“Falcon and The Winter Soldier” will be the second series corresponding to the fourth phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe extended on Disney Plus. While the great success of “WandaVision” transits its last episodes, the expectation and anxiety to know this story is widened where the protagonists will carry forward the legacy of Captain America.
They are actors Anthony Mackie as Sam Wilson (Falcon), and Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes, (the Winter Soldier). The duo formed in the last moments of “Avengers: Endgame”, will live together a global adventure that will test their skills and patience, following the events of “Avengers: Endgame”.
The premiere will be Friday, March 19 on the streaming platform. The first season consists of six episodes that are directed by Kari Skogland, with Malcolm Spellman as the main screenwriter, and it is expected to arrive with the modality of one chapter per week, as the company did with “The Mandalorian” and currently every Friday with “WandaVision” since January 15.
Disney Plus hit hard first with the premiere of “The Mandalorian”, the spin-off belonging to the Star Wars universe and then with “WandaVision”, a series truly different from anything that could have been seen so far from Marvel, which meant the beginning of a new stage now using the television format to develop and interconnect their stories.
As seen in the last Avengers movie, Captain America will host the shield and cloak to Sam Wilson, Falcon, and that will be the starting point of this new series that will arrive in March. But also among the MCU events to follow, it will also be focused on the love-hate relationship between its protagonists, Falcon and Winter Soldier.
Director Kari Skogland’s six episodes (“The Americans,” “The Punisher”) will maintain the tone set in “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” a thriller with an entirely espionage plot, which will surely not only pit Falcon and the Winter Soldier against various villains who want to end them, but also, they are supposed to fight against the government, because they were persecuted for a while and there were pending accounts of the past.
But who are the villains of the series? It is assumed that there will be three antagonists in the story that will arrive to wreak havoc on the MCU. The best known and the one that generates the greatest expectations is Barón Zemo, the Machiavellian villain played by Daniel Brühl in “Captain America: Civil War”, which anticipates a strong fight for the two protagonists.
In the movie Helmut Zemo was a former member of the Sokovia Armed Forces who lost his family during the attacks on the city in “Avengers: Age of Ultron.” After that he became a terrorist who tried to make Bucky pass as the murderer of T’Challa’s father, and thus contribute to the confrontation of the Avengers.
Towards the end of the Civil War, Zemo had been taken into custody of the CIA, and until then he was not known as Baron Zemo. Thanks to the advances of the new series, it is clear that he manages to escape and has already adopted the characteristic mask of the comics, in addition to having a group of followers who oppose the existence of superheroes.
Another villain introduced by “Falcon and the Winter Soldier” is John Walker / US Agent (Wyatt Russell), the version of Captain America created by the United States government. This character is positioned as one of the story’s antagonists, first of all, because he uses the name Captain America in a way that Steve Rogers despised. Second, it appropriates the legacy of everyone’s favorite hero, ignoring the choice of Sam Wilson as Rogers’ chosen successor.
In the comics, John Walker is both a hero and a villain; At first he was celebrated as the successor, but of course he went much further when he brutally attacked a pair of supervillains, Left-Winger and Right-Winger, to avenge the murder of his parents. However, it is not clear if the version of Walker for the series will have the same origin as in the comics, where he is supposed to be an average soldier who one day achieves superhuman abilities.
With Sam Wilson assuming Steve Rogers’ shield and being considered his heir, the question of Captain America’s legacy is one of the key narrative engines of “Falcon & The Winter Soldier”, so the dispute between the two captains will be another of the attractive points of the new fiction.
The reality is that John Walker is a very different character than Steve Rogers was and the two Captains America will be ideologically very different if the comics are kept as inspiration. Walker represents a more dangerous form of patriotism and a more extreme approach to justice on behalf of the government, while Rogers’ position had softened throughout his arc in the MCU.
But one of the latest revelations as a villain is the involvement of Flag-Smasher, another from Marvel comics named Karl Morgenthau. However, the new series would have reversed the gender of the character played by Erin Kellyman, who is shown as the leader of a terrorist cell.
In the comics, Morgenthau leads an anarchist group called ULTIMATUM, which seeks to tear down the concept of nationalism. In addition, he faces Captain America despite not having any superpowers or special abilities. It is possible that this new version of the character is one of the first threats that Sam and Bucky face.
Between the expectations and the questions of the fiction, the possibility arises of seeing a participation of Steve Rogers, but everything indicates that the series will only focus on the two main characters. It has not yet transpired if there will be cameos or participation by other Avengers, or, why not, mutants from the Marvel Universe, as is happening in “WandaVision”.
As already mentioned, the chemistry and relationship between the two central characters will be another attraction of the story. In that sense, Sam Wilson and Bucky Barnes will have their serious differences, something already advanced in part in the trailers, where the plot will also be sustained in it.
Main screenwriter Malcolm Spellman explains in an interview that this chemistry is not only with the characters, but also with the actors in their relationship behind the scenes: “There is a real chemistry. Imagine being able to write the first installment of a series of fellow police officers, knowing exactly what the rhythm and tone of the two characters is before you even begin ”. By the way, Sebastian Stan himself expressed that “they are a strange couple who do not stop arguing. Like, ‘I don’t like you, but I might need you.’
For his part, Anthony Mackie comments: “We did not lose that sense of security and espionage. It still feels like you’re in a Philip K. Dick novel or a Tom Clancy movie. But at the same time, it’s Sebastian and I, and we’re idiots, so you have more of us being ourselves. “
The trailer revealed during the Super Bowl made it clear that fiction will have many humorous moments with the dynamic between Falcon and the Winter Soldier. In fact, both will be featured like never before. In the past, the relationship between the two heroes was no longer good. They are war veterans and now looking for their own story in the MCU, something that Spellman defined as “a dynamic of fire and ice.”
Some of the characters that will appear in this new installment is the character of agent Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp), niece of Peggy Carter, who was quite relevant in the movie “Captain America: Winter Soldier.” The cast is composed, in addition to Mackie and Stan, with Daniel Brühl, Emily VanCamp, Wyatt Russel and George St-Pierre, while Don Cheadle will have a participation.
The director of “Falcon and the Winter Soldier”, Kari Skogland, is recognized for having been behind series such as “The Walking Dead” and “The Handmaid’s Tale”, he also directed a chapter in the Netflix series belonging to Marvel , “The Punisher”. While for its screenwriter Malcom Spellman, it means his first participation for Marvel.
After the puzzling, different and attractive plot of “WandaVision”, it is expected that the second Marvel series on Disney Plus is closer to the action and deployment known in the MCU movies. Impatience and expectation grows, not only because of what this series will show, but also because of how the Marvel machinery develops with its connections with other series or films of this fourth phase.