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Warning: Spoilers for the series premiere of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier -- “New World Order” -- lie ahead.
It’s a new day in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, as big changes are unfolding in the massive franchise. WandaVision saw Wanda Maximoff come into her own as the true Scarlet Witch and, now, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier features the rise of a new Captain America. Yes, John Walker finally made his highly anticipated (and much-dreaded) debut at the end of the first episode, leaving many curious to see more from the mysterious new hero. Exact details on Walker are still fuzzy at the moment, but Wyatt Russell has explained how his character is a bit “more gnarly” than Steve Rogers.
Most MCU fans remember Chris Evans’ Steve Rogers as a selfless and kind hero who came from humble beginnings. With this, Steve’s actions were not only molded by his military experience but by his moral compass as well. Wyatt Russell, however, seems to indicate that John Walker will be more of a wild card:
I don't think there's really been many MCU characters who've had quite the dilemma he's had in terms of trying to fit into this sort of moralistic superhero world. He's been thrust into this role as Captain America and he's going to do it his way, and he wants to do it right. But his way is a very specific way that he has learned through being basically a trained human hunter. I mean, that's what Marines are. They're not Steve Rogers, they're not the same. They're not like Boy Scouts anymore. They're a little bit more gnarly.
Wyatt Russell’s recent comments to USA Today seem to indicate that John Walker is going to have a tough time fitting into the typical, heroic superhero mold. It also sounds like his training as a Marine will give him an edge Steve Rogers didn’t have.
Steve Rogers and John Walker had a complex relationship in the pages of Marvel comic books, as Walker was essentially created to be the antithesis of Rogers. While Rogers was a northern boy who grew up poor and with lofty ideals, Walker was raised in a southern middle class family and was a lot more pragmatic. And as Super-Patriot, Walker clashed with Rogers, challenging him for the mantle of Captain America. He eventually took on the title after Rogers cast it aside.
While John Walker won’t be a contemporary of Steve Rogers in the MCU, it seems he’ll still differ greatly from his predecessor and, in this case, he’ll likely come into conflict with Sam WIlson and Bucky Barnes. It remains to be seen how the new captain’s actions affect their journey but, while we watch things play out, fans will likely hold onto their negative feelings about Wyatt Russell’s character.
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier drops new episodes every Friday on Disney+, which you can sign up for using this link.