Marvel and Disney’s follow-up to WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, isn’t quite as much of a brainteaser when it comes to breaking down the meaning of each new episode; the plot leans much more towards the Captain America end of the MCU, with themes of politics and national identity, than it does towards the mindbending and magical.
But it still provides plenty for fans to mull over, as a new video on The Film Theorists channel proves. Based solely on the pilot episode and promotional materials, this Marvel fan offers up three predictions for how this miniseries will play out.
Prediction 1: The new Captain America is probably not a good guy.
Yeah, go figure. The moment the new Cap showed up in the final moments of the first episode, he immediately gave off bad vibes. It bodes ill that the government essentially tricked Sam into relinquishing Steve Rogers’ shield under the pretext of putting it in a museum, only to immediately bestow the title on somebody of its own choosing; John Walker. After all, Sam is presumably the hero of this piece, and the fact that this newly selected Captain America was chosen to protect the country, not the world, means he’s already tied up in some worryingly nationalistic stuff.
In the comics, John Walker is known as U.S. Agent, a corrupt, fame-chasing version of Captain America who ultimately becomes a villain. The fact that his TV counterpart has been introduced as a hero who will toe the company line (as opposed to Steve Rogers, who repeatedly defied orders in order to do what he believed to be the right thing) definitely sets him up as one possibility for the eventual antagonist of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.
Prediction 2: The Flag-Smashers will not be the main villains of the show.
Introduced as an extremist group who believe in a world without borders and nations, the Flag-Smashers take their name from a terrorist in the comics. However, according to The Film Theorists, while this group’s violent methods appear villainous, their mission—connection and unification—actually align with that of a globalized company like, say, Marvel or Disney.
It’s entirely possible that these bad guys have been set up as a kind of “false flag” threat, either by the government as a way of showing the necessity of their new Cap, or orchestrated by Civil War mastermind Zemo. Time will tell.
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