An MCU Theory Proves Steve Roger’s Legacy Was Never His Entirely

The world of Captain America in the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been one that seemed incredibly complex on the surface and has gained even more layers as the years went on. In the beginning, the shield and Steve Rogers represented patriotism and freedom for all, and even when he got out of the ice, that sentiment was reignited. He’s been a movement for decades in his world and inspired countless heroes in that time, but the dark truth about the hero is that his legacy is anything but heroic and hardly even Steve’s anymore.

The main era that this became evident was during the time that Steve was believed to be dead. This was a time when the world had to decipher what its next steps would be without an icon as impactful as Steve. While civilians were hurting emotionally, the government was more so concerned with the assets lost when Steve went on the ice, especially since Hydra took over. As a result, SHIELD and Hydra immediately began work on reigniting the Super Soldier Program and did so with unlikely test subjects, like Isaiah Bradley.

Isaiah was given these tests against his will and was the only one who took to their serum in a way that didn’t deform or kill him. Because of this, he was sent on a mission to eliminate the Winter Soldier during the Korean War. However, when he failed, he was imprisoned and forgotten until Sam Wilson rediscovered him and gave him the respect he deserved for his heroism. Because of this, even though Isaiah was technically the second Captain America, he was more of a guinea pig for the higher-ups, as they likely put his race into focus as to why he couldn’t be given the hero’s welcome he deserved. Instead, someone else likely took his place.

Since it was never confirmed, it could’ve been yet another test at a super soldier, and this Captain America was more traditional in costuming when he took on the Red Guardian. In Black Widow, Red Guardian regaled his fellow prisoners with a story about how he defeated Captain America using his own shield. While it seemed like a tall tale used to gain respect from the prisoners, Alexei continued to ask Natasha if Steve remembered him from their battle. Since Nat knew Steve and was there when he was thawed, she knew he never fought Alexei, meaning that the Cap he fought was likely a top-secret and final attempt to make the perfect, government-sanctioned Captain America.

Following this era, Steve would be thawed some decades later, and following his retirement, the government again faced the opportunity to control the legacy with a Cap they could command. This was when John Walker came into the picture, and while he didn’t have the serum at first, he was physically at his peak and ready to serve and take orders no matter what. Moreover, he brought with him a sense of safety tailored by those in charge that made people feel safe on the surface but revealed a man just unsure of himself underneath the suit.

Ultimately, the shadowy timeline of Captain America’s legacy has shown that Steve was truly the exception to the rule because he couldn’t be ordered or controlled. He wasn’t made by a government; he was always himself and given power by a man who wanted a good person in charge. But because there was only one Steve, anyone who came after either never got to shine or paled in comparison. This was because, without Steve, Captain America was seemingly gone, and anyone who took his place in the public, like John Walker, didn’t know how to be their own hero. Thankfully Sam Wilson has proven that when people in power demand control, it’s important to give that control to someone who will look them in the eye and say “no.”

Leave a Comment