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Captain America: The Winter Soldier Trailer Breakdown

Gavin Gronenthal ’16 / Emertainment Monthly Staff

The trailer for the new Captain America movie exploded onto the Internet last week, and brought a ton of questions and a ton of excitement. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you wait for the Winter Soldier to strike in April.  And remember, potential SPOILERS follow!

Captain America 1
Something completely different.

One of the most important things to remember, and something they definitely showcased in this trailer, is that this is a huge departure from the first Captain America movie. Sure, a few things are still there: Captain America (Chris Evans) is still very much Cap, and he still works for the military, but the similarities stop there really. Almost the entire supporting cast has been replaced (note “almost,” we’ll get to that later) and we’re obviously in modern times. Unlike either of the Iron Man sequels or the upcoming Thor sequel, this movie is almost completely on its own.

Crossbones: Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D?
Crossbones: Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D?

In the opening of the trailer, where Cap jumps out of a plane with no parachute, one of the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents who remarks about it is actor Frank Grillo (right, above), who is also playing the villainous character known as Crossbones. In the comics, Crossbones was one of two characters who shot and killed Steve Rogers, but here it appears he’s working as a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent. Could this be a change in character, or foul play afoot?

Related: Agents of Shield: Welcome to Level Seven

The Game
The Game

The trailer also showcased Robert Redford’s character Alexander Pierce, who seems to be very different from his comic universe counterpart. In the comics, Pierce is a sleeper agent for S.H.I.E.L.D. who infiltrated Hydra for Nick Fury. Here, with the statement “you know how the game works,” it seems that Pierce is in a bit of a power struggle with Fury over control of S.H.I.E.L.D. If you look at it that way, this is basically a political action movie but with more superheroes.

Freedom or Fear?
Freedom or Fear?

One of the best lines of the entire trailer–and one everyone should remember–is Cap telling Fury that what S.H.I.E.L.D. is doing isn’t freedom, but fear. This is the proof that Captain America is not going to change with the times, which is exactly what this movie needs. That line alone represents that Cap is not the American government but the ideals of America, and it should give you confidence that this movie can still give you the feel of our star spangled hero even without the World War II backdrop.

Nick Fury: Hospitalized?
Nick Fury: Hospitalized?

In a scene early on in the trailer, we see Cap and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) looking into an operating room. Later, we see the Winter Soldier (more on him later) shooting an explosive device at the bottom of Nick Fury’s car.  If you can’t already guess, it looks like something ugly is going to happen to Fury during the course of this movie, and Cap will have to spring into action. Could Alexander Pierce be involved? We’ll have to wait and see.

A new look.
A new look.

Something that most people will notice is Captain America’s new look, one that doesn’t feature the star spangled part of his uniform. This is actually taken from Cap’s time as Director of S.H.I.E.L.D, when he wasn’t even Captain America but was instead going by Steve Rogers: Super Soldier. That may be important, but it may just be an overall costume change for America’s golden boy. Looks pretty good, too!

Falcon flies.
Falcon flies.

This is also the first time that we’re seeing Anthony Mackie in action as Sam Wilson, aka The Falcon. Here, it looks like their changing his origin from former criminal to S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, which is fitting seeing as the movie revolves around Cap’s relationship to the agency. Falcon is an essential part of Captain America lore, and is basically Cap’s partner on most of his missions. This is also Marvel’s first black superhero (we all love Nick Fury, but he’s not really a superhero), which is a big deal, and if all goes well he’ll hopefully be a major part of Avengers: Age of Ultron.

Lots of Black Widow.
Lots of Black Widow.

Throughout the entire trailer, Scarlett Johansson shows up as Black Widow, clearly showing that this is not a character that will be playing second banana to Captain America. Marvel even said that the deadly assassin is so heavily featured that it almost becomes a movie with two main characters, even though Cap gets the title. It’s also important to note that in the comics, Black Widow has a long standing relationship with The Winter Soldier (gasp!), so will that come into play again here? Will we finally see what the red in Widow’s ledger is?

The universe.
The universe.

With a lasting shot of one of the helicarriers crashing down, this trailer shows not only is this a Captain America movie, but it’s a Marvel movie. Iron Man may have to deal with the Mandarin, and Thor can fight the dark Elves, but here Cap is not only fighting the Winter Soldier, he is literally fighting for the Marvel Universe itself. This looks to be the most connected Marvel movie since the Avengers, and that is sure to have dire consequences.

NOTE: The final entry has major potential spoilers.

The Winter Soldier.
The Winter Soldier.

For those of you who don’t already know this from casting, comics, or the Internet, the identity of The Winter Soldier is none other than Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan), Cap’s former sidekick and best friend from World War II! In the comics, Bucky almost follows the reverse of Captain America, as he is picked up by the Russians after falling off of a moving missile and then is brainwashed into becoming an assassin for them, receiving a new cybernetic arm and teaming up with former KGB agent Black Widow. Whether that is the case or not remains to be seen, but one thing is for sure: he’s armed, he’s dangerous, and he is ready to put up a fight with his old friend.

With so many things packed into this trailer, we can’t help but be excited. The directors Anthony and Joe Russo are mostly know for directing episodes of Arrested Development and Community, so nervousness ensued upon their announcement. But now that the absolutely action packed trailer has hit, there’s nothing left but excitement. Tell us what you think in the comments below, and remember, Captain America: The Winter Soldier comes out April 4, 2014.

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