Hayley Atwell Hired For ABC Pilot, What Does This Mean For Agent Carter?


Marvel’s Agent Carter has been phenomenal this year but between low ratings and Hayley Atwell being hired for a new pilot, things look grim for the period drama.

The Hollywood Reporter writes of the pilot in which Atwell would play another Carter:

Conviction tells the story of Carter Morrison (Atwell), the brilliant but ne’er-do-well daughter of a former president, who is blackmailed into taking a job as the head of Los Angeles’ newly created Conviction Integrity Unit. She, along with her team of lawyers, investigators and forensic experts, work together to examine cases where there’s credible suspicion that the wrong person may have been convicted of a crime.

Liz Friedman, producer/writer for Marvel/Netflix’s Jessica Jones, wrote the pilot for ABC and Variety says Liz Friedlander would direct it. In another post, Variety has just said The Walking Dead’s Emily Kinney has joined the pilot along with X-Men’s Shawn Ashmore. This is certainly great news for Atwell who is a tremendous talent. But as acclaimed as Agent Carter is, Atwell landing this gig could be bad news for the lower-rated show.

TV Line writes:

Agent Carter’s ratings are downright pitiful for a drama airing on ABC. The show’s first season averaged just 5.02 million viewers and pulled in a 1.51 rating among adults ages 18-to-49, but ABC surprised everyone when it renewed the series for Season 2. Unfortunately, despite incredibly positive reviews, the show’s sophomore outing, which currently airs Tuesdays at 9pm while Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is on hiatus, is averaging a measly 2.977 million viewers and a .86 rating.

Not great. I honestly think the fan enthusiasm, as well as executives believing in the show, kept it going thus far but those things won’t be able to last forever.

Conviction being developed for ABC is both good and bad. On the bad side THR writes, “The news comes as Agent Carter showrunners Michele Fazekas and Tara Butters also have a pilot in the mix at ABC — soap The Death of Eva Sofia Valdez, which they exec produce alongside writer Charise Castro Smith.” Yes, the showrunners are also working on something else for ABC. But THR also notes, “Insiders stress the network would work out a production schedule that could accommodate both Agent Carter and Conviction.”

People have worked on multiple shows before, it’s not impossible. But something about this news strikes me as ABC saying “sorry we’re not going to continue with your show but we love what you do so here’s an opportunity to keep working for us.”

I really do hope ABC decides to renew the show and that if they do, they put even more marketing behind it to grab a larger audience. As I said, Season 2 has been phenomenal. They’ve kept up the dynamic spy adventures, delved even deeper emotionally, and added more comedy that’s really working for it.  And between the new additions to the cast and the performances being pulled out from the regulars, I would hate for this to be the last we see of Peggy Carter and Co.

4 Responses to “Hayley Atwell Hired For ABC Pilot, What Does This Mean For Agent Carter?”

  1. That Which Dreams says:

    What does it mean? It means nothing. I firmly believe that Peggy is capable of both starring in her own show, and bringing the justice in another.

  2. John Ender says:

    too bad Agent Carter is much better than Agents of Shield.. the pacing alone is far better shorter seasons means less runaround and of course the writing of the episodes

    • shadowmaat says:

      Another big plus in Carter’s favor is that they don’t keep trying to tie it in to a movie release and then having to dance around and suddenly rush forward to make sure it all coincides. It’s partly why their pacing is better than AoS. They also seem to understand how to handle their cast better in terms of story/screentime. AoS always felt overcrowded and erratic.

  3. Rick Bman says:

    But the real question is, how is she going to be the next Doctor if she does this show?