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The Truth About Karli Morgenthau From The Falcon And The Winter Soldier

Contains spoilers for The Falcon and the Winter Soldier episode 2

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier set the stage in the first episode, and, while episode 2 has more than a few surprises in store, it isn't afraid to let loose with the action and wise-cracking buddy cop antics. "The Star-Spangled Man" gives us a good look at many new players in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, including the new Captain America, John Walker (Wyatt Russell), his partner Lemar "Battlestar" Hoskins (Clé Bennett) — and, of course, the apparent leader of the antagonistic super soldier squad, Karli Morgenthau (Erin Kellyman). Morgenthau's anti-patriotic Flag-Smashers fight for an open world, and their actions draw the attention of the Falcon (Anthony Mackie) and the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan), as well as the new Cap and Battlestar.

The MCU is always full of Easter eggs and surprises, and Morgenthau is no exception. However, it turns out that while she does have a connection to the comics, she's a pretty special case. Here's the truth about Karli Morgenthau from The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.

Karli Morgenthau doesn't exist in the comics, but Karl Morgenthau does

While The Falcon and the Winter Soldier's Karli Morgenthau does have a comic book counterpart of sorts, the character is considerably different on the page. The comics version of Flag-Smasher is actually a man called Karl Morgenthau. Karl is a Swiss guy whose well-traveled youth left him disillusioned with the idea of countries and provided him a keen interest in martial arts. When his rich diplomat father died in a riot, he decided to create world peace in a similar fashion to other Marvel villains: as a super-terrorist who is against all politics and nations.   

The comic book version of the character is a fairly complex figure with considerable resources at his disposal, but his actions tend to be basic supervillain plots. Like her comics counterpart, Karli has dealings with John Walker, known as U.S. Agent in the source material. But, in addition to the gender flip-flop, Karli appears to be far less flamboyant, and seems unlikely to wear any elaborate white super costumes in the immediate future. She's also apparently juiced on super-soldier formula, something the comic book version of Flag-Smasher did not have going for him. More importantly, though, she comes across as a very human, nuanced character who just happens to be at odds with the protagonists, and is more than capable of kicking them in the rear. It's a fresh new take on the character in more ways than one, and you can probably expect great — or, as the case may be, entertainingly evil — things of her in the future.