Even though there’s been no shortage of set photos making their way online over the last six or seven months, Marvel Studios are keeping plot details for The Falcon and the Winter Soldier firmly under wraps, which is proving to be infuriating for fans, as they’ve already seen the Disney Plus exclusive delayed until 2021.
So far, all we know is that Sam and Bucky will be up against the returning Zemo, with speculation pointing in the direction of the villain assembling the Thunderbolts to do his bidding. Writer Derek Kolstad recently dropped the intriguing hint that some characters from the very earliest Marvel Cinematic Universe movies could return, too, and a new theory has now put forward a prime candidate.
As per ScreenRant, Captain America: The First Avenger‘s Dum Dum Dugan might be one of the names in question. The mustachioed Howling Commando was played by Neal McDonough, who went on to reprise the role in episodes of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Carter. And as a former associate of Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes, it wouldn’t be too difficult to imagine the title duo tracking him down.
“Dugan could have a key part to play if he does return in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” writes the outlet. Regardless of how the show approaches the situation with his age, he could provide a much-needed link to Bucky’s past. The only character in the show with a prior relationship with Bucky confirmed to be in the show is Falcon (Anthony Mackie), but their history is very limited. Bucky’s story in the series could benefit from the addition of a character who truly knows him and the person he was before becoming the Winter Soldier. With Steve no longer in the picture, the character best-suited for fulfilling this purpose is Dum Dum Dugan.
Of course he’d be pretty old by now, but Dugan is one of the few remaining characters in the MCU with a direct connection to Bucky’s past, and could be used as a way to add more layers and depth to his backstory, while also informing The Falcon and the Winter Soldier‘s central narrative.
Isiah Bradley is also rumored to appear in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and if Dum Dum Dugan shows up as well, then that provides two veterans with extensive knowledge of both Steve Rogers and the super soldier program, and they could deliver some sage wisdom as Sam gets to grips with the weight of carrying the shield.