Marvel fans are still abuzz after the conclusion of “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” but they already have more reason to rejoice. Captain America 4 will be the newest entry in the Captain America franchise, a radically different landscape at the tail end of the show, and showrunner and lead writer Malcolm Spellman and cowriter Dalan Musson will be writing it.
Spoilers for the conclusion of “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” below.
A central tension of “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” was the question of who would be the next hero to carry the iconic shield. Now the MCU has its new Captain America and he’s getting his own movie. The Hollywood Reporter reports that Spellman and Musson will pen the film, which will likely feature Anthony Mackie reprising his role as Sam Wilson, the former Falcon and current Captain America.
It remains to be seen how this news affects the structure of the MCU beyond its current Phase 4. Producer Kevin Fiege had previously hinted that several of the Disney Plus series might carry on for multiple seasons. Indiewire reported last week that the show will be submitted to the Emmies as a Drama Series rather than a Limited Series as many people had previously expected. This submission would move “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” from the competition with “Wandavision,” but also had fans excited at the possibility of a second season. Whether we will get a new Captain America film instead of a new season, or both, and in what order, remains to be seen. The conclusion of the show may have brought us a title though, revealing a brand new title and logo, “Captain America and the Winter Soldier.”
The storyline of the series echoed that of the comics, where Sam Wilson took over the mantle from an aging Stever Rogers in 2014. The character held the title for several years before reverting back to his Falcon alias, which he uses currently. The series drew quite directly from these comics for its redesign of the Captain America uniform, which leaked before airing and fans are still reacting to.
While it seems likely Anthony Mackie will return in his new suit and jet pack for “Captain America 4,” almost everything else about the picture remains up in the air. “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” left plenty of dangling plot elements that seem reasonable to expect will show up in the subsequent sequel.
The Winter Soldier
Bucky Barnes will almost certainly appear – especially if the revamped title that appeared at the end of the show is actually the title of the upcoming Captain America sequel. The Winter Soldier’s story is so closely tied to the Captain America franchise – and all the characters who have thus far gone by the name in the MCU – it seems a likely bet that he returns.
John Walker finally got his comic-book callsign in the final episode of the series, leaving behind the alias that he seemed so ill-fitted for. The last we see him he has a new black costume and is literally yelling “I’m back” to his wife and a character we know from comics as Madam Hydra. The US Agent of the comics has his own independent tie-ins in the comics but none remain so strong as that of Captain America. And if Hydra is in the picture, there’s a good chance this plays out in a future Cap film.
The subtly re-imagined Baron Zemo of the MCU is locked away on the Raft at the end of the season finale, but he still managed to get the last laugh with the murder of two remaining Flag Smashers. Zemo may be poised to form the Thunderbolts as he does in the comics, and while the Thunderbolts cross over with a lot of Marvel heroes, Captain America is still at the top of the list.
The Power Broker
The big revelation that Sharon Carter was in fact the Power Broker may not have been that surprising. It was widely rumored before the final episode. If newer rumors are true, we may be seeing Sharon again in “Secret Invasion,” but there’s a chance we’ll see her again in Cap 4.
One of the subtler character intros in “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” was Isiah Bradley’s grandson, Eli. Fans of the comics know the character as Patriot, a Cap-inspired, youthful superhero featured heavily in Young Avengers. It isn’t clear whether the character will unfold the same way in the MCU but if he does, it makes sense to see him again in Captain America 4.