Falcon and Winter Soldier episode 2 recap: New Captain America brings major tension

Falcon and Winter Soldier

Sam Wilson and Bucky Barnes are tremendous greatest frienemies.

Marvel Studios

After catching up with our two greatest Captain America boys final week, the second episode of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, titled The Star-Spangled Man, hit Disney Plus on Friday. The Marvel Cinematic Universe present takes place about six months after the occasions of Avengers: Endgame, because the world offers with the sudden reappearance of billions of vanished individuals after a five-year absence.

Wingsuit-wearing Air Power vet Sam Wilson, also referred to as Falcon (Anthony Mackie), was chosen to be the subsequent Captain America by Steve Rogers. Nonetheless, he determined nobody ought to take up the mantle and handed the long-lasting defend over to the US authorities. The politicians clearly noticed this as a chance, so that they rapidly selected a brand new Cap — probably one they may management.

Our different hero, Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan), is struggling to make amends for his many murders as brainwashed assassin the Winter Soldier. Sam and Bucky did not cross paths within the first episode, however they’re finished loads of verbal jousting prior to now.

We have additionally bought antinationalist group the Flag Smashers operating round inflicting hassle. Let’s leap into SPOILER city for episode the second.

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Even in jail, Zemo appears like he is hatching an evil plan.

Marvel Studios/Screenshot by Sean Keane/CNET

Going to see Zemo

On the finish of the episode, missing any leads on the Tremendous Soldier Serum-empowered Flag Smashers and at odds with new Captain America John Walker, Sam agrees to Bucky’s plan to satisfy an imprisoned Helmut Zemo (Daniel Brühl) for intel.

We final noticed Zemo in Captain America: Civil Struggle, when he reactivated Bucky’s programming and used him to drive the Avengers aside. The previous head of a paramilitary group in Sokovia, Zemo misplaced his household when Ultron attacked his nation’s capital metropolis. He blamed the Avengers for this, and have become obsessive about destroying the group.

Black Panther stopped Zemo from taking his personal life after his plan was full, and he was final seen in CIA custody. This episode reveals that he is in jail in Berlin, and he’ll little question play thoughts video games with the boys within the subsequent episode.

Revealing Isaiah

The Tremendous Soldier Serum was used to show Steve Rogers into Captain America throughout World Struggle II, however the authentic model was misplaced and its creator Abraham Erskine was killed by a Hydra murderer. It was recreated by teams like Hydra and the US authorities within the years since, enhancing individuals like Bucky. Experiments with the method additionally led to the creation of the Hulk and the Abomination

Bucky reveals the existence of Isaiah Bradley (Carl Lumbly), an excellent soldier in the course of the Korean Struggle. They’d a tussle in 1951, in the course of the Korean Struggle, when Bucky was underneath Hydra’s management. Isaiah apparently took half of Bucky’s bionic arm — very like Iron Man would later do in Civil Struggle.

Isaiah Bradley in Falcon and Winter Soldier

Isaiah Bradley, an excellent soldier who fought Bucky within the 1950s, does not need to revisit the previous.

Marvel Studios/Screenshot by Sean Keane/CNET

Bucky tries to persuade Isaiah to inform him and Sam how there are extra tremendous troopers on the market, however he is not joyful in regards to the questioning and finally boots them out.

“You realize what they did to me for being a hero? They put my ass in jail for 30 years,” says an offended Isaiah. “Folks operating assessments, taking my blood, coming into my cell. Even your individuals weren’t finished with me.”


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Within the comics, Isaiah was one among 300 Black troopers used as guinea pigs by the US because it tried to recreate the serum. On a mission, he took on the Captain America mantle — an act the army noticed as treasonous, and which bought him thrown in jail. He was finally launched and sworn to secrecy, however the legend of the Black Captain America started to unfold.

It positive seems like one thing related occurred within the MCU. Isaiah’s point out of “your individuals” is a reference to Hydra, which infiltrated SHIELD after World Struggle II. His remedy is proof of the chilling lack of ethics in makes an attempt to recreate the method.


Patriot, as he seems within the comics.

Marvel Comics

Residing with Isaiah is his grandson Eli Bradley (Elijah Richardson). Eli’s comedian counterpart is empowered by an infusion of his grandfather’s blood and turns into Patriot, a member of the Younger Avengers together with Wiccan and Pace. Between this present and WandaVision, the MCU may very well be increase its personal model of the teenage superteam.

A run-in with the regulation

Instantly after studying of the racially problematic remedy of a Black tremendous soldier, Sam is understandably upset as he and Bucky go away. It attracts the eye of some passing cops on the road, prompting one among them to ask if Sam is “bothering” Bucky and to ask to see Sam’s ID. The officer backs down solely when he realizes Sam is an Avenger.

It is an uncomfortable scene to observe, particularly after the dying of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis final Could. Between this and the scene within the financial institution in the earlier episode, it is clear this present is not steering away from race as a difficulty.

John Walker

A lot as I wished to hate the politician-approved Captain America, John Walker (Wyatt Russell) begins out fairly likeable and has glorious Steve Rogers-esque hair. He even has a Bucky-style accomplice in Lemar Hoskins (Clé Bennett), also referred to as Battlestar, and tries to persuade Sam and Bucky to work with them.

“You did not suppose the defend was gonna find yourself right here,” he says, understanding Bucky’s anger. “I am not attempting to be Steve. I am not attempting to exchange Steve. I am simply attempting to be the most effective Captain America I may be. It would be an entire simpler if I had Cap’s wingman on my facet.”

John Walker in Falcon and Winter Soldier

John Walker flaunts his energy as the brand new Captain America.

Marvel Studios/Screenshot by Sean Keane/CNET

The final half bugs the heck out of Sam, and he turns down the supply. Walker tries to persuade them once more in Baltimore, and divulges a sinister facet when he is rejected.

“Keep the hell out of my means,” he says, giving off some main supervillain vibes.

Setting off the police siren was fairly obnoxious although — a transparent warning signal that Walker is a jerk.


Sam and Bucky work by the strain.

Marvel Studios

The Duo

Sam and Bucky’s rivalry is massively entertaining all through the episode, and we study that the key threats confronted within the MCU have been divided into the Large Three —  Androids, Aliens and Wizards — since all of them apparently match into a type of classes.

Regardless of the strain between them, the pair make a superb crew once they tackle the Flag Smashers. They solely lose as a result of they’re shocked and completely outmatched by the eight tremendous troopers. 

Throughout an impromptu remedy session, Bucky reveals his aggravation with Sam springs from Sam’s rejection of the defend regardless of Steve selecting him for the position. If Steve was mistaken about Sam, perhaps he was mistaken in considering Bucky may very well be redeemed for his crimes because the Winter Soldier.

‘One world, one individuals’

The Flag Smashers are led by Karli Morgenthau (Erin Kellyman, whom chances are you’ll bear in mind as masked marauder Enfys Nest in Solo: A Star Wars Story). They’re Robin Hood-style “freedom fighters,” decided to cease world elites who took again energy after the Blip, they usually’re getting cowl from civilians as they transfer round.

We additionally study in regards to the World Repatriation Council, which is reactivating citizenships, social safety, healthcare and different sources for refugees displaced when billions of individuals out of the blue returned. Mainly ensuring that the established order returns.

Karli Morgenthau in Falcon and Winter Soldier

Karli has an excellent soldier shock for Bucky.

Marvel Studios/Screenshot by Sean Keane/CNET

“The GRC care extra in regards to the individuals who got here again than those who by no means left,” says Karli, hinting on the division that is arisen in society. “We bought a glimpse of how issues may very well be.” 

She additionally alludes to some kind of massive occasion they’ve deliberate, probably some type of assault.

Nonetheless, they’re being pursued by goons working for the unseen Energy Dealer, after Karli seemingly took one thing belonging to them; probably the Tremendous Soldier Serum. Within the comics, Energy Dealer is a reputation utilized by a number of individuals. The widespread aspect is giving individuals superpowers so that they’re left in Energy Dealer’s debt — John Walker and Lemar Hoskins’ comedian counterparts have been enhanced by this course of.

Observations and WTF questions

  • Former SHIELD agent Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp) will get a shoutout from Sam — she was apparently branded an “enemy of the state” after she aided the fugitive Cap, Sam and Bucky in Civil Struggle.
  • Walker’s interview takes place on the soccer discipline at Custer’s Grove Excessive Faculty, Georgia. That is his hometown within the comics. 
  • He is interviewed ABC’s Good Morning America — Disney has owned ABC since 1996.
  • Bucky learn The Hobbit when it got here out in 1937, making him some sort of popular culture hero. Marvel what he considered the film trilogy?
  • Bucky asks Walker if he ever jumped on a grenade, alluding to pre-Tremendous Soldier Serum Steve doing so throughout World Struggle II — a second that proved his heroism. 
  • I’d love a flashback to Isaiah’s 1951 battle with the Winter Soldier.
  • Karli’s comics counterpart is Karl Morgenthau, the primary individual to tackle the Flag-Smasher id. He unfold anti-nationalist sentiment by acts of terrorism, and had a significant beef with Cap.
  • Who’s Zemo enjoying chess with? Within the spirit of untamed theorizing, for instance… Physician Doom?

Be a part of us for extra Easter eggs and observations subsequent Friday, when episode three of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier hits Disney Plus.