Episode 4 of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier killed John Walker’s partner / best friend, Battlestar, as a way to draw a parallel with Steve and Bucky.
Warning! Spoilers ahead for The Falcon and the Winter Soldier episode 4.
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier just killed Lemar Hoskins / Battlestar, John Walker’s partner and good friend, why? Introduced in episode 2 as one of the closest people to the new Captain America, the show made it clear that the partners have a strong bond with each other. Throughout Walker’s arc on the show thus far, Hoskins has been there to offer any kind of support. But now, he has to move on without his trusted ally, which makes him more dangerous.
After operating separately after their first meeting, Sam, Bucky, Walker, and Hoskins met in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier Episode 4, “Everybody’s Watching”. Like last time, Walker tracked down the heroes for new information on the Flag-Smashers. While neither team wanted to work with the other, they decided to try to put their differences aside. That was until Walker insisted on moving on, causing them to break apart again. In the final battle against the terrorist organization, Karli Morgenthau accidentally pushed Hoskins too hard, sending him flying into a column in the building. This killed him and sent Walker on a distraught rampage.
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Considering how important Hoskins is to Walker, killing him in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier it was an interesting creative move. However, his importance to the new Captain America was exactly why he was killed. Ever since Walker assumed the superhero persona, he has been compared to Steve Rogers. While Walker was mostly decent when he was first introduced, not to mention he was a decorated soldier (making him the government’s choice to be the next Captain America), there is always something unpleasant about him. Hoskins’ death served as a litmus test for him to prove himself worthy of the position. Like John Walker, Steve also lost his best friend during the battle; in Captain America the First Avenger, a mishap on the train carrying Zola caused Bucky to fall in his apparent death. Steve couldn’t save his friend in a similar way, but that didn’t change him. He did not seek revenge or take it out on anyone else; he lamented, but he did it silently and without hurting anyone.
This moment crystallized why Walker is ultimately unworthy of Captain America’s mantle despite his accomplishments in the military. Blinded by rage, the more powerful Walker who injected himself with super soldier serum chased after Karli but only hit one of the Flag-Smashers members. It didn’t matter though, as he completely lost it, using the shield to hit his victim repeatedly until Captain America’s deck was stained with blood, effectively killing the guy. The Falcon and the Winter Soldier previously provided hints that Walker has the tendency to be aggressive, and being Captain America only emboldened that. He supposed that just because he wields the shield, he should be respected and followed, but things don’t work out that way.
What makes Walker break down in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier Much more interesting is that while playing with the possibility of taking the super soldier serum, he was afraid that he would change it. But Hoskins eased his concerns by saying that the “power makes a person feel more like himself”, hinting that he really believed his partner was a good man. However, if that logic is true, seeing how Walker reacted after Battlestar’s death reveals that the new Captain America may not be the good person he thought he was.
More: Steve Rogers Was Never Perfect As Captain America (And That’s The Point)
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