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SPOILER-FILLED TV Review: Marvel's The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Episode 2

Original series streaming now.

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier is a 2021 superhero series created by Malcolm Spellman. It is now streaming exclusively to Disney+. It will run for six episodes until April 23, 2021. The series stars Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan. It is based on various Marvel comics. This series runs parallel with the Marvel Cinematic Universe, acting as the second original Marvel series and a sequel to Avengers: Endgame. It was preceded by WandaVision and will be followed by Loki.

"Why did you give up that shield?" -Bucky Barnes


After soldier John Walker is given the title of Captain America, Bucky angrily visits Sam, who is more focused on tracking down the Flag-Smashers. As they find the terrorist group, their strength and courage is well as their patience with each other. Things only get worse when Walker shows up to try to start an alliance with them.


Episode 2 "Star-Spangled Man" Review

Sam and Bucky are back on screen together to further develop their relationship and the story of the next four episodes.

I would call this episode an improvement over the first. It was a little bit lighter on action, but the action sequence that we got was very exhilarating and cool. It all seemed like practical stuntwork, and I love it when stunt doubles do crazy flips and landings off of trucks and stuff. I found that really cool.

And my biggest complaint of the first episode was fixed. Sam and Bucky are now together. And their relationship is definitely a nice added spice to this episode. The bickering that was present in Civil War still exists, but there's another layer of true emotion. I don't think that they are exactly friends yet, but they are bonding over the betrayal that they faced when John Walker became Captain America.

That was another thing. I really liked the John Walker character (who is actually called U.S. Agent, not Captain America). He isn't a nut job and he isn't a villain, which was a good route to take. He is an actual war hero that deserves the title of Captain America. Is he Steve Rogers? No. But he can be Captain America, and that was a hard truth to face throughout the runtime of this episode.

Along those lines, this episode really does a great job of making you feel the weight of Steve's supposed death. The first episode scratched the surface of that, but I felt that this episode did a better job. This is displayed through Sam and Bucky, and you can sympathize with them as they are frustrated with Walker being handed the shield.

And this episode really benefits from the existence of previous MCU projects. We know from Winter Soldier and Civil War how dangerous Super Soldiers can be, and when we learn that the Flag-Smashers are Super Soldiers, that's a nice little reveal. It adds some actual sense of stakes to the show that I liked. I am a bit concerned about the Flag-Smashers. I still think that the idea of a terrorist group that liked the way things were during the Blip is great, but I don't want this group to basically just want to kill a bunch of people. That's a good idea executed badly.

I also think that this episode tried to leave us off on a big cliffhanger, but that wasn't really what I felt at the end. We already knew that Zemo was going to be in it, and I am interested to see his role, but it's not some big twist that he'll be returning. It was teased in the trailer.

I was a fan of this episode and I think that this series is off to a promising start. I still standby my point that it has a disadvantage by coming right after WandaVision, but it's still quality Marvel entertainment that's always fun to watch.

Fun Factor: 8.5/10

Acting: 8.5/10

Story: 7.5/10

Characters: 9/10

Quality: 8/10

"Star-Spangled Man"

Anthony Mackie as Sam Wilson/Falcon

Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes/Winter Soldier

Wyatt Russell as John Walker/U.S. Agent

Erin Kellyman as Karli Morgenthau/Flag-Smasher

Danny Ramirez as Joaquin Torres

Clé Bennett as Lemar Hoskins/Battlestar

Daniel Brühl as Helmut Zemo


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