SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Proceed at your own risk!
The dust has settled on The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Sam Wilson is now Captain America, John Walker is doing his thing as U.S. Agent, and Bucky Barnes seems to have come to terms with his past as one of Hydra’s go-to sleeper agent super-soldiers. But even though the Disney+ original series was a grand ole time, there are a lot of unanswered questions that have been bouncing around my brain ever since the credits rolled. And while they’re nothing that take away from the show, its characters, or rich social and moral commentaries, they linger nonetheless and I have to get them out.
These questions range from everything from Sam Wilson’s future as Captain America now that The Flag Smashers seem to have been stamped out, how and when did Sharon Carter become The Power Broker, and others like multiple questions dealing with John Walker and his new benefactor, the mysterious Valentina Allegra De Fontaine, and whatever plans they have cooked up moving forward. And again, I loved pretty much everything about the Falcon and the Winter Soldier season finale but I still have questions.
Where Do Sam Wilson And Bucky Barnes Go From Here?
Marvel fans finally got their wish in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier's Season 1 finale when Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) accepted his fate and took on the Captain America moniker after proving to himself and certain parties he was the man for the job. And Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) seemed to free himself of his dark past and move on to a brighter day, one where he no long has to worry about those dreaded trigger words. But what’s next for the frenemies-turned-pals now that their individual and and collective issues have been worked out?
With the recently announced Captain America 4 movie in the works with showrunner Malcolm Spellman picking up where he left off with the Disney+ series, it’s pretty much a given that Sam Wilson will continue to hold the shield, but who will he be using it against? Sharon Carter’s The Power Broker, Baron Zemo (if he gets out of prison), or perhaps even John Walker’s U.S. Agent (more on him next). And the same can be said for Bucky Barnes as well? Will he keep the Winter Soldier moniker, take up the White Wolf, or stick with the name he’s had for 100+ years now?
Is John Walker’s U.S. Agent A Hero, A Villain Or Somewhere In The Middle?
And then there’s John Walker (Wyatt Russell), the former “Captain America” who decided to really follow in the footsteps of Steve Rogers and ingest some super soldier serum before turning into a crazed madman and murdering a Flag Smasher in cold blood in front of the world to see. Throughout The Falcon and the Winter Soldier it seemed like John Walker was being groomed to be the next big bad for Sam Wilson and Bucky Barnes (and perhaps others) to take on down the road, but that narrative was complicated with Walker’s redemption arc before getting the new name U.S. Agent.
I know, I know, U.S. Agent has had a checkered past in the comics and has bounced around from being an ally of the Avengers to someone with a moral compass that’s no longer operational. Honestly, this is one of my favorite things to think about following the show’s conclusion and I can’t wait to see how it is explored in upcoming Marvel TV shows or even Marvel movies like Captain America 4, maybe?
And What About Contessa Valentina Allegra De Fontaine?
What about Contessa Valentina Allegra de Fontaine (Julia Louis-Dreyfus), the mysterious and unsettling figure bursting at the seams with moral ambiguity who gave John Walker a second chance and the opportunity to serve his country in a way that isn’t as flashy or out in the open as Captain America? Is she a force of good or evil, or is she someone who’s so deep in the fight that she no longer subscribes to the concepts of good and evil at this stage in her life.
And although she had very little time on screen in a highly secretive role, Julia Louis-Dreyfus made the most of it and turned out to be one of the most exciting, charismatic, and enigmatic characters in all of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and hopefully this isn’t the last we’ve seen of this character as we attempt to learn more about her past, motivations, and desires in the grand scheme of things.
When And How Did Sharon Carter Become The Power Broker?
About halfway through The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, it started to become clear that Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp) was up to something after not having a good run following the events of Captain America: Civil War, though it appears she was one of the “lucky” ones to survive Thanos’ snap in Avengers: Infinity War. As the season went on it became abundantly clear that Sharon was no longer the dedicated civil servant she was earlier in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but instead something more mysterious and darker.
In the final moments of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier it is all but confirmed that Sharon Carter is the elusive Power Broker, but the show never explicitly provides an answer as to how she transformed herself into an international crime lord with endless resources and a firm grasp on all the major players. This will surely be resolved in due time, but for now we’re left wondering she sank so low.
Will Joaquin Torres Step In As The New Falcon?
It was hinted throughout The Falcon and the Winter Soldier that Joaquin Torres (Danny Ramirez) might one day succeed Sam Wilson as the Falcon, but it was never made totally clear if that was the case. And I know Sam dropped off his wings (which were essentially destroyed) when he met up with Torres in the season’s penultimate episode, but it’s not hard to be confused following this scene when you consider Wilson’s demeanor and no proper handing over of the mantle, so to speak.
Danny Ramirez seemed hopeful when he talked to CinemaBlend about this leading up to the Falcon and the Winter Soldier finale in April 2021, but the actor didn't seem entirely sure when or how he will come back to the MCU as the new Falcon.
And Will We Ever Find Out What Really Happened To Steve Rogers?
All throughout The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, everyone from characters in the Marvel series to writers at CinemaBlend kept wondering what happened to Steve Rogers and where he went following his return as an old man in the final moments of Avengers: Endgame. There were popular theories like the one about the former Captain America being on the Moon and then there were the mentions that Steve Rogers is "gone." Still, these don’t answer one of the most pressing questions from the series and the MCU as a whole and we’re still left wondering where (and when) is Steve Rogers.
Hopefully all of these questions and more are answered in the Captain America 4 or if The Falcon and the Winter Soldier returns to Disney+ at some point in the future. While we wait for all of that, there’s never been a better time to go back and watch the Marvel movies in order, especially before the Loki premiere June 11 on Disney+.