WandaVision has only just finished its run on Disney+ (and setting up some of the next projects in the Marvel Cinematic Universe), but The Falcon and the Winter Soldier is already on the way as the next live-action MCU series. Starring Sebastian Stan and Anthony Mackie in their now-iconic roles as Bucky Barnes/Winter Soldier and Sam Wilson/Falcon, not a lot of details about the actual plot of the series have been released. The very good news for the rest of the wait for the show to premiere is that the first episode has screened, and critics have shared their thoughts.
The official description for The Falcon and the Winter Soldier simply notes that after Bucky and Sam came together at the end of Avengers: Endgame after the big Steve Rogers twist, they'll team up on a global adventure that tests their abilities. Casting announcements and trailers have yielded a little more information about what to expect, but if those weren't enough to get you excited, what critics have to say may do the trick, starting with CinemaBlend's own Sean O'Connell:
According to Sean O'Connell, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier is going to explore character as well as deliver action, and that action sounds like something that doesn't often appear on television compared to film. Plus, confirmation that Cap's legacy will be part of the premiere (for better or worse) is definitely intriguing!
CinemaBlend's Eric Eisenberg is also on board with the new Marvel series, promising the kind of action to kick things off that was held until the end of WandaVision. He also has some advice for the spoiler-phobes waiting for The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, in case you're not one who can stay up late/get up early to watch ASAP!
Peter Sciretta also notes the differences between The Falcon and the Winter Soldier and WandaVision (and TFATWS was originally supposed to be the first Disney+ MCU series to premiere), mentioning an action sequence that is more cinematic than can usually be found on the small screen. Plus, potential MCU consequences right off the bat!
To contrast, Mike Ryan isn't going all-in on The Falcon and the Winter Soldier based on the fact that he's only seen one episode, but he teased the introduction of a character who could be a game-changer, with a follow-up tweet saying "literally every guess has been wrong." So, keep on guessing!
If the unconventional WandaVision left you missing the usual Marvel fare (or just the sparse year of 2020 with a shortage of Marvel content overall), Jacob Hall indicates that The Falcon and the Winter Soldier could be a return to what the MCU delivers with some of its biggest films, just adapted to the television medium. That doesn't mean Bucky and Sam will be hanging out on sitcom sets a la Wanda, though!
Luckily for fans dying for some details without necessarily wanting any spoilers, Liz Shannon Miller spilled how long the series premiere of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier will run: 47 minutes with credits, opening with 15 minutes of "exciting Marvel action." That Marvel action seemingly doesn't involve Sam and Bucky actually interacting, if the title characters aren't mixing yet, but viewers will have to wait and find out for themselves.
And finally, Brandon Davis delivered a tease that should get MCU fans seriously hyped: he compares The Falcon and the Winter Soldier to Captain America: The Winter Soldier. While that's admittedly a natural comparison to make even without having seen the premiere due to heavy presence of both Sebastian Stan and Anthony Mackie in the game-changing Winter Soldier, Winter Soldier is widely acknowledged as a fantastic MCU installment and an improvement on Captain America: The First Avenger.
While these critics getting to see the series premiere of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier early will surely make MCU fans starving for new content jealous, the wait for the Disney+ release is almost over. The first episode of the show will release on Friday, March 19 at 12:01 a.m. PT on the Disney streamer. In case you're in the mood for Marvel content to watch (or rewatch) as well as TFATWS, you can find plenty of films also available on Disney+, as well as the fabulous Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. that came to a fantastic end in 2020 and is currently streaming on Netflix.