‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’ Episode 2: Easter eggs, six talking points and two new Captain Americas


Ross McGuinnessFri, 26 March 2021, 11:47 am

(L-R): Winter Soldier/Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) and Falcon/Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) in Marvel Studios' THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER exclusively on Disney+. Photo by Julie Vrabelová. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.
Bucky Barnes/The Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan) and Sam Wilson/The Falcon (Anthony Mackie) love their staring contests. (Marvel)

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‘Time to go to work.’

While the first episode of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier overburdened itself with world-building and superheroes battling their ultimate foe – the dreaded bank loan application – the second instalment is a smoother and vastly more entertaining beast.

A host of new characters are dropped into the mix, and like any good spy thriller, it’s a tough task deciphering the friends from the enemies.

And crucially, Sam Wilson/The Falcon (Anthony Mackie) and Bucky Barnes/The Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan) are finally in the same room together. Make that the same therapy room.

Read more: ‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’ episode 1 recap

Here are the major Easter eggs and talking points from episode 2 of the Disney+ show.

*WARNING: This article contains spoilers for episode 2 of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier*

1. #CapIsBack

John Walker (Wyatt Russell) and Olivia Walker (Gabrielle Byndloss) in Marvel Studios' THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER exclusively on Disney+. Photo by Eli Adé. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.
John Walker (Wyatt Russell) and Olivia Walker (Gabrielle Byndloss) in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. (Marvel)

Last week’s opening episode ended with a big cheesy grin into camera from the new Captain America and social media (#NotMyCap) exploded.

Now we get to see a little of the man who has replaced Steve Rogers in the red and blue suit.

He is John Walker, a seemingly all-American blond-haired military and school sports hero (think James Van Der Beek in Varsity Blues), and he’s played brilliantly by Wyatt Russell, son of Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn and always good to watch (22 Jump StreetBlack MirrorEverybody Wants Some!!).

John Walker (Wyatt Russell) in Marvel Studios' THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER exclusively on Disney+. Photo by Chuck Zlotnick. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.
John Walker (Wyatt Russell) dishes out the autographs. (Marvel)

Russell portrays Walker as that old friend from school you’re never quite sure about – will he buy you a beer or punch you in the face?

We meet him before he meets the world (or Good Morning America) in a TV interview at his old stomping ground, Custers Grove High School.

“Be yourself, they’re gonna love you,” his wife Olivia (Gabrielle Byndloss) tells him in the locker room, obviously having avoided Twitter this past week.

2. Battlestar

(Center L-R): Lemar Hoskins (Clé Bennett), John Walker (Wyatt Russell), Falcon/Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) and Winter Soldier/Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) in Marvel Studios' THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER exclusively on Disney+. Photo by Julie Vrabelová. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.
The two duos at the heart of the show meet for the first time. (Marvel)

Not only are we introduced to Cap 2, but his trusty/not so trusty (we’re not sure) sidekick Lemar Hoskins (Clé Bennett).

This pair are set up as the mirror image of Sam and Bucky, but something is slightly off with the reflection, as their moral compass appears pointed in a murkier direction (yes, let’s just conveniently put to one side the fact that Bucky, as the Winter Soldier, has murdered hundreds of people).

Read more: Everything you need to know about ‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’

“You can’t just punch your way out of problems any more,” Hoskins tells Walker, at the beginning of an episode in which the pair attempt to punch their way out of problems.https://www.youtube.com/embed/1d6Sc0RZyTQ?rel=0

They drop in on Sam and Bucky during a botched raid on a heist by the mysterious Flag-Smashers group, who hand all four a proper beat-down.

It’s a neat little action twist that neither all-American duo can save the day, and leads to a tense four-way exchange in an army transport. Barnes give Battlestar short shrift – “Stop the car!” – in the comics, Hoskins used Bucky’s alias for a time.

3. Karli Morgenthau

Karli Morgenthau (Erin Kellyman) in Marvel Studios' THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER exclusively on Disney+. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.
Karli Morgenthau (Erin Kellyman) takes on the Falcon and the Winter Soldier. (Marvel)

We also get our first close look at the apparent leader of the Flag-Smashers, Karli Morgenthau (Erin Kellyman) – oh Bucky, we can’t believe you fell for her Hans Gruber/Bill Clay “I’m just a hostage” routine.

“That little girl kicked your ass,” quips Sam to Bucky, overlooking that she kicked his ass too.

Winter Soldier/Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) in Marvel Studios' THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER exclusively on Disney+. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.
Bucky takes a beating in episode 2. (Marvel)

On paper, the Flag-Smashers should be the villains of the piece, but it turns out they’re actually stealing medical supplies, including vaccines (who said The Falcon and the Winter Soldier wouldn’t be topical?) in order to distribute them to the refugees left displaced after the Avengers reversed Thanos’s finger-snap and brought back half the world’s population.

Not only have their activities raised (ahem) flags with Walker and Hoskins, operating under the resources of the in-no-way shady sounding Global Repatriation Council, but also with a more mysterious and perhaps more nefarious enemy…

Watch: The characters who appeared in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier 0:00 2:40   Playing catch-up: These are the MCU characters who appear in ‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’

4. The Power Broker

After stealing the medical gear, Morgenthau gets a text from an unknown number that reads: “You took what was mine. I’m going to find you and kill you.”

It’s a fair bet this is from the Power Broker, whose men turn up towards the end of the episode in a failed attempt to intercept the supplies.

Read more: The Falcon And The Winter Soldier sets new streaming record on Disney+

The text could refer to the vaccines, or a more potent concoction. As Sam and Bucky and Walker and Hoskins discover, the Flag-Smashers are super-soldiers – could the Power Broker be the one providing their serum?

After all, this was his role in the Marvel comics, when he helped juice up none other than… John Walker and Lemar Hoskins.

5. Isaiah Bradley

(L-R): Falcon/Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie), therapist (Amy Aquino) and Winter Soldier/Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) in Marvel Studios' THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER exclusively on Disney+. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.
Sam and Bucky engage in some group therapy. (Marvel)

There is another super-soldier in the mix in episode 2, Isaiah Bradley (Carl Lumbly), who was known as the “Black Captain America” in the comics.

His arrival is foreshadowed when a child outside his house calls Sam “the Black Falcon”, only to be corrected by his hero. “It’s just Falcon, kid. So are you, like, Black Kid?”

Bradley doesn’t want to talk to Bucky, not because they tussled in 1951 during the Korean War, but because he has no inclination to help uncover the truth of the Flag-Smashers super-soldiers after his own experience.

“You know what they did to me for being a hero?” he asks. “They put my ass in jail for 30 years.”

The shock in Sam’s face as Isaiah turfs the pair out of his house shows some of his reluctance to pick up that shield.

6. Helmut Zemo

(L-R): Falcon/Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) and Winter Soldier/Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) in Marvel Studios' THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER exclusively on Disney+. Photo by Chuck Zlotnick. ©Marvel Studios 2020. All Rights Reserved.
The Falcon/Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) and the Winter Soldier/Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) are back together in episode 2. (Marvel)

And so we come to Zemo (Daniel Brühl), who pops up at the end of the episode, held in some kind of high-security facility in Berlin.

But as we all know from past experience, Bucky and Zemo don’t play well together.

“So you’re just gonna go sit in a room with this guy?” Sam asks Bucky, while also asking the audience: “Haven’t you seen Captain America: Civil War?!”

Yes, we have, Sam. Yes we have.

But our two boys are out of leads. So there’s only one thing left to do in episode 3…

“We’re gonna go see Zemo.”

Episode 2 verdict: What a difference a week makes. While the first episode of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier was something of a slog, its follow-up is an always slick, frequently funny slice of TV.

New and intriguing characters have been added and we’re questioning everyone’s motives without knowing what’s coming – what more could you ask for?

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(Credit: Disney+)
(Credit: Disney+)

Watch: The best things on Disney+ in March

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