Captain America: Winter Solder has been nothing short of a blow out success. The film pushed the Marvel film franchise into the Nations’ top Movie Franchises in history. What makes the film truly special is what it does to the Marvel film franchise as a whole. Marvel says that Iron Man 3 began phase two of their film line, but I don’t agree. If we were to view the films as comic book series, Avengers would have been a cross-over event. Iron Man 3 and Thor 2 would have had tag lines on them, establishing that these films were intended to be read along side or after the cross-over event. Winter Solider forces the entire Marvel Universe to shift. The next Iron Man, Avengers, and even the TV series Agents of Shield are all going to be forced into new directions after this film.
From the beginning of the franchise, arguably before the franchise, S.H.I.E.L.D was the glue. As viewers, we all knew the movies were connected. Outside of Avengers, you didn’t need to watch Thor to watch Captain America. That is no longer the case. S.H.I.E.L.D is no more, or will take a drastically different form. Where does this leave Hawkeye and Black Widow? The Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are all fugitives. Characters on Earth like Iron Man will be forced to step up and take the reigns as Earth’s guardians, while Thor, who now has no true obligation towards Earth, will have his honor and loyalties tested. Remember, S.H.I.E.L.D has weapons to battle the Asgardians. What makes Winter Soldier all the more exciting a film is the unexpected twist with HYRDRA. None of the trailers gave a hint of this twist. As a movie goer and comic book fan, this thrills me! This means any Marvel Film could change the course of the franchise in a single scene. Every movie has now become that much more important.