Episode 5 of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier is here, which means another hour’s worth of speculation and theories to dive into as we approach next week’s finale.
Amongst everything else that’s going on, “Truth,” has also given us yet another tidbit of hope about a Marvel Comics team that could potentially grace us with its presence in the Marvel Cinematic Universe: The Thunderbolts.
In the comics, the first iteration of the Thunderbolts was put together by none other than Baron Zemo. They began as former members of the Masters of Evil masquerading as heroes in disguise thanks to Zemo’s villainous plans to take advantage of the lack of superheroes in the wake of the battle with Onslaught. However, things began to fall apart when members of the team decided that they actually did want to be heroes rather than villains. The Thunderbolts have had a lengthy history thereafter, which you can do a deep dive on here, but it all boils down to the fact that they function as a team of reformed villains. The crew has gone through various iterations of the years, with leaders such as Hawkeye, General Ross aka Red Hulk, and even Bucky Barnes himself.
So what in the world does this have to do with The Falcon and The Winter Soldier?
Well, from a biased perspective, one could argue that Daniel Brühl quite literally outdid himself with Helmut Zemo’s unforgettable comeback. And thus it’s only necessary to see Brühl continue on in the MCU with a larger role that allows us to further explore the complexities of his character.
From a basic perspective, Avengers: Endgame was the final chapter for many pivotal characters, like Steve Rogers, Tony Stark, and Natasha Romanoff. As a result of that, we can be sure that new heroes, villains, and teams will continue to pop up throughout Phase 4 in order to guarantee and solidify the future of the MCU.
But when it comes to episode 5, well, the proof is in the pudding. Bucky Barnes and Zemo shared a heavy moment at the Sokovia memorial, one that ended with the Dora Milaje taking the Baron into their custody. And just where are they taking him? The Raft.
The Raft is an underwater prison used to detain and incarcerate enhanced individuals. It was last seen in the MCU in Captain America: Civil War, as it was where members of Team Cap were held after Team Iron Man took them into custody. And remember General Ross? He was there to greet Tony upon his arrival to visit the prisoners.
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But why is this so important? Well, in the comics, the Raft just so happens to have been one of the bases of operations for the Thunderbolts. At this point, all signs point to yes, absolutely, and we definitely need this to happen. In the meantime, we’ll be holding out hope for an end credits scene next week.
The finale of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier will premiere exclusively on Disney+ next Friday, April 23. In the meantime, make sure to follow along with our episodic recaps, reviews, theories, and more, as well as our recent interview with series composer Henry Jackman.