The third episode of Marvel’s latest live-action series, “The Falcon And The Winter Soldier”, has just arrived on Disney+, and with this being the midpoint of the season, everything is falling into place.
This episode sees Sam and Bucky head to a maximum-security prison to speak to Zemo about how to track down the Flag Smashers, who have hold of the super-soldier serum.
As you might expect, this leads to a prison breakout, and it’s now revealed that Zemo is a rich baron with his own private jet, so it’s off they all go to the infamous pirate Asian city of Madripoor. The city looks like a mixture of Shanghai, Tokyo, New York and Hong Kong, all blended together into a huge metropolis of bright neon lights, glass skyscrapers and dirty side streets. It’s a lived-in city that brings some realism into the MCU.
It really looks like a beautiful city and did remind me a lot of the Shanghai skyline, and with the series taking part in many locations around the globe, it only adds to the big-budget adventure feel of this series.
As with the previous episodes, this one also has some big action scenes that are movie quality, though they are kept a little short. It’s a much more gritty and down to earth fight sequence, especially when Sharon Carter is involved, since she’s just a talented former agent who could give UFC fighter Georges St-Pierre a run for his money with her MMA skills.
Our new Captain America, John F Walker, only has a couple of scenes in this film and continue to show his frustrations, since he isn’t getting the respect he thinks he deserves by being “Captain America”. It’s also setting up his superpower origin story nicely.
It’s interesting how the series is trying to portray the “Flag Smashers” and Karli Moreganthau, sympathetically. Since they are trying to be noble, stealing to give to the poor and needy, who have struggled since the beginning of the blip and feel left behind, it’s an interesting take, since the line between hero and villain in this series is very blurred.
The final moments in this episode also nicely tie up Bucky’s connection with Wakanda, which will undoubtedly have a bigger impact on future episodes and the MCU as a whole.
This episode of “Falcon and the Winter Soldier” was delightful, and seeing Zemo interacting with Bucky and Sam throughout is certainly a highlight. It wasn’t where I expected this series to be heading, and being surprised is always a good thing. Though Zemo almost feels like an entirely different character to the one we saw in “Civil War”.
Overall, this episode isn’t as strong as the previous episodes, but we are at the point now where the groundwork has been set up for where this series might be heading. The “Power Broker” is name-dropped enough times throughout the episode to build the suspense over who they are.
We’ve still got half the series to go, but no doubt, things are going to start picking up pace as we head into some final confrontations.
Rating 4 out of 5