In the comics, both Bucky Barnes and Sam Wilson became Captain America at different points in time after Steve Rogers. It was always a question as to which way the Marvel Cinematic Universe would go after Sam Wilson was introduced in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Well, Avengers: Endgame writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely made that decision.
There are *SPOILERS* for Avengers: Endgame ahead. Please avoid if you haven’t seen the movie yet.
When Steve Rogers goes back in time to return the stones, he doesn’t come back right away. Instead, he made a well-deserved selfish choice to go have a life with the woman he loved. Instead he took the long way ’round, and showed up as an extremely old man. He had a conversation with Sam, and bequeathed the shield to him, effectively anointing him the new Captain America for the MCU.
Talking to Variety, Markus & McFeely revealed why they made that decision.
Markus: “Both of them have picked up [the shield] in the comics; Bucky and Sam. But, when you look back at “The First Avenger” and realize why he was chosen to be the first super soldier, it’s about a certain purity at heart and a certain inner heroism. It’s pretty hard to give it to Bucky. As much as we love him, he is on the dark path and is recovering from that. Sam really is a truly stand up guy. It wasn’t a wildly difficult choice, certainly. I think Bucky has a lot more story as Bucky and as someone headed on a path of atonement. And Sam has ascended into this new role.“
And before anybody complains, it was 100% in the script that Bucky nodded in agreement to have Sam take the shield instead of himself.
Quick question: did you actually write in the script, “Bucky nods in agreement,” implying that he’s cool with the passing?
McFeely: “Yes. Yep.“
McFeely: “Our assumption is that he and Steve had a long conversation before Steve went back.“
This will add a whole other layer to the Falcon And Winter Soldier show on Disney+. It will be interesting to see how that is handled, and what happens, as I’m sure they will be in a few team up movies after the series too.
As comic accurate as some of the costumes have been lately, I can’t wait to see Sam’s Captain America costume. It is very cool on the page, and should look great on screen as well.
Captain America will return.