captain america, captain america: the first avenger, dan slott, haters can get off at the first stop, i believe in heroes, marvel, or i will gladly throw you overboard, peggy carter, steve rogers, stories, this is my ship, why heroes are important, writing
I was looking at Pinterest this morning, and I found something…
(TruthWillWin1, thought you might be interested!)
It appears that Dan Slott is just trying to be funny, but this struck me as deadly serious. (I have heard that Mr. Slott has a track record of trying to be funny, failing, and also failing to take the good of the story seriously.)
Yes, Steve Rogers would agree. Because that is Steve Rogers. Truly humble, because he knows all his own failings. He knows, deep down inside, that he is not perfect. He doesn’t try to be perfect. He just tries to be a good man, and sometimes, he finds himself lacking.
And, I would argue, that is why he’s the super soldier, and not Peggy.
Peggy Carter is, on a fundamental level, very different from Cap. (My sister and I actually discovered this fact by asking “What if Captain America was Cecelia “Celia” Rogers and what if Celia Rogers ‘survived’ the plane crash and was found and was present during the events of Agent Carter?” We realized that Peggy and the girl version of Cap are very different. Peggy is a woman in an man’s world who is proud of who she is and makes her way in that world without losing her femininity. On the other hand, Celia is not sure of who she is as a woman. She’s a good person, but does not know how to be ladylike, or how to be an adult woman, for that matter. She’s shy, and self-erasing, and wears blouses and skirts that don’t fit very well, and she isn’t really classically “pretty”–the effect the super soldier serum has on a woman’s body isn’t exactly what a lot of people would consider attractive. She doesn’t look like the Black Widow. She has a lot of defined muscle, and a larger rib cage but a smaller bust. Despite their different backstories, a lot of that does transfer across to Steve.)
Steve Rogers doesn’t go picking fights. He might “ask for it”, but he doesn’t start them. He speaks up, but when he’s not speaking up, he’s not noticed a lot. He’s not self-assured. He tends to question his own motives and actions–which is why Erskine picked him, because he is careful about what he’s contributing to. On the other hand, Peggy can be a bit rash at times, and she’s very self-assured, and while she sometimes questions, she doesn’t second-guess herself nearly as much as Steve does (to be just, I don’t think of them either really needs to second-guess themselves often, because they normally get it right the first time.) Steve doesn’t play up to anyone’s expectations, while Peggy acts up to those expectations so that people will underestimate her quite a bit. Steve is always completely honest and open, and while Peggy admires that, it’s not something that she can be in her line of work.
The world needs people like Steve Rogers to be themselves. (It also needs Bucky Barneses and Peggy Carters, filling their capacities, but right now, let’s focus on Steve.)
The whole reason that Erskine chose Steve was because Steve was already a hero in a small way. He was just giving Steve the ability to do it on another scale.
Also, I feel that when we suggest that Peggy could have ended the war so much sooner if she had been a super soldier, we are devaluing Peggy as she is!
She is a strong woman. She’s strong when Steve can’t be. Peggy doesn’t need the super soldier serum to make a change. She takes charge and steps in and doesn’t let them keep her out, and she’s way more successful at it than Steve.
In so many ways, while Steve is the hero the world looks to, Peggy is the hero Steve looks to. Peggy is smarter about her emotions than he is. He gets lost; she puts him back on track.
On the other hand, Peggy is aggressive, certainly much more aggressive than Steve is, and the serum tends to take your emotions and personality and past choices and push that into overdrive, so Peggy the super soldier might not be the same person that we know and love now. And maybe the war would have been over in half the time, but the ending might have been very different–and that might not have been a good thing. (Though, to be honest, if they could have found some way of stopping Hiroshima and Nagasaki from being bombed, I would get behind it–if it were ethical. The ends do NOT justify the means.)
In short, Peggy doesn’t need the serum. In a similar way that Steve Rogers doesn’t need the serum, true, except he isn’t as strong as she is, emotionally or possibly even physically. She’s just better at going far than he is, and that’s why he is the supersoldier and she is not–because he’s humble and will back out when they’re done with the fight, while she will go on to build SHIELD.
The world needs both Steve Rogers and Peggy Carter, in the roles they find themselves filling. The love story is perfect when each person can be truthfully said to be the other’s “better half.”
In closing, I can only say that I’m glad they did it the way they did. (Also, Mr. Slott, please pay more attention to the good of the story you are trying to tell. Maybe the fans would thank you then. And maybe reading a history book or two wouldn’t hurt, either!)