The Marvel Cinematic Universe currently spans 22 movies and 11 TV shows, but it doesn’t always feel like it. The TV shows are almost never acknowledged by the movies, but that changed with “Avengers: Endgame.” For the first time, a character introduced on the small screen made a crossover to the big screen.
[“Avengers: Endgame” spoilers ahead!]
No, it wasn’t Daredevil (Charlie Cox) or Iron Fist (Finn Jones) or anyone who might’ve been helpful in the fight against Thanos (Josh Brolin). Instead, it was a cameo from Jarvis (James D’Arcy).
When Iron Man/Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) and Captain America/Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) go back to the 1970s, Tony runs into his father Howard Stark (John Slattery). After a chat about fatherhood, Howard returns to his car where Jarvis is waiting. Howard asks Jarvis if he’d previously met Tony (who introduced himself as Howard Potts).
Edwin Jarvis was first introduced on “Marvel’s Agent Carter,” which ran for two seasons on ABC. The show ended in 2016. Knowing that the show was done, Marvel Studios had the ability to do whatever they wanted with the characters without worrying about continuity.
It’s also not surprising when looking at the credits for “Agent Carter.” “Avengers: Endgame” writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely were credited as creators and executive producers on the 1940s-set TV show. Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige and co-president Louis D’Esposito were also executive producers. Co-director Joe Russo an helmed a Season 1 episode. It’s clearly the show most connected to the movie studio.
The writers also considered involving the Defenders. Marvel’s Netflix heroes were not yet canceled when this movie was written, though. The writers said they worried about affecting the continuity and introducing new people to moviegoers.
“We would have to introduce these five characters — or whatever many,” McFeely told the New York Times. “We already are assuming people have seen a lot of the movies. Are we really going to assume they have bought a subscription to Netflix and watched those shows enough so that when they see them, they’re going to go ‘yay?’”
“It also screws up the timelines,” Markus added. “You would have to assume that they all got snapped away, or otherwise they might have shown up earlier. I think the only character who has come from TV to the movies is Jarvis, James D’Arcy [from ‘Agent Carter’].”
Expect more connection between the Disney+ Marvel TV shows and the films. Those will be produced by Marvel Studios rather than Marvel Television, and they’ll have a direct impact on the movies.
“Avengers: Endgame” is in theaters now and “Marvel’s Agent Carter” is available on Hulu.