Captain America’s Goodbye

Remember when I said that time travel is hard? Well, with Avengers Endgame comes many questions but with so many mysteries of the movie tied to the upcoming Captain Marvel film, a lot of these questions are simply unanswerable. That doesn’t mean though that those specific moments, some involving themes of time travel, are off limits. That’s why with the first week of Marvel Monday, I’m going to be taking a look at Captain America and what could and quite frankly should be his final moments.

Way back in 2011, audiences were first introduced to the first avenger and while not everyone was in love with the movie, what we all agreed on was that Chris Evans as Cap and Hayley Atwell as Peggy Carter were perfectly cast. Whether it was Evans’ ability to mix an “aw shucks” attitude with a physical appearance that would intimidate anyone or Atwell’s combination of toughness and beauty the two actors just fit into their roles perfectly. On top of that, the two’s chemistry is near perfection. For a pair that has only starred together in one film, the impact they made on fans was nothing but impressive, and if you don’t believe me, let’s go back to the moment when The Russo Brothers tried to give Cap a new girl in the form of Peggy’s grandniece, Sharon Carter. Fans weren’t having it. Even Hayley Atwell came out and criticized the move.

And while I can’t confirm that the writers have officially moved away from Cap and Sharon as an item, we haven’t heard any mention of the couple since their infamous kiss. And it’s with Sharon Carter being moved to the side that we can hopefully put a focus back on the Cap relationship that truly matters.

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“A week, next Saturday at The Stork Club. 8 O’clock on the dot, don’t you dare be late.”  These are some of the last words between Steve and Peggy in their final moments before Captain Steve Rogers sacrifices himself by crashing into the ice. While time travel and how it works in the Marvel universe is something that we won’t understand until Captain Marvel or possibly not even until Endgame, I absolutely believe that this will be the final moments of Captain America.

And while Chris Evans has made puzzling statements claiming that while his contract with Marvel has come to an end, fans shouldn’t consider this a spoiler for the character’s fate. Well, there’s really only 2 ways to look at this. It’s either true and the writers at Marvel are going to construct a story that somehow removes Cap from future movies while, in the process, keeping him alive or Chris Evans is lying. It wouldn’t be the first time someone has lied while promoting a movie and it won’t be the last. If Rogers doesn’t die, is there still a way for his character to have a tragic ending while still getting his dance with Peggy? Of course. Now, as I’ve stated, I do not know how time travel will work in this universe, but for these two theories, I’m using the tried and true method that anything done in the past will alter the future.

Theory One

Let’s start with the one that I think is the least likely to happen. At the end of Captain America The First Avenger we see the death of Red Skull, or so we thought. (SPOILER FOR INFINITY WAR) During Infinity War, Red Skull reappeared as a figure that has been cursed with the eternal job of having to watch over the Soul Stone. Well, what if instead of Red Skull being the one that is forced to guard the stone, it’s actually Cap who now finds himself having to carry on this responsibility? Imagine a scenario where one of the celestial beings that watch over the Universe finally steps in after our heroes have made a complete mess of things. The timeline they now find themselves in is a complete wreck because they’re just so determined to erase the snap from ever happening. Is there a potential scenario where Cap agrees to become the watcher of the stone and now finds himself waiting nearly 100 years for Thanos to arrive? While I think the idea of seeing that exact same scene from Infinity War playing out but this time, instead of the reveal of Red Skull, we see Captain America ready for battle would be amazing, keep in mind that I did say it’s the least likely.

How would this tie back into Peggy Carter though? Well, while a celestial being that has the responsibility of looking over the universe probably isn’t all that interested in two time-crossed lovers, there is always the possibility that Cap’s sacrifice for the greater good is rewarded by being able to finally have the dance he’s wanted for so long, especially if it’s in his final moments after an intense battle with the Mad Titan… I also realized that I started this theory out by claiming it would be the one that didn’t kill Captain America but about halfway through I realized that there’s no way he’s making it through this movie. Sorry, but unless Marvel somehow puts Cap in an alternate timeline where he never existed or actually died from the plane crash, I just don’t see them being able to present a story where he lives, gets the dance, and doesn’t completely ruin the timeline… unless like I said, they introduce alternate timelines and I refuse to believe that this movie is going to ask the average moviegoer to under such a complex idea. (Watch this throwaway theory be the one that’s actually correct.)

Theory 2:

While it’s fun to think of wild ideas of what we could see in Endgame, ultimately, this is a movie that needs to please millions of people, not just nerds like myself that love intense science fiction movies. Sadly, there’s a reason why I and 4 other people went and saw Annihilation in theaters. In other words, the real possibility that we actually get an Avengers movie that involves celestial being(s) like The Infinite is highly improbable. So with theory 2, I want to take a look at a much more realistic approach to the finale of Captain America.

After all of the hero’s accomplish their time travel shenanigans, it’ll be time for the big climax of the movie, or at least one of them. I’ve had this very basic idea for a while that we’re going to see all the original Avengers going on what is essentially a suicide mission to take down Thanos. It’s during this mission that I believe we’ll see Cap making the ultimate sacrifice to help the team. It’s important to remember that ever since the first introduction of Steve Rogers, we’ve always known him as a character that is willing to die saving others. The moment involving him jumping on what he thought at the time was a live grenade during boot camp is a great example of Steve’s heroism.

But how does Cap sacrifice himself and still get a happy ending? For those of you that have kept a close eye on the many set photos that have leaked online, it appears that at least some part of Endgame will be about revisiting famous moments throughout the history of the MCU. That or Marvel is doing a great job of tricking us all and honestly, I wouldn’t put it past them, but for the sake of all of this, let’s just assume those are real.

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Well, one of the more memorable moments from Age of Ultron was the scene of Scarlet Witch attempting to lock the Avenger’s minds away in personalized nightmares. As Steve entered the Stork Club he hears gunfire, the flash of cameras giving him flashbacks to grenades going off on the battlefield, and there’s even a laughing soldier in the club that’s actually being treated for a life-threatening gunshot wound.  All of that goes away when Peggy appears though. Even though up to this point in Cap’s history, he’s always tried to be a selfless man, there’s no hiding the fact that he regrets not having this dance. I believe that this moment will reappear but instead of it being used in the form of a nightmare, it will be a gift.

I imagine a scene where we see Cap, badly wounded after the battle with Thanos. All of our favorite heroes have somehow been saved from the snap and they do their best to tend to his wounds, but there’s nothing that can be done. Cap’s wounds are too fatal, and as Cap lies there dying, he says his goodbye to his friends but Scarlet Witch appears offering to give Steve what he’s always wanted, a dance at The Stork Club, with the only woman he’s ever loved, in his arms. In his final moments, Cap can finally enjoy the dance he’s always wanted.

Conclusion

While I hate that the only idea I could come up with that actually lets the real Peggy Carter also enjoy the dance is one that I consider a throwaway theory, I am hopeful that at the very least, Marvel will make sure that Captain America, a character who constantly made sacrifices for the great good, finally gets the one thing he has always wanted. As I’ve said, maybe my theories are bad or simply won’t happen but the entire point of these articles is to have fun trying to figure out how the most important chapter in the MCU’s history will come to a close. I don’t know how many or for that matter, if anyone will actually read this but anyone that happens to stumble upon it, I’d love to know what you think of my theories and I’d love even more to hear about your own and I will talk you guys next week as we take a look at some of the different possible outcomes for Tony Stark in Avengers Endgame.

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