The Falcon and the Winter Soldier has dropped a big hint that the Marvel Cinematic Universe has a new Super Soldier Serum. The latest Falcon and the Winter Soldier teaser focused on the "Big 3" of MCU villains (according to Sam Wilson/Falcon), but in between jokes and banter between stars Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan, we did get a key piece of information. We hear Falcon in voiceover talking about a new threat that's out there - a group of masked hijackers that Falcon describes as such: "These guys use brute force... They're strong. Too Strong."
Based on the footage we've seen, these new villains definitely look like they may have some variation of Steve Rogers/Captain America's Super Soldier Serum running through their veins. Take a look for yourself.
Marvel Comics has a long storied history of scientists and/or villains trying to replicate Dr. Abraham Erskine's miraculous success creating Captain America- and the horrible things that result. Just a few connections include a secret history of the US government after WWII, trying to recreate Captain America by experimenting on black soldiers - something TFATWS trailer have alluded to with Falcon's comments about the "complicated history" of Captain America's shield and presumably him taking it up. Variations of Super Soldier Serum were used to Luke Cage/Power Man, and Russia's Black Widow program (including Natasha Romanoff). The Falcon and the Winter Soldier is a potential doorway into MCU adaptation of any and all of the above - which could explain why the series had to drop before the Black Widow movie - and how Mike Coulter's Luke Cage could bet his MCU re-introduction.
However, for the purposes of what we see in this Falcon and the Winter Soldier trailer, the most intriguing Marvel Comics twist on the Super Soldier Serum may be the US Navy's "AVX" patch, aka Acetovaxidol. This patch gave a boost of Super Soldier/Power Man abilities to the user but also left him/her dependent on continued usage, at the risk of death from withdraw. It was used by a NAVY SEAL/intelligence officer who became the "Anti-Cap" - but it's a very easy story to spin around and use in this MCU version of the mythos.
"AVX" is a good story hook because it could serve as a metaphor for what did/did not make Steve Rogers great as Captain America. MCU fans remember Tony Stark's famous insult that everything special about Rogers came out of a bottle'; well, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier may show otherwise. AVX is also a great twist to explain the MCU role of Wyatt Russell's John Walker/US Agent. There's ample room to borrow some "Anti-Cap" elements (military background, drug dependency for powers) and make him a more complicated anti-hero than a villain. And also a great underlying reason why Walker and these brutal bandits in the trailer are working together...
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier premieres on Disney+ on March 19th. If you haven't signed up for Disney+ yet, you can try it out here.
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