If there’s one thing Marvel fans all around the globe love in common, its Easter eggs. Leaving tiny clues here and there that reveal a shocking plot twist is a speciality of Marvel Studios. Much to the surprise of every comic book reader, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has yet again brought to light a sensational display of years of background building.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe is the most fascinating and intricately connected of all cinematic universes. So far, the franchise consists of over 20 different movies with multiple characters, all with their own personalities and backstories, who most recently came together in the climactic three-hour Avengers: Endgame.
Watch: Entire MCU Timeline Explained
In the process of building its sprawling world, the MCU earned a large, devoted fan base, and many hardcore fans have a way of coming up with theories that somehow make the franchise even richer than it already is. One of these fan theories claims that Peggy Carter is actually Tony Stark’s mother.
Adventures of Peggy Carter
Margaret Peggy Carter is usually depicted as a supporting character in books featuring Captain America. Created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby, she first appeared in Tales of Suspense #77 as a World War II love interest of Steve Rogers in flashback sequences.
Directed by the iconic Louis D’Esposito, who is Co-President Marvel Studios LLC, and Lead by the amazing British Actress Hayley Atwell playing Agent Carter, the Television series “Agent Carter” is an American television series created for ABC by Marvel scribes Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely.
Hayley Atwell portrayed the character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, beginning with Captain America: The First Avenger (2011), and continuing in the Marvel One-Shot Agent Carter, Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014), the television series Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Marvel’s Agent Carter, Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015), Ant-Man (2015), and Avengers: Endgame (2019). Atwell will reprise her character for What If…? Captain Carter Episode.
Watch: How Peggy Carter Can Be Tony Stark’s Mother
In the comic, Peggy Carter was one of the most prominent agents of the Strategic Scientific Reserve during and after World War II and one of the founders of S.H.I.E.L.D. originally, a code-breaker working at Bletchley Park, she joined the Special Operations Executive following her brother’s death. Carter later joined the SSR, formed to fight HYDRA. On the mission in Germany, she saved Abraham Erskine from Johann Schmidt. The success of her mission enabled the SSR to start Project Rebirth and develop their Super Soldier Serum to make the army of Super Soldiers. During the project, she had befriended Steve Rogers, one of the project’s candidates.
In 1943, after the abrupt end of Project Rebirth and Roger’s transformation into the only Super Soldier, Carter assisted him in becoming the world’s first superhero, eventually falling in love with him. After Rogers’ disappearance in 1945, she continued the SSR’s fight against HYDRA, capturing the last high-ranking HYDRA officer Werner Reinhardt, and continuing her service in the SSR once the War ended. As an agent of the SSR, Carter helped former colleague Howard Stark clear his name when he was accused of being a traitor, and later traveled to Los Angeles where she clashed with Whitney Frost over the extra-dimensional Zero Matter. She helped Stark found the new peacekeeping organization, the Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division, better known by its acronym S.H.I.E.L.D.
Can Carter Be Tony’s Mother
The theory totally makes sense in some ways, but in others, not so much. Regarding theAgent Carter series, certain circles might deride Agent Carter’s relevance considering she’s almost non-existent in the comics, and she doesn’t have a direct connection to anyone in the movies, except Captain America. But what if she did have a connection to another main film character?
Watch: Agent Carter Confronts Howard Stark
Her work relationship with Howard Stark; Tony’s father allowed her work closely with the tech genius. From his lifestyle, to his ego and career choices, Peggy Carter seems the perfect fit for a man such as Howard.
The only thing that doesn’t quite work about this theory is the age. Let’s be generous and assume that Peggy is 19 in the Captain America movie, and is 20 when the mini-series takes place. Now let’s assume that Tony Stark is 44 when the first Iron Man takes place, which means she’d have to give birth to Tony at the age of 38, which might be a bit of a stretch.
Although just a theory waiting to explore, a connection between Peggy Carter and Howard Stark would give the relationship between Steve Rogers and Tony even more substance and could be developed into a whole different plot. However, one could also argue that the time to explore such a plot faded with the end of the MCU’s third phase but we can totally expect a What if episode!
Atwell will return to voice an alternate version of the character called Captain Carter in the Marvel Cinematic Universe animated series What If…?On Disney+. The premiere is set for mid-2021.