Representation in media (comics, films, television series, and video games) has become a hot button issue over the past decade. In March of 2022, the Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film of San Diego State University found “that men outnumbered women onscreen by a factor of 2 to 1 in 2021”. The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is no exception and has had its share of sexist, derogatory, and stereotypical depictions of women. However, in at least one, rather niche area, the MCU does excel in their representation of women: particularly in their representation of women within Intelligence Communities (IC) around the globe via the character of Peggy Carter.
S.W.O.R.D and S.H.I.E.L.D: What the Marvel Cinematic Universe Tells Us About the World of Intelligence and Ethics
It is without question that the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is one of the biggest media franchises in the current day. For many, it has become a part of their personality and something they enjoy either discussing, collecting, or watching. They allow us to see and explore the world differently than before and in many cases allow us commentaries on pressing issues within society or history, such as gender, race, and power. While there have been many commentaries and analyses on these topics, little has been said about the commentary the MCU offers on the world of intelligence and espionage.
Newly commissioned officers and officer hopefuls look to various areas for role models. Some look to business and politics while others look to science and academia. Yet, most look towards military officers, persons such as GEN Creighton Abrams, LTG Lewis “Chesty” Puller, or ADM Chester Nimitz. Many are able to find key qualities for officers in these persons; duty to country and subordinates, leadership, tactical ability, and intelligence.
However, one officer that frequently is never mentioned is Lieutenant General Samuel V. Wilson of the U.S. Army.