Apr 29 2016 2:00pm

Captain America vs. Iron Man: Which Side Are You On? Part 1 of 2

Captain American #Team Cap vs Iron Man #TeamIronMan in Civil War

Team H&H is having its own Civil War among our bloggers as two of our most die-hard superhero fans, Pen Singleton and Sahara Hoshi, take a side in Captain America: Civil War. Today they're offering up their opening arguments for each side, but come back on Sunday as they detail what their side winning or losing could mean for the ships we've come to love in the Marvel Universe. 

We are about a week away from Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War and I (Pen Singleton) could not be more ready!  In case you haven’t seen any of my other Marvel posts, here’s a quick rundown of my credentials.  I have a tendency to obsess and it comes into play very strongly with the movies of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  I have seen most of the movies multiple times in the theater.  And, when I say multiple, I don’t mean two or three.  I saw Captain America: The Winter Soldier in the theater ten times. And, thus far, I’ve seen The Avengers in the theater twenty times. And I say “thus far” because I already have my ticket for the Ultimate Captain America Marathon on May 5, the day before the release of Captain America: Civil War.  I will be in the movie theater at 8am to watch a 15 hour marathon consisting of both previous Captain American movies and both Avengers movies before the premiere of Captain America: Civil War. So, I know a bit about these movies and have extremely strong feelings about the battle at the heart of the new movie that will pit all of the Marvel heroes we’ve seen in movies since 2008’s Iron Man against one another: Team Iron Man vs Team Captain America.

Team Captain America (#TeamCap — Pen):

As you may know, Civil War is a major storyline in the comics but the storyline has already been changed/adapted for the cinematic universe. Additionally, I have read a lot of information about this movie and some spoilers but I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone that is not aware of what’s to come so I’m going to keep this post mainly focused on what we all know, from the trailers that have been released for the movie. That said, this post does assume that you have either seen the bulk of movies that have led up to this one or have knowledge of the major themes from them.  Based on just the trailers and the movies that have led up to Captain America: Civil War, I am firmly in the #TeamCap camp.  Let me tell you why!

There appear to be two main issues driving the wedge that separates our heroes into two opposing teams.  The first is about the Sokovia Accords, an agreement between world governments that is a direct result of the events of Avengers: Age of Ultron.  The government, along with Tony Stark/Iron Man believes that the superheroes should no longer be allowed to make their own decisions about what actions to take.  He and the government believe that the heroes, since they initially teamed up together in New York during the Avengers, have been responsible for too many civilian deaths and property destruction.  Captain America appears to be vehemently opposed to the government having any control over the heroes.  I can see why Tony Stark would feel guilt and be inclined to side with the government seeing as though he is directly responsible for the what happened in Sokovia! Tony, on his own and largely without the agreement of the other Avengers, created Ultron. Captain America did not agree with his actions and tried to stop him. Also, Cap has good reason to distrust the government’s interference with his actions. He had his strong concerns about S.H.I.E.L.D. and their actions and, what do you know, he turned out to be correct!  S.H.I.E.L.D specifically and other portions of the US Government had been infiltrated by HYDRA and would’ve killed millions of people, had it not been for the actions of Cap in Captain America: The Winter Soldier.  So, when it comes to the government vs our heroes,  I trust and agree with #TeamCap.

The second dispute between Cap and Iron Man is Bucky Barnes a.k.a. the Winter Soldier.  Bucky was a childhood friend of Steve Rogers before he ever dreamed of being Captain American and was an ally to Captain America as a founding member of the Howling Commandoes.  Bucky appeared to die during World War II but was later revealed to have been saved and brainwashed by HYDRA and turned into a master assassin named The Winter Soldier. 

Team Iron Man believes The Winter Soldier to be a dangerous criminal who needs to be apprehended and forced to answer for and pay for his decades of crimes.  Team Cap believes Bucky is Steve’s friend that has been used as a pawn who can be saved and rehabilitated from HYDRA and is not responsible for the crimes he committed while under their control.  This one is also an easy one for me. Captain America: The Winter Soldier clearly illustrated the violent and barbaric ways HYDRA used to control Bucky and wipe his memory when he did have memories of the past and his conscience started to affect him.  Because it is clear that he does have a conscience. Even after fighting Captain America nearly to the death, when he had the opportunity to let Cap drown and die he chose to retrieve his body from the water, saving his life.  The last time we saw him, he was trying to recover his memories from when he was Bucky.  When given the choice, he did not choose to remain The Winter Soldier; he chose to be Steve’s friend. So, on the issue of Bucky, I’m also #TeamCap.

I can’t wait to see how the movie plays out and how the alliances formed affect all of our heroes and the movies still to come in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  Those familiar with the comics know how it all turns out but, we don’t know yet if the movies will go the same way. Whatever the case, as it stands right now, I’m firmly in the #TeamCap camp.  Come on, May 5!

Captain America vs Iron Man Part 1 470
via Tumblr

Team Iron Man (#TeamIronMan — Sahara)

“We can’t save everyone, but we have to try” basically sums up Captain America’s voiceover in the second trailer for Captain America: Civil War. I was on Twitter when the second trailer dropped and realize the position I am in, Team Iron Man is not exactly the winning or favorite team. Why? Because Tony Stark is the reason so many things have gone wrong in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

We are just coming off the heels of Age of Ultron, another story in which Tony’s sneaking around with unchecked authority means he and Bruce (The Hulk) unleash a sentient technology on the world that messes everything up. However, in Civil War, Tony is trying to right the wrong he did in Age of Ultron, albeit probably not in the way everyone wants him to. What’s so great about Team Iron Man is the fact that the entire core of this team surrounds a man who is extremely fallible and yet gets up and tries to do the right thing even when it’s in the wrong format. If you’re Team Iron Man then you strongly believe in the power of redemption. We’ve seen Tony battle his own ego, alcoholism and a sentient creature of his own making. Yet time and time again, Tony does what needs to be done in order to be a hero. Team Captain America will argue my point by saying that if Tony Stark can be redeemed then so can Bucky (Winter Soldier) and Bucky has caused a lot less damage than Tony Stark has in the time that Bucky has been in the Cinematic Universe.

The problem for being Team Iron Man lies not in Tony’s agreement to have a restriction on not only superhuman abilities, but also Bucky. Instead the main problem is that Tony Stark usually fixes his problems in the wrong way until he can come up with a solution. I’d argue that it’s easier to be Team Captain America because the Captain hasn’t done anything truly fallible in his time in the Cinematic Universe. His main compatriots in Civil War, like Falcon and Hawkeye, are characters who have been distinguished by their brave acts and even when they did screw up (looking at you Hawkeye, see Loki-mind control) it was always due to circumstances beyond their own making. Team Iron Man is full of people haunted by their past mistakes including Black Widow, War Machine and others. For example, War Machine also went after Tony and made the mistake of siding with the wrong company in Iron Man II, however, Tony and James Rhodes have an understanding that they have each other’s backs even after one or the other has royally screwed up.

It’s easy to be Team Captain America when the character hasn’t done anything wrong, but it’s harder to stand by a man who despites so many mistakes and his own egocentricity, can’t help but look for redemption again and again. Some will argue that there are only so many times that you can forgive, but it’s not about the audience forgiving Tony Stark, it’s about Tony Stark being able to live with himself and it’s the fortitude and interest in seeing a character develop that is why I’m Team Iron Man.

Ready for Part 2? See how your side will effect your ships! 



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Pen Singleton is a writer, reader, obsessive fangirl and pop culture addict. You can find her on Twitter @sweetiepiepen or fangirl with her on Tumblr

Sahara Hoshi reviews for Wicked Lil Pixie and is a lifelong reader of romance. Favorite genres include new adult, paranormal romance, contemporary romance and erotica.


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2. wsl0612
@TeddyP and Sahara - Go TeamIronMan! :-)

@ Pen - I wish you lived near me (I'm assuming you're in NY), I'd love to attend all the repeat showings too!
5. Fiona Marsden
I'm in the fortunate position of being in Australia where Captain America:Civil War was released two days ago. I've seen it twice already. I'm not going to do any spoilers but I will say this movie dealt with the problems of loyalty, choice and redemption far better than the similarly themed Batman Vs Superman. So. Much. Emotion.

I agree with both teams positions above. And if #TeamIronMan was trying for the pity #TeamCaptainAmerica because I agree with the deep down reasons of why he made the choices he did. And please...please don't leave the cinemas the moment the credits come up like a good percentage of people at the sessions I went to. There are TWO, count them, TWO snippets for you to watch. The first is ESSENTIAL, the second is fun.
Pen Singleton
6. PenSingleton
@TeddyP & @wsl0612, awww man, I couldn't sway you? *sadface*
@wsl0612 I love going to the movies multiple times and catching things I missed!
@Heather Waters & @stacymd2 - woohoo!! #TeamCap FTW!
@Fiona Marsden - thanks for the insights; I'm so excited to see it! I never leave until the very end but I appreciate the heads up about the bonus scenes!
7. Amy Kat
I would normally be inclined to be #TeamCap but I don't quite understand why Cap isn't willing to let Bucky be apprehended and go to trial. I hope and anticipate that the movie will provided a decent explanation for Cap's thinking, but Bucky has killed a lot of people over the years, including Tony's parents. There is a decent chance that he would be declared innocent due to his brainwashing, so why not let him go through the legal process?
Saundra Peck
8. sk1336
Strong and loyal Team Iron Man... He may be a narcissist, but he also befriends kids and bows to Pepper. How can you resist that?!?!
9. Fiona Marsden
Hi Amy Kat, Do you really believe that Bucky would live to go to trial with all the people gunning for him?
10. Jennifer_Estep
I *love* the first two Cap movies. I think they are some of the best movies in the MCU -- especially Winter Soldier -- and that Cap is one of the most interesting, layered, and developed characters in the MCU.

#TeamCap all the way because Cap always tries to do the right thing, no matter how hard it is.

Tony always invents things (suits of armor, weapons, killer robots) with mostly good intentions, but he never thinks through the consequences of his actions. He's a genius, but he never learns his lesson about this, and he always makes things worse.
12. nypinta
Team Cap. And it doesn't have anything to do with the personalities behind the positions. But one should look at the people taking sides as well as the issue itself as they are all relevent and can offer both strengths and weaknesses to their argument. Tony, quite frankly, comes off as both arrogant and hypocritical in his stance. Tony did have someone to be held accountable too, but then he went behind his back. So what's to say he or any other superhero that registers won't just do the same thing? Tony put Steve in charge of the Avengers and then he and Bruce made Ultron without any input from Steve. He circumvented the system he himself put into place to put him in check. And then later when Steve tried to stop him from doing it *again* Tony punched him. He balked his own system! So, in short, systems don't work. This has been demonstrated multiple times throughout the Marvel movies. SHIELD was corrupt. Tony ignored his own chain of command. The council that Fury answered too nearly nuked NYC. Oversight is never good, because it can be swayed to easy and unless you're Steve Rogers, chances are no one will be able to stop it when it starts to go awry.

As for Bucky, I think Steve's main concern is that he doesn't trust that anyone would treat Bucky fairly. He's too easy a scape goat that would be buried by everyone that needs someone, anyone to pay just so they can pretend they're doing something about Hydra and the corruption that was allowed into the intelligence community. Bucky is the "take your shoes off at the TSA checkpoint" of anti-Hydra reforms. Also, it might have been implied that Bucky killed Tony's parents but until Bucky says he did it, I'm on the fence believing it's true. Tony's folks died in a car crash. Unless it was one where an explosive blew up their car, fixing the brakes doesn't exacty seem like something Hydra would bother wasting their most top secret asset on. Anyone can fix brakes.

Tony might want to atone for his actions and vengence for his parents, but neither reason is a good reason to force an entire population of people to adhere to strict regulation. I recall thinking when I first saw them standing off against each other at the airport, that everyone on Team Ironman are people that are either privledged for protected. Where as the people Steve is standing up for are all the ones that have something to loose.
13. Vickie Russell
#teamcap all the way - I saw the movie last weekend, and it's fabulous. The Captain America movies are my faves and Civil War doesn't disappoint.
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