Marvel Comics has finally accepted Sam Wilson as the official Captain America, a delightful step forward for the publisher. For years, Sam Wilson was essentially relegated to the role of comic book sidekick; even in-universe, he once quipped his codename isn’t “…and the Falcon.” Finally, though, Sam was acknowledged as a true hero in his own right when Steve Rogers chose him as the next Captain America. Although controversial at the time, the decision proved iconic enough for the MCU to follow suit.
Sam Wilson became Captain America all the way back in January 2015, when he was also appointed leader of the Avengers (for a time). Remarkably, though, it’s taken seven years for Marvel to cross a milestone; the comic book publisher has just announced the next Avengers lineup, and the press statement finally names Captain America as a member without taking the time to note they’re referring to Sam Wilson. It’s an important moment, signifying that Sam really has become accepted as a definitive Captain America, with no clarifications needed.
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What Sam Wilson’s New Role Means For The Avengers
Marvel Comics New Avengers Team
The new Avengers lineup is a particularly interesting one: Captain Marvel, Black Panther, Vision, Scarlet Witch, Thor, Iron Man, and of course Captain America. Written by Jed MacKay and featuring art by C.F. Villa, the roster feels like an attempt to establish a central Avengers team in the same kind of way the Justice League has an iconic “seven” lineup. In this case, it consists of the Trinity – Captain America, Iron Man, and Thor – with notable additions. If this is indeed an attempt to establish a core group in popular culture, then the decision to use Sam Wilson’s Captain America is all the more significant.
The decision is, of course, likely shaped by out-of-universe factors. This new Avengers team largely consists of major characters in the MCU’s Multiverse Saga; both Captain America and Captain Marvel are soon to star in their own movies, Scarlet Witch and Vision have played important roles, and Thor Odinson became the first MCU hero to star in four solo films. This lineup is clearly designed to synergize with the MCU, and MacKay – one of Marvel’s best writers – is certain to pull it off.
For now, though, readers can take delight in the fact Sam Wilson really is considered a definitive Captain America by Marvel – so much so that press releases no longer need to clarify his identity. This hopefully means a golden age is coming for this comic book character, one perfectly timed to take advantage of his starring role in the MCU’s Phase 5. These comics should be absolutely unmissable.