In WandaVision we got a pretty deep dive into the trauma Wanda and others faced after the events in Avengers: Endgame. Now with the arrival of The Falcon And The Winter Soldier, we’re seeing a different side of the fallout. It’s one that showcases a lot more traditional Marvel-style action, but still has the focus on the emotional struggles of the characters.
In the case of Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) and Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie), both are men with military experience who then faced down world-ending villains with the Avengers. Those things would have an obvious effect on one’s mental health. “The whole subject of PTSD and the experience that they both share, as soldiers, as men who have served, it’s one of the things that brings them together,” says Stan. “PTSD is not something that just sort of ‘poof’ you’re done with. It’s really something that one has to continue to grow with and become better at dealing with. It’s a major part of the show, and it grounds both of these characters in very realistic ways.”
With six episodes, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier gives opportunities that aren’t there in a traditional Marvel film. President of Marvel Studios Kevin Feige has always considered the human side to the superhero to be the most interesting. “What’s great about the Marvel characters is is their flaws.” This new Disney+ series allows a deeper dive into Bucky and Sam than we have ever had in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. “There has been a lot of trauma for these characters over the years and you can easily forget that or brush that under the carpet because there are sparkly portals opening and people cheering and Iron Man punching a flying lizard,” says Feige. “We think about what if we were those characters? What if we lived this? There would be horrific elements to that that would have repercussions years down the line, and that is really fun to explore.”
You can watch this story unfold when The Falcon and The Winter Soldier premieres on March 19, 2021 on Disney+, with new episodes following weekly.