We are just a couple of weeks away from the premier of Captain America: Civil War, so I thought it would be fun to make a few predictions about what will happen in the film. I’ve done this in the past with other films, and one time, my crazy theory was even right. We’ll see how I do this time around. Let’s get to it.
Let me preface this by saying that I have been waiting a long time to write this.
I haven’t read the comics, but those who have know that the plot of Captain America: Civil War will be making major deviations from the Civil War storyline in the comics. In particular, this version will depict Captain America’s pressing personal crisis of the terrible, tragic fate of his best friend, Bucky Barnes. Directors Joe and Anthony Russo have teased that Civil War will be a psychological thriller. Having been through so much with Bucky and because of Bucky, Steve Rogers is tied heart and soul to his friend, perhaps so much that Steve could be blind to his dark side. Until the movie comes out, we will have to wait for the details of how Bucky’s situation will divide the Avengers Analyzing the last two films that Bucky has appeared in, we must ask ourselves the question, what is the appeal of the Winter Soldier to the legions of fans who, like myself, have fallen in love with him, and why is his story making such an impact on the Avengers?
You can reasonably expect as the time draws nearer for the release of Captain America: Civil War that I will write a few more MCU-related posts. As a fan, there is a lot at stake for me in this film. One of biggest, most burning questions that will be answered of course, is this:
Will Steve Rogers, our beloved Captain America, die?
In my Captain America post last fall, I said that I expected him to die in Civil War. Now let me amend that. It would be wrong to not expect anyone to die in this movie—as attached as we are to all of the characters, someone is going to bite it. Perhaps multiple people. There would be no emotional stakes otherwise. But I’m going to focus on Cap because he is the obvious choice for a dramatic, show-stopping death.
Another week is in the books, and we are bringing back our “This Week in Geek” feature. In this feature we are going to take a look at a few of the stories that happened this week in the world of Geek. We aren’t a news site, so this won’t necessarily be a comprehensive list, just a few highlights. If you see a story throughout the week that you think should be featured here, then send it along to me and I will include it. You can send it directly to firstname.lastname@example.org. Alright, let’s get to This Week in Geek.
This is part 3 of the 3-part Road to Civil War series.
WARNING! SPOILERS FOR ANT-MAN BELOW. READ AT YOUR OWN RISK.
The question everyone seems to be asking is why the Civil War installment of the Marvel Cinematic Universe a Captain America movie? The truth is, we won’t have all the answers until it comes out. However, here are some of my thoughts from what we’ve heard about the plot and based on my observations of Steve Rogers.
Captain America as a Leader
At the end of The Avengers: Age of Ultron, we see Captain America squarely in charge of a new Avengers team. The actions of this team under his leadership will lead to the debate over the regulation of superheroes.
Steve Rogers thinks of himself first and foremost as a soldier, but he has always been a leader. I f people expect Captain America to lead them, then he expects them to work like an army does. In Captain America: The First Avenger, he is the unquestioned leader of the Howling Commandos, and even the directors of the Strategic Scientific Reserve look to him to lead the fight against Hydra. We don’t see much of the men who followed him aside from Bucky, but I think he had a good working relationship with these guys that probably set his expectations for similar experiences a little high.
When Captain America goes to work for S.H.I.E.L.D., the situation is far from ideal. What Steve Rogers expects from those who work with him is trust. He prefers to know what other people are doing and what’s going on, whereas Nick Fury thinks it’s safer to “compartmentalize” assignments and secrets. Finding out that S.H.I.E.L.D. was controlled by Hydra is the last straw. From then on, Captain America doesn’t want to be in a position where he isn’t calling the shots. Being in control is Steve’s way of coping with the fact that he can’t trust other people’s motives.
Cap in the Age of Ultron
Steve decides to take out the remnants of Hydra, but it is unclear whether he asked the other Avengers for help or if they volunteered. But destroying Hydra is Steve’s project, so they let him decide what they do. To an extent they consider him the leader, and he may even think of himself as one.
Tony Stark referred to Captain America as “the boss” at one point during Age of Ultron, but Tony doesn’t treat him the way Steve expects he would if he really thought that. In The Avengers Tony is condescending and even resentful toward him. After the two work together for some time, there’s a little more respect and even some liking. Yet Steve expects that the other Avengers follow his directions and not do anything to jeopardize them or their mission. Tony Stark does his own thing. And Steve mistrusts Tony for this.
Steve is more concerned at first about preventing Ultron from causing more problems. But then Wanda Maximoff warns Steve the being Ultron was creating with the Mind Stone could be put to use by Tony Stark—and Steve takes it very poorly. His only thought is to prevent Tony from creating another Ultron, and he’s offended that Tony’s attitude and behavior are hurting the team as well as the world. Civil War as good as almost started over Vision’s cradle.
It would be wrong to say that Steve isn’t sad to see the breakup of the original Avengers. But at the same time I think he’s looking forward to working with the new team that has come together, probably more or less at his invitation. He has an advantage with this new team because he can set new terms for their working relationship. He can teach them how to work together, trust each other, and rely on each other in ways that the original Avengers never could: the way he wants them to.
So one of the hard parts of Civil War will be watching all of Steve’s hopes and expectations for the new Avengers go down the drain.
A Product of War
Captain America was created to fight a war that, for the rest of the world, ended seventy years ago. But the war never ended for Steve, and the best thing he can think of doing is continuing to fight.
During World War II, all civilian resources—food, clothing, and even entertainment—were redirected to the military and to mustering support for the war effort. It was a time period when people ate, slept, and breathed war. Cap went on the ice. The rest of the world had time to transition, but Steve didn’t. So a part of him still eats, sleeps, and breathes war because he didn’t get to see it end. And whatever closure he thinks he has—Hydra being vanquished, for instance—is an illusion.
When he got up, furthermore, he was asked almost right away to help save the world from Loki. Steve never intended to be Captain America for the rest of his life, but that’s what nearly everyone else wants him to be. So he has chosen to be a superhero: that is “home” for Steve now. And if it is his job to keep the world safe, then he will do whatever he thinks is right to get the job done. His job from the war, stopping Hydra, was left undone, so he is going to finish it. And his mind, it is an army—in this case, the Avengers—that is the best chance of stopping Hydra.
Doing the Right Thing as a Weakness
A lot of people don’t see why Steve had to crash the Valkyrie at the end of The First Avenger. My explanation is that Steve didn’t want the world to have access to the Hydra weapons or technology that was on that plane: Hydra was so evil that he wanted to destroy it and every evil thing it created. And, of course, he held Hydra responsible for Bucky’s “death.”
Steve does whatever he thinks is right at all costs, and if you disagree with him about what it takes to keep the world safe, then he is not giving you the benefit of a doubt.
In Captain America: Civil War, Steve will encounter a serious barrier to his goal of fighting Hydra just as Hydra is regaining strength, and his attitudes and choices in that time will put him in conflict with Iron Man and other superheroes. And then we have the Ant-man post-credit scene. From the dialogue and other inferences about the situation, we know that Bucky Barnes turning up again in this manner only complicates an already difficult situation. But why did Marvel choose to show this scene in particular? Steve wants to help his best friend, at whatever cost to himself, and if he has to break the rules—if he has to fight Tony Stark—to do so, needless to say it’s going to get ugly.
Bucky is the only thing Steve has from the life he used to know: before he was a soldier, before ANYTHING. If Steve can save Bucky, then he will be able, in some small way, to “come home.” It isn’t right this time: it’s personal.
But Steve, however, will put his personal happiness on the line to do what he thinks is right. I am prepared at this point to accept the possibility that Steve might even die in Civil War. What I am really worried about is, can Steve put up with all of this and still be a good person?
That’s the best speculation I can give you for now. But of course, it could all change the moment the trailer comes out.
This is Part 1 of the three-part Road to Civil War series.
WARNING: SPOILERS FOR AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON, ANT-MAN, AND CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR INCLUDED BELOW. READ AT YOUR OWN RISK.
I would have been perfectly happy if Marvel hadn’t announced anything and we had no idea who was on who’s side until next May. But now that we have the names, it’s only fair to speculate. I don’t know much about the comics so this is entirely based on the movies, the discussions of other online fans, and what we know so far.
Team Iron Man
Colonel James “Rhodey” Rhodes is Tony Stark’s best friend and sidekick. I did ask a fan website what else would motivate him to take Tony’s side in this controversy. The response was that Rhodey works for the U.S. government, so he will support whatever the government decides. This didn’t make sense to me, but then I remembered the scene in Iron Man 2 where Rhodey took the stolen armor to the Air Force Base. If that doesn’t speak volumes about Rhodey’s priorities, little else will.
I have never liked Spider-Man, but when they announced that Marvel had bought the rights from Sony to include him in Civil War and reboot him within the existing universe, I decided to deal with it. In the comics, Spider-Man plays an important part in the Civil War story. The film version, however, will differ since we are seeing Peter Parker at the outset of his career. Tom Holland was cast as the teenage webslinger based on how he performed with Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Evans, so Parker’s relationship with the heads of these two factions, specifically with Iron Man, might be crucial. There was also a mock news interview with Scott Lang released as a promo for Ant-Man, and someone on Tumblr mentioned that in the crawl on the bottom of the screen said Tony Stark had established a scholarship for inner-city students. Peter Parker probably looks to Stark as a patron. Given Tony’s relationship with Harley in Iron Man 3, Tony Stark looking for a protege makes sense.
Vision used to be JARVIS, but I have to scratch my head because Age of Ultron did little to establish how much of JARVIS is left inside of the android. As Vision, however, he might have good personal reasons for siding with Iron Man. Vision states in Age of Ultron, “I am on the side of life.” Perhaps Captain America is doing something he finds morally reprehensible.
In the comics, Vision is in a relationship with the Scarlet Witch, but since they are on different sides I wonder if that relationship is ever going to occur, if it hasn’t already.
Natasha Romanoff making Team Iron Man was certainly a shock. The fandom is disappointed because after everything that she and Steve went through together in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, they seemed to have earned their mutual trust. I for one would have expected her to at least fight on the same team as Hawkeye. We may have to wait and see what Natasha’s motivations are more than for the other characters.
Team Captain America
Scarlet Witch was not involved in Civil War in the comics, and her presence alone indicates that the film is going to be very different, Wanda Maximoff was my new favorite character in Age of Ultron, so I am really happy that she is on Steve’s side. It’s not surprising, though, because if you remember in Age of Ultron she and Pietro volunteered for Hydra’s experiments in the first place because of their grudge against Tony Stark. A part of me says that Wanda hasn’t gotten over that. And the twins, if you remember, were close to Clint Barton, it’s no surprise that Wanda is sticking with him.
Sam Wilson, of course, is extremely loyal to Steve Rogers. Considering his role in Ant-Man, Sam will be the one recruiting Scott Lang and he may be the one pulling other people to Cap’s side. He might even be considered a co-leader of the team. I am interested to see how he will interact with Hawkeye/Clint Barton. They both have superhero names based on birds of prey and so naturally the fandom thinks they belong together. In-between all of the other shenanigans there is a chance we might get to see the “bird bros” bonding onscreen.
If you haven’t seen Ant-Man yet, go see it! Those of you who have, you know he’ll be called in to do Steve the ultimate favor. Scott Lang is a huge Avengers fan to start with. But what’s interesting is that in Ant-Man, Hank Pym mentioned to Scott that he could never trust Howard Stark with his technology and he doesn’t want Tony anywhere near it either. That impression probably stuck with Scott. I think Scott Lang will be Steve’s new go-to man for equipment, since he is burning bridges with Tony, and heaven knows Steve and his teammates are going to need some tech to compete with Stark.
This was the surprise for Cap’s team. I mean, he is a really loyal friend to Natasha so I am surprised and disappointed they weren’t on the same side, but that’s what’s going to raise the stakes, right? At the end of Age of Ultron, Clint went back to his family at least for a little while, so I wonder what might get him to go back into the field. The registration act from the comics storyline is not going to work out, but in Age of Ultron the other Avengers except Natasha did not know about his family, so he still had at least some degree of privacy. Something may be threatening his family and he is siding with Steve in order to protect them.
The Winter Soldier
All signs indicate that Bucky will be getting at least some of his memory and personality back, but his external circumstances will remain less than ideal. Other people aren’t going to care that he’s no longer Hydra’s brainwashed assassin, and in fact if you saw the Ant-Man post-credit scene you KNOW that he’s vulnerable for it. The more I hear, the more I think that the resolution of the Winter Soldier’s storyline will be the pin on which everyone hinges. Steve might take his stance based on how people respond to Bucky, and Steve may or may not trust certain people based on who agrees with him.
The Double Agent
When the team lineups were announced, it was also rumored that one of the superheroes was going to be a double agent. Everyone thinks (and wants) it to be Natasha, but I think we need to give the other character a look. To be brutally honest, Bucky fighting at Steve’s side is almost too good to be true. Spider Man is a new character and his motivations are unknown, but if he’s a young teenager who looks up to Tony Stark I doubt he would do anything that gutsy. Scott Lang/Ant-Man might become disillusioned with his superhero idols after watching them fight each other. Maybe Tony does something that Vision disagrees with, but once Vision makes a decision I doubt he would go back on it: he is too much pure goodness.
I would say that Team Iron Man has the advantage as far as technology, but for powers I think they might be even. As for the characters I like I think Captain America’s team took the vast majority of the cool people. However, much remains to be seen about what the actual conflict is and what will really motivate these characters we know and love to take sides.
It’s old news by now that Captain America 3 will be loosely based on the Civil War Story line from Marvel Comics. It has become one of the more highly anticipated non-Avengers movie in the MCU lineup. It is a story line that should see Captain America and his supporters facing off against Iron Man and his supporters. For those that are unfamiliar with the comics story line let me summarize it for you. It starts out with a young superhero group known as The New Warriors. They are superheroes and reality TV stars. On one particular adventure near Stamford, Connecticut, one of the bad guys-Nitro- goes off causing an explosion that destroys miles of the area they are in, killing a bunch of people. Included in that area was a school and 60 kids die. This leads to congress passing the Super Human Registration act, requiring all super humans to register so the government can more closely monitor/control their actions. This also means that their secret identities would become public. At this time, Tony Stark is running SHIELD, and he ends up supporting the act. He believes that someone should be regulating all the super beings and their powers and what they do with them. He is obviously not concerned with his own secret identity (secret identities, with a few exceptions, are not as big a deal in Marvel as they are in DC). Cap opposes the act. He feels like it is taking away the rights of the super powered beings, and even though he has no secret identity, he understands how that is a protection to some of the other heroes. Cap and Iron Man become the de facto leaders of each side and the whole Marvel Universe is split on the issue of super human registration.
Those familiar with this story line in the comics had some idea of how the Civil War movie was going to play out. Obviously, the film was not going to follow the story line exactly, but the broader story could work out. This last week Marvel announced that Captain America: Civil War was beginning principal photography in preparation for its May 2016 release. Along with its announcement that the shooting was beginning, Marvel also announced who was going to be in the film and how the basic story line would play out. You can find all those details here.
If you look at the list, at first glance, it looks like the whole MCU will be in this movie, but there are a few notable names left off the list. Nick Fury, Maria Hill, The Hulk, and Thor are all missing from the list of cast members. Some have called this film “Avengers 2.5,” but it will be a very different Avengers team if these characters will in fact be missing from the film. It looks like Daredevil will also not be making his debut on the big screen with Civil War. Also missing is Spider-Man. The final decision on who will be the MCU’s Spider-Man has not been made, so just because he is not listed here does not mean he won’t be in the film. They are probably waiting to make that announcement separately.
There were also some interesting names on the list. Most intriguing is General Ross. We haven’t seen him since he was hunting after Edward Norton as the Hulk. It’s been a while. What makes his inclusion even more interesting is that Hulk is not on the list. So why is ol’ Thunderbolt going to show up? Maybe we will be seeing a Hulk in the film, he just won’t be green. Martin Freeman is also listed, but not who he is playing. I honestly have no idea who he will be playing in the film. I don’t even know where to begin to guess, but I do wonder if it will be similar to Robert Redford’s character- someone we have never heard of before. Black Panther and Ant-Man are both listed in the film, so it will be interesting to see where they fit in. The other really interesting character is the Winter Soldier. What will his role be in the movie? In any case, it is a very impressive list of characters.
We also get an idea of how the actual story will play out. Instead of the New Warriors being involved in the incident that leads to the Super Human Registration act, it will be the new Avengers team. This makes sense, since we have never seen the New Warriors in the MCU. Plus, from a lot of the rumors we are hearing, the new Avengers will be the primary team in the Infinity War Part 1, so it makes sense to have them working together before that, and this movie is a perfect opportunity to play that out. It will also be interesting to see which of the characters will end up on which side. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out leading into Phase 3, how it will set the phase up and what the after effects will be.
What do you think of the cast and story announced for Civil War? Are you excited to see how it all comes together, or are you afraid it may be too many characters to cram into one movie? Let me know in the comments.
On Monday, Marvel made the news official that they were in fact leading up to the Civil War plot in their Cinematic Universe. The news broke in an article in Variety, detailing how Robert Downey, Jr. was in final talks with the studio to be in Captain America 3, and that the film would be following the Civil War storyline.
For those of you who are not familiar with the Civil War event that took place in the Marvel Universe back in 2006, it was basically a major event that involved every character in the Marvel Universe. Captain America and Iron Man were central to the story because they represented the two opposing views and sides. Basically, the government comes out with the new Superhuman Registration Act (not unlike the Mutant Registration Act), which requires every superhuman to come and register their identity and their powers with the government, then they would essentially become employees of the government, sent in as a high-powered police force whenever needed. Tony Stark gets on board with this act, and as a result he ends up running S.H.I.E.L.D., or what’s left of it at this point, and becomes the guy working with the government to convince others to get on board and to bring in those who don’t. Captain America opposes the Act. He feels it is an infringement of civil rights and individual liberties. He sees secret identities as a protection for the superhumans and doesn’t think they should be forced to give it up. Part of the marvel Universe follows Iron Man, and part of it follows Cap, Cap and his followers are breaking the law, and they become fugitives, and are forced into hiding.
The story was huge in the comics. There are countless Civil War graphic novels that give the account of different heroes during the event, so there is a lot of potential for this storyline to be a whole phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. For sure, Captain America 3 will not be the only movie to deal with this story line, and the Avengers will never be the same after it is over. Some of them may not survive. No one knows for certain how this will all play out, or what Marvel is planning in the end, but it is always fun to speculate. Here are my top 3 theories for how the Civil War story will affect the MCU.
Spider-Man Will Make it into The MCU
Is it a coincidence that we have started to hear rumblings that Marvel and Sony have started talking again about Spider-Man rights right at the same time that we hear Marvel is planning to do the Civil War storyline? For those who are familiar with the story, it should come as no surprise. Captain America and Iron Man are the two big stars and central figures in Civil War, but the next most major role was played out by Spider-Man. He, like many of the characters, was caught in the middle between two men that he has always looked up to. His story was really a way for all of us to relate to what was happening in the storyline, as he had to choose which side he was on. One of the pivotal moments in the event comes when Spider-Man, swayed at this point to get on board with the program, reveals to the world that he is Peter Parker and that he is registering with the government.
Later, Spidey realizes it was a mistake, and ends up joining up with Cap to fight against the Registration Act. One of the things that makes Spider-Man so great is that he is so easy for the every-man to relate to. He is really just an average guy who happens to have super powers. As you read his story, he is trying to cut through all the confusion of super heroes on such opposite sides. He almost represents us in the story and sees the conflict almost through our eyes. Marvel could accomplish this with another character, and they might have to, but this may be the reason that the two sides have begun talking about it again.
Thanos and the Infinity Gems Might Bring them All Back Together
Remember this guy?
Marvel revealed that they had plans for Thanos when he showed up at the end of The Avengers. I, along with everyone else, thought he would be the big bad in Avengers 2. Right up until the y announced the name of the movie as Age of Ultron. They like to keep us guessing, those marvel guys. It became apparent again that they must have plans for him, as he appears in Guardians of the Galaxy. This latest news makes it seem that it will be a while before we see the Titan in an Avengers film. He plays no role in the Civil War story line, a story line where there is no traditional villain. I can’t imagine that Civil War will be contained in just Captain America 3, or that it will be wrapped up in time for an Infinity Gauntlet story in Avengers 3. I think Civil War will start in Cap 3 and go through Avengers 3. The Thanos/Infinity Gauntlet story will happen next, giving the heroes a really big bad to get united against, and bring everybody back together and begin the healing process. It may be Avengers 4 before we see the super team square off against Thanos.
Cap’s Not Going to Make it
In the aftermath of the Civil War Storyline, in the comics, Cap is in S.H.I.E.L.D. custody, and he gets assassinated as he is being brought in.
His old partner, Bucky Barnes, recently back from the dead in the Winter Soldier storyline, steps in and takes up the Captain America title. Could this also happen in the movies? We know Chris Evans is under contract through Avengers 3. After that, who knows. It could be that Marvel is just not planning on having him continue, but it could also be that they just haven’t signed him to any more contracts yet. Sebastian Stan, on the other hand is signed on to appear in multiple Marvel films going forward, which might suggest that this is exactly the direction that Marvel is headed. If that’s the case, Captain America may be in Avengers 4, to possibly battle Thanos, but Steve Rogers won’t be.
All of these are of course, just theories. It’s fun to speculate, but take it all with a grain of salt. One important thing to remember is that the Variety article states that the studio and Robert Downey, Jr. are only in talks. They may be final talks, but nothing is confirmed yet, and without Stark, the Civli War storyline can’t work, so they may have to go in a completely different direction for Cap 3, or have it only be at the very end and lead into it in Avengers 3. Who knows for sure. It is exciting, though. I really enjoyed the Civil War event in the comics. It was interesting and different, so I am looking forward to that playing out in the films.
What are your thoughts on the announcement? How do you think it will affect your favorite heroes in the MCU?