Marvel has treated Hayley Atwell's 'Agent Carter' to an official premiere date and first clip in the last week alone, but the latest addition to the 'Captain America' spinoff series has an even larger tie to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. 'The Americans' star Costa Ronin has joined Marvel's 'Agent Carter' in the role of Anton Vanko, an important tie-in character to the 'Iron Man' franchise we've seen Tony Stark tangling with in the past.

According to Marvel's official announcement, Ronin will appear in an unconfirmed number of 'Agent Carter''s eight-episode run, portraying the same Anton Vanko we saw last gasping for breath in 'Iron Man 2.' Vanko supposedly worked with Tony Stark's father Howard (returning Dominic Cooper) to develop the original arc reactor, but was subsequently deported and discredited, eventually passing the work to his son Ivan Vanko, as portrayed by Mickey Rourke.

The mixed reception of 'Iron Man 2' not withstanding, it certainly makes sense that we'd see some seeds of the Iron Man franchise, what with Peggy Carter and Howard Stark having founded the original S.H.I.E.L.D. long before Tony took a load of shrapnel to the chest, and started down his own avenging path. In any case, here's Marvel's lengthy summary of the 'Agent Carter' series:

ABC presents its second action packed series from the creative minds at Marvel in “Marvel’s Agent Carter,” inspired by the feature films Marvel’s "Captain America: The First Avenger" and Marvel’s "Captain America: The Winter Soldier," along with the short "Marvel One-Shot: Agent Carter."

Years before Agent Coulson and his S.H.I.E.L.D. team swore to protect those who cannot protect themselves from threats they cannot conceive, there was Agent Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell, Marvel's "Captain America: The First Avenger," Marvel's "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"), who pledged the same oath but lived in a different time when women weren’t recognized as being as smart or as tough as their male counterparts.

But no one should ever underestimate Peggy.

It's 1946 and peace has dealt Peggy a serious blow as she finds herself marginalized when the men return home from fighting abroad. Working for the covert SSR (Strategic Scientific Reserve), Peggy finds herself stuck doing administrative work when she would rather be back out in the field; putting her vast skills into play and taking down the bad guys. But she is also trying to navigate life as a single woman in America, in the wake of losing the love of her life, Steve Rogers – aka Captain America.

When old acquaintance Howard Stark (Dominic Cooper, Marvel's "Captain America: The First Avenger”) finds himself being framed for unleashing his deadliest weapons to anyone willing to pony up the cash, he contacts Peggy - the only person he can trust - to track down those responsible, dispose of the weapons and clear his name. He empowers his butler, Edwin Jarvis (James D'Arcy, “Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World”), to be at her beck and call when needed to help assist her as she investigates and tracks down those responsible for releasing these weapons of mass destruction. But Jarvis, who is a creature of habit and sticks to a rigid daily routine, is going to have to make some major life changes if he’s going to be able to keep up with Peggy.

If caught going on these secret missions for Stark, Peggy could be targeted as a traitor and spend the rest of her days in prison – or worse. And as she delves deeper into her investigation, she may find that those she works for are not who they seem, and she might even begin to question whether Stark is as innocent as he claims.

Most recently adding 'Nikita' star Lyndsy Fonseca as Peggy's pal, Marvel’s ‘Agent Carter’ also features James D'Arcy playing the human incarnation of Edwin Jarvis, ‘Boardwalk Empire”s Shea Whigham in the role of Peggy’s SSR overseer Roger Dooley, and Chad Michael Murray and Whedon favorite Enver Gjokaj as Agents Thompson and Sousa, respectively. Its pilot will be directed by one-shot helmer Louis D’Esposito, with ‘The Winter Soldier”s  Russo brothers helming the second and third episodes, and ‘Captain America”s Joe Johnston likely the fourth.

Well, what do we think? Do you like the idea of 'Agent Carter' exploring a bit of 'Iron Man' history? What Marvel connections do you want to see when Peggy's adventures premiere on January 6, 2015?

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