‘Avengers: Endgame’: The Marvel TV Character Who Made It Into the MCU
The Marvel Cinematic Universe is the most vast media property ever, including having a consistent crossover effect with other existing Marvel projects. While you can find a few continuity slip-ups between these media universes, MCU has done a good job in offhandedly linking it with current TV shows.
Avengers: Endgame brought one character we’ve seen from TV to the film as a way to prove outlying characters can become a center of importance in a larger story. We’re talking about Edwin Jarvis, a character who was a butler in the now-defunct TV series Agent Carter, and as artificial intelligence in the Iron Man movies. Latter also morphed into the android Vision later.
This interesting character twist could kick off similar crossovers in later MCU films.
Remembering back to Jarvis the butler from the past
Those of you who happened to watch ABC’s underrated Agent Carter a few years ago will remember seeing Jarvis as a devoted butler to Howard Stark during the mid-1940s. Stark allows Jarvis to assist Peggy Carter through her missions on the show, essentially helping him escape the boredom of being just a lowly assistant.
While basically a sideline character on Agent Carter, you could almost sense there was something more there considering the winning repartee between him (James D’Arcy) and Carter. Marvel decided to reach into the backstory of Jarvis and have him cameo during one of the time travel sequences in Endgame.
There was always a little mystery why Tony Stark insisted on making Jarvis’s personality a part of his user interface system that helped build the Iron Man suit. Despite the AI version of Jarvis being called J.A.R.V.I.S., a lot of people still didn’t understand why the character mattered so heavily to Tony.
We were to assume Jarvis was no longer living by the time Iron Man begins. Yet, in Endgame we see a very clever time travel trick showing how multi-layered the entire MCU really is in appeasing fans.
A glimpse of Jarvis in 1970
If you saw Endgame, then you know how entangled their time travel plot was. It still has audiences confused and trying to connect all the dots in their heads. At least one logical part of it was Tony Stark and his superhero cohorts going back to 1970 New Jersey to gather the Tesseract and Pym Particles, requiring interaction with people of the era.
Of course, this treads on Back to the Future territory and possibly creating dual existences. In Endgame, the excuse is they’re creating alternate timelines, even though all of the people Stark loves are still there in 1970.
One of those is his dad who he has a touching reunion with toward the end. Then we notice Jarvis is working as Howard Stark’s butler again in a brief cameo by James D’Arcy.
Considering this is 24 years after Agent Carter took place, the film attempted to make Jarvis look older. For fans, this is probably a signal it’s the last we’ll ever see of Jarvis in the MCU again…maybe.
The chances of the MCU having cameos from TV again
We can probably count on Marvel including some of their TV characters in future film cameos. Some of them might even factor more heavily into plots to give legitimacy to the entire Marvel universe.
Many fans wanted Daredevil or the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to make cameos in Endgame, despite seeming incongruous. Since we’ll be waiting a while until the next MCU films come out, it’ll give some time for current Marvel TV shows to regain some footing into the public consciousness.
Really, though, it’ll be a challenge to make such a TV crossover more emotional than the one with Edwin Jarvis. Dipping into the past always resonates more than characters in the present timeline.