The finale of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier drops today, which means we’re finally going to find out whether or not Sam Wilson and Bucky Barnes will become super best friends or if they’ll keep their friend-dating casual. (FYI people have been spoiling the finale all over Twitter but we will not be addressing what happens in the final episode in this post so that everyone has a chance to watch.) As far as I am concerned, the status of the friendships on Falcon is the most important part of the show, because goddess knows I don’t care about the Flag Smashers (who should have a MUCH more specific beef with the Avengers, since they’re the ones who brought everyone back, thus displacing the Flag Smashers from their new, post-blip homes). In the recent yet grand tradition of highly scientific rankings, I am here to rank the various friendships of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, both real and imagined, because some of these characters have not yet met BUT THEY SHOULD. This list is ranked in the order in which I most want to hang out with these people.
John Walker and Murder
Everyone’s got that one friend who just totally loses it at inappropriate times. You know, the friend who goes over the top about sports things, or gets mad about the behavior of fictional characters in movies and TV shows, or just generally goes a little too big when the stakes are entirely low. John Walker is that friend, but he goes from zero to murder in three seconds flat. John Walker wants to extra-judicially kill people with impunity, so, you know, throw the ENTIRE man out, and then wheel that dumpster to a therapist’s office. But not Bucky’s crappy court-appointed therapist’s office, I’m convinced she’s secretly Hydra, she’s so terrible at her job.
John Walker and Lemar Hoskins
Before Walker took the supersoldier serum and went completely off the deep end, he and Lemar Hoskins seemed to have the kind of battle-tested friendship shared by Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes. But where Steve’s whole deal was “Bucky, stop murdering”, Walker’s thing is “Let me murder”. I’d rather hang out with Walker when Lemar is around, though, that’s for sure.
The Flag Smashers
Pros for hanging out with the Flag Smashers:
- Plan heists with buddies
- Be part of a club!
- Uniform has an easy-breezy DIY aesthetic
- World travel
- Spend time with Cheekbones Smasher
Cons for hanging out with the Flag Smashers:
- Low key bad vibes
- Flash mob activities
- Odds of murdering or being murdered are high
Bucky Barnes and Zemo
Bucky and Zemo have one of those fun frenemy-ships that involves playing pretend games in public and plotting each other’s murders. Like you don’t THINK this relationship will ACTUALLY turn violent, but you’re ALSO not super into playing laser tag with them, either, just in case it DOES. It’s just all too intense and loaded with innuendo. Theirs is a classic, will-they-won’t-they relationship but you’re not sure if it ends in a drunken hookup or a murder-suicide. There will probably be chalk outlines of bodies either way.
Bucky Barnes and Violence
I know they say he’s reformed these days but look at that man, he’s keeping his knife-flipping skills sharp. It’s always useful to have a friend who’s good in a fight, though.
Sam Wilson and Staring Thoughtfully into the Middle Distance
Just as you need to have a friend who’s good in a fight, you also need a friend who can show up When Times Are Tough and stare thoughtfully into the middle distance say things like, “Sometimes things are just hard,” and, “We can never really know ourselves.” This friend was fielding a LOT of calls and texts in 2020.
Sam Wilson and Bucky Barnes
Look, making friends as an adult is HARD. I think about all the times some math teacher told me I was going to need to know algebra and how I absolutely do not ever use algebra in my daily life, and how all that algebra time could have been better spent teaching kids how to build friendships so that adult life will be a little less fraught. Most of us just end up making friends with co-workers—and sometimes those friendships are great!—because it’s easy and convenient, and Sam and Bucky are no different. Would they choose to be friends if circumstances didn’t keep throwing them together? Probably not. They have few interests in common outside of Steve Rogers (who was the king of trying to make his work friends and his real friends get along). But they are making the best of it, dammit! They will be cordial co-workers until the day they realize they have become super best friends almost on accident, like the rest of us.
Sarah Wilson and Leah
Sometimes you just need a friend with whom to commiserate when you do not have time for these fools and duds wasting your time! Sarah Wilson and Leah should be those friends!
The Dora Milaje
Pros for joining the Dora Milaje:
- Coordinated couture uniforms
- Ride or die besties for life
- GREAT clothes when not in uniform
- Wakandan technology
- Jurisdiction wherever you go
Cons for joining the Dora Milaje:
- Lots of exercise, probably
- Occasionally responsible for deprogramming brainwashed super-assassins
- Avengers up in your business
- Carry the stain of King T’Chaka’s death forever
Sharon Carter and Contessa Valentina Allegra de Fontaine
As far as we know, Sharon Carter and Call-Me-Val-But-Also-Do-NOT have never met, but both are bad bitches and I stan a bad bitch dyad. If they don’t know each other, they SHOULD, as both are former SHIELD agents who, for reasons their own, have traded in the good-gal life for a life of high crimes and misdemeanors. Sharon and Val have GREAT best friend potential and, frankly, if they did team up, I would probably root for them to take over the world. The more I think about it, the more I think the Avengers ought to be thrown in jail for that sh-t they pulled with the Infinity Stones. They REALLY f-cked up the world by bringing the snapped people five years into the future, instead of just unwinding time back to 2018 and making it so the blip never happened.
I know it was done to protect Morgan Stark’s existence, but we have seen enough of the post-blip chaos to grasp that the world was PROFOUNDLY DAMAGED by their actions. We haven’t even gotten into all the people who DID move on in those five years and had their NEW lives completely f-cked by the Avengers bringing everyone back. Basically, the next round of Marvel villains will have deeply sympathetic motivations because the Avengers definitely made things worse by “saving” the world the way they did, and people will have undoubtedly legit grounds to be furious at them for it. Anyway, sometimes you just wanna be a bad bitch and hang out with other bad bitches, and I am rooting for Sharon and Val to become bad bitch BFFs and, while they’re at it, dismantle the Avengers because I’m starting to think THEY’RE the real villains.