Saturday, October 1

7 MCU Moments That Showed The Falcon Was Worthy Of Cap’s Shield

avengers endgame It was an emotional roller coaster from start to finish. From the “Five Years Later” reveal to “AVENGERS ASSEMBLE,” Marvel fans were literally able to get “all the feels.” The penultimate scene was especially heartbreaking because it spelled the end of Steve Rogers’ time as Captain America. However, it was also one of hope when Steve (Chris Evans), now elderly, gave his shield to Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie), also known as the Falcon.

In the comics, Sam had become Captain America for a while, and now it appears to be his turn to take on that role in the MCU. If his official transition to the role takes place at the end of the new Disney+ series The Falcon and the Winter Soldier It remains to be seen, but one thing is clear: Sam has earned it. Let’s look at moments throughout the MCU that solidified the bond between Captain America and the Falcon and made Steve finally decide that Sam was the right man to pass on his shield to.

“On your left”

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Image Credit: Marvel Studios

Sam’s first encounter with Steve wasn’t on a mission or during a superhero battle. It was during a morning jog. As Sam walks through the mall in Washington, DC, Steve continually runs past him, amusingly saying “to your left” each time.

When they finally have a conversation, Sam doesn’t treat Steve like a super celebrity or put him on a pedestal, but like a real person. During good portions of avengers, people reacted to Steve as if he was a larger than life figure or a relic of a dead era. Sam treated him like he would any other person. This moment, while not as grand as a helicopter battle, signaled to Steve that this was someone he wanted in his life and formed a bond that would become legendary.

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a natural leader

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Image Credit: Marvel Studios

Although Sam has always had Cap’s back, he’s definitely not just a sidekick. He may not have led the Avengers against the Chitauri, but he’s still an empathetic leader in his own right. At a local veterans center, he runs a support group for soldiers suffering from PTSD. In the short time we saw him in this role, Sam inspired the group to keep going, something that no doubt impressed fellow veteran Steve. If that wasn’t a defining trait of Captain America, we don’t know what is.

“When do we start?”

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Image Credit: Marvel Studios

Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan), Cap’s best friend turned brainwashed HYDRA winter soldier, had just spent most of the movie trying to kill Cap and Sam. Cap, knowing that Bucky was not himself and could be saved, wants to look for him. Having no history with Bucky himself and not forgetting what the Winter Soldier tried to do to him, Sam trusts Cap with his life. If there’s any way Bucky can recover and Cap believes it, that’s good enough for Sam. While “On Your Left” sparked their bond, “When do we start” solidified it.

choose a side

Captain America: Civil War

Image Credit: Marvel Studios

When Secretary Ross presented the Sokovia Accords to the Avengers, he divided the team. Tony Stark wanted to comply with them, saying that they should be held accountable for their actions. Steve objected, feeling that in his line of work, working through an approval committee might cost more lives than save them. But even though Steve was against the Accords, Sam was the first to speak out against him, before learning of Cap’s position. In a discussion with James Rhodes, Sam commented, “How long will it be before we LoJack ourselves as a group of common criminals?”

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While Avengers Civil War pitted close friends and allies against each other, that wasn’t a concern with Captain America and the Falcon because Steve and Sam felt so similar. Making tough decisions in the pursuit of freedom, regardless of the consequences, is a vital component of the Captain America mantle.

the bucky bonus

Captain America: Civil War / avengers endgame

Image Credit: Marvel Studios

To say that Bucky and Sam’s relationship started off bad might be the biggest understatement in the MCU. Bucky spent their few meetings trying to kill Sam and then trying to run from him. There could be no better “glue” to hold them together than Steve Rogers. They reluctantly formed an alliance, which resulted in them facing Spider-Man (Tom Holland) during the airport battle (this also showed their dysfunction, as it took two of them to take down a high school kid).

However, as time passed, so did their friendship, which became apparent in the final moments of avengers endgame. It was a small gesture, but when Sam put his hand on Bucky’s shoulder during Tony’s funeral, it represented how close they were becoming. Like Steve Rogers, Sam Wilson had found a close friend in Bucky Barnes.

Sacrifice for the Greater Good

-Captain America: Civil War

Image Credit: Marvel Studios

During the Avengers’ battle at the Berlin airport, Cap and Bucky needed to get to the Quinjet so they could chase down Helmut Zemo, even if their allies were defeated in the process. It was Sam who decided that he and the rest of Cap’s team would make this sacrifice, knowing that the mission was to get them both on the jet, no matter the cost. “No, you get to the jet. You two. The rest of us are not getting out of here. His faith in his friends gave him the strength to make the toughest decisions, and that faith was rewarded at the end of the film.

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“I’ll do my best”

avengers endgame

Image Credit: Marvel Studios

Being offered Captain America’s shield is one thing. Accepting it is another. When Sam first tries it on, he tells “old Steve” that it feels like someone else’s. Steve replies, “It’s not.” Then, in what can be called a defining moment in Falcon’s career, there is a 12-second pause. Sam has a look on his face where he’s weighing everything about the decision he’s about to make. Finally, he looks at Cap and says, “Thank you. I’ll do my best.” His acceptance solidifies that Sam’s journey through the MCU always led to this moment.

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier premieres March 19 on Disney+.

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