First episode impressions: ‘Marvel’s Agent Carter’

“Marvel’s Agent Carter” (8 p.m. Central Tuesdays on ABC) largely meets my expectations of having the vibe of those two “X-Files” episodes that featured FBI agent Arthur Dales in the 1940s. All the guys wear suits, and if they’re not smoking a cigar, you get a sense that they could do so at any moment. The women are in demure skirts and blouses, the technology is primitive (photographs have to be “developed”) and – although the show is filmed in color – everything is tan and brown (except the photos, which are in black and white).

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‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ looks great, but doesn’t have much of a point

“Guardians of the Galaxy” (2014) has such gorgeously detailed production design in every frame that I almost want to watch it again on mute. There probably wasn’t a better-looking film released last year. But the film itself is shallow, and frankly, it might be the most overrated of 2014.

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First episode impressions: ‘Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’

Joss Whedon’s first four TV series are about underdogs who are victimized or marginalized by a corrupt government or system, which they heroically battle against: Buffy is a tool of the Watcher’s Council, but she asserts her individuality; Angel is beat down by Wolfram & Hart and tries to take it over from within; the crew of the Serenity is pushed to the fringes of the galaxy by the tyrannical Alliance; and Echo is a slave of the Dollhouse, which literally can program her brain as they see fit.

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