The Evolution Of Captain America In The MCU

Captain America’s journey in the MCU has been a long one, and he’s been through a lot. He started out his story in these films as a young, sickly kid in 1940s Brooklyn who wanted so badly to help fight in World War II. From there he has been a hero, a fugitive, and more. While we don’t yet know Captain America’s fate in Avengers: Endgame and what, if any, story lies ahead for Steve Rogers, we can look back on his evolution thus far.

Here are the main stages of Captain America’s evolution in the MCU.

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10 SKINNY KID FROM BROOKLYN WHO HATED BULLIES

When we first meet Steve Rogers, he’s a young adult in ’40s Brooklyn who likes to fight bullies in alleyways. He desperately wants to join the Army and fight for what he thinks is right, especially considering his best friend is going and his dad died in World War I. Even before he was Captain America, Steve cared deeply about doing the right thing and sticking up for people. He didn’t like bullies, and as Dr. Erskine said, he was a good man.

9 BECOMING CAPTAIN AMERICA

The next major moment in Cap’s evolution is him becoming Captain America. Because of his inherent goodness (and a particularly clever moment with a flagpole), he is picked to try the super soldier serum. He becomes Captain America but is mostly used to sell war bonds at first.

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However, when he makes a tour stop in Italy, he learns that Bucky is either missing or killed in action. This prompts him to use the powers he has been given to save Bucky and the other soldiers. This is the moment where Steve really starts to become Captain America and learn how to be not just a hero, but a superhero.

8 WAKING UP FROM THE ICE AS A MAN OUT OF TIME

At the end of Captain America: The First Avenger, Steve sacrifices himself to save millions of others when he flies the plane into the ice. He wakes up again around 70 years later to a completely new world. He’s now a man in the 21st century, and he’s left to try and figure out how to live in this new world. Everyone he was close to is either dead or old, like Peggy who lived a full life while she thought Steve was dead. Steve is definitely lost and unsure of his place in the world and where he can find friends and family now.

7 BECOMING PART OF THE AVENGERS

In The Avengers, we see Steve still trying to figure out the new time period he lives in. He is recruited by Fury to become part of the Avengers Initiative. Of course, this doesn’t go super smoothly at first, and it takes some time for the Avengers to fight together as a team.

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But, this is the start of a new lease on life for Cap as he’s able to fight bullies and help save the world again. He also begins to find people he can call a team, although he still struggles to feel he belongs going into Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

6 DISILLUSIONMENT IN WINTER SOLDIER

In Winter Soldier, Steve is working for SHIELD, but he still is clearly mourning the loss of his old life and the people he cared about. He starts to find people he can rely on such as Sam Wilson, but he also learns the awful truth the SHIELD has been infiltrated by HYDRA. This knowledge clearly shakes him deeply and shakes a lot of the trust he had in institutions. This shift in his way of thinking will come into play many times in later movies, too.

5 SAVING BUCKY BARNES

The other most important part of Steve’s evolution in The Winter Soldier is learning that Bucky Barnes is still alive and has been brainwashed into being a HYDRA assassin.

RELATED: Avengers 4’s Chris Evans Says Bucky is Steve Rogers’ “Home”

Steve is stuck between wanting to do everything he can to save the world and wanting to save his friend. He is willing to die instead of fighting Bucky, and Bucky’s emergence back into his life will impact his arc in the rest of the movies.

4 A TROUBLED RELATIONSHIP AS CO-LEADERS WITH TONY STARK

From the moment they meet in The Avengers, Tony and Steve have a somewhat hostile relationship. They are two very different people, although they both believe strongly in doing what they can to save others. At times they respect each other, and many other times they are at odds. Their relationship is strained once again in Avengers: Age of Ultron which leads into the major conflict in Captain America: Civil War.

3 BREAKING THE LAW TO DO WHAT HE BELIEVES IS RIGHT

In Civil War, Steve Rogers has another major shift. While many believe Steve is a letter-of-the-law type of man, he is more loyal to people and ideas than institutions. When the Accords are presented, he chooses to go against them, and his decision is cemented when Bucky is blamed for the attack on the U.N.

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Steve is stuck between wanting to do everything he can to save the world and wanting to save his friend. He is willing to die instead of fighting Bucky, and Bucky’s emergence back into his life will impact his arc in the rest of the movies.

2 FUGITIVE/NOMAD

After Civil War, Captain America is a fugitive and war criminal. He is off the grid and takes haven in Wakanda before going on covert missions with Falcon and Black Widow. He is clearly disillusioned and not sure how to embody the Captain America role anymore. He distances himself from this title during this time period. As he no longer has his shield, he takes up the Nomad identity from the comics, even though this time period of his life isn’t focused on much onscreen.

1 TAKING UP THE MANTLE OF LEADER AGAIN

In Avengers: Infinity War, Steve is still a fugitive. However, when Thanos becomes a threat and Tony Stark is no longer there to defend earth, Steve becomes a leader again. He doesn’t exactly take up the Captain America mantle again, but he does bring the rest of the team on earth together to fight the battle in Wakanda. When the Thanos snap happens and the Avengers lose, Steve is clearly devastated. While Endgame isn’t out quite yet, we’ve seen from trailers that he will get the shield back somehow and will likely embrace his Captain America title more fully once again.

NEXT: Avengers: Endgame Early Reactions: A Truly Epic Conclusion (& Beginning)


2019-04-24 03:04:44

Amanda Steele

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