of us in Whimsieville are even more entranced by SHIELD’s sister show, Agent Carter. And some of us (like me) are most entranced by that show’s pivotal character, Howard Stark’s butler, Edwin Jarvis (as portrayed by British actor James D’Arcy).
Ah, Jarvis! Where do I begin? Okay, how about this? Let’s start with…he’s so good-looking, in a classic, old-fashioned clean-cut sort of way. Trixie may prefer the muscle-bound Thor with all his long crazy hair, and Tessie is partial to the sometimes unkempt Fall Out Boy Patrick Stump in his hats and tee shirts, but for me, the vision of Jarvis in a 1940’s suit, vest and tie, with a handkerchief neatly folded in the breast pocket, topped by a clean shaven jaw and every hair in place, is just the thing to set my heart aflutter.
Now, as if that wasn’t enough, how about a man that makes you laugh? You know how you’re always hearing that a woman wants a man with a good sense of humor? Well, I don’t know if Jarvis necessarily has a “sense of humor,” (if he does, it’s very dry) but he does provide a good deal of humor. And most of it is in his language.
Let’s start with the accent. Trixie is not the only one who loves a British accent, thank you very much! And Jarvis’ speech is the epitome of proper enunciation. He uses his calm and soothing voice to deliver important information, unintentionally melding humor into his extensive vocabulary. Take a listen:
Now, what could be funnier than that? Well, how about this—Jarvis attempting to impersonate an American police officer:
Oh, that Jarvis! He’s always making me laugh! isn’t he simply…jarvelous??
But it’s not just what he says, he can do physical comedy as well. Watch him here trying to take on Peggy:
Haha! And of course nobody can beat Peggy. Except here he does, and at the end of this clip, who should walk in but…his wife! And she doesn’t seem to have any problem with her husband lying on top of the attractive Agent Carter.
Which leads to my next point. The next thing I love so much about Jarvis is his relationship with his wife, Ana. First of all, she’s so cute! Isn’t she? And they just go so well together. I can’t quite figure them out, they are like no other couple I have ever seen before, either on TV, in movies, or in real life. She apparently loves him and trusts him completely, and for his part, he is obviously completely devoted to her.
But then that’s no surprise, because if there’s one word you could use to describe Jarvis’ character it’s that exactly: devoted. As a butler, he is completely devoted to his employer, Howard Stark. Stark could trust him with any secret. As Peggy’s partner in espionage, Jarvis is the picture of reliability. He will do anything to help her. And for his wife…well, here we pull out all the stops. Jarvis is so devoted to Ana that when she is shot by the villainess, even though it turns out she’s going to live and be okay, Jarvis can think of nothing but revenge.
In fact, he is so intent upon revenge, that in a very un-Jarvis-like moment, he hauls off and SHOOTS Whitney Frost… in cold blood! Unexpected. Of course (unfortunately) she’s imbued with supernatural powers, so she doesn’t actually die, but I must tell you, it was a shocking moment for all of us here in Whimsieville.
So shocking, in fact, that Miss Chrissy fears that as we near the final episode of this season of Agent Carter (a season, which, we are afraid, may be the last, as the star Hayley Atwell has apparently been offered another show—good for her! But bad for us Agent Carter fans….) the “powers that be” may decide that Jarvis has to die. Oh no! May it never be! Has that one moment of passionate indiscretion branded him as irredeemable? I certainly hope not!
And that’s why I’m writing this now, instead of after this coming Tuesday, when the season will be over. I want this to be my tribute to the wonders of Jarvis, not his obituary. If the next few days ends in his obituary, I will cry and cry. As will the rest of us here in Whimsieville. But, there is one ray of hope…
Mr. Russ, who knows Marvel comics much better than Miss Chrissy or the rest of us do (except perhaps for Trixie) insists that the “powers that be” are NOT going to kill Jarvis. Mr. Russ insists that Jarvis must live on to become a part of Tony Stark’s life, to serve him when he is an Avenger, and to provide the inspiration for the brilliant Mr. Stark’s even more brilliant computer, J.A.R.V.I.S.
So, we will cling to the hope that this coming Tuesday will not spell the end for our most devoted and loyal friend, Edwin Jarvis. We will all be glued to the television, and no matter how it all turns out, even if there are no further seasons of Agent Carter, though we will all be sad (because frankly, this is just about the best thing we’ve ever seen on TV), we will take consolation in the fact that Jarvis will always live on, in the comics, in our memories, in our hearts…and in re-runs!