The cat's out of the bag, folks! Sam Wilson is officially the new Captain America for the Avengers NOW! line up that also contains the new female Thor as well as Iron Man: San Francisco. After Steve Rogers is depowered, the shield and the star go to The Falcon himself. But who is the man with the metal wings, and what sort of background does he come from?

With a rich history that spans from 1969 to the modern era of comics, The Falcon can not only enrich the comic universe, but also provide us with a blueprint to where the Marvel Cinematic Universe will go with the character. After all, we know how much Marvel loves to mix and match pieces of continuity across a character's personal history to create a cinematic version of their persona. With that in mind, here's five things you should know about the newly crowned Captain America, Sam Wilson!

Origin Story
He Owes His Super Life To The Red Skull
Sam Wilson, aka The Falcon, was introduced in September 1969 (Captain America #117.) He was one of the first African American characters in mainstream comics, and would go on to become one of Cap's best-known sidekicks. After engaging in his own adventure against Red Skull, Cap encouraged Sam to take the alias and costume of "The Falcon," named as such due to Redwing – the falcon he trained to aid him in serving justice. Unbeknownst to him, life as he knew it (as is the usual turn of events for any comic book hero) would change in an instant.

During (or because of) his adventure fighting Red Skull and his "exiles," Sam Wilson's past history as "Snap" Wilson is erased and replaced with that of a life as a social worker. While Red Skull is busy rewriting Wilson's past via the Cosmic Cube (aka "The Tesseract,") he becomes empowered with the ability to mentally communicate and control not only Redwing, but birds in general. His current incarnation in Avengers NOW! was drafted to replace a recently de-powered Steve Rogers as Captain America. He's previously served as an Avenger, and was at one time even rumored to be a mutant... only to see that be debunked in a later issue.

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