We Need To Talk About John Walker
It's been almost 3 weeks since the finale of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier on Disney+ and, like my angst with Sharon Carter, I still have some feelings and thoughts about John Walker that are actually consuming me. Like any Marvel fan, I need to just rant about it to feel better. So enjoy my final thoughts on John Walker from The Falcon and The Winter Soldier finale.
Since his introduction in the last few seconds of the first episode, fans, myself included, absolutely hated John Walker. This man didn't speak a single word until episode 2. All he did was wink, and the Marvel fanbase just collectively agreed that we were not going to vibe with this basic white man. John was a very wishy-washy role in a sense that we could never get a true read on his character. There were times where I felt bad for him. Then there were other times where I felt guilty for feeling empathy because he was such a freaking power hungry jerk.
I think the worst part about his character was his determination to prove that he could be Captain America. This man thought that he needed the Super Soldier Serum to truly become The Star Spangled Man. If you think that, then you should never hold the title anyway. Steve Rodgers was a great Captain America because he was a good man, not because he was "suped-up" on some experimental drugs. John's struggle to be as good, or better than, Steve is dangerous. He's only flaunting his toxic masculinity and insecurities. This is what can make John's future as the US Agent, a little scary.
In the last bits of the final episode, it was revealed that Valentina's true intentions with Walker was to use him as the US Agent. In the comics, John Walker is historically know as a conservative. Although, he isn't such a bad guy. He's went on to lead a few Avengers teams, and fight alongside several other Superhero organizations in Marvel Comics. As for the MCU though, John Walker may get to continue on his path of injustice. We can assume from Valentina's words and actions in the series, that she may not be so trustworthy. With John in a vulnerable state, desperate to prove his validity as a United States hero, Val is definitely going to take advantage of him. Giving him his role as the US Agent, I am assuming the MCU is going to turn to the direction of the storyline that was presented in Captain America: Sam Wilson #11. To roughly summarize this comic, Sam Wilson was no longer deemed fit to carry the shield by the US Senate. The Senate then reached out to John to approach Sam, and take back the shield. Eventually, John realized that confronting Sam was not the right thing to do as he admitted that the shield should in fact belong to Sam. This makes me wonder if Valentina will implant this idea in John's head in the MCU's future, and have him go rogue after the new Captain America before he eventually comes to his senses.
Whatever your thoughts may be about John Walker's character, we can agree that Wyatt Russell did an outstanding job portraying him. To essentially introduce a new character to fans in this massively established franchise, and make them feel for him as much as we need, truly speaks wonders for his ability and skill as an actor. Whatever John Walker's future may be in the MCU, I'll be excited to see what Wyatt will continue to bring to his character - good or bad.
You can stream the entirety of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier on Disney+ now!