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I Don’t Buy the Supposed Reason Cap Got Shortchanged in Avengers: Infinity War

I guess I'm just a bitter Steve stan.

Chris Evans as Steve Rogers/Captain America in Avengers: Infinity War

For those of us who love Steve Rogers, Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War seemed like a bit of a letdown. While Cap certainly got some badass moments, such as his introduction in the train station, he didn’t have much by way of a character arc. Marvel screenwriter Stephen McFeely is aware that Cap, along with a few other characters, didn’t get much time in the spotlight, and that their fans might be a little annoyed.

As he explained to io9, “When I was talking about [Infinity War], I very often said that sometimes we gave ourselves permission to tell more story for a character in Endgame than in Infinity War. Cap’s a great example. People counted Cap’s lines [in Infinity War] and he had like 20. So Cap steps forward, as you can probably tell, pretty dramatically in Endgame. And that’s because we knew some people had more interesting stories after [the Snap] than before it. Cap and Natasha are good examples of that. So I wouldn’t say we shortchange anybody [in Endgame], but part of the reason there are only [13] people on that poster was to go deeper with fewer.”

I understand why Steve couldn’t be the star of Infinity War. The now dusted Guardians, Spider-Man, and others had to take precedence as their story is over for the time being. And yet, Tony, Thor, and Thanos got to steal the show in Infinity War, and no one is expecting any of them to be sidelined or take a backseat in Endgame. So the question is “Did Steve really have to take the backseat in that film?”

There’s a lot to explore with Steve in his post-Civil War existence. He grows his angst beard. He’s on the run with best friend Natasha and other best friend/possible love interest Sam. He’s probably doing some undercover superhero work … There’s a lot to be explored in what turned Steve into who he was when he appeared in Infinity War. The film didn’t have to focus on him, but he could’ve been given a bit more to do.

Steve has struggled to find a good character arc in the MCU. While Tony and Thor, his fellow members of Marvel’s core trio, have had neatly defined arcs that track well over the course of the films, Steve changes personalities based on who’s writing him. In The First Avenger and The Winter Soldier, he gets an excellent story of morality and trying to be a good man. In The Avengers and Age of Ultron, he’s a goody two shoes who likes to follow rules. I don’t even know what was going on with Civil War, but it’s my least favorite Steve characterization by a mile.

In Infinity War … he’s tired. That’s about all I can come up with for that film.

As I said above, I understand why Steve couldn’t be the star of Infinity War, but if Tony, Thor, and Thanos had enough story to star in two back-to-back Avengers features, then certainly they could have given Steve an actual character arc, instead of saving his entire role for his final bow.

(via ComicBookMovie.com, image: Marvel)

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Kate (she/her) says sorry a lot for someone who is not sorry about the amount of strongly held opinions she has. Raised on a steady diet of The West Wing and classic film, she is now a cosplayer who will fight you over issues of inclusion in media while also writing coffee shop AU fanfic for her favorite rare pairs.