An unexpected Avenger features in the series premiere of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. We spent nine episodes of WandaVision waiting for another iconic hero to turn up in Westview, but this second Marvel Studios TV show treats us to a surprise crossover right off the bat, which We Got This Covered told you would happen last week.
Yes, the third Avenger who appears in the Falcon opener is none other than James “Rhodey” Rhodes AKA War Machine. Early on in the episode, Sam is making a speech at a press event at a museum in Washington D.C. where it’s revealed that he’s donating Captain America’s shield instead of using it himself and taking on Steve Rogers’ mantle. Don Cheadle’s Rhodey is then shown to be in the crowd, looking surprised and disappointed in Sam’s decision.
After that, we cut to the duo walking around the museum, which has various costumes and items from Cap’s past on display, with Rhodey gently questioning Sam over his choice. He tries to encourage him to reconsider, but he’s just not ready yet. He’ll have to get over that and fight for the mantle, though, as the end of the episode reveals the government has stolen his donated shield and given it to their own choice for the new Cap – John Walker (Wyatt Russell).
This is likely Cheadle’s only appearance in Falcon, but don’t worry. War Machine will be back in the MCU as he’s getting his own Disney Plus series in the near future. Armor Wars will see Rhodey having to suit up again to foil a currently unknown villain who steals Tony Stark’s tech and plans to use it for their own nefarious purposes. It also seems feasible that the character could show up in the Iron Man-related Ironheart, too.
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier continues next Friday on Disney Plus.