Synopsis: “Power Broker” sees The Falcon (Anthony Mackie) and The Winter Soldier (Sebstian Stan) enlist Zemo (Daniel Bruhl) as their ally. Consequently, the trio head off to Madripoor, to try and find out essential information about the super-soldier serum . . .
In comparison to last week’s episode, “The Star Spangled Man”, we’re fully into the story-world of the show, now. The stage is set for Sam (Anthony Mackie) and Bucky (Sebastian Stan) to take on adversaries at their level. The world of Madripoor was well used, and allowed us to see the sort of places that we often see in the comics. Getting to see Zemo (Daniel Bruhl) navigate them through there was a good way to show how important and complex a character he is. For example, his many connections that he could rely upon.
The re-introduction of Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp) was handled well, and her story felt like it fit in well, too. Her inclusion helped to further explore a key theme of the show: where is the line between hero and villain? This has long been a trope in the MCU Captain America narrative. “Power Broker” showed us the same world, but from multiple and varied perspectives, keeping things interesting.
Hats off to Daniel Bruhl. Bruhl did a great job of the enemy turned temporary ally. There was that element of comic book mischief to him. You can’t side with him fully, but you definitely flirt with it for a while. The performance really managed to personify that aspect.
Some awesome diverse acting from Emily VanCamp, this week. Her physical acting was really helped to keep the idea of this show as an action-based affair. But also, her character work really helped to show her motivations too, and determination to clear her name.
CGI & Effects
More high-octane stuff. The explosion in the lab was smart, visually. These well choreographed scenes really help to keep the MCU as the benchmark to compete against. There’s a realism to the effects in this show, that notably are very different from WandaVision.
A real delve into a world that exists somewhere between the fictional and the real. The world of Madripoor managed to create an atmosphere that was fascinating and terrifying. And, what helped was that both Bucky and Sam were out of their comfort zones, and so they were as surprised as we were, in many ways. But it wasn’t just Madripoor that made “Power Broker” a powerful episode . . .
We continued to see elements manifest, that we’ve written about in Falcon and The Winter Soldier: Some Predictions. Zemo brought a sense of fun to the proceeding, and fit in with the humorous element wonderfully. Another thing that we felt we’d seem and did, was the use of references to established events. The detail of the same notebook did so much. As ever, the MCU continues to build on what has been, and incorporate it into what’s happening now. But it doesn’t do so for the sake of, which means that when we see an “Easter-Egg”, it almost certainly adds to the current story. That was absolutely the case here, keeping everything relevant.
Falcon and The Winter Soldier airs Fridays, on DisneyPlus. running for six episodes, over six weeks. To help celebrate the launch, May The Verse Be With You published “Stucky”, to coincide with episode one., and this week “On Your Left“, too.
- CGI & Effects9.3
- Incidental Music9.1