The Falcon and The Winter Soldier is undoubtedly one of the most exciting projects of the MCU Phase 4. The show, released on Disney+ last April, played a crucial role in the web of MCU and provided the fans with an ultimate viewing experience. However, despite critical acclaim, the show could not match the audience levels of fellow Disney+ MCU shows such as Loki and WandaVision. Did it deserve to win more awards than it did? Probably. Here's why we think The Falcon and The Winter Soldier are the most underrated amongst all the MCU canon shows.
The Performances And Chemistry
The casting of this series could well be perfection. Ever since his first appearance on Captain America: The First Avenger, Bucky has gone through one of the most complex journeys. Sebastian Stan shines throughout as Bucky Barnes, a former soldier-turned-assassin, who is finally free and given a second chance at life, yet haunted by his past, and on a quest for redemption.
Anthony Mackie is marvellous as Sam Wilson. As an Avenger contemplating his life choices, fighting injustice, and standing for his family, his performance is top-notch. His story arc builds a strong case that justifies why he is the right candidate to carry the legacy of Captain America. Daniel Brühl unravels an exciting new side of Baron Zemo, and his performance captivates the audience. Wyatt Russell is terrific as John Walker, the Cap we all hate. Both Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan are amazing in their roles as Falcon and the Winter Soldier, thanks to their chemistry and buddy-cop vibe being one of the best parts of the show.
The Falcon and The Winter Soldier is the only show that refreshingly did not go all-out with its magic. Instead, it dared to depict the reality of the contemporary world. Tony Stark's snap was for the greater good, but there is a downside to this. When an elevator gets overcrowded, it stops functioning. As the show asks — what would happen if a planet is overcrowded? How are people in Earth-616 living after its population suddenly doubled?
Winter Soldier is the first to shed light on the consequences of the snap: the uncertainty, the hunger, the politics, and the unrest. It perfectly tied the present-day troubles within a superhero space. Moments like Isaiah Bradley's struggle, and Sam's failed effort to get a loan despite being an Avenger, are so gut-wrenching. The way the makers made the show in line with the current times is remarkable. Moreover, the little bits of humour throughout the series is enjoyable. The scene when Bucky is finally free from his horrific past, Sam's monologue after he becomes Captain America, and Sam's attempt to counsel Carli are just too good.
The Action And Humour
The production values of this show are top-notch. From locations to armour, the detailing is incredible. With its picturesque shots, the Madripoor episode is a visual treat. Each action sequence is spectacular and well-choreographed. The opening sequence in Batroc, Falcon and Bucky vs John Walker, and the dockyard fight in Madripoor will be one of the finest fights in the MCU.
Moreover, the little bits of humour throughout the series is enjoyable. Sam and Bucky's couples therapy, Zemo's dancing, and the dynamic between these three men are lovely to watch.
The Falcon and The Winter Soldier manages to consistently surprise its audience. Dancing Zemo, new Captain America, and a forgotten supersoldier — the show gave us all that we signed up for and much more. The Wakandan connection and the appearance of the Dora Milaje were a surprising dimension to the series. The scene in which John Walker goes berserk and kills a Flag-smasher with the very shield that Steve Rogers donned, keeps you at the edge of your seat.
In addition, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier gave us some exciting cameos. While Don Cheadle and Emily Vancamp reprised their MCU roles in the series, Julia Louis-Dreyfus's Valentina was the most exciting appearance, a significant new entrant into the MCU. The unexpected twists and turns and cameos make this show a gripping watch.
The Cinematic Parallels
With countless comics and MCU references, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier is the ultimate gift for Marvel fanatics. The show offers easter eggs and parallels from The Captain America trilogy and The Avengers movies.
Sharon using the same disguising tech as Natasha, Sam's visit to the Smithsonian, and Bucky keeping a notebook just as Steve did are some of the many parallels. Also, we got Sam's infamous lines such as “On your left!” and “When do we start?” and, of course, the infamous car seat parallel. Bucky is never going to move his seat up!
The show itself is set in the same tone as Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Captain America: The Winter Soldier is of the most remarkable movies of MCU, loved by audience and critics alike, making this show all the more exciting.
The Falcon and The Winter Soldier is a perfect Marvel meal. With spectacular visuals, breathtaking action, an intriguing plot, and a justified ending, this series is a thrilling ride. It is a pathbreaking MCU show that deserves a much better reception than it did.