Captain America 4’s Latest Update Officially Breaks A 14-Year MCU Trend


Captain America: Brave New World will break a long-running trend of the Marvel Cinematic Universe hero’s franchise in Sam Wilson’s first movie as the Sentinel of Liberty. Chris Evans’ Steve Rogers debuted in the MCU in 2011’s Captain America: The First Avenger. Since then, the hero has become one of the faces of the franchise, with Evans’ Captain America trilogy being a strong contender for the best among all other MCU heroes. Following Steve Rogers’ seeming MCU ending in 2019’s Avengers: Endgame, Anthony Mackie’s Sam Wilson is now the MCU’s Captain America.

Steve passing on his shield to Sam Wilson ensured that the Captain America mantle stayed in good hands in the MCU. Well, while that was his intention, Sam had to go through some challenging events in Disney+’s The Falcon and the Winter Soldier before being able to firmly stand as the MCU’s Captain America. In the end, the character prevailed, and the help of some friends was crucial in doing so. However, according to a new Captain America: Brave New World cast update, Sam will be short of a major companion in his first MCU movie.

Sebastian Stan’s Bucky Barnes is one of the MCU’s longest-running characters. Stan has appeared in all three Captain America movies, with the actor also returning as Bucky Barnes in multiple other MCU projects, such as a few Avengers entries. Due to his constant appearances over the years and Bucky’s arc of going from hero to villain to hero again, the character has become a fan-favorite. As a beloved MCU player and a Captain America franchise mainstay, it is shocking that Bucky Barnes will not appear in the upcoming Captain America: Brave New World.

Speaking to Radio Times, Mackie revealed that Stan’s Bucky Barnes and Daniel Brühl’s Zemo are not in Captain America: Brave New World, saying, “When they decided to go back to the movies, it is what it is, but I don’t have my friends anymore, so it kind of dampens it a little bit.” Bucky, Zemo, and Sam formed an exciting team in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, so Mackie’s update is disappointing. As Bucky played a major role in Evans’ three Captain America movies, his absence from the upcoming film marks a major shift in the franchise.

While Mackie’s comments throw cold water on the chances of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier season 2 happening and Bucky reuniting with Sam in Captain America: Brave New World, Stan still has an MCU future set even if he does not get to interact with Mackie’s character. Bucky Barnes will be an important player in Marvel Studios’ Thunderbolts. The film will bring back multiple characters who appeared in past MCU movies and series, including The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’s John Walker/U.S. Agent, played by Wyatt Russell.

Sam Wilson with Captain America's shield and Joaquín Torres with the Falcon's wings in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier

Bucky Barnes will be the leader of the Thunderbolts, and with the upcoming movie said to have abandoned a story route that would have seen the team die on their mission, Bucky could continue in the MCU for years to come. While he will be missing from Captain America: Brave New World, Stan’s Bucky Barnes will finally get the chance to be the star of an MCU movie in Thunderbolts, and with Bucky not dying in the movie due to the film’s reported changes, the character could get his own franchise for the foreseeable future.

While it would have been exciting to see Sam Wilson and Bucky Barnes team up once again in Captain America: Brave New World due to the characters’ fun chemistry and shared history, Stan’s MCU hero being absent will not deeply impact the film. That is due to The Falcon and the Winter Soldier having already set up the perfect character to serve as his replacement: Joaquín Torres. Danny Ramirez is set to return for Captain America: Brave New World as Joaquín, aka the new Falcon.

At the end of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Sam leaves a Falcon suit for Joaquín, teasing his future superhero identity. While Bucky Barnes is a staple of the Captain America movies and has a cool connection to Sam, the character is ultimately Steve Rogers’ best friend. Sam needs to be his own man as Captain America, and the movie using Joaquín as his sidekick, with the character as the new Falcon, is better suited for this new era of Captain America in the MCU that will come with Captain America: Brave New World.

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