By: Elianna Alcantar Vega
“It feels like it belongs to someone else.”
In Avengers Endgame, Marvel fans were left pondering who will be the next Captain America. Before the movie ended, viewers were given an intimate scene where Steve Rogers, Captain America, hands the Falcon his Cap shield. Leaving the fans questioning whether Falcon will be the next Captain America or will he decline the offer.
The Disney+ series The Falcon and The Winter Soldier aired on March 19, 2021, allowing Marvel fans to get a closer look into the everyday lives of the Falcon and the Winter Soldier after Endgame. The Falcon, Sam Wilson, who is played by Anthony Mackie and the Winter Soldier, James “Bucky” Barnes played by Sebastian Stan gave Marvel fans something to look forward to each Friday till April 23rd; ending the first season of the series. Filled with action, like any Marvel Studio movies; the series brings characters such as Zemo and Sharon Carter back to the Marvel Cinematic Universe as well as introduces new members such as the Karli and John Walker. Sam and Bucky are paired up to fight a rebel group called the Flag Smashers, while shedding light upon real world issues such as the death of family members, grieving, the effects of PTSD, and what Black Americans face in their everyday lives.
The opening scene of the series is Sam Wilson, aka the Falcon, getting ready in a suit and putting Cap’s shield back into the bag Roger’s had handed him. As Sam holds the shield in his hands, he reflects back to the first moment Roger handed him the shield. Later on into the first episode the audience witness Sam coming to his decision. Handing over Cap’s shield to be put into a museum, saying “Symbols are nothing without the women and men that give them meaning. And this thing, I don’t know if there’s ever been a greater symbol. But it’s more about the man who propped it up, and he’s gone. So today we honor Steve’s legacy but also we look to the future.” Knowing this decision wasn’t easy Sam strongly believes that the shield will always represent Steve and his legacy and feels like he won’t be able to live up to it. But there are more reasons behind his decision. In later episodes the viewers will begin to understand Sam’s thought process behind coming to his conclusion; a heartbreaking reality Black Americans have to face everyday.
Bucky’s introduction to the show is a bit more intense. Bucky is in the process of facing his PTSD. Within the first episode Bucky is reliving in a traumatizing situation he was put in because Hydra was controlling his every move. Bucky wakes up drenched in cold sweat and breathing heavily after being woken up from a nightmare. Suddenly, the scene is taken to Bucky sitting in therapy. This is because after years of being poisoned with Hydra ideals, Bucky wants to put the Hydra Winter Soldier behind him; additionally is part of his patron. Here MCU fans are already given a deeper look into Bucky’s character and his thought process. After watching every episode, the audience will notice how much Bucky’s character has developed. Bucky is more open with Sam and their partnership of course there are moments where they test each other’s patience but it makes the show better.
Together Sam and Bucky give MCU fans everything and more. In Avenger movies Sam and Bucky starred in they were never given a few lines and a few scenes. Because of this show, fans were given the opportunity to look closer into their everyday lives and related to their personal struggles.
After the final episode aired, I asked several of MCU fans questions about The Falcon and Winter Soldier Series. I came to these conclusions: Their least favorite character throughout the series was “Replacement Captain America,” John Walker, and Sharon Carter. Some of their favorite moments include the Bucky and Sam bickering and the awareness on different topics the show includes. Additionally, MCU fans loved the chemistry between the actors, the character development, and how they tied in how important family is. Lastly, most fans would love to see season two.
In my opinion and overall, I would rate the show 9.5 out of 10. As a Marvel fan I personally loved how the MCU decided to get a depth look into the MCU characters lives, starting with WandaVision and now with The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. I truly loved how they incorporated real-world problems into the show, especially when they introduced the character Isiah. Although I loved the show, I wasn’t a huge fan when they made Sharon Carter the enemy. I am hopeful that there will be a season two or at least a movie because I would love to watch more Sam and Bucky content. In order to know if Sam never becomes Captain America, you must watch the show.