Now playing on Disney+ Marvel’s The Falcon and The Winter Soldier Episodes 5 and 6. Before we start, check out my previous review of Episode 1, Episode 2, and Episodes 3 and 4. Here’s my review of the explosive (literally) finale!
Whew guys! Marvel knows how to leave you hanging. Marvel’s The Falcon and The Winter Soldier Episodes 5 and 6 are no exception. I hate to say it, my friend was right, Sharon Carter is the “Power Broker” and that is NOT good news friends. Sharon, I’m not mad, just disappointed. Sigh.
We’ll come back to that. 😞
Here’s the recap, and review, of Marvel’s The Falcon and The Winter Soldier Episodes 5 and 6!
Episode 5 opens with our buddy Johnnie Walker running from the scene of the murder to an empty warehouse. His thoughts are whirling with all the adrenaline of what just happened. He’s convinced he had to kill this guy, who was just laying on the ground, no defense. Eerily similar to certain police actions we hear about in the news. 🧐
Just saying 🤷🏽♀️….but I digress.
Sam and Bucky catch up with him, trying to reason with him to give up the shield, but of course, he refuses and a fight ensues. They eventually get the shield back, but this was one of those get-down, drag-out fights where no one came out that mofo without feeling hurt. It’s a great scene, and Bucky even has to save Sam’s life. At one point, John has him pinned and he is about to kill him with the shield again until Bucky comes to and is able to knock him away. The sad part of this scene is they cannot convince him that the guy he killed was not the one who killed Lemar. Karli did. But he needs to keep this lie alive in order to justify murder. And he’s completely delusional thinking he is the embodiment of Captain America. Basically, he lost it.
Subsequently, John is put on trial with the U.S. military, stripped of his title, other than honorable discharge, and all his retirement and pension and rankings are revoked. This scene is key to the struggles of the people who serve in the military. There is not a lot of say from those not in power. There are rules and decisions and that’s that. He tries to speak during the proceedings but is constantly shut down. He makes a good point, that he was trained to be a killer, and that’s how he operates now, so how can they punish him for what they made him to be?
Afterwards, while he and his wife are speaking in the hallway, we get the MOST unbelievable cameo: Julia Louis-Dreyfus!! Her character is named Val (although he’s not allowed to call her that, it’s a thing). She’s a mysterious, cryptic fairy godmother that is here to put him back in the game, and it is still unclear the plans for him. Maybe this is revealed in the comic books, but I have not read them, so I will wait to see where it goes next season. In Episode 6, he is dressed in a black Captain America suit, and I do not have good feelings about where this is going. I honestly thought she was the “Power Broker” at first, but I was wrong.
Still, a living legend with a substantial role, and maybe even a villain! I don’t even care she might be a villain, it’s JULIA!
How many hit TV shows can you be cast in?? I mean, there has to be a quota in Hollywood somewhere. Seriously, who gave her the Midas magic? Anyone?? Can I have some, please??
John later visits Lemar’s family and lies about who killed him. Again, trying to rationalize in his mind that he did not murder a man who was innocent of the crime.
In Zemo’s world, long story short, Bucky finds him at the Sokovia memorial, fakes a gunshot to his head, and actually has the Dora Milaje waiting in the wings to take him to jail. It’s a place called the Raft. Later, you do see that it is actually a raft, in the middle of the ocean. No thanks! Either the fear of confinement or, potentially drowning by any large wave with no shore in sight, would do me in. I would lose my mind, y’all. This is why I don’t mess with crime.
But he ain’t done yet! That spoiler is coming later.
The Dora Milaje still have not forgotten Bucky’s betrayal and advise him to not visit Wakanda for a while. But the you-know-whats on this guy—he has the nerve to still ask this woman for a favor later. She doesn’t say no. 🤷🏽♀️
Just a testament to the inner beauty of these women, this community. Grace, at its finest.
We move back to Sam, back in Baltimore, speaking with Isaiah. This is where things get deep in the feels. It’s a very hard scene to watch, just because of the story of what happened to Isaiah in the military. Unfortunately, it is not unlike many stories of Black men and women who are heroes but treated as second class. He explains how he, and others, were experimented on for the serum, and there were complications. Some died. The story is very much like the story of the Tuskegee airmen. Another beautiful example of how Marvel can thread fiction with reality to make it one story.
Isaiah fought for the country with his brethren. At one point, his guys are caught behind enemy lines and overhears a discussion to blow up the camp where they are imprisoned, to cover up the experiment. But he knows, these are real men, real family, and refuses to let them just be loose ends to tie up. He goes and rescues them, and for that, he is sent to jail for basically the rest of his life. He was married at the time, and they told his wife he was dead. She wrote to him, and they kept the letters, so he was unable to respond. She died not knowing the love of her life was still alive, and he had to spend his life in jail without her. Horrible injustice, and unfortunately, not a unique story, even in reality.
They also torture him, taking his blood to experiment with the super serum. He mentions that a kind nurse had mercy on him and allowed him to escape, while also giving him the box of letters from his wife. Too little, too late, but better than him not having some freedom. He’s been able to lay low and make the government believe he’s dead. Unfortunately, his history, along with the history of his Black brothers has been wiped from the history books.
He condemns Sam for even thinking of taking the Captain America title and shield. For the very same reason Muhammad Ali refused the draft, why should Sam defend a country that doesn’t defend him as a Black man. THIS is why people kneel during the anthem. And this is also why a lot of White people are upset to see it, because they cannot understand that their ancestors have been allowed to be free, not the African ones. A lot of White faces have replaced the Black and Brown faces who truly made history. The inventors, fighters, heroes, and servants who gave their time and lives. They were made to look like the supporting roles, not having any original thoughts or movements, for so many historical events. Or, they were just left out completely so future generations would never know their contributions.
Thankfully, Sam redeems this injustice by getting Isaiah’s statue into the Smithsonian, right next to Steve’s exhibit. He’s able to show Isaiah that he, and his brothers, did not give their lives in vain. This is now the time where it is safe to tell their story, and it will not be swept under the rug.
This is so symbolic for our current times, the year of 2020, “perfect vision”. People do not want to be hidden any longer, they do not want to be silenced. So we are perfecting our collective vision. Revealing what needs to be revealed, unearthing what needs to be unearthed, giving long-awaited credit where it is due. As difficult as it is to see innocents sacrificed, or to learn about what could have been prevented to save lives long after it was too late to save them, this is a good thing. A time of awakening. You can read about this discussion in my article about the George Floyd case verdict.
Sam returns home, decides to restore his parents’ boat, and Bucky shows up to help. He also brings a mystery gift from Wakanda, which will be revealed later as the new Captain America suit.
Side note: Bucky seems to have loved his time in Wakanda because he and Sarah, Sam’s sister, are flirting, BIG TIME!! I love this wholeheartedly. 😂
Sam, still struggling with his conversation about the shield with Isaiah, wakes up one morning to see his young nephews playing with it. And he sees that he has to be an example for them. He realizes he has to show them they deserve the chance to be heroes for this country. He has to fight for them to be able to succeed. That’s what any positive movement for the progression of a people has always been about, right? Well, cue the Rocky montage!! Sam practices his fight skills with the shield.
I couldn’t resist.
In the finale of Marvel’s The Falcon and The Winter Soldier Episodes 5 and 6, we see that Sharon has hired Batroc, the hostage taker from the first episode, to help Karli and the Flag Smashers. The larger plan is that they are going to attack the GRC (Global Repatriation Council) vote to enforce the borders around the world. Since the “blip” they want to return people to their countries of origin and give back the homes to the people who were gone. Which means millions of people will be displaced and homeless.
Sam, Bucky, and Sharon all show up to the meeting in New York. The Smashers create a diversion with gas bombs to rush the GRC leaders to armored trucks outside. But they have someone on the inside who locks them in the trucks and the Flag Smashers take out the original drivers and gain control. During this time, Bucky is fighting Batroc as a distraction while the Smashers escape.
The Smashers believe Karli’s plan is to hold them hostage, but actually she plans to set the trucks on fire, with the leaders inside, as an example. During this time, Sam comes in to reveal his new white Captain America/Falcon suit. He and Bucky fight with Karli and the Smashers until they can get the leaders away from them safely.
At one point, some of the hostages are on a helicopter. Sam is able to use his small Redwing assistant to analyze and find the pilot amongst the hostages. While he gets the Smasher pilot out of the helicopter, she jumps in and lands the helicopter safely. During a scene where one of the trucks is about to fall down into a big construction ditch, Sam is trying to hold it from falling. But surprisingly, John Walker steps in to help, somewhat redeeming himself.
In the final showdown, Batroc, Karli, and Sharon have a standoff. He realizes Sharon is the “Power Broker” and demands more money. Karli realizes Sharon hired Batroc to spy on her, and it all ends with Batroc dead, and Sharon shot.
Sam enters, unaware that Sharon is the “Power Broker” backing the Smashers. While talking to Karli about backing down, she attacks him, but he won’t fight her. It’s revealed, through her emotions, that Karli is just an angry, scared kid. She didn’t really want to go to the lengths she did to take down the GRC, she just needed to be heard. And millions of others are in her same position. She begs Sam to fight her, and he won’t, because he sees this in her, and wants her to release this pent up anger. She’s not really a villain. During the fight, Sharon has to shoot her to save Sam’s life, and she later dies.
After saving the GRC leaders, Sam is in full view of the world on camera phones. He confronts the leaders about their decision to enforce the borders with soldiers. He explains if they do not come up with another plan, they get another Karli who won’t be as easy to defeat. She has power, because people believe in her cause. A previous scene in Central Park shows Karli meeting with Batroc. She speaks into her phone and half the people in the park just stand up, revealing how vast the Smashers support is. Very eerie scene.
Sam also has to confront the paradox of being the new Captain America, the Black Captain America. He realizes he will be viewed as a traitor to some Black and Brown people, but he says, we built this country, so we should defend what we built. Frankly, I personally have never heard someone argue that point before, and I do not disagree. He also realizes that there will be opposition from White America too, but he will still serve.
I told you Zemo wasn’t going away! The Smasher super soldiers are caught and handcuffed, being escorted into an armored car. Aaaaaand then it explodes. Cut to Zemo on the phone with his butler telling him job well done. He has done the work he set out to do, rid the world of super soldiers. Welp, apparently, he didn’t get the memo about John Walker being the new guy in town. I have a feeling this is the last we see of Zemo. But what do I know??!!
Also, Bucky finally finishes his amends list, and tells his friend Yori that he was the one who killed his son as the Winter Soldier. There’s no coming back from that, so Bucky leaves town, and is back with Sam, helping with the family boat business.
Lastly, the teaser for next season shows Sharon at a U.S. government hearing. She is pardoned and her agent status is renewed, along with VERY high government clearance—thanks to Sam.
Hold the applause. 🤚🏽
As she leaves, she’s on the phone ready to sell all U.S. secrets and weapons to the highest bidder.
Again, thanks to Sam. 🙄🤦♂️
It’s been a ride folks, see you next season!!
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