The H2H combat scenes in Marvel's Agent Carter offer proof that a skilled actress and fight choreographer can overcome a lack of martial arts training.

In the 2014-15 network TV season, there's been an increase in the number of heroines who are able to physically handle themselves against male opponents. They include Laura Diamond in The Mysteries of Laura on NBC, Meredith Brody in NCIS: New Orleans on CBS, Sameen Shaw in Person of Interest (also on CBS) and the most engaging one of all, Peggy Carter in Marvel's Agent Carter on ABC. What's impressive about the actresses who portray these law-enforcing characters is that they have no background in action film or television and no experience in the martial arts — yet they all do decent fight scenes. Granted, stunt doubles are inserted to maintain the slick pugilistic intensity, but it's done sparingly and doesn't disrupt the energy or visual rhythm. Often, the key to making these film fights work is ending things on a high combative note: a knockout punch or kick, a dynamic throw into a piece of furniture, or a violent hurling through a door or window. The Difference That said, what's so unique about Agent Carter? The actress who portrays the lead character and the setting in which she gets things done. At least 105 films have been adapted into TV shows. Of the 52 live-action programs based on films, only one features in both the film and TV incarnations a main character who’s played by the same actor — in this case, Hayley Atwell. As Carter, she's the trusted friend of Howard Stark (father of Tony Stark, aka Iron Man) and the girlfriend of Steve Rogers (aka Captain America) in Captain America: The First Avenger (2011) and Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014).


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That gives Agent Carter a strong sense of continuity and makes it easier for the audience to connect with the heroine. Thus, even though Captain America isn't in the TV series, when Carter flashes back to her relationship with Rogers, it doesn't feel forced. The Setting It's 1946, and Carter, a former French resistance fighter and intelligence gatherer, works for the SSR, an American covert agency that monitors the Soviet Union. Disappointingly, she's assigned only jobs that women are thought capable of: doing administrative work, fetching coffee, ordering lunch, filing papers and so on. It’s the embodiment of sexism. In reality, however, Carter is on a secret mission to clear the name of Howard Stark, whom the SSR suspects is selling weapons of mass destruction to the Commies.

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Enter Russian spies and assassins. Carter is tasked with stopping their latest plot to destroy America: Project Leviathan. That mission puts her directly into the fray, where she gloriously whoops and wails in up-close-and-personal hand-to-hand combat. Built like a brick house, Carter can kick a man's butt so badly that his colon becomes a semicolon. The Star "I'm very clumsy,” Atwell jokingly admits. “I've unfortunately kicked various stuntmen in sensitive areas, and I'm not that popular with men on set. “I've hit a grip over the back with a lead pipe and kicked a chair into one of the assistant directors, all while I was rehearsing stunts." Yet on camera — with help from quick pans and close-up shots — Carter looks coordinated, confident and smooth. Credit goes to Atwell, as well as the fight choreographer. (Photos courtesy of ABC) Go here to order Dr. Craig D. Reid’s book The Ultimate Guide to Martial Arts Movies of the 1970s: 500+ Films Loaded With Action, Weapons and Warriors.
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Dustin Poirier has knocked out Conor McGregor in the second round at the UFC 257 Main Event. This spoils McGregor's long-awaited UFC return after his win over Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone last January. Poirier hinted after the match that he would be open to another bout against McGregor, as this fight brings their rivalry to a 1-1 record. The impressive wins of Poirier and Michael Chandler on Saturday night set the UFC's lightweight division up for a very exciting future.

The Legendary Black Belt Magazine Hall of Fame has never before been documented in a single location. Now, you can learn about all the icons that have achieved one of the greatest honors in all of martial arts.

Black Belt Magazine is proud to announce the NEW Member Profiles feature for the Hall of Fame. At the time of this article, the online records account for every inductee from the inaugural year of 1968 all the way through 1990 (upwards of 200 martial artists). The page will be updated continuously and will include every inductee through 2020 in the near future. For now, you can enjoy images and facts about the legendary members for each induction they received before 1991. Take advantage of this never-before-seen opportunity to learn about many of the martial artists who contributed to the lifestyle, culture, and community that every martial artist experiences today.

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The UFC returned to American network television for the first time in more than two years Saturday on ABC while former featherweight champion Max Holloway returned to his winning ways following two straight losses, earning a unanimous decision over Calvin Kattar in Abu Dhabi. Holloway showed he still has plenty left as a fighter dominating Kattar from the opening bell of the main event with a mix of punches and low kicks.

It appeared as if the former champion might stop his opponent in the fourth round landing a series of vicious body blows followed by hard elbows to the head as a bloodied Kattar sagged against the fence. But Kattar somehow survived managing to keep himself upright through the fifth stanza as well, only to lose a lopsided decision. After dropping his title to Alexander Volkanovski and then losing a controversial rematch, Holloway may have put himself in position for one more crack at the championship following Saturday's impressive performance.

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Jessie Wray's Virtual Fight Tour brought the heat in their fifth promotion with a call-out match, massive "Draft Edition" team fight, and a surprise bonus bout to bring sport karate fans an action-packed event.

The call-out match featured the Canadian veteran Ben Stewart as he challenged Black Belt Magazine's #3-ranked point fighting heavyweight in the world, Anthony Merricks of Team Next Level. After a new Virtual Fight Tour record was set in that bout, the action just kept getting more intense as Team Jadi Tention took on Team Richard Plowden in twelve total rounds of team fighting. Even after a thrilling team fight with numerous momentum shifts, promoter Jessie Wray still brought out one last fight to keep the fans happy. Keep reading to find out how it all went down at Virtual Fight Tour V: Draft Edition.
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