The premiere of Falcon and the Winter Soldier hit the ground running hard! It starts off with explosive action scenes reminiscent of Captain America: Winter Soldier. I’d always wondered what a Falcon solo movie would be like. The opening of the first episode gave me a taste of what that would look like, and it was epic!
It’s been six months since The Blip and half the world reappeared five years after being snapped existence. Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie), Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan), and the rest of the world have to learn how to live in a post-Endgame world. They also have learn how to function in a world without the help of Captain America to defend against any villains that might take advantage of the world when it’s at its most vulnerable.
The guys are trying their best to move forward with their lives as normal civilians. Sam’s joined up with the Air Force to help take down terrorist organizations like L.A.F. And Bucky, as part of his pardon, is required to go to therapy and “make amends” for the crimes he’s committed as the Winter Soldier.
We also see Sam’s continuing struggle of accepting Steve’s shield as his own.
As he’s packing up the shield, the conversation he had with Steve runs through his mind:
Old Steve Rogers : How does it feel?
Sam Wilson : Like it’s someone else’s.
Old Steve Rogers : It isn’t.
In trailers leading up to the premiere, the above photo along with the one below, was sending fans into a frenzy believing that we were getting a scene set at Steve’s funeral. I think we all breathed a sigh of relief when Sam donated the shield to complete the Steve Rogers exhibit at the museum after a formal ceremony.
Rhodey (Don Cheadle) makes an appearance in the audience. The following scene of him and Sam taking a walkthrough the Captain America exhibit. The conversation between these two is one of my favorite scenes in the episode! This quote in particular jumped out at me:
James Rhodes: The world’s a crazy place right now. People are… Well, nobody’s stable. Allies are now enemies. Alliances are all torn apart. The world’s broken. Everybody’s just looking for somebody to fix it.
It perfectly reflects on the current events our country and world are currently facing. There couldn’t have been a more timely show.
Another standout scene for me was Bucky’s nightmare scene. It’s a great look into how his time as Winter Soldier still affects him to this day. This is followed by his therapist appointment. If any character needed therapy it’s him!
Dr. Raynor (Amy Aquino) asks him if he’s had any more nightmares. He denies it. He doesn’t want to talk about it. She reminds him that this is part of his pardon deal with the government: therapy and making amends for past actions. She also encourages him to nurture his relationships. He’s cut everyone off including Sam so I wonder how they’ll cross paths.
He hasn’t cut off all relationships though. He meets up with Yori (Ken Takemoto), an older neighbor, for lunch. While at the restaurant, Yori insists that Bucky asks their waitress, Leah (Miki Ishikawa), out on a date.
During lunch, Yori starts talking about his son being killed and not knowing what happened. We find out later when that Bucky, as the Winter Soldier, is the one that killed. When the connection is made between the guy in the photo in Yori’s apartment and the guy Winter Soldier murdered during Bucky’s nightmare, it’s the most sobering, heartbreaking moment in the episode. Bucky repays Yori for lunch and leaves.
Sam goes back home to Louisiana. We’re introduced to his sister Sarah (Adepero Oduye) and his two nephews. Sarah has to sell their parent’s boat, but Sam insists she get a loan from the bank to help with finances. Unfortunately, their request for a loan is denied.
It was great seeing Bucky and Sam experience civilian life for a change. Some of those scenes felt a little slow, but were great character development for our two leads.
They also introduced Joaquin Torres (Danny Ramirez) who in the comics replaces Sam as the Falcon in the comics. That’s probably what will end up happening in the show at some point. I enjoyed the character and can’t wait to see more of him. If you’ll allow me a moment to fangirl: HE’S PRECIOUS AND MUST be PROTECTED AT ALL COST!!! Ok. I’m better now. Moving on.
We also got our first look at the Flagsmashers, a gang of villains. The scene we get of them was great and proved that they’re a group you don’t want to mess with. Plus they tried to kill the cinnamon roll pictured above. (OK. Now I’m done.)
The last scene is when John Walker (Wyatt Russell) is introduced. Sarah tells Sam to turn the TV on and watch what’s going on. The government introduces the world to a new Captain America, and Sam watches as Steve’s shield gets handed over to the imposter! The acting from Anthony Mackie during this scene was amazing!
The only way to describe Sam’s expression and the fandom’s sentiment towards this character can only be summed up in a GIF:
Unlike,WandaVision ,which felt like and was designed as a TV Show,Several of the episodes felt Falcon and Winter Soldier feels more like Captain America 4 chopped up in six pieces. Just when I was really getting into it, the credits started to roll. It left me wanting more.
This episode was a good start to what I’m positive will be a great series!
PS. Can we please give Sebastian Stan and Anthony Mackie all the awards now? They deserve it!