Falcon and Winter Soldier The Problem with Flag-Smashers

Discussion in 'MCU Limited Series on Disney+' started by GutterTalk, Nov 27, 2021.

  1. GutterTalk Registered

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    My main complaint about this series was that I could never believe the Flag-Smashers were capable of taking on Bucky or even US Agent in a fight. Bucky is a trained assassin and far more experienced in combat and US Agent has military combat training. The Flag-Smashers were largely teenagers who took the super serum. Sure that may make you as strong as Bucky, but he has technique and fighting experience to trump these kids. Something needed to be done to level the playing field or explain how these kids suddenly had fighting skills downloaded to their brains like The Matrix. Or play up the lack of skill in the fight choreography, the flag-smashers aren't so great fighters but can keep taking punches and getting back up to interfere with Bucky.
     
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  2. metaphysician Not a Side-Kick

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    I mean, I think that last thing was clear intent, especially as combined with Bucky's subplot of uncomfortably adjusting to a less-lethal lifestyle. It was just a bit muddled, like a lot in the show.

    ( Though honestly, that wouldn't be nearly the problem if they didn't also muddle the *motivation* of the Flagsmashers, such that you have to practically watch the entire show to eventually decipher exactly what it is they believe and want. . . which is kind of a problem when they are the primary antagonists. And its not like their beliefs were especially deep and complex! )
     
  3. GutterTalk Registered

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    That is true too. It isn't until later episodes that their motivation becomes clear and we are supposed to suddenly switch to empathizing with them.

    Good thing this series isn't required viewing like some of the others that have wider implications for the MCU. As far as casual movie goers are concerned, he was given the shield by Cap and is now Captain America.
     
  4. Zarex Registered

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    It would have helped if Ms. Morgethau was a more compelling lead villain or we got an episode or two dedicated to The Flag Smashers in order to care about them or their cause. But ultimately that group of attractive multi ethnic revolutionaries did not work as a big bad in a show about a black man deciding to take on the mantle of Captain America.

    TFATWS would have been better served if FS were one of a few groups from whom the Falcon/Bucky/Zemo were trying to wrestle back the serum and we only got them for an episode. Or, as I originally figured, the Big Bad of the show was the Sons of the Serpent with their enhanced minions, the Serpent Society (I know, no relation) pulling strings behind the scenes to make sure Sam doesn't get the shield. But what we got didn't work.

    It's a shame, because I liked all of the non Karlie characters in the show. But the disappointment of the Flag Smashers made it by far the weakest of the MCU D+ offerings.
     
  5. metaphysician Not a Side-Kick

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    Yeah, the Flasgsmashers as "idealistic but dumb revolutionary terrorists" would work fine as one episode villains. They just didn't work as season-length big bads, not when there were three other "villains" all of whom were more compelling. For that they needed either much better writing so their ideology ( and thus the stakes ) were much clearer, a better performance as Karlie, or preferably both.
     
  6. The Lazarus Pit The Boy Wonder

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    They might be the least interesting villains in the MCU. A lot of the blame falls on Kellyman’s shoulders.
     

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