From almost the second The Falcon and the Winter Soldier was announced, long before a single shred of plot information had been revealed, fans were convinced that the final episode was going to end with Sam Wilson becoming the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s new Captain America, paying off his interaction with Steve Rogers at the conclusion of Avengers: Endgame.
On that front, they weren’t left disappointed, but up until the finale, the series was focused on the larger notion of legacy. Sam was so reluctant to accept the shield in the first place that he ended up giving it away, only for the government to hand it straight to John Walker. Bucky Barnes wasn’t pleased with the decision, and Isaiah Bradley didn’t care in the slightest, but it all worked out in the end.
However, in a new interview, Mackie admitted that he wasn’t sold on the idea at first, though based on the myriad of comments he’s made since officially assuming the mantle, he’s clearly embraced his status as the MCU’s resident star-spangled superhero.
“We never talked about that when the pitch of the show came about it. It was more so about the continuation about what was gonna happen with the shield, if it was gonna be Bucky or if it was gonna be Sam, Because at the end, Sam didn’t accept the shield. He told Steve, ‘It feels like this is someone else’s, it feels like it’s yours’. So at no point in time was he excited or looking forward to the idea of becoming Captain America.
So it was more so Kevin Feige and Nate Moore telling me, ‘We’re not sure what’s happening, so the show will be more about the idea or the archetype of Captain America, not you becoming Captain America’. So I was really confused leaving out of the meeting. But I wasn’t excited either. I hated the idea. I thought it was gonna be an awful idea.”
It’s an understandable reaction, when Chris Evans had become so intrinsically linked to the role over the course of his decade-long tenure, and there was always the chance audiences would reject the proposition of somebody else stepping into his shoes. The fact that folks were celebrating the one-month anniversary of Mackie becoming Captain America would certainly indicate that it was the right call in hindsight, and the actor is now fully established as the new Cap, with a solo outing announced to be in development the very same day The Falcon and the Winter Soldier‘s finale dropped on Disney Plus – so he’s clearly in it for the long haul.