I’ve read several reviews of Endgame that focus on the ending of my all-time favorite superhero, Captain America. At least half of them trash-talk the ending, saying that there’s no way that his story makes sense. I’ve spent hours dwelling on how his arc played out and quite a bit of time discussing it with other people. My conclusion is this: his story makes sense if you put any amount of thought into it at all. The “inconsistencies” are just people looking to complain about things in a movie that was darn near perfect. So I’d like to take a look at two of these “inconsistencies” in particular…
You Can’t Affect The Future
It’s established early in the “Time Heist” planning stages that the heroes can’t simply go back to before Thanos got the stones and stop him from getting them. Nor can they go kill baby Thanos and stop him that way. By this logic, some argue that it’s impossible for Captain America to go back in time, live with Peggy Carter, and then end up in the current Earth’s present day since that would then mean that Peggy didn’t meet her “real” husband or have the children that we all know she had. This argument makes sense if you ignore everything else that was explained about time travel. When Hulk visited the Ancient One to ask for the time stone, she gives a very nice illustration of how time travel works. By going back and reuniting with Peggy, Captain Rogers starts a new branch of the timeline with a new Peggy (which has since been confirmed by the Russo brothers). Had he just lived out his life, he would have become an old man in that alternate timeline. But, of course, he didn’t. Why? Because at the end of his journey he used his “Time GPS” to return to the current timeline. Instead of making a “V” like in Hulk’s example to the Ancient One, Cap made a triangle. He returned to the current timeline at a different point than he left it.
Steve Rogers Would Never Retire
The next argument I see is that Steve Rogers would never leave his friends behind to go live a peaceful life with his one true love. This argument is absolutely 100% correct. There is no way that Steve would hang up the shield and settle down when there was good to be done. And there is no way that Peggy would simply retire from the SSR or SHIELD to settle down when there was good to be done. I’m not sure why these reviewers seem to think that Cap and Peggy together means that they just buy a house in the suburbs and are never heard from again. We’ve seen the good that Carter and Rogers were able to do on their own. Can you imagine what the two could accomplish together? Honestly, I’d like a movie that follows Steve and Peggy through their alternate timeline life together as the coolest Dynamic Duo the world has ever seen. This is to say nothing of their children. The popular mobile game Marvel Future Fight even created the character of Sharon Rogers, an alternate timeline daughter of Steve and Peggy who learns the best of both of them and becomes Captain America when Steve Rogers retires. In a world where time travel and quantum realms exist, it is definitely possible, even likely, that Captain America would live out his life saving an alternate timeline with his butt-kicking wife and their equally butt-kicking kids before returning to the current timeline to hand off the well-worn vibranium shield to Sam Wilson so that the legacy can continue. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if Steve just went the extra mile and rescued is best friend Bucky to round out the team.
All in all, this is exactly the ending I would have written for Captain America. Sure, he could have gone out in a blaze of glory, but to metagame a little here, this is what Cap has earned. He’s served his country during two different periods of history against everything from Nazis to evil aliens. He’s earned a break, and saving the world with the love of his life sounds like exactly the break that he wants and deserves.