I"m Worried That Captain America 4 Has Too Many Villains

  • Captain America 4 features a strong cast, but concerns arise over the overwhelming number of villains in the storyline.
  • Samuel Sterns, Thunderbolt Ross, and Isaiah Bradley (mind-controlled) are among the antagonists who may overshadow Sam Wilson's hero journey.
  • Giancarlo Esposito's addition as another Marvel villain in the reshoots raises worries about the film being overstuffed with antagonistic characters, without mentioning the potential antagonist Sabra.
Captain America: Brave New World is exciting for many reasons, but I am worried about the number of villains the story contains. Captain America 4's story, after lengthy delays, will finally come to theaters in February 2025. What I'm most excited about is getting to see Anthony Mackie's Captain America in his first solo adventure, even if it is coming too late after The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Nevertheless, Captain America 4 is one of my most anticipated upcoming MCU movies.
Another reason for my excitement about the movie is Captain America 4's strong cast. Led by Mackie, the involvement of actors like Harrison Ford, Tim Blake Nelson, Carl Lumbly, and Giancarlo Esposito only further raises the high bar set by the movie's premise. That said, all of the actors listed here are playing villains - or misguided antagonists - in Captain America: Brave New World, bringing to light one significant worry I have about the film aside from minor gripes that Sam's new look will overtake his original Phase 4 outfit.
Related Captain America's Original Phase 4 Costume Confirmed In Brave New World Set Photos New Captain America: Brave New World set photos reveal the latest look at Anthony Mackie as Sam Wilson, now back in a very familiar MCU costume.
Captain America 4 Has A Concerning Number Of Villains The Number Of Villains Threaten To Bury Sam Wilson's Hero Story Worryingly, Captain America 4's villain roster is incredibly overstuffed. The primary villain of the film is expected to be Tim Blake Nelson's Samuel Sterns/The Leader. While I cannot deny the sheer excitement at getting to see the character in all his glory after he was teased almost two decades ago in The Incredible Hulk, he could be overshadowed by other villains. Harrison Ford was recently cast in the movie as Thunderbolt Ross, another antagonistic presence who will clash with Mackie's Captain America.
On top of these two characters, footage from CinemaCon seemed to imply that Captain America 4's Isaiah Bradley - played by Lumbly - will be an antagonist of sorts in the film. The footage showcased Bradley shooting into a group of U.S. politicians, seemingly as a sleeper agent like the Winter Soldier before him. This marks three villains, or brainwashed antagonists in Bradley's case, already for Captain America: Brave New World, and that is without mentioning Sabra - the MCU's Israeli superhero - who could fall into the story as a villain to Sam Wilson.
Your browser does not support the video tag. Captain America: Brave New World Recently Added Giancarlo Esposito As Another Marvel Villain A New Addition In Captain America 4 Reshoots Adds Yet Another Villain To The Story Custom Image By Debanjana Chowdhury To make matters worse, set photos from Captain America 4's recent reshoots revealed that Giancarlo Esposito has joined the film as an unknown Marvel villain. Do not get me wrong, Giancarlo Esposito is a fantastic actor and plays villains better than most in Hollywood, so I am excited to see what he does in the MCU. However, his addition does not help my worry that Captain America: Brave New World's story is simply overstuffed with antagonists to go up against Sam.
Many theories indicate that Esposito will play William Stryker in the MCU, a common X-Men villain.
While the set photos did not outright confirm that Esposito is playing a villain in the film, reports from trades like The Hollywood Reporter and Variety confirmed his antagonistic role. This means that Captain America: Brave New World will have three outright villains and an antagonist/antihero in Lumbly's Isaiah Bradley. If Sabra is on the opposite side of whatever fight Sam Wilson is involved in, that would mark five potential villains in the film. This is a staggering amount, and I am worried that the film will struggle to handle it from a storytelling perspective.
Related Who Is Giancarlo Esposito Playing In The MCU? 10 Best Captain America Villain Theories Esposito has described his character as an “agent of chaos” and he will appear in Brave New World before a larger role in a series.
Giancarlo Esposito Deserves More Than Being Typecast As A Villain Another Problem Is Raised By Captain America 4's Newest Villain Close As I alluded to, Esposito is a brilliant actor and has proven at length that he is an expert at playing villains. However, his inclusion in Captain America: Brave New World - when combined with most of his roles in past projects - proves a sad reality. Giancarlo Esposito is an endlessly charismatic, charming, funny man who deserves big roles with a greater range, rather than being typecast as a cold, calculated, ruthless villain. Although it makes sense for studios to cast Esposito in a role that emulates his breakout performance as Gustavo Fring in Breaking Bad, it has become tiring.
Esposito's role in Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing proves how well he works as an eccentric, confident character.
From Moff Gideon in Star Wars' The Mandalorian and Stan Edgar in The Boys to Castillo in the video game Far Cry 6, Esposito is rarely able to break free of Gus' clones. Many hoped that casting the actor in the MCU would allow for this, with fan casts often pinning Esposito as Professor X. I admit, this would have been fantastic, but it remains the case that he will play another villain in Captain America: Brave New World. Not only is this undeserving of his obvious charisma, but it worsens my worries over the film’s absurd number of villains.
Captain America: Brave New World Captain America: Brave New World (formerly titled New World Order) marks Sam Wilson's first MCU big-screen appearance as Steve Rogers' successor after receiving the suit and shield in Phase 4's The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Anthony Mackie returns as the titular Avenger alongside Danny Ramirez as Joaquin Torres, Carl Lumby as Isaiah Bradley, and Tim Blake Nelson as The Incredible Hulk's former ally Samuel Sterns. Harrison Ford makes his MCU debut replacing the late William Hurt as Thaddeus Ross.
Director Julius Onah Release Date February 14, 2025 Writers Dalan Musson , Malcolm Spellman Cast Anthony Mackie , Harrison Ford , Tim Blake Nelson , Carl Lumby , Danny Ramirez , shira haas


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