Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie), the high-flying Falcon, gets a Wakandan upgrade when he becomes the all-new Captain America in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier‘s coming series finale. In Episode 5, “Truth,” Sam and Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) reclaim the blood-stained shield of Captain America from the embattled and Super Soldier Serum-powered John Walker (Wyatt Russell), who destroys Sam’s mechanical Falcon wings in a fit of fury. When Sam tells USAF Lt. Joaquín Torres (Danny Ramirez) to keep the broken wings, Bucky travels to Delacroix, Louisiana, to drop off a carrying case containing a favor he called in from the Dora Milaje’s Ayo (Florence Kasumba) and the Wakandans.
“Truth” ends with Sam opening the case gifted to him by the Wakandans, revealing just a peek at the specially-tailored flight suit Sam will wear as he wields the star-spangled shield of Captain America. In the classic Marvel Comics, it’s King T’Challa, the Black Panther, who gives Sam the gift of flight when the Harlem hero journeys to the technologically advanced African kingdom of Wakanda.
Seeking a power upgrade so Captain America’s crime-fighting partner can be “something more than a ‘costumed athlete,'” Sam accepts a meeting with the African king over Avengers Hank Pym and Tony Stark:
Captain America and the Falcon #170 ends with Sam revealing the Wakanda-created new and improved Falcon with wings. Light but super-strong and jet-powered, the Falcon’s glider wings are connected to a sunlight-charged power pack and controlled by a direct link to Sam’s brain.
Falcon takes flight for the first time in Captain America and the Falcon #171, where Sam soars into action on his mini-jet-tipped glider wings to save T’Challa after he’s thrown from a cliff:
Years later, when an aged Steve Rogers is a Super-Soldier no more, he reveals his replacement as the all-new Captain America: a star-spangled Sam Wilson (in Captain America Vol. 7 #25).
The newest Captain America of the Marvel Cinematic Universe will have a more dramatic reveal in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier‘s series finale premiering Friday, April 23, on Disney+.
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