The Falcon and the Winter Soldier episode 3 has answered one of the big early questions of the series: Where did this new Super Soldier Serum come from? The first two episodes of TFATWS introduced the mystery of the Flag Smashers, a power-enhanced anarchist group fighting for a 'world without borders.' The Flag Smashers' leaders Karli Morgenthau (Erin Kellyman), Dovich (Desmond Chiam), Gigi (Dani Deetté), DeeDee (Indya Bussey), and Nico (Noah Mills) have all shown evidence of having received a new Super Soldier Serum. In The Falcon and the Winter Soldier Episode 3, we find out exactly how they got it...
Warning: The Falcon and the Winter Soldier Episode 3 SPOILERS Follow!
As it turns out, Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) and Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) were on the money, all along. After freeing Zemo (Daniel Brühl) from prison, the trio takes a trip to the criminal haven of Madripoor to meet a criminal named Selby who knows where the new Super Soldier Serum originated from.
Turns out, America's secret Black Captain America, Isaiah Bradley (Carl Lumbly) was all too accurate when stating he'd been used as a guinea pig for everyone from the US government to HYDRA. In fact, it was both factions that were responsible for unleashing this new serum: Dr. Wilfred Nagel (Olli Haaskivi) was recruited by HYDRA after the failure of the Winter Soldier Program, and after HYDRA fell he was tasked by the CIA to finish reverse engineering Dr. Erskine's formula. By combing through Isaiah Bradley's DNA, Nagel achieved that goal.
Unfortunately for Nagel, he was dusted by Thanos just when he had his breakthrough: a better serum than Erskine's, that doesn't require machines to work or radically alter the subject into a bulky mass - just pure power enhancement. His work was forgotten for five years until the Blip brought him back, and by then interest in his work had waned. The mysterious Power Broker funded Nagel's move to Madripoor, where the new serum was produced. Bad luck struck Nagley again when Karli Morgenthau stole the twenty vials of Super Soldier Serum to help advance the Flag Smasher's agenda.
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier doesn't let the potential threat (and fan theories) about Dr. Nagel's Super Soldier Serum run too far: Zemo executes Nagel to stop the flow of super-soldiers. Nonetheless, the new serum still is out there, and more potential new superhumans can be made. Isaiah Bradley's blood is still also very much in play - and Marvel fans are waiting for it to create at least one Young Avenger, down the line.
The Falcon And The Winter Soldier is now streaming on Disney+.