Welcome to the Heavy Spoilers show. I’m your host, Paul, aka The Man, The Myth, and The Mephisto, and in this video, we’re breaking down episode 4 of Falcon and the Winter Soldier.
After a thrilling season, we’re finally getting all of the pieces falling into place, and there’s a lot of plot theories, Easter eggs, and things you missed that we’re going to be talking about in this video.
Before that, though, I just want to point out an Easter egg. I got sent by Logan Kelly 13 on Instagram, who pointed out that in the museum in episode 1, we see a photo of Steve holding the taxi door with the star on it. If we jump back to Captain America: The First Avenger, we can actually see the person who took this photo standing in the crowd, showing that it’s all connected.
It’s all connected.
THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER EPISODE 4 BREAKDOWN
Last week saw Sam and Bucky free Zemo in order to track down the origins of the brand new and improved Super Soldier Serum, and this led them to Madripoor. After learning it was the Power Broker all along, they were reunited with Sharon Carter, who seemed more suspicious than Tom Holland trying to keep a secret.
We also got a small clip of Zemo busting out dance moves that would make Star Lord and Justin Hammer evacuate the dance floor.
Earlier in the week, the actor behind him, Daniel Bruhl, revealed that he actually did a longer dance but that Marvel cut it down, and after fans united and got #ReleaseTheZemoCut trending, they dropped an hour-long version of it last night.
I sat through the entire thing seventy-five times. I don’t give a f***.
There was also a road sign on the embassy that a lot of people commented on as a nod to the X-men, and I actually drove around throughout the week looking for this on the road. I got the wife to take a photo of it, and as you can see, it clearly confirms that the X-men exist in the Heavy Spoilers universe too.
We ended with a cliffhanger and saw that Ayo had been sent from Wakanda to bring Zemo in. Before you could say, ‘Wakanda sh*t is this? we cut to Black Panther’s music.
Now episode 4 starts off with a flashback to Wakanda, where we see Ayo initiating the brainwashing words on Bucky to see if he can retain control of his consciousness. During this, we cut to flashes of both the Civil War and Captain America the Winter Soldier to see the times when these words were used on him to hurt people. There’s flashes of the Starks and his many attacks in The Winter Soldier, and we get the feeling that he’s haunted by it all. Over the top of these moments, we can also hear the winter soldier theme, but alongside the clips of him snapping out of it, this music changes to subtly hint to us that he is finally free. You can really see why he has such an attachment to Ayo, who, in many ways, broke him out of his enslavement.
Now I love how we go from this statement of Ayo stating how you could free him to then asking Bucky how he could free Zemo. Shuri is named as King T’Chaka, and you really get the feeling of betrayal that the Wakandan feel. After all, they helped Bucky, and he has now sided with the murderer who killed their king. After giving him a deadline of 8 hours, Ayo leaves Bucky to return to their place in Latvia.
Now, I forgot to mention last week that in the Marvel Universe, this is actually a neighbouring country to Latveria, aka The Home of Doctor Doom. Whether he or this pops up or not remains to be seen, but it is an interesting location to choose. The trio learns of Karli’s attack last week, and Zemo goes off on a monologue about how the idea of the Super Soldier always leads to supremacy.
This is actually very similar to something that Flagsmasher said in Sam Wilson’s Captain America, and during a run-in with an LMD version of him in the comics, he discussed nationalism. Flagsmasher said that believing one’s country is supreme means that you believe others who are part of it do not deserve the same rights. He proposed that nationalism always leads to fascism, and this was something that was prominent in Germany during the Second World War. They believed that the Ayran was the supreme race and even referred to them as the Superman. Characteristics of the Aryans included blond hair and blue eyes, characteristics that both Steve Rogers and John Walker have. Juxtaposing this, the flagsmashers are made up of people who don’t possess them, and thus they’re in direct opposition. This too has led to them going off on their own path of radicalization, and with both opposing sides wanting their way, it means we are destined for a path of war.
Whereas John Walker operates with help from the government, the flagsmashers do not, and we join them out in the wilderness. It turns out that after the attack, the GRC has put in place something known as the Patch Act, which will create stricter borders. In episode one, we discovered that the flagsmashers wanted open ones, so this is very much against their goals, and it’s all Karli’s fault.
Stricter borders lead to empowered police, and I very much get the feeling of escalation throughout this entry as we watch each side participate in more and more violent acts in order to beat the other.
Sam, Bucky, and Zemo arrive at the Flagsmasher base, and the former quickly realises it’s their base of operation due to the red handprint. This is actually based on the Hamsa, which we see Karli holding in this episode.
The hamsa is meant to bring its owner happiness, luck, health, and good fortune. However, it also acts as a defence against the evil eye. Eyes have appeared in the season at several points, namely episode 3, when we saw a sign in Madripoor that said the Power Broker was watching you.
This was a play on the saying Big Brother Is Watching You, and with the Hamsa inclusion as part of the Flagsmasher’s logo, it subtly lets us know that the two sides are in opposition to one another.
THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER EPISODE 4 TITLE EXPLAINED – “THE WHOLE WORLD IS WATCHING”
The episode itself is called The Whole World is Watching, and this very much sets up the ending, which we’ll talk about later on.
Now the refugees displaced here have been let down by the GRC, and it’s clear that after the snap six months ago, their priorities have changed. As we theorised, the population being downsized due to the snap would’ve led to more opportunities in work, travel, and homes. For example, if all of the middle management in a company got snapped, then the people at the bottom would be able to ascend faster and take their jobs, leading to their gaining a better quality of life.
These people have united behind Karli, and though she may be going about it the wrong way, it’s clear she wants to help people other than herself.
After learning of Donya’s funeral and not telling Sam and Bucky, I have to ask them: Does Donya wish you didn’t trust Zemo so much?
Ey, having that.
This causes Bucky to lose it, but he calms down, and Zemo asks if he wants some cherry blossom tea. This could be a reference to Cherry Blossom, who just so happened to work for an organisation known as the Hand. Speaking of hands, mine is actually hurting because that’s the biggest reach I’ve ever made.
Cut to Shady Sharon, and we see that she has several goons on her side. Now, a lot of people have theorised that Sharon is the power broker, but personally, I don’t believe it, as Zemo did say that he knew the villain before he was jailed, which was during the time that she was operating as Agent 13. However, she does seem to have connections to him and is able to lend a satellite to Sam for surveillance, showing how high up she is.
It is even possible that Sharon has had Super Soldier serum injections too, as she was doing a lot of things in that fight that would be difficult for a normal person to pull off.
The antagonist is furious after Nagel was killed because he was the golden goose, and we cut to Karli, who still has the super soldier serum he’s after. Now this gravestone belongs to one of the members grandfathers, who we learn was a World War IIresistance fighter. He clearly instilled in his grandson a positive image of Captain America, and we very much get the idea that Karli could become the next one because of her beliefs and values. He states that Captain America should look like and represent the people that are forgotten; however, she says it’s a relic of a bygone era and wants to destroy it.
This is something that Sam reiterated last time, subtly hinting to us that he too possesses the values that are needed right now and letting us know that he is worthy.
In Latvia, Walker and Battlestar track down the trio, and before he loses his temper, Wilson tells him to stop being weird. I love Wyatt’s portrayal in this show, and you really feel like the guy could lose it in any second. He’s very Homelander, in my opinion, and I’m on edge almost every time he’s on screen.
Walker gives them ten minutes to apprehend Karli at the funeral, and this adds another time limit to a show that’s already full of time limits. Karli gives a speech that distils her beliefs, and this echos Sharon’s at Peggy’s funeral. Clearly, Donya was another maternal figure that everyone has respect for. She’s a really complex anti-hero, and we can see why she’s very much viewed as a Robin Hood figure.
Now outside, Walker starts to get impatient, and though we believed that he already had the Super Soldier serum within him, it’s been revealed that he didn’t.
This is in opposition to the comics and the entire Power Broker plot line from the source material.
Now I think it’s safe to say that The Power Broker is slowly becoming the new big bad of the series, and though US Agent is clearly going to be somewhat of an antagonist too, the former is the palpatine of this show.
The mantle has been taken up by several characters, and originally the villain was a businessman known as Curtiss Jackson. Not him. His goal was to run a criminal organisation as if it were a respectable business, and after meeting with Dr. Karl Malus, the pair formed a company called Power Broker Incorporated that they operated under. Malus appeared in Sam Wilson’s Captain America, which this show also heavily pulls from, and it looks like they’re bringing together multiple arcs and runs in order to tell this adaptation.
Power Broker Inc. ended up showing superhuman abilities to clients, and he was behind empowering US agents, Demolition Man—no, not that one—and several members of the UCWF.
In the comics, Jackson used his own procedures on himself, and in doing so, he grew muscles to the point that he was actually unable to move. Jackson later became confined to a mechanical suit but was still heavily hampered by his new-found augmentations.
More recently, another character has taken up the mantle, and this Power Broker wears a battle suit that allows him to fire blasts of energy from his hands. But can he fire up the dancefloor with his hands? Absolutely not.
So they are going against that by the looks of it and having Walker completely disconnected from him, though maybe he’s double-dipping and already has it.
We discover that Karli and co. were actually ousted from their positions as soon as people returned, and it speaks to how the GRC only wanted them when they provided use. I actually loved seeing Sam and Karli, and though this episode has been slower-paced in terms of action, it does paint out people’s politics and ideologies.
Though Karli doesn’t believe she’s a supremacist, she does state later on that she believed she’d be chosen, which is something throughout history that many have said.
No one believes they are the bad guys, and Sam actually agrees with Karli on several levels; he just can’t comprehend how she’s doing it.
Walker arrives and messes things up, and Zemo escapes after undoing his handcuffs. He of course wants to wipe out soldiers across the world because he believes that it leads to supremacy, and he gets the jump on her.
Zemo destroys the super soldier serum remnants, and Walker takes one of the vials, leading to him likely using it on himself. Clearly, the pressure is getting too much for him, and he believes that he needs to take it to keep up with things.
There is a parallel conversation in the episode in which both Sam and Walker discuss whether they would take the Super Soldier serum or not. Sam states he wouldn’t and does so definitively, whereas Walker convinces himself that it’s the right thing to do, even though we know so far it’s created nothing but misery.
This is true to the comics, as he of course ended up with it, whereas Sam never took it, even when he was Captain America. Walker feels completely inadequate, and due to his past, namely the hypocrisy that comes with war, he decides that it is right to take it.
As Erskine said, the serum enhances what’s already there, so taking it if you’re bad will make you super bad.
Walker shows up and wants to go toe to toe with Sam, showing how opressive he is and that, unlike the latter, he will never talk it out with anyone. They’re saved from going at it by Dora Milaje, who kicks the crap out of Walker and Battlestar, further driving home why he will feel the need to take the serum.
They leave Bucky looking pretty armless, and Zemo makes off by pulling an El Chapo. This is a reference to the real-life drug lord, who had tunnels built under his home that he used to escape from the authorities with.
Now where he’s gone exactly, we don’t know, but in the trailers, we do see him at the Sokovian Memorial, so I’m guessing that he’s now at this location. He did mention it in episode 3 to Sam and Bucky, so that would give them a clue that he was there.
Karli reaches out to Sarah, threatening her to send a message to Sam, and we do see her struggle with crossing the line.
Sam and Bucky meet up with her, and she asks them to join. She states she doesn’t want to kill Sam, and we watch across town as Walker and Battlestar enter the Flagsmasher hideout. This moment heavily echoes the scene from the first Avengers in which Stever busts into a hideout with guns drawn.
Now one thing I also noticed here is that the American flag now appears in different shades of grey, black, and white on Walker’s uniform.
According to Google, the flag being portrayed in this fashion is to show police solidarity, and it shows that Walker is very much a metaphor for them. It could also showcase the black-and-white way that he views the world and that he’s missing the shades of grey that are required to take into account all perspectives.
At the location we have, it’s confirmed that Walker did take the serum, and there’s somewhat of a staircase fight that echos the iconography of the Civil War.
With the serum in his veins, Walker is finally able to go toe to toe with the Flagsmashers, and we also see Bucky busting out some of the knife skills that he had in The Winter Soldier. What’s funny about this is that in The First Avenger, Howard Stark told Steve he needed a shield because Hydra wouldn’t be coming at them with pocket knives. Bucky, of course, ended up working for Hydra and doing this very thing, which marries these moments across the MCU.
Karli goes to kill Walker, but this leads to more deaths when Lemar jumps in the way and gets killed with a super soldier punch. Having his best friend die like this sends Walker off the deep end, and this further leads to escalation and an eye for an eye mentality that has him kill one of the flag smasher forces.
Walker jumps out of a window in a moment that’s similar to Steve jumping through one in the Civil War, and outside he murders a downed man for all to see. Now clearly, this is referencing police brutality and how innocent and unarmed people are often killed, which is then captured on camera.
This leads to social media outcy, and acts like this often split the discord into left and right politically, with both sides arguing over the rights and wrongs of it.
Though a lot of people think that this is the end for Walker, I actually don’t think it will be.
Because he’s working with the law, I think that things will be brushed under the rug and there will be constant PR to show that he acted in the right way. We see this a lot, and Walker could end up metaphorically showcasing that even if you’re caught in 4K, if you’re working on a certain side, you have far more power.
The danger that he poses is that he’s now no longer working within the law, and he believes he is the law, which speaks to why the character is beyond repair at this point.
The shield has a long legacy, and to end it with it covered in blood symbolises how far this icon has come from being a symbol of defence to now being something used for oppression.
THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER EPISODE 4 REVIEW AND ENDING EXPLAINED
Ok, and before we get into the review part of the video, I just want to thank you all for supporting the channel throughout the last four weeks. If you’ve enjoyed the video, then I’d really appreciate the thumbs up and a click on the subscribe button if you want to see what other crap videos we have to offer. Don’t click if you’re already subscribed. Yeah, that’s not how it works, ya bloody dingus.
Now, as for the show itself, though I’m still really enjoying it, I dunno if it’s quite capturing my interest in the same way that Wandavision did. Though I’m hyped as hell whenever I finish an episode and can’t wait to watch the next one, by the time Monday rolls around, I notice that me and my friends have stopped talking about it. The both of them used to love pinging theories back and forth with me about Wandavision each and every day, whereas here it’s a bit straight-forward, even with some of the big twists and cliffhangers.
Now that’s not to say it’s bad at all, and I think even if you compare the first four episodes to the first four of Wandavision, Falcon and the Winter Soldier is, in my opinion, a lot better. That might be unfair as they have a longer run time, but even compared to the first six, I would say these are a lot better. However, they are slightly by the numbers, whereas with Wandavision, you really didn’t know what you were going to get, so as far as keeping people’s interest, I think that that show was more successful than this.
It may be an unfair comparison, but with them both being Marvel and Disney+ shows, I feel that it’s fair. However, as much as I sound like I’m slagging it off, I’m not. I really, really enjoy the show, and I just wanted to talk more about my general feelings as the series has gone on.
I think you would really struggle to do this, and though I know there are some people out there who don’t always like the political and social commentary, I do feel like it’s important for Marvel to tackle these issues. Captain America first hit the mainstream by hitting Hitler, and since then, the comics have tackled themes like race, civil rights, steroid abuse, the Patriot Act, and a lot more. Therefore, it feels fitting to me, especially in today’s climate, that a show based around what it means to be Captain America would be tackling this.
As for the episode itself, again, I really enjoyed it, and this is such a solid show that it’s difficult to describe any of its acting, action, or production quality. It’s a world-wide, globe-trotting adventure that I feel is a satisfying sidestep into the more grounded aspects of the MCU, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.
Now the rumours that there will be a big cameo coming in Episode 5 have long persisted, and over the last week, these have picked up even more steam. If you missed our last video, then in that we discussed how there was a big character on set during the filming of this show, and the appearance happened at the old Deklab court house.
Apparently they filmed for two days, and it was a moment that would make your jaw hit the floor.
The character is apparently female, and when discussing what was coming down the line, Malcolm Spellman, the show’s creator, said the following:
“There are characters in our series who I would love to see partnered with, like—it’s a very, very grounded character—partnered with one of the big world-shakers like Thor or someone like that… The personality is so strong; it’s the episode five character. I’d love to see that character with Thor.”
Charles Murphy later confirmed that Ayo is not the reveal, and Atlanta Filming recently said that, as far as they know, the character is still in the show.
Now there’s not really a lot to take from this, and my guess based on the Thor comment would be that it’s someone like She Hulk or maybe even Rogue… I mean, we all saw that road sign.
It could also be Florence Pugh, aka Yelena Belova, who, had the pandemic not hit, would have been an established character in the MCU. She’s going to be a big part of Black Widow, and being more grounded, I do think that makes a lot of sense.
Anyway, I really hope this isn’t a letdown and that it is the big moment that we’re being promised.
Now obviously, I’d love to hear your thoughts and theories as we head into the penultimate entry, so make sure you comment below and let me know.
As a thank you for interacting with the video, you’ll be entered into a prize draw on the 30th of April in which we’re giving away three copies of Zack Snyder’s Justice League in 4K. All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning is like the video. Make sure you subscribe with notifications on and drop a comment below with your thoughts on the episode. The winners of last month’s competition are on screen right now, so if that’s you, then message me on Twitter, @HeavySpoilers.
If you want something else to watch, then make sure you check out our breakdown of the What If Trailer, which will be linked on screen now. We break down the entire thing, so it’s definitely worth checking out if you want to know more.
With that out of the way, thank you for sitting through the video. I’ve been Paul, and I’ll see you next time. Take care, Peace