Wyatt Russell says John Walker, the former Captain America, is a man with little left to lose going into Friday's series finale of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Spoilers for Episode 5, "Truth." When he uses the star-spangled shield once wielded by Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) to brutalize Nico (Noah Mills) of the Flag Smashers — revenge for his partner Battlestar (Clé Bennett), who is KIA battling the Super Soldier Serum-empowered Karli Morgenthau (Erin Kellyman) — Walker is stripped of his title and authority as Captain America. With the blood-stained shield stolen from him by Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) and Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan), Walker forges his own shield he'll use to dispense vengeance as the U.S. Agent.
"I'm just asking to be heard," an increasingly frustrated Walker tells the council that removes him as the new Captain America, effective immediately. "I lived my life by your mandates! I dedicated my life to your mandates! I only ever did what you asked of me, what you told me to be and trained me to do, and I did it. And I did it well."
When he's sentenced to an other-than-honorable discharge and told he will hold no rank in retirement and receive no benefits, Walker tells the council: "You built me. Senator, I am Captain America."
"He only ever knew one family — and that was the United States Military," Russell told Esquire. "He cared and he fought for them and he loved it, but now they've taken it. They've used him, and he feels used and doesn't feel understood. Everybody has now turned their back on him, which is very dangerous to do to a person like that who now has Super Soldier Serum in his veins."
Weeks after viewers first reacted to a smiling-and-winking Walker with the #NotMyCap hashtag on social media, Walker is No One's Cap — a mantle that will at long last be adopted by Sam Wilson in the Falcon and Winter Soldier series finale.
Being a Captain America who wasn't Steve Rogers or Chris Evans was "partly why I liked it," Russell said of his Marvel Studios role. "People were going to hate it. I knew it. That's the reason you do it. That's the point. You elicit that response and it's like, Great, it's working."
"I'm the kind of person [where] the gray area is a place that you must live," he added. "If you don't live there, you're going to have a very difficult time in your life trying to figure out who you are, because you're limiting the kinds of questions you can ask yourself and ask others... What this character hopefully brings to people is the idea that there's a gray area in him—and that in life, there's gray area all around us every day."
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier will premiere its sixth and final episode on Friday, April 23, on Disney+.
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