Why didn't the screenwriters have Rogers ask Stark why the vibranium-shield was the only circular shield in the room? All the other shields' shapes were strange, but clearly Medieval-inspired, and then we see a shield shaped like a perfect circle? The screenwriters should've realized that was going to raise some questions from the audience.
On top of that, the shield sticks out like a sore thumb, but Steve instantly treats it like it's the most worthy of his possession. Why was Steve so interested in a plain-looking circular shield instead of the other ones that were specifically designed for combat? One again, the screenwriters should've realized that was going to raise some questions from the audience.
Because...it's really not that big a deal? The shield gets all the exposition it needs. "What's this?" "Oh, that's a prototype made from an indestructible metal. That's actually all of that metal we have, so none of these other shields have it." "Oh, hey, it completely and perfectly blocks bullets." Would the movie really have been improved by a bunch of discussion about it?
It's a mild-level "deal" because it makes Steve's reaction come off as unnatural and contrived. If he had actually listened to what Stark was telling him about the others, then noticed the circular one and asked "oh, what about this one?" it would've seemed pretty normal. But he basically ignores all the rest and latches onto just one for no apparent reason.
He saw the shield and liked it. Seriously, what would the movie have benefited by having Steve listen to Stark explain a bunch of shields that we all know he isn't going to use? The scene illustrates the difference between Steve and Stark. Steve goes for simple utility, Stark goes for a bunch of gadgets and gizmos.
Doing the scene the way you want it would be like having James Bond go through the usual routine of Q showing him all the neat gadgets, only Bond goes, "Eh, no thanks. I'll just use my gun." and walking off without so much as a single exploding cigar.
Not to mention that in contrast to all the other shields, which have weird contraptions attached to them, the circular shield would've been most familiar to Steve - in the beginning of the movie, we see Steve attempting to defend himself from the bully with a shield-like trashcan lid, in a manner that can be interpreted as him having done this before. Not only that, but all those weird contraptions on the other shields would've made the shields themselves highly impractical as a melee weapon, which is what Steve would need most out of a shield based on the kind of field situations he is expected to enter in (close-quarters combat, where his new super-soldier body would be best put to use).
The REAL question is if they made the Vibranium shield, why did they decide to give him the option for other shields?! When Rogers first notices it, Howard actually tries to dissuade him from picking it! Exactly why did they make the most useful shield there, out of the only sample of an ultra-rare mineral on the planet, if they never intended him to actually use the damn thing?!
He said it's a prototype. What do you do with prototypes? You test them and then improve on them. Stark tried to dissuade Rogers from taking it because he wasn't done playing around with it yet, while the other shields were more or less ready for deployment.
Also, think of Stark's (both generations) mindset: Gadgets and toys are cool and the way to go. Stark waved off the vibranium shield because it was just a shield, while the others had all kinds of neat gizmos attached that Stark thought would be useful. Stark is the kind of guy who, when building a shield, immediately thinks, "Okay, but it needs to shoot stuff too."
Well, I always thought that it was the only shield in the room that resembled a trash can lid, which he'd used as a shield at the beginning of the movie.
I think all of these questions can be answered by simply considering what exactly Captain America is: a scrawny, unassuming nobody who was singled out and given a chance for exactly these reasons (Rogers' natural Heroic Spirit helped, of course, but that's beside the point). It makes sense that he would notice the shield with the most basic design (and untapped potential) amid all the fancy-looking, intentionally souped-up shields.
During the montage with the Howling Commandos, why was it necessary to stick the bomb underneath the tank. If all they wanted to do was destroy the tank, then why not just stick it to the side? That way, there's no risk of being squashed or hit by something sticking out from the underside.
Tank armor is thickest on the sides and thinnest on the bottom.
Also Artistic License-Economics: HYDRA has betrayed the Reich and fights the Allies, this meaning they are practically fighting against the entire world, but their bases and factories are in the Reich-dominated Europe. How do they supply them with money (they never seem to have any legit businesses running), raw materials, rail and road transport, construction crews?
It could be that HYDRA stole some funds from the Nazis, and by this point Schmidt could just disguise his purchases as anti-Nazi resistances.
And/or just plain stole resources from whoever had them. With an army of fanatically loyal soldiers armed with supertech, its not like most forces could keep Hydra from just hijacking shipments of minerals and chemicals.
Then again, once you start wondering about economics in the Marvel Universe, it brings up questions about how any organization can afford all their Technology Porn.
HYDRA is really more of a cult than a military regime, at least the labor and materials could have been "donated" by members, and it seems like the Reich was sinking a lot of money into them before the actual betrayal; maybe HYDRA was also embezzling? It's not too hard to imagine if you're willing to just accept that that much money exists in the first place.
Come to think of it, this could also ironically explain why the rest of the Reich's forces are strapped to even hold the line. Hitler and the Nazis poured so much into HYDRA that it came at the expense of the German war effort.
If Cap had his shield on him when he got frozen in ice (as evidenced by the beginning of the movie), what was Tony Stark using to prop up his machine in Iron Man II?
Probably some kind of prototypical attempt to recreate it in some fashion.
Let's see...I am making shield prototypes and I have just enough 'vibranium' to make one. Don't you think you'd make at least one practice one first? And maybe, just maybe, some of my junk was then left to... I don't know... MY ONLY SON!?
Not only that, in The Avengers Stark was less than impressed with "the guy he father couldn't shut up about". Plus Howard Stark had been trying to re-create vibranium, something he couldn't do (Tony eventually did as a next-gen power source). Seems likely he would have used the same test mold the original sample used to test any experiment (the original shape had known test properties). Phil Coulson immediately recognized it (he was a known Captain America fan) and may have thought it was the original before common sense took over).
Why does Steve need to crash the Valkyrie before it reaches New York City? The plane itself wasn't the thing that was going to go boom, it was just going to drop the (labeled by city) bombs it was carrying.
Recent evidence suggests that planes themselves, when they aren't properly piloted and crash into populated areas, do plenty of damage even without bombs.
Because— get this— Steve isn't a pilot. Even if he can figure out how to get it to go in the direction he wants, he can't land it, so whether he was in the Valkyrie and dumping the bomb-planes into the ocean, or crashing the Valkyrie and flying away on a bomb plane, he wasn't getting out of it alive (as far as he knew). Crashing the Valkyrie with the planes inside it just kept the damage as localized as possible.
When Armin Zola, the scientist, visits Johann Schmidt, the Red Skull, you never see Johann's face. An artist is painting a portrait of him, and his palette consists mostly of chunky, deep red paint. The artist also looks visibly disturbed. Makes sense about halfway through the movie, when Johann takes of his mask.
The Arc Reactor. It's mildly foreshadowed by the sounds—the Tesseract-powered weapons have the same "warm-up" sounds as the Repulsors in the movie, then, with the ending of Howard Stark finding the Tesseract, it's made clear. But then you remember; the Arc Reactor in Iron Man was huge! Why? Because it's powered by a natural artifact. Howard Stark never tried to make one artificially, but if he had, he would have found out it was possible to miniaturize. — Leonardo Fibonacci
I had the exact same line of thought, but the reactor at Stark Industries wasn't running on the Cosmic Cube. Both Tony and Ivan had to rely on palladium, which as indicated by Fury, is only a stand-in (likely until Howard could fully replicate the Cube's elemental makeup); Ivan couldn't have built his reactor if the key component was an Asgardian artifact, and no box of scraps could have saved Tony in Afghanistan were that the case. And Skull's disintegrated by a beam of light opening up the Yggdrasil; note how Iron Monger didn't meet a similar fate. - Almighty Smiley
Though we did see a similar 'beam of light' shooting into the sky.
But not one that, as far as the audience could see, opened a dimensional portal. Hence the necessity of the Cube material; with palladium, as said on Iron Man's Fridge Logic page, it's just a bigger version of the chest blast.
Except that what Tony rediscovers is vibranium, not the Cosmic Cube.
Tony's replacement core glowed with the same effect as the Cube. Howard's experimentation revealed that even a fraction of the Cube held a huge amount of energy, which is sort of the Arc Reactor's main selling point. Vibranium, as far as the films go, is just a pretty good metal for shielding purposes. Also, it doesn't glow.
In Thor, we are told that magic is more or less sufficiently advanced technology. The arc reactor (60s tech) and Tony Stark's miniaturised version (2010s tech) are inspired by the Cosmic Cube but built from first principles, rather than containing elements of it. They are current humanity's early approaches to technology of a level enjoyed by Asgard.
The Red Skull doesn't seem the type to take prisoners. This is probably why the army didn't want to mount a rescue mission - they didn't know that Skull was using the captured soldiers as labor instead of just killing most of them right away.
I thought they were making plans for one, but Steve couldn't be a part of it.
IIRC, the Colonel's objection to a rescue mission was trying to get to a facility that far behind enemy lines would end up killing more men than it rescued.
Which makes perfect sense: The base is in Austria. They're in Italy, and based on the war's timeline, have been for at least a couple of years, as it was a big stalemate. There would be no way to send a squad of soldiers that deep into enemy territory and get them out again. Cap's mission is essentially a suicide mission; that he survives and succeeds is what earns him his reputation.
Dr. Erskine says that, "The serum amplifies everything that is inside, so good becomes great; bad becomes worse." Once put into Steve Rogers, it made Captain America. Put into Johann Schmidt, it made Red Skull. 60 years later, a reverse-engineered version was put into Emil Blonsky... and made the Abomination.
You forgot the gamma radiated Hulk blood. Bronsky is a fierce mercenary soldier using a reproduction of the Super Soldier Serum. It's incomplete, but did seem to enhance what he was, a fighter/soldier. It gave him seriously advanced healing, agility, speed, and seemed to be adjusting his bones slowly to handle receiving a curb stomp battle. We have to also look at the series of events. Steve Rogers received a full vial of serum into each major muscle and enough vita rays to shut down the power grid, all at the same time. Bronsky received a syringe of "we hope it works" serum, broke every bone in his body, recovered, then received some gamma blood.
This ties into the old plot device regarding the gamma radiation where the person's subconscious influenced the outcome. The fact that they were able to tie this in with the Red Skull is pretty ingenious.
Also, it acts as a good justification for the Disposable Superhero Maker: They probably replicated Erskine's formula a long time ago, but as it's controlled by General Rippers like Ross instead of Cool Old Guys like Erskine, they only used it on jerks like Blonsky. That means all they've ever produced are Abominations. To get a super soldier the likes of Captain America, The Government would have to use the serum on a Good Man... and if they ever did, they haven't let him walk around.
Or it's an incomplete serum and humans rights prevents them from really testing it...until Blonsky demands it, anyway.
Or it's not even the Serum that's missing from the equation: it's the Vita-Rays. All attempts to make the Captain America miracle happen twice were focused on what to inject their test subjects with, but not what to expose the serum-injected subjects to in order to activate it properly.
On the train just before Bucky falls out of the train he picks up the captains shield to protect himself. It seems straightforward enough but when you think about what happens in the comics it gains a whole nother level of brilliance. In the comics, Bucky takes over being Captain America for a while after Steve is thought dead.
When Red Skull becomes angry at Steve Rogers' "I'm just a kid from Brooklyn" answer to what makes him so "special" becomes even more obvious when you consider that he was exiled from Hitler's elite circle for not resembling the Aryan ideal anymore. Meanwhile, the Blond, Blue-Eyed Steve Rogers has essentially become the ultimate Aryan. Steve is essentially everything Red Skull wanted to be, and he's on the Allied side.
More than that, when Steve Rogers denies there is anything special about him, he implicitly denies there was anything special about *Schmidt*. That is what really angers the guy.
Just how empowered is Schmidt if his fist can put a dent in a stage prop?
Given that he uses it to deflect bullets and it's made of steel (bronze or brass do not make the ringing sound when hit, but more like a deep-sounding bell, as ancient large bells were made from bronze), yeah, Skull's a badass.
The original idea, when the movie was first announced, was for half to be a WWII period piece and half to take place in the present day. So why didn't they do that? Because Thor already gave us a fish-out-of-water story. (Though the lack of a solid civilian cast for Cap post-WWII might have also had something to do with it.) —Wack'd
Schmidt and Zola were able to use the Tesseract to turn Hydra into an N.G.O. Superpower. Howard Stark salvaged the cube but doesn't do the same? Ohhhh yeahhhh... Because he's not a megalomaniac! The Tesseract could be used to build powerful weapons, and would make building an empire simple via Phlebotinum Dependence - any attempts to turn the technology against them would be futile as the Tesseract is the only way to power it. But powering the world was something else entirely. The Arc Reactor technology he struggled with to his dying day was his attempt to make the technology widespread - turn nuclear warheads into nuclear reactors.
It also shows Howard's reasoning in deporting Vanko - Hydra proved that the technology was easily weaponized, but Stark refused to follow in their footsteps and was deeply disgusted by Vanko's attempt to plunge the world into Hydra-style Tesseract-powered warfare. Tony was less successful in protecting the technology from Senator Sterns and Hammer - the assholes only saw Arc Reactor tech as a weapon, never understanding how much havoc Hydra wreaked with it - until Vanko cut loose.
It also goes a way towards explaining some of Tony's extreme 'my technology, you no touch' reactions to the arc reactor and the suit, if he had it drilled into his head from early on that anything falling into the realm of 'tesseract stuff' had to be strictly controlled and kept out of government hands.
Except Tony's only used the arc reactor tech as a weapon - to power the Iron Man suit. It's not that he thinks it should be used for civilian rather than military purposes, it's that he thinks only he (a frequently irresponsible, impulsive alcoholic) is a safe person to have access to it. Which is more than a tad arrogant.
Not true! The Arc Reactor in his chest was designed to keep the shrapnel out of his heart: using it to power the first Iron Man suit was entirely secondary to that. He also sets up Rhodey to inherit the responsibility of Iron Man after his impending death. As to thinking that only he is safe to use it: arrogant or not, he's basically right. Everyone else who wants the Iron Man tech wants it for morally corrupt reasons. Rhodey is the only exception, but he still takes it straight to the military to have it outfitted.
Tony's goal was fulfilled in The Avengers: he's now "kind of the only name in clean energy." The government kept demanding access to it when it still had kinks in it - like poisoning people with palladium. In that state, all it was good for was weapons - things people wouldn't be hanging around. The Government was just like Stane - "You really think that just because you have an idea, it belongs to you?" Nationalized! We don't care about palladium poisoning, we can iron it out in a few decades! Another Three Mile Island would teach those whiny citizens not to waste so much of our energy! Now that he's figured it out, he's testing it on the Stark Tower, and then it's to the market he goes.
The palladium poisoning thing wouldn't be a problem for most people, since it was only toxic to Tony because it was inside his body. The more likely answer was that Palladium is a rare precious metal and actually using enough of it an Arc Reactor big enough to power a building would be extremely expensive, and it would only get worse as the cores would need to be replaced. But since he's the only one who knows how to make the new-element core his Arc Reactor runs on, he can pretty much make as much or as little as he chooses, which he'd be doing anyway because it's keeping him alive! It's also a shrewd business maneuver too, because it's clean energy that no one else can successfully replicate and so Tony's got the market cornered until someone else comes up with something better.
More like Fridge Figuring Out The Obvious, but this Troper was just thinking how amusing it was that they included all the cheesy Walt Disneyshout outs in this movie and in Iron Man 2, with the Expo's and songs by Alan Menken and whatnot...and then I remembered that Marvel is owned by Disney now.
It's much more than that. Iron Man 2 has the Stark Expo song Make Way For Tomorrow Today which is a Disneyland Tomorrowland type song in the vein of Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow. This isn't coincidence - MWFTT is written by one of the Sherman Brothers, who were legendary songwriters for Disney, including that Tomorrowland song. You might also think it isn't a coincidence that Howard Stark appears to be a mix of Howard Hughes and Walt Disney (Hughes for the tech, Disney for the family friendly showmanship and public persona).
Steve doesn't know what fondue is because it wasn't popular until the 50s and 60s. Howard Stark of course knows what it is because he's rich and indulges in all sorts of high brow tastes that the common masses don't know.
Also doubles as Fridge Horror, but this troper was originally confused by Bucky repeating his serial number over and over just before Steve rescues him. A quick Google search provided an answer: a soldier is only supposed to give their name, rank, and serial number when being tortured for information. HYDRA must have been torturing Bucky. Poor guy.
Actually, it's for all interrogations. To be fair, the Nazis did use torture and didn't give a crap about the Geneva Convention.
That's what this troper was thinking they were doing, and almost thought (in the train attack scene) that they had brainwashed Bucky during that torture until he starts shooting at the Hydra guard after closing the door on Steve.
This troper got the distinct impression that Bucky actually was being brainwashed (but only on stage one and so not permanently affected). Brainwashing would be a great explanation for how Hydra got so many disposable mooks, if they were taking the most able-bodied prisoners and, rather than putting them on the work crew, wiping their minds and sticking them in uniforms. Not they couldn't have gotten the men another way, but it does neatly explain why they were so plentiful even after Hydra cut ties with the Nazis, and why Red Skull didn't see any potential resource problems with killing them for failure. Adds some Fridge Horror too.
The experimentation becomes even more likely given that it would be a perfect explanation how Bucky could survive his fall and come back in a later film. In the comics Bucky gets some serum in him, is discovered by the Russians, and gets brainwashed into modern-day villain Winter Soldier with a bionic arm.
Though it's probably Translation Convention, this may instead have implications of Switch to English for HYDRA's higher-ups speaking in English instead of German if some of the mooks are actually brainwashed Allied soldiers
Remember how in Iron Man 2, the shield Tony uses to prop up his particle accelerator is mostly made of plastic with a little bit of metal? Howard Stark says that the Vibranium shield is made out of just about all the vibranium they have; the plastic shield Tony's got is just a stand-in for the real deal.
And why did he just stuff it in the particle accelerator? Because it was a failed attempt at replicating the shield, he's probably got a bunch of those all over the place if the one in IM1 is any indication.
Which is kind of Fridge Logic as to why the spy shot him since there is no longer any way to make more serum which seemed like the spy's goal in the first place.
No, it makes perfect sense. The spy's already got the last actual sample of the serum in his hand. He shoots Erskine so he can't remake it for the Americans.
This leads into a second piece: Why did the spy wait until after the experiment? He had to make sure it worked. If it failed, he just would have sent back a message saying the Allies are still no closer to a proper serum. But since it worked he followed his directions carefully; notice that the only time he actually stands to confront Steve is when he has the child hostage, any other time the spy's either trying to lose him or taking potshots to keep him in cover while extending his lead.
Steve grabs a helmet that belongs to one of the dancing girls when he's going off to save Bucky. Just a way to justify his trademark blue helmet with the white A, right? Well...earlier in the movie, we saw how well normal army helmets fit the man. The serum didn't expand his skull: he needs a helmet fitted for someone smaller than the average soldier.
His head looks average sized to me, certainly in proportion to his post-procedure body. Pretty sure he did get a larger skull during the procedure.
No, his head remained the same size. It's average sized in proportion to his post-procedure body...but very large in proportion to his pre-procedure body. The genius part is that it looks okay both ways.
The "Heil HYDRA" salute looks like a doubling up of the Nazi salute, which is sort of cheesy...but their motto is "Cut off one head and two more will take its place." Something doubled-up makes perfect sense.
Having the black dude be the one to capture Arnim Zola wasn't just an attempt at giving him one scene of focus - it was twisting the knife in the wound. Nazi or Hydra, they're Aryans after all.
Take a close look at just where Schmidt picks up the Cosmic Cube: Tønsberg. Which Thor established was the site of a major battle in the Asgardian/Frost Giant War. The few surviving humans would have had first-hand experience just how dangerous the powers Asgardians and their like are dealing in can be to humans, and a great reason to feel indebted to the Asgardians. In other words, the perfect start for an Ancient Tradition guarding a (seemingly, at least) Asgardian relic.
The super soldier serum may have made Steve stronger and faster, but he remained Adorkable, with little charisma to speak of. The stage shows he starred in took care of that; he went from needing cue cards taped to the back of his shield, to the charismatic hero figure he was destined to be.
Huh? He's only adorkable around women, and even after the USO shows he still awkward. What was it pre-USO that showed him as lacking in charisma?
The double date with Bucky where the girl he is going with doesn't pay any attention to him?
That would be the "with women" part, and it was pre-Serum. She would not doubt have been all over him post-serum. You speak as if he was distinctly lacking in charisma between getting the serum and becoming a USO celebrity.
Much of it has to do with character development. Rogers gained his stage confidence over a period of time, and accepted the USO gig because he was still thinking like a soldier and a general told him the war bond drive was the most important front. In Italy he's laughed off as a man in tights by real soldiers. He then becomes a real soldier and a hero rescuing the POWs. Peggy Carter respected him as recruit, liked him as a USO performer, but probably fell for him as a hero.
Bucky's body is never shown, he falls into icy terrain, he's been a lab rat for (possibly) HYDRAs super-serum. Sets it up nicely for Bucky turning up as Winter Solider if Marvel wants to.
Well, judging by the title of the sequel...
Prior to the procedure, Erskine has to point out to Peggy that she should be in the observation booth. It's subtle, but an indication that she's already falling for him.
Not to mention that during the procedure when Steve starts screaming in pain, Peggy is the first person to shout for them to shut it off.
Plus, there's also during the "Grenade!" scene where Peggy is actually the only person running to Steve diving heroically over the grenade, while everyone else ran for cover.
He may have been a scrawny guy having trouble with the basic training run, but Peggy was clearly amused he solved the flag problem.
Prof. Erskine just happens to be there when Steve talks to Bucky passionately about joining the fight. Kismet? No, he's there at the invitation of Howard Stark, who was presenting at the expo, and nipped over to the recruitment tent because he's always looking for recruits.
Steve's sharp memory could be a result of the super-soldier serum.... Or then it might be due to artists often having excellent memory and eye for detail. He may have been asked to emulate another artist's style or reproduce a small picture on a larger scale.
Perhaps a small, unintended bit of brilliance. When the Red Skull gets taken into the Bifrost, the effects almost make it look like he is getting burned. In addition, he gets taken away, rather than dying like the rest of HYDRA. In Greek mythology, the only way to keep a hydra's head from regrowing is to burn the stump after cutting the head off. Also, the last head of the hydra is immortal, and most myths state that it is pinned under a boulder to deal with that. Maybe not the exact same thing as transporting it to a different realm, but kind of an interesting connection.
A Case of Fridge Horror: Wonder why all of the prisoners in Hydra's work camp are Americans, with a few British and French thrown in, instead of the Polish, Finnish and Swedish soldiers they would've captured first? Consider that Hydra clearly doesn't care about it's slave labor's safety: they just ran out of everyone else.
You would be extremely unlikely to find Finns or Swedes outside the Nordic fronts in the first place; the Swedish stayed as neutral as possible, while the Finnish were having their own defensive war in an uncomfortable alliance with Germany. The only ones of either nationality likely to be in the region would have been the few fanatics and andventurers who joined the SS as volunteers.
Or like discussed above they might have been brainwashed and added into hydra ranks. Remember we never actually see any of their faces.
Fridge Stupidity, really... when Steve Rogers is trying so desperately to get into the army, he is perfectly willing to lie about his real name... and yet includes details that he could have easily omitted from his medical history, such as 'Has had household contact with tuberculosis' and 'Parent/sibling with diabetes'. Admittedly the physical exam would have had him rejected anyway, but telling them these details was just plain stupid.
Hey, if anyone's going to be Lawful Good to a fault in the Marvel universe, it's Captain America. One would guess he only lied about his name because otherwise he wouldn't be able to try out at all, and he was determined to get in. But at the same time, he probably wanted to get in despite his infirmities, rather than lying about them.
When does he use a false name and what is it?
Steve doesn't seem to use false names, but rather false birthplaces (Paramus, New Jersey is listed as one of them, forgot about the others.) other than his real birthplace (Brooklyn, New York).
"Steve" and "Rogers" are common enough names that a false birthplace is enough to conceal the fact that he's already been rejected as 4F. He'll lie just enough to get his foot in the door, no more.
I had an odd thought upon re-watching the film - Rogers rejects the team Phillips wants to assemble in favor of asking the POWs he rescued to return to the front. Not only did he see them in action and approve of their tenacity, but he would have compared them subconsciously to the men he was at the Project with. Playing that out in my mind gave me this; there was a way besides Cutting the Knot to get that flag off the flagpole - they could have helped each other. Brawny guys like Dugan on the bottom. Mid-sized guys further up, bracing themselves against the flagpole. Rogers, the "ninety-pound asthmatic" determinedly crawling up the pile to retrieve the flag. "Whoever brings me that flag gets a free ride back to base!" No reason it couldn't have been everyone presenting him with the flag, and refusing to abandon the others. Instead they were yanking each other off the flagpole like crabs in an open bucket.THAT is why he wanted those weirdos - they worked together almost instinctively despite not only being from different units, but different countries.
Why is Bucky alone in no wearing any special Stark-designed battledress, opting instead for a peacoat, aside from paying homage to the comics? It is because since Brubaker's overhaul of the character, Bucky is the Invaders' point man and scout. He was possibly required often to scout ahead, dressed civilian-ish, to gather intel.
The way Cap's Mighty Shield kept on getting its paint job messed up always felt odd to me until I read this review; the shield is itself indestructible, but the paint is just paint - it must be maintained and cared for to show the shield's true glory. So it is with America itself - we are not unsullied and invincible, we screw up and falter and make too many excuses, there is work to be done for us to shine at our best, but underneath the scarring the American Dream is unbowed and unbreakable.
The star at the center also doesn't seem to get scratched up, perhaps representing the ideals that's at the heart of every American's desire to live up to that American Dream.
This Tumblr post gives some interesting ideas about the kid shown near the end of the film.
Except it'd make sense for the kid to be ANYONE but that particular character, since he seems to be around the late thirties/mid forties at most, and if he were alive by VE Day that'd make him AT LEAST 63-65 years old by the time of Iron Man 1, let alone Cap's defrosting and The Avengers taking place. And by NO accounts does Coulson look that old in ANY of his appearances.
And Yet one of the integral parts of Marvel Canon is the Infinity Formula, a serum that extends the lifespans almost indefinably. It's not too much to assume Phil wasn't injected when he was older or with an inferior prototype.
Schmidt mentioned early on that he'd been sent to the Swiss Hydra base because he "no longer fits Hitler's Aryan vision". Which could mean either his Red Skull deformity or him being dark-haired (even before procedure if the Erskine flashback is any indication). Take a look at the few Hydra employees we've seen unmasked, like the agent who shot Erskine or Mr "We fought to the last man". All dark-haired. This subtly hints that Hydra is basically a Reassigned to Antarctica for the Nazis - adding to Schmidt's entire motive of putting down the Reich, so to speak.
Me: "Hey, wait a minute, if Schmidt had all of those targets in Europe, why was he taking the Valkyrie to New York first?" My brother: "He probably wants the ground troops to take care of them."
Also, either Zola was lying about being a vegetarian because he was paranoid about the steak, or he really was a vegetarian. Like Hitler.
Part of the reason why Steve is so immediately disoriented and afraid when he first wakes up in 2011: the SHIELD agents are wearing heavy black armor, not too immediately dissimilar from HYDRA armor, and the technology he encounters as soon as he breaks out is highly advanced beyond what he's familiar with, beyond, again, HYDRA technology. Even if he doesn't think they're HYDRA, he's going to be drawing some automatic and very emotional connections to HYDRA regardless.
The name "Vita-Rays" stuck me as dumb-sounding and vague until I realized that was probably the point. Erskine was trying to keep the supersoldier creation process known only to himself, so it makes sense that he'd hide not only the formula but the name of the radiation involved as well.
This is typical operating procedure for some secret government projects. The use of "tank" to mean a tracked armored vehicle with at least one powerful gun came about because the British were attempting to fool the German Empire into thinking it was a mobile water tank. It's good for keeping eyes away from your project by hoping your enemies think it's just something boring they can easily take care of later, or, in the case of the Vita-Rays, not fully sure what it is and maybe it is just a distraction because it's got a stupid name.
The first we see of the HYDRA soldiers, they're dressed and armed no differently like other Nazi soldiers. Once they have possession of the Tesseract, we gradually see the HYDRA soldiers look less and less like regular Nazi personnel, with their uniforms getting more heavily protected and their tech obviously getting more advanced. Then when you consider that Red Skull probably had HYDRA completely split off from the Nazis upon making the discovery in Norway...
First, Steve gets 4F as a grade. Then, he gets 1A. They might be actual military grades, but think about it: a guy played by Chris Evans went from 4F to 1A.
1A and 4F are actual Selective Service classifications, standing for "Available for unrestricted military service," and "Not Acceptable for military service" respectfully. Still a funny coincidence.
A very minor point but it does make an interesting parallel between the Captain and Red Skull. When Zola is trying to transfer the Tesseract's energy to an artificial cell, he stops at 70%, afraid to go further since it's untested technology, but Skull pushes it to 100, unwilling to stop going all the way after waiting so long. Later when Steve is undergoing the serum infusion, as Stark pushes the energy to 70% Steve begins to scream, and as Erskine tries to shut it down, Steve refuses to let him, insisting he can do it, and they keep going.
A bit of both Brilliance and Fridge Horror: Jim Morita's bitterness is justified when you consider that his family back home is likely in an internment camp.