The Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Steve Rogers hails HYDRA in a new piece of creepy Captain America fan art. Ever since he first explained how he could “do this all day” in 2011’s Captain America: The First Avenger, Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) has been a cornerstone of the MCU. The same could be said for HYDRA, the authoritarian, century-spanning, terrorist organization bent on world domination.
In that first film, Rogers battled Johann Schmidt/Red Skull as he separated the organization from Nazi Germany. Following HYDRA’s “defeat” in 1945, it was secretly rebuilt inside of S.H.I.E.L.D. by Arnim Zola. Thankfully, a recently-thawed Rogers was there to stop them and liberate a brainwashed Bucky Barnes in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. After that film, HYDRA seems to be a thing of the past and, following some time-traveling antics in Avengers: Endgame, a wrinkly Rogers passed his shield to Sam Wilson/Falcon (Anthony Mackie)—who officially inherited the mantle of Captain America in Disney+’s The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Despite rumors of Evans reprising his role in the future, his tenure in the MCU has run its course…for now. With Phase 4 projects like Loki and What If…? exploring the multiverse, alternate versions of Rogers’ “Cap” are still very much a thing.
Digital artist Erathrim on Instagram recently shared some art, which sees Rogers’ Captain America sporting the skull and tentacles on his chest. The creepy piece imagines a universe where the star-spangled man hails HYDRA. Check it out below:
With the multiverse in play, it’s possible audiences could see the infamous HYDRA Captain America in the MCU (most likely in an episode of What If…?). As was the case in “What If… Captain Carter Were the First Avenger?,” if the character appears in a season of Marvel Studios’ animated series, he probably won’t be voiced by Evans. However, Evans could come back as the character in live-action. In a controversial comic book storyline, an old Rogers’ youth is seemingly restored as he’s turned into HYDRA Supreme via Red Skull and another cosmic cube/Kobik. The subsequent Secret Empire crossover event, in which “Captain America” works to establish the organization’s dominance, sees HYDRA conquer the U.S. HYDRA Supreme who is ultimately revealed to be a double of the real Rogers.
Although old man Rogers is presumably somewhere in the MCU, it’s unlikely Marvel Studios will adapt the Secret Empire storyline in live-action. It’s already been confirmed that Evans will not be returning in Captain America 4 and his return elsewhere risks undermining his happy ending in Endgame. Still, What If…? and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness introduces infinite possibilities. Even if it’s only for a second, it could be fun to see Rogers explain how he “can do this all day” while fighting on the wrong side of history.