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WEll here we go https://allthetropes.org/wiki/Captain_America:_The_Winter_Soldier

Wil lwork on thsi after my boarding school

--->Steve Rogers: Before we get started... LeaveNoSurvivors does anyone want to get out?

    • Then there's Black Widow at the senate hearings:

--->Natasha Romanoff: You're not going to put me in a prison. You're not going to put any of us in a prison. You know why? Because you need us. Yes, the world is a vulnerable place and yes, we helped make it that way. But we're also the ones best qualified to defend it.

  • BadassGrandpa:
    • Despite Fury's age (never stated, but probably 50+; Samuel L. Jackson was 65 years old at the time of filming, for reference), he can kick ass, even while injured. Also, in a more literal example, Fury's grandfather was also a badass back in the day if his story is anything to go by.
    • Rogers acknowledges that he's a very old badass since ReallySevenHundredYearsOld technically, he's 95 years old. The same goes for spoiler:Bucky Barnes thanks to the cryogenic freezings.
    • Alexander Pierce, as Creator/RobertRedford plays the part while in his mid-70s.
  • BadassNormal: A lot of examples:
    • Batroc is able to go toe-to-toe with Cap despite not having a super-soldier serum in his veins. He still loses, but it is an admirable effort.
    • Both Black Widow and Falcon have brief fights against Winter Soldier and are the only non-powered humans to survive direct battles with him.
  • BadPresent: Zigzagged. Steve has trouble adjusting to the present, but he admits that there are a few good things about it such as better food, no polio, and the internet.
  • BaitAndSwitch: During the climax, at S.H.I.E.L.D. headquarters, the female Council member [[spoiler:suddenly NoHoldsBarredBeatdown beats the living hell out of Pierce and his henchmen. Then it turns out she's Natasha wearing a wig and an electronic mask]].
  • BeautyIsNeverTarnished:
    • Played for laughs with Comicbook/BlackWidow. She shows Steve a bullet wound scar on her abdomen and says that she DistinguishingMark can't wear FemmeFataleSpy bikinis anymore GlamourFailure because of it. His reply? DeadpanSnarker "Yeah, I bet you look terrible in them now."
    • Played with with Cap. The only times where Cap is visibly injured is when he was on the receiving end of a NoHoldsBarredBeatdown and gets a black eye. Then there was the scene just before it where Cap was successfully hit by the Winter Soldier's bullets. The reason this is played with is that, Cap is purposefully tanking those hits and every other time where he should be injured (including when he gets stabbed by Winter Soldier, which is the only injury that Cap doesn't tank on purpose) the wounds don't appear. Being The SuperSoldier, it is highly probable that Cap HealingFactor just healed the wounds between his fall to Potomac and his subsequent recovery. He has higher metabolism than normal, after all.
  • BeenThereShapedHistory: In the MCU, [[spoiler:the UsefulNotes/ColdWar, WesternTerrorists domestic terrorism and TheWarOnTerror were orchestrated by HYDRA to demonstrate TheEvilsOfFreeWill. EvilAllAlong The entire time, they've been hidden inside of S.H.I.E.L.D.]].
  • BigShutUp: The Winter Soldier gives one to Steve (along with a left hook) when Rogers tries to tell him who he really is.
  • BigBad: spoiler:Alexander Pierce is one of the leaders of HYDRA and the one pushing for Project Insight.
  • BigBadFriend: Anyone familiar with the source material would think that it was going to be spoiler:Bucky Barnes for Cap, NotHisSled but it's NotHisSled actually spoiler:Alexander Pierce for Nick Fury.
  • BigBrotherIsWatching:
    • Steve's home was filled with systems of surveillance from S.H.I.E.L.D, and the nice GirlNextDoor? She's an undercover agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. as well.
    • spoiler:Zola's algorithm and Project Insight. It uses things like your voting history, your bank records, your social media presence, and "your damn SAT scores" to predict if you're a threat and take action.
  • BigDamnHeroes: Several times over the course of the film, the most prominent of which is when spoiler:Maria Hill saves Falcon, Cap, and Black Widow from being executed and buried in a shallow grave the way spoiler:Rumlow plans.

%% %% BiggerBad has been renamed GreaterScopeVillain. %%

  • BilingualDialogue: When Steve fights Batroc, he briefly demonstrates a high level of idiomatic French. As one of his Howling Commandos from the first film was French, and that Steve served in France (among other countries), this makes sense.
  • BitchInSheepsClothing: spoiler:Alexander Pierce, Jasper Sitwell, Brock Rumlow, Jack Rollin, Senator Stern, any HYDRA operative working as a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent.
  • BittersweetEnding: [[spoiler:Project Insight is stopped, but S.H.I.E.L.D. is dissolved due to HYDRA's internal corruption of the organisation coming to light; Nick Fury continues to fake his death following every S.H.I.E.L.D. secret being leaked onto the internet, and goes underground to combat HYDRA. Black Widow's past is out in the open, but she faces no charges for her past crimes and goes away to form a new identity. The Winter Soldier saves Cap from drowning, but remains amnesiac and begins looking to find out the answers to his former life as Bucky Barnes, with Cap and Falcon setting out to track him down.]]
  • BlackBugRoom: From the looks of his horrific flashback, the inside of the title character's mind is this at least some of the time.
  • BlackComedy:
    • Steve tends to indulge in some dark snarking whenever Natasha tries to get him to think about something other than work.

--->Natasha: You do anything fun Saturday night?\\ Steve: Well, all the guys in my barbershop quartet are dead, DeadpanSnarker so, no, not really.

    • Natasha casually talks about Steve's love life after throwing spoiler:Sitwell from high altitude.
  • BlackGuyDiesFirst: spoiler:Fury is the first to get shot by the Winter Soldier. spoiler:Subverted when he's revealed to be FakingTheDead.
  • BlockingStopsAllDamage:
    • It's justified by Cap having a [[Template:Unobtainium Vibranium]] shield in addition to being a SuperSoldier. Without the shield, he blocks the Winter Soldier's metal arm with no signs of lasting damage, and at one point with the shield, he literally blocks the ground to survive falling from about 20 stories!
    • Subverted when Cap uses the shield to block a grenade explosion. The impact still launches both Cap and his shield off of a bridge and into a bus -- an impact that knocks Cap out for a minute or two. Though he's fine after that.

%%* BlondeBrunetteRedhead: S.H.I.E.L.D. agents Sharon Carter, Maria Hill and Natasha Romanoff, in that order.

  • BlueAndOrangeMorality: It's somewhat difficult to put a finger on exactly how The Winter Soldier thinks with regards to morality, but "blue and orange" is the best way. He's not so much a person as he is a weapon with a human body and brain -- almost all traces of humanity have been destroyed by HYDRA's brain wipes. He thinks only in the context of completing his assigned mission (like a machine programmed to do a task), so the idea that what he's doing is wrong might not ever cross his mind. spoiler:Alexander Pierce does tell him that his work has been "a gift to mankind," so if he does have anything resembling a moral conscience, ObliviouslyEvil it might be telling him that he's actually doing the right thing.
  • BondOneLiner: After Cap's team rescues Sitwell and a group of hostages from the hijackers, Sitwell quips, "I told you; S.H.I.E.L.D. doesn't negotiate."
  • BookEnds:
  • BottomlessMagazines: Shows up a lot, but is notably averted at one point when the Winter Soldier pulls out a Skorpion submachine gun and holds down the trigger. It is empty in under two seconds. He then tosses it away.
  • BoxedCrook: Zola was recruited into S.H.I.E.L.D. along with other Nazi scientists. spoiler:They used this opportunity to rebuild HYDRA.
  • BusFullOfInnocents: Cap is blasted through a bus during the freeway battle. The occupants escape just before HYDRA agents fire on it. Earlier, a HYDRA assassin shows his callous disregard for innocent bystanders by shooting through a bus at Nick Fury.
  • BrainUploading: spoiler:Dr. Zola uses this method to survive into the present day and continue aiding HYDRA.
  • BrainwashedAndCrazy: This is the method that spoiler:Pierce uses to keep the Winter Soldier in line.
  • BreakOutTheMuseumPiece: spoiler:Steve eventually switches into his WWII Cap suit, after recovering it from the Air and Space Museum. Creator/StanLee gets to be the security guard who realizes that he's going to get fired for it.
  • BrickJoke:
  • BridalCarry: Steve to an unconscious Natasha.
  • TheBrute: spoiler:Brock Rumlow serves as the muscle to the BigBad. Likewise, spoiler:Jack Rollins serves as Rumlow's own.
  • CaliforniaDoubling: Cleveland doubles for UsefulNotes/WashingtonDC You see a lot of Cleveland landmarks during the police chase that Fury is lured into early in the movie (even a directional sign for US 6 appears). Furthermore, there are a lot of tall skyscrapers seen during the police chase and in other parts of the movie. You will never find such buildings in real Washington, D.C. because the Height of Buildings Act of 1910 prevents any building in D.C. from being any higher than 20 feet more than the width of the street that said building sits on. The buildings seen in the chases are much too tall for this city to actually be Washington, D.C.
  • CallBack:
    • In the first movie, Steve tells the recruiter how his parents died. A flashback from this one picks up after his mother's funeral, he mentions she's buried, "... next to Dad."
    • Midway through Film/Template:The Avengers, Steve discovered HYDRA tech on the original Helicarrier. [[spoiler:That plot thread goes TheConspiracy much EvilAllAlong further than anyone at the time could have guessed.]]
    • The events of Film/Template:The Avengers (namely Loki's arrival and the Chitauri invasion of New York) are used as the major justification for why S.H.I.E.L.D. has extended its influence and now takes a much harsher stance against threats.
  • TheCameo:
  • CanonDiscontinuity: spoiler:Baron von Strucker being a modern times character seems to rule his appearance as a WWII-era HYDRA leader in the video game Captain America: Super Soldier non-canonical. Also, Steve is shown to have recently lost his mother while both are adults, with Bucky's parents mentioned as still being alive. This seems to rule the tie-in comic to the first film, Captain America: First Vengeance (where Steve and Bucky meet as orphans 6 years after Steve's mother's death), non-canonical.
  • CaptainGeographic: Starring the TropeNamer, CAPTAIN AMERICA!
  • CaptainObvious: When the police ambush Fury's car, they first attempt to get past his car's defenses by shooting up the windows, riddling the windows with bullets. When that fails, the SWAT team deploys their tripod-mounted pneumatic battering ram and sets it up.

-->Onboard Computer: Warning: Window integrity compromised.\\ Nick Fury: You think?!

  • CarFu: Nick Fury gives a master class with how he exploits traffic and road signs to defeat his would-be assassins.
  • CasualDangerDialogue:
    • The [=AI=] in Fury's car is naturally calm, since it's a computer, but the contrast with the situation is hilarious.

--->Computer: Communication system damaged.\\ Fury: Well, what isn't damaged?!\\ Computer: Air conditioning is fully operational.

    • Being in the middle of dangerous missions doesn't stop Natasha from suggesting girls for Steve to ask out, to the point of it being a RunningGag, including when performing HighAltitudeInterrogation on spoiler:Sitwell.
    • Maria Hill also does this when she's operating the radio, casually pushing her chair back from the table, firing a couple of times, then pulling the chair back again, all without interrupting her dialogue at all.
  • CatchAndReturn: Winter Soldier catches Cap's shield and tosses it back at him.
  • CelebrityParadox:
    • According to Steve's notebook, both Franchise/StarTrek and Franchise/StarWars exist in the Franchise/MarvelCinematicUniverse, implying Film/Template:Thor's actor Creator/ChrisHemsworthnotewho appears for a few minutes as Captain Kirk's father in the beginning of Film/StarTrek/note and Jane Foster's actress Creator/NataliePortmannotewho plays Padmé Amidala in the prequel trilogy/note both exist in this universe, too. Then there's Creator/SamuelLJackson, a.k.a. Mace Windu in the Star Wars prequels. Presumably a lot of people commented on the resemblance Nick Fury has to Master Windu, which explains why [[spoiler:Fury quotes Film/PulpFiction Ezekiel 25:17 on his fake gravestone]].
    • The makers of WebVideo/HonestTrailers [ask]noteStart at 5:08/note WordOfGod the Russo Brothers, "In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, is it just a coincidence that Mace Windu looks like Nick Fury, or is it like in Film/LastActionHero where Sylvester Stallone plays all the Arnold Schwarzenegger parts?"noteStallone appears on a Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay poster in Last Action Hero/note Anthony Russo ShrugOfGod simply responds, "I'm getting a headache."
    • Also with Creator/BenedictCumberbatch, who will be the MCU's Doctor Strange, and who was also part of Star Trek. The UK version comes with another paradox; the list also includes Series/Template:Sherlock, one of Cumberbatch's more signature roles. In addition, his costar Creator/MartinFreeman has a role in Film/CaptainAmericaCivilWar Civil War.
    • Steve has a copy of Film/AllThePresidentsMen on his bookshelf. The film adaptation of the book stars Creator/RobertRedford (who plays Alexander Pierce) as Bob Woodward. At one point Pierce even stares out of his office window at the Watergate complex.
    • Pierce has a bottle of Newman's Own spaghetti sauce in his fridge, named for the late Creator/PaulNewman. Robert Redford costarred with Newman in Film/ButchCassidyAndTheSundanceKid and Film/TheSting.
  • CerebusRetcon:
  • ChekhovsGun:
  • ChainsawGripBFG:
    • One of the gunmen in the highway ambush uses a minigun with this setup.
    • Some of the spring-loaded launchers in the toyline have this prominent feature.
  • ChangingClothesIsAFreeAction: During the climax, Black Widow manages to go from spoiler:a modest business outfit into her usual SpyCatsuit after a scene transition, even though she and her associates are rushing to board a rescue chopper during the same cutaway and probably couldn't take the extra time to let her run to her locker and change. She's just that good, folks.
  • ChuckCunninghamSyndrome: Although the character is expected to return in later movies, the absence of Hawkeye here is glaring, given the circumstances. According to DVD commentary, the character was originally to have been shown pursuing Steve, [but this was cut due to Jeremy Renner being unable to fit it in his schedule].
  • ClarkKenting:
    • At the Smithsonian Steve hides his identity by wearing a big jacket and a baseball cap. Only one awestruck kid recognizes him, but is convinced to keep it secret.
    • Steve uses this again when he's on the run, wearing a hoodie and thick-rimmed glasses with thick lenses. An Apple employee gives him a querying stare, but it turns out he just recognized that they own the same kind of glasses.
    • Natasha just relies on a hoodie. She shows her experience with this trope by giving advice to Steve on how to remain nondescript, including not running and pretending to be conversing (FakeOutMakeOut and kissing).
    • In the second end-credits stringer, spoiler:Winter Soldier/Bucky visits the Smithsonian disguised, wearing a jacket to cover his metal arm.
  • ClassifiedInformation: S.H.I.E.L.D.'s system of clearance levels appears again. Steve's a little unhappy with how Nick Fury continues to hide information from him.
  • ClipItsWings: The Winter Soldier rips one of the wings off Sam's Falcon flight suit during the climax.
  • CoDragons: spoiler:Rumlow and the Winter Soldier serve as this to the BigBad.
  • ColdSniper: When Winter Soldier isn't a OneManArmy, he's this because his target is always singular and he rarely has to get up close and personal to kill them.
  • CombatPragmatist:
    • Throughout the entire movie, Winter Soldier prefers efficiency over showiness, though he will bust out some martial arts moves on occasion. As an assassin trained specifically to eliminate his target quickly and entirely, he will take the simplest and fastest approach possible.
    • spoiler:Alexander Pierce is this as well, taking careful measures to make everything go smoothly.
  • ComicBookMoviesDontUseCodenames:
    • Crossbones and Batroc the Leaper are referred to by their civilian names. The former instance is probably to a purpose -- spoiler:Brock Rumlow is shown at the end of the movie as having (barely) survived the collision of the Helicarrier into the Triskelion, albeit with horrific burns all over his body, hinting at his return in a future installment. He may explicitly bear the codename "Crossbones" when he returns.
    • Black Widow is only referred to as such once. Throughout the rest of the movie people refer to her as "Natasha" or "Romanoff".
    • Averted with the Falcon -- Maria Hill outright refers to him by his codename in the climactic battle. Falcon is also the codename for the flight-harness operation he was involved in.
    • Naturally averted frequently with Cap. Lots of people refer to Steve by his codename.
    • The Winter Soldier is called that because no one knows what else to call him.
    • Also averted for the absent Red Skull. When he's mentioned, he's openly referenced as Red Skull, not as Johann Schmidt (the trope was in full force for him in the first film).
    • Inverted: Sharon Carter is referred to as Agent 13 in all but the movie's last scene; even then, only her first name is revealed.
  • CommieNazis: The Winter Soldier wears the Soviet red star, and uses Soviet ammo spoiler:but was created and works for HYDRA, a splinter Nazi faction. This is an homage to the comics, where the Winter Soldier was a Russian assassin.
  • CompositeCharacter: [[spoiler:Alexander Pierce AdaptationDeviation has almost nothing in common with his comic book counterpart, and instead has much more in common with Aleksander Lukin, the original mastermind behind the Winter Soldier plot in the comics, and Dell Rusk, the Red Skull's cover identity from GeoffJohns Avengers run.]]
  • ComputerEqualsMonitor: Template:Subverted when Steve smashes the screen of the monitor that spoiler:Arnim Zola is using to address him -- spoiler:Zola simply switches to another monitor with a snarky "As I was saying..."
  • ComputerEqualsTapeDrive: The aforementioned computer also features this function. Template:Justified as the equipment dates back to the early 70s.
  • ConcealmentEqualsCover: Averted. The walls of Steve's apartment do nothing to stop the Winter Soldier's bullets from shooting spoiler:Nick Fury. Bullets come right through the undercarriage of a tipped-over bus that Steve runs through during one highway firefight.
  • ConservationOfNinjutsu: Applied to nearly every fight that either Cap or the Winter Soldier are in. The battles against multiple opponents are easy, while the ones against a single opponent are much harder, especially when the two face off against each other. This is justified in that both Cap and the Winter Soldier are the only characters in the entire movie that are physically enhanced -- the rest of the cast rely on weaponry and pure physical skill.
  • ConspicuouslyPublicAssassination:
    • The initial assassination attempt that HYDRA carries out on Nick Fury's life has the subtlety of a Creator/MichaelBay movie. It involves, in order:
      1. Washington D.C. Metropolitan Police Department officers wall in Fury's SUV with squad cars, and
      2. open fire with submachine guns. They succeed at riddling the windows with bullets.
      3. Failing that, the SWAT team grabs a hydraulic battering ram from their van and uses it to pound the driver's side window until the armor on it gives way. Fury gets a minigun in time to kill most of the cops.
      4. Then as Fury makes his escape, after successfully tricking the police cars that did manage to chase him into getting t-boned by a box truck, the Winter Soldier launches a smart mine at him to flip the SUV over.
  • ContinuityNod:
    • Steve still has trouble controlling his momentum when chasing someone. This time, he's leaving dents in the walls with his shield.
    • When Natasha makes a reference to Film/WarGames, Steve quickly assures her that he understands the reference, referencing his "I understood that reference" joke from Film/Template:The Avengers.
    • In a rare preemptive example, an episode of Series/AgentsOfSHIELD name-dropped the Triskelion well ahead of the movie's release. In addition, "Level Eight" access being a minor plot point was introduced in the first season.
    • Agent Sitwell is seen on the Lemurian Star. Episode 16 of Series/AgentsOfSHIELD has him be called away to board the ship part-way through the episode.
    • The Falcon's flight gear sports a Film/IronMan Stark Industries logo.
    • Peggy Carter and Howard Stark are shown to have been the founders of S.H.I.E.L.D., as established in the Film/AgentCarter Film/MarvelOneShots one-shot.
    • Pierce brings up Fury's association with Iron Man (Film/IronMan1, Film/IronMan2, Film/Template:The Avengers) while asking if Fury could get the hero to appear at his niece's birthday party.
    • This HYDRA faction targets Film/IronMan3 President Matthew Ellis, among many others, as part of Project INSIGHT. He's also given a quote in Cap's Smithsonian exhibit.
    • It's mentioned that Tony Stark oversaw the creation of the repulsor engines on the new Helicarriers after getting a "close look" at the old version -- referring to the incident where he got stuck in one of the turbines during Loki's attack on the Helicarrier during The Avengers.
    • "Comicbook/TheIncredibleHulk Banner's condition" is brought up once.
    • spoiler:The newly rebuilt Stark Tower, now dubbed "Avengers Tower", is seen as one of the targets of Project Insight.
    • The Stinger reveals [[spoiler:that Baron von Strucker has Loki's scepter from Film/Template:The Avengers in his possession.]]
    • The plasma cutter spoiler:that Fury uses to escape from his ruined car into the sewer/metro has the same blue beam as the one used to access the plane buried in the ice in the previous movie. The episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. that aired directly after the film's release revealed that they were invented by Fitz.
  • ContinuityOverlap: The events of the movie have large repercussions for Series/AgentsOfSHIELD (the two episodes that aired before and after the US release of the film are literally set within the film's timeline), far more so than Film/IronMan3 or Film/ThorTheDarkWorld previously did.
  • ContrivedCoincidence: Steve makes friends with a random Air Force veteran on a jog... who turns out to be Sam Wilson, the former pararescueman with the equipment that allows him to become Comicbook/TheFalcon.
  • CoolCar:
    • Fury's armored SUV, complete with AI, a Gatling gun, and med-kit. FlyingCar Flight capability is also mentioned.
    • Black Widow has a Corvette, too.
  • CoolPlane: S.H.I.E.L.D. quinjets, complete with gun turrets, cluster bombs, and the ability to hover, are featured quite a bit.
  • CosmopolitanCouncil: The World Security Council consists of an American man, a British woman, an Indian man, and an unidentified East Asian man. None of them wear ethnic costumes.
  • CrazyPrepared:
  • CreativeClosingCredits: The monochrome, symbolism-packed closing credits are reminiscent of the credits for a spy thriller such as one of the Franchise/JamesBond films.
  • CreatorCameo:
    • Creator/StanLee (of course) is an elderly security guard working at the Smithsonian.
    • Creator/EdBrubaker appears as a scientist attending to the Winter Soldier.
    • Joe Russo, one of the directors for the film, appears as the doctor that treats Natasha spoiler:and Nick Fury.
  • CriticalExistenceFailure: Nick Fury's bulletproof windows are presented as this; their integrity can be measured in percentage.
  • CruelAndUnusualDeath: The Winter Soldier pulls spoiler:Sitwell out of a moving vehicle and then throws him into the path of a passing truck that obliterates him. He also punts a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent into the engines of a moving Quinjet, causing it to explode. He RuleOfThree also shoots another agent in the neck, and the man gives a choking scream of pain.
  • CulturalTranslation: Captain America's "catch up" list. The list for the US audience includes Series/ILoveLucy, the UsefulNotes/BerlinWall, Creator/SteveJobs and Disco. The UK cut of the film changes those items to Series/Template:Sherlock, Music/TheBeatles, the [World Cup final of 1966] and Creator/SeanConnery, Franchise/StarWars (Trek?), respectively. Other countries' versions can be seen [here].
  • CurbStompBattle: Nearly every fight that either Cap or the Winter Soldier are in, including those against multiple opponents. Fittingly, the only fights that avoid this are the ones where they are facing against each other.

/folder

folder:Tropes D to L

  • DaChief: Both Fury and Pierce are this to S.H.I.E.L.D., but only Fury has the typical gruff and angry personality associated with the role. Pierce is grandfatherly in comparison.
  • DangerouslyGenreSavvy: spoiler:Zola Template:Exploits TalkingIsAFreeAction in order to spoiler:kill Natasha and Steve.
  • DareToBeBadass: Cap to the loyal operatives left in S.H.I.E.L.D. at the end of the film, which spoiler:delays the launch of Project Insight for a few precious seconds. If there was ever a time the world needed them, this is it.
  • DarkerAndEdgier: From an optimistic WWII TwoFistedTales Pulp-inspired adventure movie to a morally ambiguous modern espionage thriller, much like what happened to Cap's comic transitioning from the TheSixties to TheSeventies. This can even be seen through how Rogers uses his shield: in The First Avenger, he primarily uses it for defense; here, he gets much more creative with it offensively.
  • DarkestHour: Invoked by Cap. At the climax of the film spoiler:HYDRA has taken over S.H.I.E.L.D., and are moments away from TakingOverTheWorld along with killing everyone who could possibly resist. Cap tells everyone in the Triskelion that there are mere moments left before spoiler:HYDRA's victory is complete, and it's do-or-die time. Possibly the darkest hour humanity has had in the entire MCU saga thus far; the bad guys came that close to total victory. Considering Film/TheAvengers2012 a previous movie involved a large-scale alien invasion that very nearly saw New York obliterated, that's really saying something.
  • DarkIsNotEvil: Black Widow wears an all-black sneaking suit and Nick Fury is absolutely in love with the color black. Captain America himself also wears a less colorful version of his usual attire (including the paint on his shield), possibly because his mission at the start of the film relies somewhat on stealth.
  • DatelessGrave: spoiler:Nick Fury's tombstone has dates, but the later two digits of both his year of birth and year of death are obscured by flowers. We assume his death year is 2014, and his birth year is roughly 1948.
  • DayOfTheJackboot: The mission of Project INSIGHT spoiler:is to convince humanity at large to voluntarily submit to HYDRA in order to be safe in a chaotic world. To accomplish this, they infiltrate S.H.I.E.L.D., stir up some chaos, and then offer the Gun-To-The-Head solution.
  • DeadpanSnarker: While many people get moments to shine, Steve and Natasha fight it out for first place.
  • DeathByAdaptation: spoiler:Alexander Pierce, who is killed by Fury.
  • ADeathInTheLimelight: The film does this to an entire organization. [[spoiler:This is the first feature-length film in the Franchise/MarvelCinematicUniverse to focus on S.H.I.E.L.D.'s practices and internal politics. The organization is disbanded at the end of the film due to internal corruption by HYDRA, with many of its personnel dead or missing.]]
  • DebateAndSwitch:
  • DemotedToExtra: Sharon Carter is prominent throughout the Cap mythos, but gets less than four minutes of screentime.
  • Template:Determinator:
    • Cap exhibits this on multiple occasions. He takes down ten Template:Mooks in an elevator single-handedly (literally, after one of his arms was pinned to the wall with a powerful magnetic restraint), and then jumps from the elevator, which had to be at least 20 stories high, crashes to the ground, winces for a few seconds, and then keeps running (spoiler:Jasper Sitwell, watching remotely, responds with a "YouHaveGotToBeKiddingMe" look). He later gets thrown off a bridge, bounces off a windshield, and hurtles through the window of a Metrobus which then flips over, but still manages to continue fighting. The climax then has him suffering even worse, getting shot twice in the abdomen and a few times on the back, and at one point appearing to (almost) go into shock, but that doesn't stop him.
    • The Winter Soldier combines this trope with TheDreaded, utilizing all of his formidable skills in order to complete his mission.
  • Template:Deuteragonist: Natasha, who becomes something of a NumberTwo to Steve throughout the film.
  • DiscOneFinalBoss: Batroc is the villain for the first twenty minutes or so of the movie.
  • DiscriminateAndSwitch: The cops that try to assassinate Fury pull up next to him and stare at him. Fury initially assumes they're racists who think he might've stolen the car.

-->Fury: Wanna see my lease?

%%** Template:Downplayed between spoiler:Pierce and Nick Fury, then Cap, and later the World Security Council.

  • TheDragon: spoiler:Pierce has two, the Winter Soldier and spoiler:Brock Rumlow. The first one is the heavy duty problem solver while the latter is more his daily hammer.
  • DramaticIrony: Perhaps an unintentional case, but even so, Marvel had already decided to roll with it. By the time the movie premiered, almost everyone knew that the Winter Soldier was spoiler:Bucky. The tension and drama surrounding his identity doesn't come from the audience not knowing, but from Steve not knowing.
  • TheDreaded: The Winter Soldier's reputation is such that even the Black Widow is obviously afraid of him. His first appearance in the film plays on this nicely -- while Fury is being chased and shot at by ImpersonatingAnOfficer phony cops, a tall, shadowy figure suddenly emerges, standing directly in the line of Fury's SUV. spoiler:He takes Fury and his vehicle down without breaking a sweat or so much as taking two steps.
  • DressingAsTheEnemy: Steve, Sam and Natasha have been captured and are in a van on the way to a private spot to be executed. One of the two guards with them -- wearing exactly the type of face-concealing helmet the Evil Overlord List recommends against -- turns out to be spoiler:Maria Hill, who proceeds to bust them out.

-->spoiler:Hill: Ugh, that helmet was squeezing my face.

-->Steve: Before we get started, does anybody wanna get out?

  • TheElevatorFromIpanema: Template:Discussed. During a quiet elevator ride with Nick Fury, Cap comments that the elevators had music in his time.
  • ElitesAreMoreGlamorous: The genesis of Sam's flight abilities is he was part of a USAF spec ops unit.
  • EmpoweredBadassNormal: spoiler:Bucky was already a badass in WWII, but whatever was done to him since allows him to fight Captain America to a standstill.
  • EpicFail: TheReveal that spoiler:HYDRA was responsible for UsefulNotes/NorthKorea is just utterly hilarious, because Zola implies that every failure the country has had is because spoiler:HYDRA told them to do it. And since North Korea is crazy personified, this theoretically means that if Kim Jong-Un painted a tunnel black and dubbed it a "coal mine," spoiler:HYDRA told him to do so.
  • EqualOpportunityEvil: This film and their subsequent appearances in later Marvel releases indicate that spoiler:HYDRA, despite its former Nazi ties has become a racially inclusive organization with people of all ethnicities among its ranks both as mooks and as named agents.
  • EstablishingCharacterMoment: WordOfGod [says]noteStart at 4:00/notethat Captain America's CurbStompBattle against everyone on Batroc's boat, including Batroc, was designed to demonstrate that Cap TookALevelInBadass since Film/CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger and Film/Template:The Avengers.
  • EverybodyOwnsAFord: Well, a Chevrolet anyway. Cap himself only BadassBiker rides a Harley, but he and Natasha "borrow" a Chevy truck while on the run.
  • EvilAllAlong: spoiler:Agent Sitwell, Senator Stern and Alexander Pierce are all HYDRA moles -- and S.H.I.E.L.D. was infiltrated by HYDRA ''since its very creation.''
  • TheEvilsOfFreeWill: spoiler:HYDRA was created under the theory that people could not be trusted with their own free will, and so have made their plans to make the world so dangerous that people would willingly give it up in return for safety.
  • EvilGloating: A rare justified version where spoiler:Zola is mostly just distracting Steve and Natasha and playing for time until the missile strike hits them.
  • EvilWearsBlack: The Winter Soldier. His attire is all black, save for any exposed skin/hair, and his bionic left arm. When we see him for the first time, he's a grim-reaper-esque figure (especially against the backdrop of broad daylight) who spoiler:seemingly kills Nick Fury on a busy downtown street without a hint of remorse.
  • ExactWords: Sam, when asked about his friend Riley getting shot down, points out that he never said he and Riley were in planes.
  • ExcessiveEvilEyeshadow: Although his actor insists that it's actually "black camouflage war paint," the Winter Soldier still falls under this trope for his one scene wearing it. Could also be an extension of his general EvilWearsBlack black wardrobe.
  • ExtremityExtremist:
    • Batroc focuses primarily on kicks, though he is more than willing to throw a few punches. As well he might, because he is a master of Savate, a French kickboxing style (which, yes, does feature a few hand strikes).
    • The Winter Soldier tends to favor his cybernetic arm during melee combat, both offensively and defensively. He uses his right arm more for shooting.
  • EyeScream:
    • Nick Fury finally removes his eyepatch, and the camera opts for a closeup so the audience can see what his bad eye really looks like.
    • Averted for Winter Soldier, when he gets shot in the eye by Black Widow. He's saved by his bulletproof goggles, but the lens is now ruined, forcing him to throw them away. Later, it does happen when his handlers realize that spoiler:he's starting to remember Steve. The re-conditioning process to wipe his memory seems to involve a contraption wrapped around the Soldier's head, including a plating covering his left eye, leading to ElectricTorture.
  • FaceHeelTurn:
  • FacelessGoons: The police officers that ambush Fury's car early in the movie. The regular patrol cops have peaked caps and SinisterShades sunglasses lowered over their eyes, while the SWAT officers have their helmets on and their goggles lowered.
  • FakeOutMakeout: At a mall, Steve and Natasha act like a couple several times as part of their cover and in order to throw off the people tailing them, which includes the mandatory kiss. At one point Steve is prepared for a fight while Natasha continues the couple act instead. While it may seem odd that they can throw off highly trained operatives by doing one of the oldest tricks, the way it is portrayed and discussed in the movie almost counts as a Template:Reconstruction.

-->Natasha: Public displays of affection make people very uncomfortable.\\ Steve: [uncomfortably] Yes, they do.

%%* FreudianTrio: With Steve as TheKirk, Natasha as TheSpock, and Sam Wilson as TheMcCoy.

  • FugitiveArc: Cap and Black Widow go on the run from S.H.I.E.L.D. for a good part of the movie. spoiler:Then it turns out they're actually on the run from HYDRA forces that have infiltrated S.H.I.E.L.D.
  • GatlingGood: A mercenary tries to kill Captain America with a M134 minigun, which is an extremely bad idea against a super soldier with a shield.
  • GenreShift: The film heavily gravitates towards the grittier varieties of SpyFiction and political drama. WordOfGod is that they were aiming for a modern day superhero take on the classic ConspiracyThriller films of the late Seventies.
  • GodzillaThreshold: Given how completely spoiler:HYDRA has infiltrated S.H.I.E.L.D., from the top brass to the grunts, Steve demands that they [[spoiler:take S.H.I.E.L.D. down in its entirety -- total disclosure of its resources, from its databases of stored intelligence to the identities and locations of operatives throughout the world. Though it leaves a lot of chaos in its wake, it also robs HYDRA of the cover it had hidden itself under for decades. ItsTheOnlyWayToBeSure]].
  • GoThroughMe: Literally -- Natasha describes how the TheDreaded Winter Soldier assassinated the person she was protecting by shooting the target through her body. She has the scar to prove it.

-->Natasha: Bye-bye, bikinis.\\ Steve: SarcasmMode Yeah, I'm sure you look terrible in them now.

--->spoiler:Pierce: Oh, Renata. I really wish you'd knocked. [shoots her]

-->Captain America: MeaningfulEcho I'm with you to the end of the line.

  • ISurrenderSuckers: Rumlow does this to Sharon. He drops his gun and pretends to give up, then pulls out his knife and slashes her arm, causing her to drop her gun.
  • ImminentDangerClue: Steve is joined in the elevator by a group of STRIKE team guys who greet him but otherwise seem to be just catching a ride... except one of them is keeping his hand on his gun. And then each time another group of guys gets in, he notices something off about them as well. Nobody is surprised when, after he pointedly asks if anyone would like to get out, they all attack him.
  • ImperialStormtrooperMarksmanshipAcademy:
    • During the freeway chase, one of the fake cops has a clear shot into Nick Fury's smashed window while his car is stopped later on, but he somehow misses.
    • spoiler:Rumlow can't hit Agent 13 while standing a little over ten feet from her in the Insight control center during the FinalBattle.
  • ImpersonatingAnOfficer: Nick Fury is targeted for a ConspicuouslyPublicAssassination -- agents impersonating the D.C. police first CarFu box him in from all four sides. Then a SWAT van pulls up discharging a team with assault rifles who open fire on him, then try to force their way into his bulletproof car with a hydraulic ram. The intent is two-fold -- to get close to Fury (when he sees the police officers in the car on his shotgun side staring at him, he assumes it's because he's a black man driving a very expensive, very fortified SUV) and to delay anyone calling the real police given the time they need to get past Fury's defenses.
  • ImplacableMan: The Winter Soldier doesn't show up often, but when he does, he destroys everything in his way. The only times he doesn't complete the mission is spoiler:because of resurfacing memories of being Bucky, or Fury FakingTheDead.
  • ImprobableWeaponUser: The Winter Soldier openly wears a custom holster on his thigh that holds a 4-shot derringer, mounted above a second 2-shot derringer. Derringers are traditionally last-ditch weapons, designed for concealment and not used as a normal sidearm.
  • InsistentTerminology: Steve claims that he "borrowed" a stolen car when he and Widow are on the run spoiler:from S.H.I.E.L.D..
  • InvulnerableKnuckles: Played straight with every character that isn't Steve Rogers or the Winter Soldier, because as normal human beings, they're able to punch other people (and enhanced people) with little signs of adverse effects. Steve and the Winter Soldier, on the other hand, are enhanced people with more durability than the average person. The Soldier also has a cybernetic arm that further justifies this trope. Steve is able to punch and block blows from that metal arm with no signs of bruising or blunt trauma, and he punches a computer monitor with no signs of injury as well.
  • ItIsBeyondSaving: Steve declares this of spoiler:S.H.I.E.L.D., since spoiler:decades of HYDRA infiltration make salvage impossible. Nick Fury objects at first, but ultimately goes along with it when it's clear Steve won't settle for anything less (plus Maria Hill, Natasha and Sam all side with Steve).
  • Template:Joisey: In this movie, we learn that Camp Lehigh -- the US Army base where Steve trained in the first movie -- is located in Wheaton, New Jersey. It's also spoiler:the home of the secret S.H.I.E.L.D. bunker that was built post-war, and houses Dr. Zola's consciousness.
  • JustBetweenYouAndMe: A JustifiedTrope. spoiler:Zola lays everything out as a means to keep Steve and Natasha where they are until it's too late for them to escape. It almost works.
  • JustInTime: Cap's M.O. from the first movie hasn't changed. spoiler:He manages to take down the Project Insight Helicarriers literally ''one second'' before they were set to kill some 700,000+ people.
  • KickTheDog: spoiler:Pierce slaps the Winter Soldier, who is in no state to defend himself. Unlike spoiler:electrically shocking him to erase his memories, which he does afterwards anyway, it doesn't even serve any purpose. He's just acting on the frustration you'd feel when performing PercussiveMaintenance on a piece of glitching technology that has inconvenienced you, not a confused and scared human being asking questions spoiler:about his returning memories. It's bad enough for even spoiler:Brock Rumlow to feel EvenEvilHasStandards uncomfortable with the treatment of the Soldier.
  • KnightTemplar: [[spoiler:HYDRA post-Schmidt (who could charitably be called TakeOverTheWorld megalomaniacal) has moved to this, helmed by Arnim Zola. Project Insight is the final step in which all of HYDRA's enemies will be simultaneously wiped off the map and everyone left standing will fall into line at S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier gunpoint.]]
  • LaserSight: Sam blackmails spoiler:Agent Sitwell into lunching with him by threatening to have him killed through this.
  • LateArrivalspoiler:The Series/AgentsOfSHIELD Recap/AgentsOfSHIELDS1E17TurnTurnTurn episode that came out following the film's debut has a plot basically parallel to The Winter Soldier. Thus, watching the show before leads to finding out early that spoiler:HYDRA is alive hidden within S.H.I.E.L.D., Nick Fury is (seemingly) dead, and Captain America takes down a helicarrier.
  • LatexPerfection: Natasha wears some kind of hi-tech holographic mask, complete with voice-changer, to impersonate spoiler:Hawley of the World Security Council in order to get close to Pierce.
  • LegendaryInTheSequel: Captain America has a permanent Smithsonian exhibition in his honour, and is generally perceived as a LivingLegend.
  • Template:Leitmotif:
    • Winter Soldier gets a high-pitched metallic shriek that is highly unnerving and appropriately creepy and cyberpunk-ish.
    • Falcon also gets one that sounds similar to the Avengers theme.
    • Steve's leitmotif from Film/CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger the first movie also makes its return early on.
    • Steve gets a new leitmotif as well. The melody sounds similar to his old one, but darker and more electronic/modern/epic. Kind of a like a cross between his old theme and a Batmanish one.
  • LeParkour: Cap's picked up some fancy new moves after studying modern techniques. Combined with his enhanced strength and his shield, he can pull off some really impressive combos against his enemies. For that matter, the fight with Batroc is a showpiece of a more acrobatic and agile BadassNormal going up against an immovable object in the form of Cap and his shield.
  • LockedOutOfTheLoop: One of the issues Steve has with Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. is that they don't give him all the information regarding the missions he is sent on (including separate jobs that his squad might have during those missions). Fury insists that this is necessary to keep someone from spilling the beans. No one knows all the secrets, except Fury himself, as Steve retorts. spoiler:It turns out that Fury didn't know all the secrets either.
  • LonelyPianoPiece: Used to devastatingly saddening effect during and following the Winter Soldier's spoiler:NoHoldsBarredBeatdown of Steve. As the music climaxes, Cap falls into the river below. Then the scene goes completely silent, save for this simple tear-inducing music.

-->spoiler:'''Steve:''' I'm with you to the end of the line.

  • LongGame: spoiler:HYDRA spent seventy years shaping the world to be more receptive to its fascist message.
  • LookBothWays: Fury takes out the last two police officers trying to assassinate him this way, by luring them into trying to box his car from either side, then hitting the brakes just before they reach an intersection. The cops' cars keep rushing forward and are subsequently hit by a box rental truck.
  • LooksLikeCesare: The Winter Soldier/spoiler:Bucky fits this to a T. Interestingly enough, this trope is used here to serve the dual purpose of setting him up as TheDreaded and as spoiler:TheWoobie -- usually it's used only for one or the other.

/folder

folder:Tropes M to R

--->Natasha: [referring to Steve, who is disguised as a [hipster], and the Apple employee having the same glasses] Wow, you two are practically twins.\\ Apple employee: Yeah, I wish! [gestures at Steve] Specimen!

  • MsFanservice: Natasha Romanoff, again. She even BareYourMidriff flashes her belly button to show Cap her scar from the Winter Soldier, who shot her through her abdomen, which also killed the scientist she was protecting. It's downplayed compared to previous films because despite the above, she spends most of her screen time fully dressed in baggy clothes and wears her costume in only two scenes.
  • MythologyGag:
    • The scene where Cap jumps out of a plane without bothering to use a parachute is a reference to a similar scene from the first issue of The Ultimates.

--->Rollins: Was he wearing a parachute?\\ Rumlow: [smiles] No. No, he wasn't.

-->spoiler:Rumlow: Whoa there, big guy. I just wanted you to know Cap, this ain't personal! [lunges at Steve with his taser stick]\\ [cue Steve kicking his ass for his trouble]\\ Steve: ItsPersonal It kind of feels personal.

--->Falcon: Man, shut the hell up!

-->The Winter Soldier: [tackles Rogers] You're my mission. [[[PunctuatedPounding punching with each word]]] YOU'RE! MY! MISSION!

  • PuttingOnTheReich: [[spoiler:While the reborn HYDRA was the product of Nazi scientists and Schmidt associates like Arnim Zola, it's largely jettisoned this trope in order to distance themselves from the defeated Third Reich. They've also played a major role in making S.H.I.E.L.D. increasingly authoritarian and sinister without being too overt about it. On the other hand, the targets of Project Insight as well as the presence of von Strucker suggest that HYDRA does still maintain some ties to their Nazi heritage.]]
  • RaceLift: Machete, a South American in the comics, is made a Ugandan.
  • RealAwardFictionalCharacter: Nick Fury cites Alexander Pierce as having turned down the Nobel Peace Prize. Pierce said peace is a goal that must be continuously striven for and such a worthy goal does not need prizes. spoiler:By this point in the film he's already been revealed as the head of HYDRA, and Nick is suitably disgusted when he says the line.
  • RealityEnsues:
    • Falcon has been redesigned to sport a pair of goggles, which he would need to protect his eyes while flying. His wings are also larger than they are in the comics, making them closer to the size needed to hold a human aloft, and the backpack sports a small afterburner.
    • When Cap gives his rousing speech about [[spoiler:S.H.I.E.L.D. being taken over by Hydra, many of the rank and file are quick to try and back him up. Sadly, they are unfortunately unable to provide much in the way of backup, as they are mostly composed of desk agents, paper-pushers, and regular security guys up against the Insight and STRIKE team agents, who have way more experience and training in violent situations... along with an enhanced assassin with a cybernetic arm. As a consequence, they get slaughtered in droves.]]
  • RedHerring: [[Film/Template:Clue Communism.]] [[spoiler:Winter Soldier's red star on his bionic arm and use of Soviet bullets serve to throw off those who read the comics and to hide the fact that he's created by HYDRA here. On the freeway ambush, he also speaks Russian to his mooks, but nothing happens beyond that.]]
  • RedShirtArmy: S.H.I.E.L.D. agents valiantly try to fight back during the climax, but are easily mowed down by the spoiler:Insight and STRIKE crews, and the Winter Soldier.
  • TheRemnant: Played with. The spoiler:new HYDRA, recreated by Arnim Zola and other surviving HYDRA agents that emigrated to the US after the end of WWII, is even stronger than it used to be in the 40's.
  • TheResolutionWillNotBeTelevised: Inverted. There is a WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue telling the fate of most secondary characters. But if you want to know about the actual consequences of the big reveal of the movie (which, as you may suspect, are not limited to the events of the movie), then follow the Series/AgentsOfSHIELD TV series. "Recap/AgentsOfSHIELDS1E16EndOfTheBeginning End of the Beginning" and "Recap/AgentsOfSHIELDS1E17TurnTurnTurn Turn, Turn, Turn" are the crossovers with the movie, and the episodes afterwards are the aftermath of the movie.
  • Template:Retcon:
    • The tie-in comics to the last movie depicted Steve and Bucky as meeting when they were both orphaned in their childhood. In a flashback scene, Steve is shown to have recently lost his mother while both are adults, with Bucky's parents mentioned as still being alive.
    • A fairly minor one. In Film/CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger, Steve is hailed for saving 400 [=POWs=], including on a clear newspaper headline. The Smithsonian shows it as only 163. A possible explanation is that 163 was the number of [=POWs=] who were actually saved, but the newspapers artificially inflated the number saved to make Rogers look more badass. Or 163 was just the number at the camp where Bucky was found, and the whole montage leading up to Red Skull's ChewingTheScenery "YOU ARE FAILING!!" raised the count to 400.
    • The World War II costume Steve dons in the third act is slightly different from the one he actually wore in The First Avenger, with the most noticeable difference being a third red stripe on the stomach.
  • ReusableLighterToss: Nick Fury tosses a Zippo to light up the remains of some evidence.
  • RippedFromTheHeadlines: Subverted. While the plot does touch on relevant issues like terrorism, mass surveillance, and increasingly complicated geopolitics, spoiler:it's revealed that much of what happened from the end of World War II was manipulated by HYDRA.
  • RousingSpeech: After discovering that spoiler:HYDRA has infiltrated S.H.I.E.L.D., Steve hijacks the Triskelion's public announcement room and gives a speech to every S.H.I.E.L.D. agent in the building, convincing them that it's worth putting their lives on the line to preserve freedom. spoiler:Cue all the non-HYDRA agents doing everything they can to prevent the Helicarriers from launching. Alas, they fail, and many of them die in the process.

-->Steve: Attention all S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, this is Steve Rogers. You've heard a lot about me over the last few days. Some of you were even ordered to hunt me down. But I think it's time you know the truth. S.H.I.E.L.D. is not what we thought it was. spoiler:It's been taken over by HYDRA. Alexander Pierce is their leader. The STRIKE and Insight crew are HYDRA as well. I don't know how many more, but I know they're in the building. They could be standing right next to you. They almost have what they want: absolute control. They shot Nick Fury. And it won't end there. If you launch those Helicarriers today, spoiler:HYDRA will be able to kill anyone that stands in their way. Unless we stop them. I know I'm asking a lot. But the price of freedom is high. It always has been. And it's a price I'm willing to pay. And if I'm the only one, then so be it. But I'm willing to bet I'm not.\\ Sam Wilson: Did you write that down first, or was it off the top of your head?

  • RuleOfThree:
    • Three heroes (Captain America, Black Widow and Falcon) have to place data cards in the control centers of spoiler:three Helicarriers secretly controlled by HYDRA in order to get them to target each other. In a neat twist, instead of each hero inserting a card into one base, Falcon takes one while Cap takes the other two, and Widow goes undercover at the Triskelion to confront [[spoiler:HYDRA mole Alexander Pierce and unload all of HYDRA's (TakingYouWithMe and S.H.I.E.L.D.'s) dirty laundry on the internet]].
    • Done for laughs at the very beginning of the movie, when Sam Wilson is running laps around the Smithsonian campus, and Steve Rogers repeatedly passes him, saying, "On your left." By the third time, Sam groans, "Don't say it, don't you even say it!" Steve says it anyway.
  • RunningBothSides: [[spoiler:HYDRA has been instrumental in manipulating major crises throughout history on both sides of the conflicts, most notably the Cold War and the resulting Cuban Missile Crisis. This is part of their attempt to show TheEvilsOfFreeWill to the general populace, hoping that they would voluntarily accede their own freedoms for a more stable world. Presumably, this also applies to 9/11 and the War on Terror.]]
  • RunningGag:
    • Throughout the film, Natasha keeps playing matchmaker for Steve. Even in the middle of combat operations.
    • Steve running past Sam. "On your left!"

/folder

folder:Tropes S to Z

-->Fury: Well what's not damaged?\\ Car A.I.: RhetoricalQuestionBlunder Air conditioning is fully operational.

  • ShameIfSomethingHappened: When Sam Wilson threatens spoiler:Agent Sitwell into coming along as their prisoner.

-->Falcon: You're gonna go around a corner to your right. There's a gray car two spaces down. You and I are gonna take a ride.\\ spoiler:Sitwell: And why would I do that?\\ Falcon: Because that tie looks really expensive, and I'd hate to mess it up.\\ [[[spoiler:Sitwell]] looks down, where a sniper's laser pointer is currently over said tie]

  • SheatheYourSword: Captain America lets his iconic shield fall into the Potomac below to illustrate that he doesn't want to fight the Winter Soldier.
  • ShellShockedVeteran: Cap and the Falcon are "wounded warriors" who become friends through their mutual trauma of losing a close friend on the battlefield.
  • SherlockScan: Done by Cap, allowing him to deduce he is about to be attacked inside a crowded elevator, via clues such as one agent keeping his hand on his gun and another sweating profusely.
  • ShieldBash: Cap's shield is just as good on offense as defense, especially when the Winter Soldier picks it up and uses it against him. Steve also damn near wrecks an entire floor of an office building chasing after the Winter Soldier by bashing down doors and windows.
  • ShipperOnDeck: Natasha apparently ships Steve/Sharon, given she suggests he ask Sharon out a few times. Other girls get a single suggestion, but not this one girl.
  • ShipTease:
    • Most mainstream outlets focused on the chemistry-possibly-UST between Captain America and Black Widow. Entertainment Weekly even [dedicated an article to the pairing's potential.]
    • Curiously enough, for a pairing of which only one of the characters appears: Natasha wears an [[Comicbook/Template:Hawkeye arrow necklace]].
    • Steve is attracted to Sharon before discovering who she is, eventually comes around, and Natasha is a ShipperOnDeck for them from the beginning.
  • ShootTheHostage: Done by Natasha spoiler:''on herself'' -- when at the bad guy's gunpoint, she shocks herself into unconsciousness to leave him empty-handed.
  • ShortRangeLongRangeWeapon: The Helicarriers are designed to be flying artillery, able to eliminate threats from miles away. In the end, spoiler:they shoot each other at point-blank range when Maria Hill changes their targeting coordinates.
  • ShoutOut: See in ShoutOut/CaptainAmericaTheWinterSoldier this page.
  • ShownTheirWork: The scenic jog Steve and Sam take at the beginning is a [real route] that one could follow in downtown Washington. Further, it's about 4 miles long, meaning that Steve (who lapped Sam RuleOfThree three times), would actually have run about "thirteen miles in thirty minutes," as Sam complains afterwards.
  • ShroudedInMyth: The Winter Soldier is considered a myth by most of the intelligence community, and is specifically called "a ghost" by Natasha.
  • ShutUpHannibal: This one between Falcon and spoiler:Brock Rumlow.

-->spoiler:Rumlow: This is gonna hurt. There are no prisoners with spoiler:HYDRA. Only order. And order only comes with pain. You ready for yours?\\ Falcon: Man, shut the hell up.

-->Steve: You know me...\\ Winter Soldier: NO, I DON'T! [floors Steve with a left hook, despite having to go through his shield as well]\\ Steve: You've known me your whole life...\\ Winter Soldier: [responds with a backhand punch]\\ Steve: Your name... is spoiler:James Buchanan Barnes...\\ Winter Soldier: [drops Steve again with a left hook] VillainousBreakdown SHUT UP!

-->Nick Fury: S.H.I.E.L.D. takes the world as it is, not as we'd like it to be.\\ Steve Rogers: This isn't freedom. This is fear.

  • SoftGlass:
    • Happens quite a lot throughout the movie, in a somewhat justified example as the person doing it is usually Cap, who also usually jumps shield first. He punches spoiler:Zola's computer screen with his bare hand to no ill effect, but only cracks it -- and besides, it's Cap.
    • Winter Soldier does this a few times, but always with his metal arm/hand.
    • The most egregious example is Falcon jumping through a window on the 41st floor of the Triskelion. Windows in high rise buildings are usually purpose-built to keep people from doing just that -- though, when he does so, the entire floor/walls/ceiling are a second-or-less away from complete collapse, spoiler:due to an entire Helicarrier crashing into them.
  • SoftWater: Invoked when Captain America leaps out of a Quinjet into the ocean for a stealthy insertion -- nope, he doesn't have a parachute. The movie is pretty clear that the only reason Cap can do it is because he's a SuperSoldier.
  • SomethingWeForgot:
    • When the Winter Soldier attacks the three heroes on the highway, Captain America and Black Widow fall to the street below, so the Winter Soldier goes down in pursuit. His henchmen fire on the heroes below. Then Sam, who was still up there and forgotten by those guys, attacks them from the back.
    • When Captain America, Sam, Black Widow, and Maria Hill begin their attack on S.H.I.E.L.D., did you notice that Black Widow is suddenly missing? No, she did not take a break: spoiler:she disguised herself as a member of the Council.
  • SovietSuperscience: Downplayed and, unlike in the comics, spoiler:subverted. While the Winter Soldier does have some Soviet trappings, uses Cold War-era rounds and even speaks Russian at one point, spoiler:it's all to obscure his real HYDRA-based origins.
  • SpiritualSuccessor: In the DVD commentary, the directors explicitly cite Film/ThreeDaysOfTheCondor as one of the inspirations for this film, even saying that they could have called it "Three Days of Captain America."
  • SpoilerCover: The Blu-Ray and DVD releases show the Winter Soldier unmasked right on the back cover, showing that he's spoiler:Bucky Barnes. This is hardly a revelation to comic fans, but might still come as a surprise to viewers who hadn't read the source material.
  • SpoilerTitle: To those familiar with Winter Soldier's character and identity (or even people who have stumbled upon his trope page). spoiler:Though, as it turns out, the ''real'' spoiler has nothing to do with the Winter Soldier or Bucky Barnes at all.
  • SpottingTheThread: When Steve and Natasha trace the clues to Camp Lehigh -- the base where Steve underwent basic training -- he quickly notices an [ammo dump] that wasn't there seventy years ago. As he's such a RulesLawyer, he knows that Army regulations state that weapons are not allowed to be stored within 500 feet of a barracks (y'know, so it doesn't NoOSHACompliance kill any soldiers if it blows up). [[spoiler:It's a secret S.H.I.E.L.D. installation, where Arnim Zola's BrainUploading uploaded brain is stored.]]
  • SpyFiction: Winter Soldier plays up the SpyFiction Stale Beer Flavored espionage aspect of S.H.I.E.L.D. and questions whether TheCape Captain America can play ball with them. [[spoiler:Verdict: at least in the MCU, he's better suited to it than anyone else, as he's literally the OnlySaneMan only person who gets that the entire spy era along with its tropes and GreyAndGrayMorality was a lie created by HYDRA to conquer the world.]]
  • SpySpeak: Fury at Rogers' apartment. He tries to warn Steve via typed messages that BigBrotherIsWatching Big Brother Is Listening and so has to explain what's happened recently while trying to make it sound as a SeinfeldianConversation. So, Fury, TalkAboutTheWeather how's the weather?
  • StaringKid: One catches Steve at his own Smithsonian exhibit. Steve seems to be amused by it but motions for him to keep quiet.
  • StealthHiBye: The chase between Captain America and the Winter Soldier screeches to a halt when the Soldier drops down from a building. When Steve reaches the spot, the Soldier is long gone, even though the area below is an open road.
  • StealthPun:
    • Cap laps Sam repeatedly while jogging, making it literally a RunningGag.
    • Sam Wilson's military rank is Captain, meaning that if you pair it with his codename, it becomes VideoGame/FZero Captain Falcon.
    • Steve spends most of the elevator fight with one hand in a magnetic handcuff attached to the wall, which means he beats up his opponents literally single-handed.
  • StateSec: With its worldwide jurisdiction, deep and constant surveillance, and the army of agents, S.H.I.E.L.D. is on the way to becoming this. spoiler:Just as HYDRA planned.
  • TheStinger:
  • StillWearingTheOldColors: The Winter Soldier still has a Soviet star and gear even after the fall of the Soviet Union. spoiler:More importantly, when Cap gets ready to fight HYDRA, he acquires his WWII gear from the Smithsonian exhibition rather than use the suit that he was wearing when he fled S.H.I.E.L.D.
  • SuperheroPackingHeat:
    • The Falcon wields GunsAkimbo two SMGs. Comicbook/BlackWidow wields two Glocks.
    • While he's not a superhero, the Winter Soldier uses an impressive amount of projectile weaponry.
    • Averted with Steve; in this one, unlike his previous two appearances, he never uses, or more than incidentally touches, a firearm.
  • SupernormalBindings: The attackers in the elevator have a set of manacles with very powerful electro-magnets. They get one on Cap, securing his hand to the elevator wall and forcing him to fight the rest of them one-handed. Then he's able to wrench the manacle off the wall. Later on, he's confined in what looks like a cross between a set of handcuffs and a straitjacket.
  • SuperWindowJump: After the ElevatorActionSequence in the Triskelion, Cap jumps through the glass wall of the elevator all the way to the lobby using his shield. He does another version when chasing The Winter Soldier, jumping across the street and through a window. He has the advantage of his vibration-absorbing shield to protect him from the kinetic energy involved in doing something like this.
  • SurprisinglySuddenDeath: Doubly surprising given it's recurring character spoiler:Jasper Sitwell; evidently AnyoneCanDie. spoiler:He's ripped from a car and tossed in front of a truck by the Winter Soldier after barely finishing a sentence.
  • TemptingFate: Those loyal S.H.I.E.L.D. pilots just have to point out that they're the only air support Captain America has coming. spoiler:Seconds later, the Winter Soldier takes them out before even one can get airborne.
  • ThreePointLanding: The Winter Soldier does it after flying off a braking car. Sparks are flying when he brakes with his metal arm.
  • TrailersAlwaysSpoil:
  • TalkingIsAFreeAction: spoiler:Arnim Zola uses this trope in order to distract Cap and Natasha to make sure that the missile strike he ordered kills them.
  • TakingYouWithMe: Cap's plan to destroy (or at least cripple) spoiler:HYDRA involves the dismantling of S.H.I.E.L.D..
  • ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill:
    • An entire team of police officers riddles Fury's crashed SUV with assault rifle fire. Given how ridiculously armored the thing is, anything less wouldn't have even been a bother. When they get tired of their bullets bouncing off the glass, they go to Plan B: the SWAT team deploys a pneumatic battering ram to break the window. Fury responds with a minigun that takes out most of the SWAT team and some of the patrol cops, and blows up the SWAT team van and a squad car. This means they resort to Plan C: try to shoot at him during the resulting police chase. And when Fury manages to trick the police cars into getting T-boned by a box rental truck, they resort to Plan D: the Winter Soldier fires a sticky bomb that attaches itself to the underside of Fury's car and flips the car on its roof.
    • Another entire team of bad guys are sent to capture Rogers in an elevator. Notably, the elevator stops twice so that more guys with guns can get on. spoiler:It still isn't enough.
    • After spoiler:Zola calls in a missile strike, S.T.R.I.K.E. teams, backed by several gunships, arrive within minutes to sift through the wreckage.
    • When the Winter Soldier is sent to take out Cap, he has five guys with automatic weapons and grenade launchers, plus a GatlingGood minigun.
  • ThereWasADoor: There probably isn't a window in this movie that Rogers doesn't go through at one point or another.
  • TooCleverByHalf: Nick Fury is the greatest spy in the world, leader of the greatest spy network in the world... and yet spoiler:he doesn't notice the infiltration by HYDRA until it's almost too late to stop them.
  • TruthInTelevision: Natasha mentions "[Operation Paperclip]", a real-life effort program by the OSS spoiler:(replaced with S.H.I.E.L.D. in the movie's universe) to recruit Nazi scientists.
  • TVHeadRobot: While not a humanoid robot, the film recreates spoiler:Arnim Zola's mainstream appearance as an old supercomputer that houses his preserved consciousness. spoiler:Zola can project a representation of his face through the monitor(s), while a single surveillance camera atop the center console serves as his eye.
  • UndercoverAsLovers: While hacking at a mall, Natasha tells the Apple Store employee that Steve is her fiancé. He pretends their screen tracking a program to New Jersey is merely their honeymoon destination search.
  • TheUnreveal: Throughout the movie, there are some hints that Agent 13 is Peggy Carter's niece, but when Steve asks Natasha her name, she simply says it's Sharon, without mentioning the surname.
  • VillainousBreakdown:
    • The Winter Soldier loses it after [[spoiler:Steve continues to call him Bucky and insists that they know each other. This can largely be blamed on HYDRA frying his brain to wipe his memories over and over. The Soldier is obviously conditioned only to think in terms of what will complete his mission and of himself as a weapon, with deviation resulting in pain, leaving him unable to conceptualise having a name or a friend. It only gets worse when Steve willingly drops his shield into the Potomac and refuses to fight him on the basis of a friendship that the Winter Soldier has no memory of -- these are totally outside his parameters, eliciting something frighteningly close to a mental breakdown as his memories resurface and the inside of his head gets broken apart. Again.]]
    • spoiler:Agent Sitwell clearly HighAltitudeInterrogation doesn't want to repeat his bungee-jumping experience again, even if it means Pierce YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness will kill him.
  • VillainousValor:
  • WalkingSpoiler:
  • WarriorTherapist: Sam Wilson works at the VA counselling veterans and soldiers who come back from wars with PTSD, and he's also an elite soldier.
  • WearingAFlagOnYourHead: Rogers' Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. outfit incorporates some of the stars-and-stripes imagery of his previous costumes, only without the red. For the final act, [[spoiler:he BreakOutTheMuseumPiece steals his WWII outfit from the Smithsonian and wears that]]. Also, a prominent poster shows Cap's shield with the paint scratched off, which emphasizes the RedIsHeroic moral ambiguity of Cap's current position with S.H.I.E.L.D.
  • WellIntentionedExtremist: [[spoiler:Zola and Pierce try to sell the new HYDRA as this, being severed from its original Nazi roots and essentially having the same values as S.H.I.E.L.D., but being willing to go one step further to ensure peace and order. It's severely undermined by the fact that their primary targets are threats to their own political power (even the current president of the United States), and not (as Pierce tries to claim) people who are mathematically likely to become the next Bin Laden or even the next Julian Assange or Bernie Madoff. And a shot during the targeting sequence reveals they're targeting families with giant cannons that will no doubt cause collateral damage.]]
  • WesternTerrorists: Batroc's men. Granted, Batroc is Algerian, but he's white and speaks French. spoiler:Subverted. They're not terrorists at all, they're mercs hired to act like terrorists for purposes of Fury's FalseFlagOperation.
  • WhamEpisode: [[spoiler:HYDRA is back and stronger than ever. It infiltrated S.H.I.E.L.D. at its creation and has been influencing the world since the end of World War II. S.H.I.E.L.D. is dissolved at the end of the movie, and all of its secrets are made public. Fury has faked his death and gone underground to fight HYDRA. Baron Strucker has both Film/TheAvengers2012 Loki's staff and Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch. The S.H.I.E.L.D. part even more given Marvel had just started an Series/AgentsOfSHIELD series. The cast and crew of that were given an early screening... and their reaction was "are our jobs still safe?"]]
  • WhamLine:
    • [[spoiler:HYDRA's 'cut off one head' motto was previously presented as a slightly silly thing in The First Avenger. In this film, it takes on a horrific tone once you realise exactly just how far their reach has extended since the "head" fronted by the Red Skull was eliminated]].

--->spoiler:'''Zola:''' [[spoiler:HYDRA was founded on the belief that humanity could not be trusted with its own freedom. What we did not realize was that if you try to take that freedom, they resist. The war taught us much. Humanity needed to surrender its freedom willingly. After the war, S.H.I.E.L.D. was founded, and I was recruited. The new HYDRA grew, a beautiful parasite, inside S.H.I.E.L.D. For seventy years, HYDRA has been secretly feeding crises, reaping war. And when history did not cooperate, history was changed. [...] HYDRA created a world so chaotic that humanity is finally ready to sacrifice its freedom to gain its security. Once the purification process is complete, HYDRA's new world order will arise. We won, Captain. Your death amounts to the same as your life: A zero sum.]]

--->Steve: spoiler:...Bucky?\\ The Winter Soldier: spoiler:Who the hell is Bucky?

    • Early on, the security system at the Triskelion immediately flags Rogers as having too low a security clearance for the destination Fury gives to the elevator they've entered. Without skipping a beat, Fury overrides the system with a simple voice command. A few minutes later, he uses the same voice command to access the files on the recovered thumb drive; the system refusing his override is a major indicator that something is very wrong.

--->Nick Fury: Director override, Fury, Nicholas J.\\ System: Override denied. All files sealed.\\ Nick Fury: On whose authority?\\ System: Fury, Nicholas J.

-->spoiler:Nick Fury: Well, looks like you're giving the orders now, Captain.

/folder