The Falcon And The Winter Soldier: Young Avengers, Isaiah Bradley, and Villains Explained (Episode 2 Breakdown)
There have been more super soldiers in the Marvel Cinematic Universe than anyone knew about, [...]
There have been more super soldiers in the Marvel Cinematic Universe than anyone knew about, including a Captain America character who was kept a secret from the rest of the universe for too long of a time. There are also plenty of teases for a Young Avengers roster and the villains are slowly being revealed. This is your breakdown of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier Episode 2, so spoilers follow, but I'd like to start out with shout outs to head writer Malcolm Spellman and Episode 2 writer Michael Kastelein for this episode. The MCU stuff is great, but the way they're handling race issues in America is organic and important. Hats off to the creative team for not shying away from very real issues. Now, let's take a look at the new heroes this episode introduced!
Boom! Just like that Isaiah Bradley is in the MCU and has been for a long time. In the comics, Bradley became a super soldier and Captain America very quickly after Steve Rogers. However, he was a part of an experimental program and kept a secret. Isaiah explained that he was part of an experimental program in MCU lore, he became Captain America, no one ever new about it, and after he fought for his country he was thanked by being tossed in jail. It's similar to the story from the 7-issue event comic series with Isaiah Bradley being known as Black Captain America on the pages.
Thought we were done with the Bradley family? Not so fast! Eli Bradley greeted Sam and Bucky at the door and if kid will follow his Young Avengers destiny from comics, he might be on a path to become Patriot, the hero he is when introduced in 2005's Young Avengers #1.
You know, the Avengers are being delivered by the dozen almost. The MCU pretty much has enough characters to fill a roster: Patriot is introduced here, Wiccan and Speed introduced in WandaVision, Cassie Lang is going to be a major player soon, Ironheart is on the way, Ms. Marvel has a series later this year, Kate Bishop is ready to take the MCU's Hawkeye mantle, even Joaquin Torres, the next Falcon, was snuck into The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. Now, just give me Amadeus Cho and Miles Morales and I'll be a very happy camper.
Now, let's talk about John Walker -- he really wants to team up with Sam and Bucky, and is questioned about whether or not he has jumped on top of a grenade, a shout out to pre-Super Soldier serum Steve Rogers doing just that in Captain America: The First Avenger. It's all connected!
John Walker seems to have the accolades to be worthy of Captain America but if he's anything like his comic book counterpart, it's as real as time travel in Back to the Future. In the words of Scott Lang: "Back to the Future is a bunch of bullsh-t?!" John Walker, in comics, uses a bunch of propaganda to get himself to be the new Captain America and he's aided by none other than Lemar Hoskins.
Hoskins, aka Battlestar, is introduced in this episode and he's new Cap's Bucky until, in comics, he learns Bucky is a demeaning term toward African Americans so he goes by Battlestar. Both of these characters have ties to the Power Broker, the villain who gave them their superhuman physical abilities.
PowerBroker hasn't showed up in The Falcon and The Winter Soldier but if you look at the credits Powerbroker is named in the animated portion and the Flag-Smashers seem to be running from such a character -- and this makes a lot of sense. The Flag-Smashers are hoarding some sort of vaccines -- in the comics, my favorite phrase in these videos. PowerBroker is a mad scientist named Dr. Karl Malus. He first appeared in Captain America #230 back in February of 1979.
PowerBroker experiments on people and makes them dependant on his drugs, all under the guise than the drugs are actually helping him. -- Theory time, I'm thinking thinking John Walker and Battlestar actually like this guy and the Flag-Smashers. Confirmed Super Soldiers on the run from PowerBroker, are actually just trying to get away from him. They might not be "good guys" because they clearly have objectives that are not in line with the rest of the world's views but their thieving of vaccines might just bee in hopes of making themselves independent of a villainous PowerBroker.
It'll be interesting to see if we dive into the John Walker and Lemar Hoskins backstory of it all, because just like all of us, those characters are familiar with Sam and Bucky's backstory. John says to Sam that he and Bucky know really well that going at a threat divided is not a good move, which could be a reference to the Avengers fighting each other thanks to Zemo's intervention in Captain America: Civil War, but it could also be about thee Avengers not putting their differences aside to fight Thanos in the first place during Avengers: Infinity War. Everyone involved with that movie argued that the Avengers would've beaten Thanos the first time if they fought him together. Could there maybe be some hostility from the world toward the Avengers over half the world disappearing because they didn't get the band back together before Endgame after Zemo tore them apart?
Some think Zemo, who is seen at the very end of this episode, could turn out to be the PowerBroker but I'm not buying this theory. I think it's the aerospace engineer from WandaVision. Just kidding. Just kidding. It's obviously Mephisto.
Shout out to Bucky referring to himself as the White Wolf, that's an alias he takes on in the comics and could be who we see him become in the MCU beyond this series if he is able to get his mind fully stable and be seen as a reliable super hero squadmate.
What Easter Eggs and references did you catch in The Falcon and The Winter Soldier episode 2? Share your thoughts in the comment section or send them my way on Instagram!