'The Falcon and The Winter Soldier' Spoilers: What Happens to John Walker in the Comics

The Falcon and The Winter Soldier Episode 4 saw the new Captain America John Walker (played by Wyatt Russell) at the heart of an international scandal as he was caught on film murdering one of the Flag Smashers with his shield. The scene, with its reference to the police violence caught on camera that sparked Black Lives Matter protests, spells trouble for Walker, who is known as U.S. Agent in the Marvel comics.

In fact, those comics may also give fans a preview of what will happen to the character in the Disney+ show. In a Captain America arc from the late 1980s, Steve Rogers (Chris Evans in the MCU) abandons his role as Cap because he does not want to be tied to America and its political agenda.

In this arc, the Commission on Superhuman Activities consider The Falcon (Anthony Mackie) to be the next Captain America, but decide that the U.S. is not ready for their premier superhero to be Black.

Instead, they give the role to John Walker, who until that point had been operating as Super-Patriot, a nationalistic super who emerges as one of Rogers' greatest critics.

falcon and the winter soldier john walker
Wyatt Russell as John Walker in 'The Falcon and The Winter Soldier' Episode 4. Disney+

The comics' Walker and the version in The Falcon and The Winter Soldier have different backstories – in the latter, Walker was a Marine before being named Captain America rather than a superhero of his own.

However, Walker's arc as Captain America has followed the same trajectory in both the comic book and the Disney+ series. In both, he is more politically reactionary than Rogers and also more violent due to a lack of control.

In both media, he goes too far and beats a foe to death. In the show, it is one of the Flag Smashers, while in the comics it was Professor Power, the head of an army of right-wing extremists.

If the show follows what happens next in the comics, then things are about to get very bad for Walker following this act of brutality. In the comics, two people rejected from his team of commandos get revenge by broadcasting his name and birthplace on TV, a move that leads to Walker's parents being murdered.

This sends Walker into a spiral that sees him showing signs of a mental breakdown while inflicting brutal revenge on the people who released his birthplace. He also has to be saved by Rogers and Battlestar after he is captured, leading Walker to express regret over what he has done. After faking his death and hypnotizing him to make him believe that his parents are still alive, he re-emerges as US Agent.

There are some notable differences between this story and where The Falcon and The Winter Soldier can go. Rogers decided to give up being Captain America in the present at the end of Endgame, while Battlestar (Cle Bennett) died in episode 4.

The show, however, revolves around this idea of who deserves to be the next Captain America, so it seems likely that Walker will be forced to give up the role to someone who better represents America in 2021 towards the end of the show. Whether he will return to the MCU as U.S. Agent, however, remains to be seen.

The Falcon and The Winter Soldier airs Fridays on Disney+.