Falcon and the Winter Soldier: The next Captain America isn’t who you expect

Marvel Studios' AVENGERS: ENDGAME..L to R: Nebula (Karen Gillan) and Captain America/Steve Rogers (Chris Evans)..Photo: Film Frame..©Marvel Studios 2019
Marvel Studios' AVENGERS: ENDGAME..L to R: Nebula (Karen Gillan) and Captain America/Steve Rogers (Chris Evans)..Photo: Film Frame..©Marvel Studios 2019 /

The current assumption amongst fans is that Sam Wilson will become the next Captain America in Falcon and the Winter Soldier, but that may not be the case after all.

At the end of Avengers: Endgame, Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) passed his shield and the mantle of Captain America down to Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie). Sam reluctantly accepted the title, presumably becoming the next Cap. Unfortunately, that’s not entirely true.

The poster image revealed at D23 gave fans their first look at the titular characters of Marvel‘s Falcon and the Winter Soldier, though Sam was missing a particularly important piece of hardware: Cap’s shield. He should be carrying it with him, but the shield doesn’t appear to be on his person. Perhaps the angle they’re posed in is concealing the shield, though odds are it’s not with either of them.

The reason we suspect neither Sam or Bucky (Sebastian Stan) has Cap’s shield is the other characters cast on the show. So far, we have Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp) and Helmut Zemo (Daniel Bruhl) joining them but they’re not so important. The real character of intrigue is John Walker (Wyatt Russell).

For those unfamiliar with John Walker aka U.S. Agent, he’s essentially the government-funded version of Captain America in the comics. There’s more to his character history but that’s the major point to take away from this casting.

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Russell’s casting was caught exclusively by The Wrap and holds much significance since his comic counterpart once held the title of Captain America. His superhero alias as U.S. Agent has also been confirmed so there’s yet another reason to assume Russell will be the next Captain America, even if it is only for a brief time.

While there’s a good chance John Walker will become America’s newest hero, influences from the comics probably mean he’ll hand over the shield by the series’ end. Walker held onto it until Steve Rogers returned to reclaim his namesake in the comics, but with Rogers out of the picture, the shield will likely go to either Sam or Bucky. Our guess is it’ll be the former Winter Soldier.

Despite Rogers naming Sam his successor, it’s Bucky who appears to be next in line. We suspect this to be the case since Sebastian Stan has three more movies on his contract with Marvel.  Anthony Mackie can’t be ruled out but it’s worth noting that the number of movies left on his contract is unknown.

Who do you think will hold the mantle of Captain America next? Let us know in the comments.

Falcon and the Winter Soldier is set for a 2021 release.

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