Spoiler-Free First Thoughts on ‘The Falcon and The Winter Soldier’

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Bucky Barnes and Sam Wilson fans, how are we feeling? The world is finally but a day out from the premiere of Marvel’s latest live-action television series, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier.

The show sees the return of Sebastian Stan and Anthony Mackie, who made their first appearances in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in Captain America: The First Avenger (2011) and Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014), respectively. Both characters have grown tremendously throughout their tenure in the films and are now finally ready for some well-deserved front and center screen time as the leads of this series, which takes place in the aftermath of Avengers: Endgame.

Ahead of tomorrow’s premiere, I’m here to share some spoiler-free initial thoughts on the first episode of the six-part series.

First and foremost, the show feels very consistent with the style and quality of prior films in the MCU. The filming locations, paired with the special effects (which thus far feel on par with what fans are used to), contribute to the grand-scale cinematic quality of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. To put it simply, the show facilitates a seamless transition — both visually and narratively (more on that later) — from the films that it follows.

When it comes to our two main stars, Stan and Mackie have effortlessly slipped back into their roles as Bucky and Sam (and boy have I missed them). Though the ensemble cast lineups are part of what makes the MCU films so incredible, it’s really exciting to finally see these two ruling the spotlight. Previous films and recent teaser trailers have made it abundantly clear that the easy chemistry behind Stan and Mackie’s snarky banter is the recipe for success in this buddy comedy action series, but these two also have their own individual compelling facets that they bring to The Falcon and The Winter Soldier.

Chuck Zlotnick/Marvel Studios

This is where the narrative praise comes in. Bucky’s trauma and past wrongdoings as the Winter Soldier have not been forgotten, and instead sit at the forefront of his personal journey. Meanwhile, we’ll also dive into the private life of Sam beyond the wings and the suit. Despite his key role fighting at Steve Rogers’ side, he’s been long overdue for a deep dive into his backstory. We’ve grown used to seeing these two in scenes of intense action (interspersed with comic relief), but now both Stan and Mackie are getting the chance to show off a deeper side of their characters. At the same time, the show will also recognize the legacy of Steve Rogers as Captain America, and it will grasp on to familiar faces and new problems to drive a riveting global adventure. To put it simply, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier is just quite literally the perfect storm of MCU goodness.

Episode 1 of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier boldly sets the stage for what promises to be an incredible ride with Bucky Barnes and Sam Wilson. If you’re tuning in as a fan of the aforementioned duo, rest assured that this show is here to provide, because these characters are truly at the top of their game when they’re leading the story. And if you’re just joining in as fan of the MCU as a whole, be prepared to gain an entirely new appreciation for the Falcon and the Winter Soldier.

The Falcon and The Winter Soldier will premiere exclusively on Disney+ on Friday, March 19.

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By Lindsey
Lindsey joined the Nerds and Beyond team in 2018. She has spent a large portion of her life dedicated to her first love, photography. When she's not behind the camera, she's likely reading books and comics or dabbling in creative writing. Otherwise, she's probably yelling about Star Wars, Marvel, anime, or Ted Lasso. Contact: lindsey@nerdsandbeyond.com
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