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Captain America: The First Avenger

 Captain America: The First Avenger
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Captain America: The First Avenger
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CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger
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Advertisement:propertag.cmd.push(function() { proper_display('tvtropes_mobile_ad_1'); })Captain America: The First Avenger is a 2011 action/adventure based on the Marvel Comics character Captain America, produced by Marvel Studios, and directed by Joe Johnston; it is the fifth film in (and in some ways, a prequel to) the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This film is not to be confused with the 1990 film Captain America, the two Captain America TV movies from the 1970s, or the classic movie serials from the 1940s, all of which have no relation to this film (aside from being based on the same comic book character). It is the first film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe chronologicallynote if you discount the flashbacks to millenia ago in Thor.Taking place in the timeframe of 1942 to 1945, First Avenger tells the story of US Army reject Steve Rogers (Chris Evans), who volunteers for a secret government program which transforms him into the very epitome of human potential. As the Star-Spangled Soldier, Rogers goes to war against Nazi Germany's military forces — including Johann Schmidt (Hugo Weaving), who has his own plans for world domination.Advertisement:propertag.cmd.push(function() { proper_display('tvtropes_mobile_ad_2'); })Like Thor, The First Avenger serves as a proper introduction to Captain America in preparation for The Avengers. The original run of the film even included a trailer for The Avengers after the credits.Steve is next seen in The Avengers, released on May 4th, 2012. An official sequel to The First Avenger was released in theaters April 4th, 2014, titled Captain America: The Winter Soldier. A spin-off TV show was also released on January 6th, 2015, titled Agent Carter, revolving around Peggy's adventures in the 1940's set after the events of this film. A second sequel, Captain America: Civil War, was released on May 6th, 2016.
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Forceful Kiss
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Forceful Kiss: Steve gets forcibly pulled into a kiss with a flirty secretary, only to be caught by his Love Interest Peggy. Cue the Woman Scorned.
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Villain: Exit, Stage Left
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Villain: Exit, Stage Left: When his POWs start running amuck, Schmidt/Red Skull looks at a monitor to see what's going on. After taking one glance at Captain America routing his forces, he calmly begins to arm the self-destruct.
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Spiking the Camera
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Spiking the Camera: In-universe, Steve Rogers/Captain America (or at least someone in his "troop") in the USO's propaganda films ends up looking directly at the camera, forcing the director to issue a retake.
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Fanfare
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Fanfare: Cap's theme in this film is a triumphant war march by Alan Silvestri.
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Canon Foreigner
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Canon Foreigner: Senator Brandt and Pvt. Lorraine.
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Applied Phlebotinum
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Applied Phlebotinum: The Cosmic Cube is essentially the only thing that allows HYDRA to power their advanced technology. Vibranium makes its first named appearance in Marvel movie continuity; the iconic round shield is made from their only sample. (The novelization of Iron Man 2 also names it as the element Howard Stark leaves to Tony to recreate, though whether or not this is canon is debatable.)
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Overranked Soldier
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Overranked Soldier: Steve makes the jump from a buck Private to a Captain for propaganda purposes. Somehow, Falsworth starts out as 2nd Lieutenant in November, 1943 and is a Brigadier by VE-Day.
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Friendly Sniper
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Friendly Sniper: Sergeant James Buchanan Barnes.
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Adorkable
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Adorkable: Even after his lab procedure, Steve is painfully earnest about everything and the opposite of smooth with the ladies. Dernier, who looks like he just got a puppy for Christmas after he blows up an armored car.
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Creator Cameo
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_127fc252
comment
Creator Cameo: Par for the course, Stan Lee, who shows up as a general at a medal ceremony. While he was not Cap's creator, he was responsible for reviving the character and bringing him into the Avengers (while teamed up with Jack Kirby, who was the creator). This marks Lee's first cameo in a Marvel Cinematic Universe film about a character he did not himself create.
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Bloodless Carnage
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_135b9977
comment
Bloodless Carnage: Surprisingly averted at times, moreso than previous MCU films; one mook experiences the Helicopter Blender trope on-screen (complete with a blood trail as the plane keeps flying) and several people who get shot get red mists accompanying the hits.
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Dragon-in-Chief
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_13c1fec8
comment
Dragon-in-Chief: Johann Schmidt was originally a loyal member of Hitler's inner circle, until his face melted off and he no longer fit the Führer's "Aryan Ideal". At which point he was apparently banished to the Alps to lead the HYDRA science division. Eventually Schmidt decided to turn HYDRA against the Nazis and take over the world himself.
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Trailers Always Spoil
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_143939c1
comment
Trailers Always Spoil: The trailer touting the fact that it's the #1 movie in America not only partially spoils a character death, but the final scene in the movie. Not cool, editors. Not cool.
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Boisterous Bruiser
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_153299b4
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Boisterous Bruiser: Cap himself.
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You Can't Thwart Stage One
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You Can't Thwart Stage One: Despite the Allies' efforts, they fail to disrupt HYDRA's activities and merely delay the completion of Red Skull's Doomsday Device, leaving Cap with no choice but to save the day just in the nick of time. Notably, the SSR forces do exactly what the military would do in their situation: Lacking intelligence about the goal, but knowing what some of the components are, they attack those components, hoping to identify the goal based on their successful operations while simultaneously attempting to derail HYDRA's plans. The fact that they fail to accomplish either goal (substantially) is a credit to Red Skull's paranoia and preparation.
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Tempting Fate
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Tempting Fate: Howard Stark notes the he "[doesn't] see what all the fuss is about" when it comes to a sample of the mysterious Tesseract energy that HYDRA utilizes. Then he touches some with an electric arc...
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Badass Adorable
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Badass Adorable: Steve, before and after Super-Soldier serum is such a polite and kind sweetheart that whether you're a man or woman, you'd wanna hug him.
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Cool Old Guy
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For the mature lady, Colonel Chester Phillips.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_1779f10e
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"Well Done, Son!" Guy: Red Skull has shades of this concerning Dr. Erskine. In the end, Schmidt took Erskine's serum for himself, but he always seemed bitter that he never really earned it. This is what sparks his intense rivalry with Captain America.
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All There in the Manual
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All There in the Manual: The comic mini-series Captain America: First Vengeance which reveals the backgrounds of the minor characters, such as Dugan and Bucky having been in the same unit and Peggy having formerly been undercover in HYDRA.
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A Father to His Men
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A Father to His Men: Col. Phillips is a particularly curmudgeonly sort — but when Steve goes to ask him about Bucky, he didn't need to check any paperwork; the clear implication is that he knows the name of every man he's lost in the last mission.
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Say My Name
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Say My Name: The final words of the last Nazi official after finding himself unable to escape from Schmidt's lab before the Tesseract cannon fires at him is a terrified and enraged scream of "SCHMIDT!" Steve as he sees Bucky nearly falling off the train to his supposed death. Peggy also undergoes the trope when the plane crashes into the Arctic and ends Steve Roger's final transmission abruptly.
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Beta Outfit
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comment
Beta Outfit: The USO costume is intended to be Steve's permanent costume, and it's just for show, not for combat. This is why Steve puts more appropriate pants and a jacket over it when he goes to save the POWs. After he proves that he can be a soldier, not just a symbol, he designs a new outfit that is more practical and looks more fitting to his new role.
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World of Badass
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World of Badass: Spies that plan to escape in super-submersibles. An intelligence officer who can get a headshot on a moving target from half a city block away. Soldiers willing to go up against disintegrator weapons. A kid whose response to being thrown in the Hudson is, "Go get him! I can swim!" Basically, the only reason Captain America gets super-powers is so he can keep up with everyone else.
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Underestimating Badassery
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Underestimating Badassery: Even after the medical procedure, Steve still has difficulty being taken seriously mainly because he is the star of a silly propaganda show with no actual combat experience. It isn't until after he goes out of his way to prove himself in combat that people recognize that he means business.
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Single Woman Seeks Good Man
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Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Peggy seems to fall for Steve on the basis of his humble, kind, and rather adorkable nature.
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Death by Origin Story
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Death by Origin Story: Dr. Erskine is killed, ensuring that Captain America is the only super soldier. Bucky too, although like in the comics they Never Found the Body.
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Celebrity Resemblance
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comment
Celebrity Resemblance: Kind of: Hugo Weaving explained in a press release that Red Skull's accent is a cross between that of Werner Herzog and Klaus Maria Brandauer.
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Diesel Punk
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comment
Diesel Punk: In spades. Most obvious at the Future Expo, which includes (among other things) a 1940s car fashioned into a hovercraft. The Red Skull's car is a 1938 design blown to gargantuan proportions, incorporating the front half from a 1938 Mercedes-Benz 540K, the rear two-axle section of a Mercedes-Benz G4, the utilitarian toolboxes of a WWII Kubelwagen (light German jeep) and a frontal supercharger from a Bentley Blower (while most top-of-the-range Mercedes-Benz models ran similar superchargers, those were side-mounted and inside the engine bay). In-universe, it's supposed to run a V-16 aircraft engine for which the blower is too small.
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Mr. Fanservice
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_1b4e322c
comment
Mr. Fanservice: Where to start... All-American Good Guy Steve Rogers. His Badass BFF Bucky Barnes. For the mature lady, Colonel Chester Phillips. Not only do we see where Tony gets it from, but Howard Stark wears the hell out of those suits.
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Soft Glass
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comment
Soft Glass: During the chase right after getting the serum, Steve stumbles through a large store display window but is mostly unfazed and shows no signs of cuts, despite wearing minimal clothing and bare feet (having stripped down to undergo his transformation). It's possible the Super Serum made him scratch resistant.
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Wicked Cultured
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_1c6ded94
comment
Wicked Cultured: When Zola walks in on Schmidt getting his portrait painted, Schmidt is listening to German opera. Götterdämmerung, to be precise. Props to the music editor who timed it out so that the ominous double chords fall at an appropriate point in the conversation.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_1c6ded94
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_1cc2ea8d
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Villain Ball
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_1cc2ea8d
comment
Villain Ball: Nicely averted until the very end. The Red Skull's plan is completed in full with precision. Only a last-minute attack and Cap's final fight leave the Red Skull literally picking up the Villain Ball (more specifically, the Tessaract) and stopping his own plans cold.
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Green-Eyed Monster
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Green-Eyed Monster: Peggy reacts negatively when she walks in on a blonde secretary seducing Steve. Steve also gets the wrong idea when he thinks Peggy and Howard Stark are "fonduing".
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_1d2400e9
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Breaking Bad News Gently
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Breaking Bad News Gently: S.H.I.E.L.D. makes Steve's room look like something from the 1940s so that he can have more time to rest and recover before being confronted with the fact that he'd been frozen for decades. It doesn't work out.
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Heterosexual Life-Partners
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_1dfbbf31
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Heterosexual Life-Partners: Steve and Bucky, who in this universe were best friends even before entering the army.
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Framing Device
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Framing Device: The film starts with the wreck of the Hydra aircraft being found, and then Cap's shield is seen in the ice. Everything is a Flashback until Cap wakes up in the present.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_1e1afc1b
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Übermensch
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_1e6dfea1
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At first, Red Skull makes claims that his lack of a human face is no consequence, and that he's actually better for it, going so far as to refer to himself as Erskine's "greatest success". However, when he later has Cap at his mercy after the two have been nemeses for years, he says Erskine "gave [Cap] everything" and asks Cap what made him "so special". So much for the Blatant Lies.
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Stealth Pun
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Stealth Pun: Stan Lee's cameo in this movie is as a general. General Lee.
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Royals Who Actually Do Something
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Royals Who Actually Do Something: Lt. Montgomery Falsworth is a British Lord.
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Dare to Be Badass
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Dare to Be Badass: After completing a failed USO performance in front of soldiers, Steve is confronted by Peggy, who offers him this advice: This is also how Steve takes the Colonel's derisive dismissal after calling him a chorus girl.
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Take My Hand
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_1fe36347
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Take My Hand: Steve tries one of these nearly verbatim to Bucky to prevent him falling from the train, and fails.
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Faceless Goons
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Faceless Goons: Most HYDRA soldiers have face-covering masks and helmet wear. Not quite Gas Mask Mooks but close.
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Punch-Clock Villain
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Punch-Clock Villain: It's clear that not only is Zola in HYDRA for the science, but that Red Skull scares the crap out of him.
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With Great Power Comes Great Insanity
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_208c4494
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With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: The imperfect Super-Soldier serum that the Red Skull took enhanced his cruelty, narcissism and lust for power to the level of insanity. However, being completely out of his mind is no obstacle to his success.
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Adaptational Villainy
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Adaptational Villainy: Red Skull of all people gets this treatment, going from Hitler's fanatically loyal right-hand man to someone who invokes an Eviler Than Thou on the entire Nazi Party.
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Suit-Up of Destiny
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Suit-Up of Destiny: Both subverted and played straight. Subverted the first time Cap appears in his iconic costume, as there's nothing dramatic about it — he's popping up on stage in a garishly bright outfit for a bond rally. Later, the trope is played straight after Cap gets his shield and suits up to raid a HYDRA base, revealing a more practical (and subdued) version of his uniform.
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Like Father, Like Son
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Not only do we see where Tony gets it from, but Howard Stark wears the hell out of those suits.
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Single-Use Shield
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Single-Use Shield: Rogers starts off using a roughly-triangular "heater" shield he picks up during his stage show (a Mythology Gag to the character's roots). The shield is used precisely once as a guard against the Red Skull's fist. The Red Skull caves it in, and it is quickly discarded.
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Screw the Rules, I Have Money!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_230d64
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Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: Specifically stated by Colonel Phillips as the reason Howard Stark is going to get away scot-free for helping Steve with the above mission.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_230d64
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For Science!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_234bd900
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For Science!: The main motivation of Zola in regards to working for HYDRA. However, on the other hand, he seemed reluctant to activate the Tesseract machinery at 100% in the beginning of the film (self-preservation trumps science for Zola, and he wasn't at all sure the machinery could withstand full power), and it was also hinted that he was shocked and horrified about using POWs as slave labor.
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Aborted Arc
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_23698fa8
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Aborted Arc: Both in-universe and a meta example, despite it being a trademark of his backstory and one of the reasons the army is in the supersoldier business, Steve doesn't actually fight any Nazis, just in films and comic books. Justified since by the time he gets sent overseas and begins to take part in the war, Schmidt and HYDRA are much larger threats.
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Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_23a79ebf
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Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer: Schmidt (and thus his actor Hugo Weaving) receives very little screen time in the commercials for the movie, possibly to make him much more terrifying. Bucky even less.
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Patriotic Fervor
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Patriotic Fervor: Unsurprisingly, USO shows featuring Captain America are made of this trope. He's selling war bonds after all. Steve himself is more nuanced.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_23be181a
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Parody Sue
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Parody Sue: Captain America as a USO show character.
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In Medias Res
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In Medias Res: The opening scene takes place in the modern day, hinting towards what is going to happen in the movie and where they are going to end up.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_259d5879
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Anachronism Stew
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_259d5879
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Anachronism Stew: During the moviehouse scene, a war newsreel shows a British Sherman Firefly, a Medium tank that wasn't introduced into the British Army until June 1944, while the scene itself is set in 1942, a full two years prior. Falsworth reminds them to "Mind the Gap" when they are about to jump on the HYDRA train. A reference to the unofficial motto of the London Underground, which first appeared in 1968. Morita wears a modern tactical headset when he operates as the Howling Commandos' radioman. During the serum administration, several technicians are wearing modern (thin, loose-fitting, and white) latex gloves instead of the thick, black rubber gloves that would more likely have been used at the time. Two-tone emergency vehicle sirens can be heard in the scene where Steve sits in the bombed-out London pub. However, British police cars, fire engines and ambulances were fitted with bells at this point in history. The once-familiar 'nee-naw' klaxon wasn't introduced until the late '60's. During Captain America's war movie shoot scene, when they cut the rear projector footage changes to an SMPTE Universal Countdown Leader (the familiar kind with the sweep-around animation behind the numbers in a circle), which did not come out until the 1960s.
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Red Right Hand
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_25b7257f
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Red Right Hand: The Red Skull is marked by what the first super soldier serum did, but the very deformity he named himself after.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_25b7257f
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_25bc8511
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Generation Xerox
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_25bc8511
comment
Generation Xerox: Howard Stark is a Large Ham, The Casanova, and an ahead-of-his-time genius. Apparently, these were all genetic traits. Also worthy of note, Howard Stark similarly mentions to Steve that he considers himself more of a workaholic and his work takes priority over being The Casanova, has people in his lab working on a motorbike and attempts to ignore the Vibranium shield completely. A subtle example with Steve and his father. Both were soldiers who served in a World War and never came home to their lovers.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_26a1af2f
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Chance Meeting Between Antagonists
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_26a1af2f
comment
Chance Meeting Between Antagonists: While searching for Bucky, Cap happens to spot Dr. Zola fleeing his lab, but abandons pursuing him in favor of finding Bucky. A few minutes later, the two encounter Schimdt and Zola as they all head for the elevator, and Zola ends up cutting them off so that the heroes can't reach them.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_26a1af2f
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Mythology Gag
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_26ac510e
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Mythology Gag: Col. Phillips refers to Steve in a telegram as Steven G. Rogers, a reference to a storyline where he had fake memory implants of him being a middle class guy from Maryland named Steven Grant Rogers. Montgomery Falsworth's appearance (at least in the scene depicted in the trailer) owes a lot to Howling Commandos Percy Pinkerton, while his name comes from the World War I-era hero Union Jack, who is basically the British Captain America (sans superhuman powers) and thus wears a Union Jack uniform. While the movie Falsworth isn't a superhero and doesn't wear a uniform, he wears a pair of crossed belts over his battle dress to carry grenades, which — when combined with flaps of his battle dress' breast pocket — resembles the bars◊ on the Union Jack. Cap's first costume (for the USO show) is basically his comic book costume. The original Human Torch appears as "The Synthetic Man" at the Modern Marvels of Tomorrow exhibition at the Future Expo that Steve and Bucky go to. Made better by Chris Evans's other big superhero role. The display also bears the name of Phineas Horton, the inventor who created both the Human Torch and The Vision in the comics. Additionally, Phineas is step-father of Frankie Raye, one of Johnny Storm's ex-girlfriends, and she also appeared in Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer as potential love interest for Johnny, who was portrayed by Chris Evans, who portrays Captain America in this movie. Mr. Stark shows off his latest technology, a shiny red thing that flies, at an expo while being surrounded by dancing girls. Like son, like father. Specifically, he's showing off a Flying Car. Nick Fury and other S.H.I.E.L.D. agents frequently used flying cars in the comic books and The Avengers has the Helicarrier, so this may also be a way to foreshadow that. Bucky mostly eschews his comic book tights for more sturdy fatigues, however his jacket follows the design of the top of his comic costume. There's also a point in the movie where he picks up Cap's shield, a reference to the fact that he was Captain America for a while in the comics. At one point, Steve puts his shield on the front of his motorcycle, much like he did in an earlier made for TV movie in the '70s (yes, even before the '90s movie), as well as the comics. During the scene where the soldiers of the 107th escape from the HYDRA base, Dugan can be heard screaming "WA-HOOOOOOOOOOO!" in reference to the battle cry that the comic versions of the Howling Commandos use when going into battle. The first we see of Arnim Zola is his face on a television screen. His comic counterpart has a robot body with his face displayed on a screen in his chest. Also, some of the cameras in his lab mimic the design of the "head" his robot body possessed. It's also featured a bit later on: In a blink-and-you'll-miss-it scene, when Zola runs into his office in the Austrian factory, a few frames show him grabbing the blueprints for a strangely familiar android with a monitor on its chest. There is a scene where children are eagerly buying the original Captain America comic book that depicts Cap famously punching out Hitler. In-universe, the cover is inspired by Cap punching a Hitler impersonator as part of his USO show. This is later referenced when, while rescuing the American prisoners in Schmidt's HYDRA base, they ask if he know what's he's doing, and Cap responds, "I've knocked out Hitler over two hundred times." Stan Lee makes his regular cameo appearance, this time as an American general attending one of Cap's award ceremonies. Red Skull is the result of the same formula used to make Captain America, just like in the '90s movie. The Skull also had the facial disfigurement, although in the comics it was because of an accident involving his "Death Dust" during his fight with Steve Rogers and John Walker. He was also in a body that had been cloned from Rogers, and thus also benefited from the serum. Steve is shown sketching in his downtime, and able to reproduce base locations on a map after a brief glance. In the comics, part of his civilian life was drawing for Captain America comics. The prop shield for the Captain America USO shows looks a lot like the one the character used in his earliest appearances. The famed "Psyche Hitler" from an earlier film seems to be referenced. Steve is given a single shot in the arm which he thinks is the serum but which is actually just penicillin. In the original comic, the serum was just a single shot to the arm as opposed to the dozen plus injections and Vita-Rays. There are a couple of references to the animated Ultimate Avengers film, specifically, a German officer (Skull in TFA, Kleiser in UA) denting Cap's steel shield with a punch and Cap realizing just how long he's been asleep once he's outside. (That was actually not shown in The Ultimates, just Cap escaping from S.H.I.E.L.D.) Many of the HYDRA weapons make the same sound that Iron Man's hand repulsors do in his films. There's a brief shot of a rocket in the background when Cap fights Red Skull for the first time, referencing his The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes! origin story, in which he got frozen while trying to stop a giant rocket that Red Skull had fired at the US. A number of elements of the motorcycle chase scene reference similar scenes in the 1979 films, in particular the rear mounted flamethrower mimicking the rocket propulsion of the 1979 motorcycle, as well as Steve at one point wedging the shield between the handlebars, where it was mounted as a windscreen in the earlier film.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_26ac510e
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_26e685c0
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A Mythology Is True
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_26e685c0
comment
A Mythology Is True: Norse Mythology, in fact. The Tesseract comes from Marvel's version of Asgardians, who are Human Aliens with magitek. Also, considering that this is the same universe as Thor...
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_26e685c0
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_26eb6287
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Funny Background Event
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comment
Funny Background Event: After the serum treatment, a nurse holds out a shirt for Steve to put on... then gets a second look at him and silently walks away.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_26eb6287
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_27a42ebc
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Spiritual Successor
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_27a42ebc
comment
Spiritual Successor: To Joe Johnston's The Rocketeer movie.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_27a42ebc
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Bald of Evil
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_28114487
comment
Bald of Evil: Red Skull, without his full head mask.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_28114487
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_289008dc
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Incorruptible Pure Pureness
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_289008dc
comment
Incorruptible Pure Pureness: Like the comics character, one of the reasons Steve is chosen is because he has this, and the serum emphasizes it. With a character like Schmidt, however, it emphasizes the negative traits.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_289008dc
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2a015a74
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Beauty = Goodness
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2a015a74
comment
Beauty = Goodness: It's implied the Super-Soldier serum horribly disfigures anyone not pure of heart and amplifies attractiveness in good men — hence Johann Schmidt's deformation and Steve's rocking new body.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2a015a74
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2a015a74
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2b7ec38e
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The Scrappy
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2b7ec38e
comment
The Scrappy: The troops like the USO show when the girls come and dance, but Captain America is hated for taking away from the main appeal of the show with his talk of war bonds.invoked
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2b7ec38e
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2b7ec38e
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2bdae2ae
type
Awesome, but Impractical
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2bdae2ae
comment
Awesome, but Impractical: The Skull's mooks, despite their extensive use of Magitek, are easily defeated by conventionally-armed soldiers. Their disintegration weapons are bulky and heavy and only have single shot firing mode. In the Final Battle, they are shown picking off enemies one-by-one while Allied forces charge in and overwhelm them with much more efficient conventional firearms. The Valkyrie bomber is eyebrow-raising to a fairly massive extent: It has twin turbojet engines... and eight propellers. These are justified since they are the bomb aircraft's propeller. If anything, it's more of a redundant feature on the plane. Also Truth in Television: The post-war Convair B-36 bomber, designed during the war to bomb Europe from the States if England fell, had six rear-facing propellers and four turbojets to help it reach takeoff speed. The bomb aircraft also apply. They have the maneuverability of a fighter and an ejection seat, presumably to give the pilot a fair chance of survival once it's on a collision course with the target... but there are no parachutes anywhere aboard or in the hangar, preventing the Captain from leaving the bomber once it's about to crash. Schmidt's Cool Car looks neat, but it apparently handles like an 18-wheeler in Real Life. There's a reason the scenes with the car in motion show it going in a straight line.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2bdae2ae
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2bdae2ae
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2be15316
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Ambiguously Jewish
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2be15316
comment
Ambiguously Jewish: Dr. Erskine. Especially given that he looks a lot like Albert Einstein, sans the hair, and had to flee Nazi Germany. A case of All There in the Manual, in the lead in comic, Erskine's wife is confirmed as being of Jewish ancestry. Johann Schmidt couldn't care less, but makes it perfectly clear to Erskine that he is willing to act on it if Erskine refuses to work for him.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2be15316
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2be15316
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2c67783f
type
Pinned Down
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2c67783f
comment
Pinned Down: Whilst boarding the HYDRA train, Steve and Bucky get trapped on separate cars. Two squads of HYDRA troopers are sent in to take care of them, and while Steve easily takes care of his assailants, one straggler manages to corner Bucky behind cover. Steve has to backtrack to Bucky's car and flank the straggler so Bucky can get the headshot, leading to the Meaningful Echo.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2c67783f
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2c67783f
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2cd6b637
type
Fantastic Nuke
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2cd6b637
comment
Fantastic Nuke: HYDRA plans to destroy a bunch of the major cities of the world, using WMDs powered by the tesseract.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2cd6b637
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2cd6b637
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2d4fa515
type
Ax-Crazy
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2d4fa515
comment
Ax-Crazy: Everyone recognizes Schmidt as insane and his methods of employee discipline are horrific. However, according to Zola, he is to be feared regardless because his insanity means he never stops to ponder the downsides of his plots, meaning he will carry them out against all odds and circumstances.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2d4fa515
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2d4fa515
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2dbbe772
type
Propaganda Hero
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2dbbe772
comment
Propaganda Hero: Cap's set up as the poster boy for the American troops, mostly to sell war bonds. Ironically, the men actually on the front line have no respect for a leotard-wearing shill who has never seen combat. That changes.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2dbbe772
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2dbbe772
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2de5077d
type
Power Is Sexy
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2de5077d
comment
Power Is Sexy: Seems to be the reason the blonde secretary puts the moves on Steve. During the debriefing scene between Steve, Peggy and Col. Phillips, she can't keep her eyes off of him. When he asks if he can speak with Howard Stark later, she isn't even about to give him the time of day until she recognizes him. After that, she's all over him.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2de5077d
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2de5077d
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2df4fa08
type
Omniglot
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2df4fa08
comment
Omniglot: Gabe Jones, aside from English, also knows enough German to identify which buttons to pilot a hijacked HYDRA tank (telling Dum Dum which one to press) and French. (He implies that the reason why he switched from German to French was so he could woo girls.)
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2df4fa08
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2df4fa08
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2eb94abd
type
Deadly Euphemism
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2eb94abd
comment
Initially Red Skull wears a hat with the (swastika-carrying) Nazi eagle, and the HYDRA insignia below it. The only other time the swastika is ever seen (aside from the propaganda commercial during the beginning) is with the three Nazi officers who come to chew him out and are met with a taste of his weaponry.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2eb94abd
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2eb94abd
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2edf787f
type
Significant Birth Date
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2edf787f
comment
And when you look closely at Steve's enlistment form: his birthday is July 4th, 1918.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2edf787f
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2edf787f
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2ff4c09b
type
Special Person, Normal Name
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2ff4c09b
comment
Special Person, Normal Name: Steve Rogers. Also, Johann Schmidt (basically, German counterpart to John Smith).
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2ff4c09b
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_2ff4c09b
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_30401348
type
Too Fast to Stop
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_30401348
comment
Too Fast to Stop: Happens when Steve, fresh out of the procedure, goes after the HYDRA spy. Unused to his brand new high-performance body, he winds up bashing a couple of windows.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_30401348
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_30401348
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_30de7a51
type
Chivalrous Pervert
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_30de7a51
comment
Chivalrous Pervert: Howard Stark may be a playboy inventor, but when it comes to working within the SSR, he buckles down to business and takes his work very seriously. He is not going to spend his time chasing girls, as he later explains to Steve Rogers about what he actually meant by "fondue". (Essentially he was requesting that he and Peggy go out and get dinner.)
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_30de7a51
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_30de7a51
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31237f3e
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Custom Uniform
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31237f3e
comment
Custom Uniform: No two Howling Commandos wear the same uniform.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31237f3e
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31237f3e
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_319e4a2f
type
Even Evil Has Standards
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_319e4a2f
comment
Even Evil Has Standards: One may get the inkling that Dr. Zola becomes increasingly disturbed by Red Skull's megalomania as the movie goes on. It's relatively clear early on that Zola serves Red Skull not out of a sense of loyalty, but out of fear. Especially after Erskine is killed. Colonel Phillips is able to use this to get him to turn on Red Skull after he's captured.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_319e4a2f
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_319e4a2f
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31a2a33c
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Stuff Blowing Up
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31a2a33c
comment
Stuff Blowing Up: Up to and including an entire room full of bombs going off at once.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31a2a33c
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31a2a33c
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31fcc258
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Training Montage
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31fcc258
comment
Training Montage: Unusually, the training doesn't actually go well.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31fcc258
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_31fcc258
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_32e7cb8d
type
Waking Up Elsewhere
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_32e7cb8d
comment
Waking Up Elsewhere: At the end the film, Steve Rogers wakes up in a hospital recovery room in New York City after landing the Valkyrie in the ice. However, after escaping from the recovery room, he soon learns that he's been asleep for nearly 70 years in the ice.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_32e7cb8d
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_32e7cb8d
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_337a0f4
type
TrailersAlwaysLie
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_337a0f4
comment
Trailers Always Lie: Played with. All the scenes in the trailers occur in the movie, but the context of several of them gives them a whole different meaning. In a good way, natch.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_337a0f4
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_337a0f4
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_33affa42
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Government Agency of Fiction
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_33affa42
comment
Government Agency of Fiction: The Strategic Scientific Reserve. Implied to be the OSS to S.H.I.E.L.D.'s CIA. Explicitly stated to be so in the extended ending scene.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_33affa42
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_33affa42
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3496b29a
type
Heart Is an Awesome Power
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3496b29a
comment
Heart Is an Awesome Power: Not about any of the super powers in the film, but about the way Steve's lack of strength gave him the character to make him the right man for the project:
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3496b29a
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3496b29a
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_34dd5f3
type
La Résistance
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_34dd5f3
comment
La Résistance: Before getting captured by HYDRA, Dernier was one of these.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_34dd5f3
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_34dd5f3
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_34df1e4b
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Critical Research Failure
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_34df1e4b
comment
Critical Research Failure: In-universe, courtesy of S.H.I.E.L.D. When they build Steve's hospital room in 2012, they try to play radio clips from 1945. The baseball radio clips are actually from 1941, which Steve is quick to point out. What makes this research failure even worse is that of all the games they could have picked, they chose the only one in history to feature a Brooklyn Dodger hitting an inside-the-park grand slam. Even if Steve, who lived in Brooklyn, had not been at that game, it is highly likely that he'd heard of it.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_34df1e4b
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_34df1e4b
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_35022c20
type
No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_35022c20
comment
No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: The Super-Soldier serum. Erskine keeps the notes all in his head to protect the secret from abuse. The only viable sample not used on Cap is spilled in the ensuing theft attempt. The vibranium shield is explicitly stated to be a prototype by Howard Stark, and seeing as he claims they've used all of the element that's ever been found, it's not hard to see why only incomplete copies could be attempted in the intervening years.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_35022c20
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_35022c20
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3517000d
type
Mad Scientist
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3517000d
comment
Dr. Zola would rather build his designs in a environment that did not require chanting "Hail HYDRA". The sequel reveals that he was only "reluctant" to work for Red Skull; he's quite happy to be a Mad Scientist and is ideologically proud to work for HYDRA, especially since it's implied that the Skull's successors treat him with more respect than the Skull did himself.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3517000d
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3517000d
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_368c1306
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The Men First
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_368c1306
comment
The Men First: The very first words out of Steve's mouth after returning to camp with a train of rescued prisoners and captured HYDRA technology and saluting Col. Phillips are "Some of these men need medical attention".
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_368c1306
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_368c1306
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_36c64123
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Gentle Giant
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_36c64123
comment
Gentle Giant: Mr. Rogers, post procedure.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_36c64123
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_36c64123
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_38ad0e6a
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BreakingSpeech
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_38ad0e6a
comment
Breaking Speech: Red Skull gives one to Captain America each time they meet. The subject is always how "special" they are compared to normal people and how he especially should rule the world.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_38ad0e6a
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_38d02d44
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Batman Gambit
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_38d02d44
comment
Batman Gambit: Dr. Arnim Zola's failure to take his Cyanide Pill leads Colonel Phillips to realize that he is pliable. So Phillips simply sends a communique saying that Zola's defected to the Allies using an encryption method he knows HYDRA has broken, but that HYDRA does not know that he knows they've broken. Upon hearing this, Zola does all the work himself: he knows as a demonstrated fact that the Red Skull does not broker failure, so his only chance is to throw himself on Phillips' mercy. Zola thus sings like a bird.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_38d02d44
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_38d02d44
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_392372f9
type
Actor Allusion
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_392372f9
comment
Actor Allusion: Chris Evans kisses a love interest from outside a moving car, as he did in the first Fantastic Four (2005) film. We see the original Human Torch at the World of Tomorrow expo... not to be confused with the other Human Torch played by Chris Evans. Tommy Lee Jones pushes the red button in a fancy black car to make it go faster. Red Skull makes quite a few allusions to Hugo Weaving's role as Agent Smith in The Matrix. His real name, Johann Schmidt, is a coincidence because that's the character's name in the comics, but it sort of counts; "Schmidt" is the German form of "Smith". His introductory scene has him approaching in a car, and then walking into the church hideaway with his feet being focused on first, and Erskine's explaining about Red Skull has the first flashback depicting him with several copies of himself, similar to a certain Agent in The Matrix. The shot of a dozen Schmidts is a particularly strong example as it makes absolutely no sense except as an Actor Allusion. His fight with Cap in a plummeting plane, which makes a suspended-gravity environment, is reminiscent of a scene in The Matrix. At a meta level, things like Red Skull's fighting style and even how he levels his gun ("Unfortunately I am on a tight schedule...") have apparently stayed with Hugo Weaving after the Training from Hell he went through to play Agent Smith. It's also not the first time Hugo Weaving has played a megalomaniacal psychopath. A character played by Hugo Weaving is a terrorist who intends to bomb major landmarks while wearing a mask to hide his disfigured face. The John Slattery incarnation of Howard Stark towards Roger Sterling. This isn't the first time Neal McDonough has portrayed a member of an elite combat unit in World War II.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_392372f9
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_393ec3f9
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Zeerust
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_393ec3f9
comment
Zeerust: The weaponry and technology of HYDRA is deliberately retrofuturistic, stylized after the visions of the future widespread in pulp sci-fi. The trope is lampshaded when Steve and Bucky attend a fair showing the marvelous world of the future including a Stark Industries Flying Car which doesn't work — Call Forwarding the lack of such cars when Steve wakes up in the real future.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_393ec3f9
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3946634e
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The Smart Guy
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3946634e
comment
The Smart Guy: Jones.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3946634e
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3946634e
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_39b8d3d6
type
Boring, but Practical
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_39b8d3d6
comment
Boring, but Practical: Captain America's shield. Howard Stark shows him a handful of prototypes with built-in weapons and gadgets (never demonstrated, but he starts to talk about them) before Steve settles on the simple round shield. It doubles as a hidden test of character. The seemingly humble, defensive vibranium shield is the only one capable of absorbing HYDRA's disintegration weaponry. Without it, Cap would die a hundred times over. Of course, Stark would have a very good reason for making Steve take one of the more fantastic shields: the classic one is made of an untested material with unknown properties.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_39b8d3d6
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3bbecc8b
type
Hell-Bent for Leather
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3bbecc8b
comment
Hell-Bent for Leather: Johann Schmidt in spades. Even his shirt appears to be made of fine leather. All HYDRA troopers wear uniforms and masks that look as if they were made of leather.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3bbecc8b
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3bc88a7f
type
Foregone Conclusion
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3bc88a7f
comment
Foregone Conclusion: If you didn't know that Cap gets frozen for decades before waking up in the present day, you probably will after the first five minutes. Of course, the story isn't necessarily about what happened, but rather how.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3bc88a7f
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Schizo Tech
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3c5ae1a1
comment
Schizo Tech: An unusual example. HYDRA tech isn't too outlandish by the standards of modern audiences (Horten-like flying-wing bomber, mounted flamethrowers, a mini-submarine, etc.), but it's incredibly advanced for WWII standards. This is also lampshaded. Most of it is real Nazi designs they either never got to work or abandoned because they were ultimately impractical. It makes sense a research group would have access to it, presumably perfected by the resident mad scientists of HYDRA or powered with their "godly" energy source. The actual Third Reich had a few flying wing prototypes able to fly (Real Life USA also had them in the late 1940s), smaller one-hand flamethrowers◊ compared to the well-known 80lbs "backpack" model, and multiple types of mini-submarines, including a prototype able to steam underwater as fast as a modern SSN. Making them usable in large enough numbers for the battlefield was a different question altogether.
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No Body Left Behind
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3c7ccb69
comment
No Body Left Behind: Anyone caught in any Tesseract/Cosmic Cube-powered weapon's blast is instantly vaporized to the point that no body is left behind, all in a blue mist. Yet this happens differently for Schmidt.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3cb1d38d
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Bad Boss
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3cb1d38d
comment
Bad Boss: Both used straight and subverted with the Red Skull. The audience is made to think he's going to abandon Zola because his escape rocket only seats one, only for Red Skull to give him the keys to his car instead. Zola's still useful. He coldly shoots down an officer who protests that "we fought to the last man!" with, "Evidently not!"
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3cba8ce9
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Psycho Prototype
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3cba8ce9
comment
Psycho Prototype: Red Skull is revealed to be the one who received the Super-Soldier serum before Rogers did, and boy did the results backfire on him, or maybe Gone Horribly Right.
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No Swastikas
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3ccaf3ac
comment
No Swastikas: Due to HYDRA secretly going rogue within the German military regime, swastikas are surprisingly hard to come by. Initially Red Skull wears a hat with the (swastika-carrying) Nazi eagle, and the HYDRA insignia below it. The only other time the swastika is ever seen (aside from the propaganda commercial during the beginning) is with the three Nazi officers who come to chew him out and are met with a taste of his weaponry. HYDRA still has a vaguely swastika-like flag, and a two-fisted salute and cheesy slogan ("HAIL HYDRA!") which strongly recall Nazi imagery. And you can still see the odd swastika if you look carefully whenever Nazis appear. One example is the Hitler actor from the stage show, who wears the armband. You just don't see it clearly.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3d59c9a0
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Powered Armor
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3d59c9a0
comment
Powered Armor: Apparently employed by HYDRA Elite Mooks, at least to some capacity. The one present in the train seems to carry weapons far heavier than can be wielded without Super Strength and can take Rogers' punches like a man, too.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3d59c9a0
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3d7ff013
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How Dare You Die on Me!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3d7ff013
comment
How Dare You Die on Me!: Peggy warns Steve that he "better not be late" for their first dance. He promises to be there, but unfortunately, it was not to be.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3d7ff013
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3df9c288
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Keystone Army
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3df9c288
comment
Keystone Army: Ultimately averted. While all HYDRA technology is reliant on the Tesseract and cannot operate without it (it's up to debate whether the secondary power sources empowered by the Tesseract need to be recharged periodically by it or are linked to it via some sort of wireless energy transfer), this doesn't come into play at all and HYDRA is defeated by methodical base-by-base warfare.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3e16e61c
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Villain by Default
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3e16e61c
comment
Villain by Default: Nazis, natch. HYDRA by extension of being Nazis dialed Up to Eleven.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3e24cb38
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Musical Nod
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3e24cb38
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Musical Nod: As promised, we hear "Make Way for Tomorrow Today" in this film as a theme for the World's Fair, just as it was a theme for the Stark Expo in Iron Man 2.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3ed17fe0
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Wide-Eyed Idealist
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3ed17fe0
comment
Wide-Eyed Idealist: Steve, both before his transformation and after. Also, Dr. Erskine, who was looking for someone exactly like Steve to fulfill his dream.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3ed17fe0
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3f45f1e6
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Adaptational Heroism
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3f45f1e6
comment
Adaptational Heroism: In one scene of Steve trying to join the army, Steve claimed his parents both served until they died. In the comics, Steve's dad was an unemployed drunkard. In the comics, Project Rebirth is a division of Weapon Plus Program which is, if you know this name, you know how amoral they can be. Here (although it's also because X-Men film rights is owned by Fox), the project is run by Strategic Scientific Reserve, predecessor of S.H.I.E.L.D., and is more ethical in its methods (for example: Dr. Erskine and the others almost stop the procedure when Steve is screaming in pain).
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3f7a958b
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Secret Test of Character
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3f7a958b
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Secret Test of Character: Several, all of which Steve passes and others fail. "Do you want to kill Nazis?", Jumping on a Grenade, etc. Lampshaded each time by Steve!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_3f7a958b
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_400f03bc
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Faked Rip Van Winkle
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_400f03bc
comment
Faked Rip Van Winkle: Inverted with S.H.I.E.L.D.'s failed attempt to make Steve think he's waking up in The '40s at the end.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_400f03bc
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4063acfd
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Woman Scorned
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4063acfd
comment
Woman Scorned: After Peggy stumbles upon the blonde secretary kissing Rogers. If that weren't enough, he further ticks her off by retorting/asking if she and Stark were "fondue-ing," which later leads to an awkward situation where, when "testing" if the Vibranium shield could withstand a handgun, she aims for his head. She forgives him later when a film of one of their operations briefly shows that his compass contains a picture of her.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_40cc0c7e
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Bittersweet Ending
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comment
And then there's the Bittersweet Ending cutting to a rather happy and uplifting ending credits.
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ShutUpHannibal
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Shut Up, Hannibal!:
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_415b3315
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Stylistic Suck
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_415b3315
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Stylistic Suck: The stage show that Steve is in after he gets his powers could be one of these. Alan Menken even did a song fitting in with the theme!
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_41d8a845
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Sufficiently Analyzed Magic
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_41d8a845
comment
Sufficiently Analyzed Magic: This is Red Skull's take on the Tesseract Cube. He outright corrects one of his Nazi inspectors at one point when he calls it magic, and insists that advanced science "has always baffled primitive men."
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Zerg Rush
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_41dd77d
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Zerg Rush: The POW escape starts out this way. Then they begin arming themselves, taking weapons from the HYDRA soldiers they take down and commandeering vehicles.
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Cold-Blooded Torture
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Cold-Blooded Torture: Implied to be what happened to Bucky after his unit is captured and Steve, coming to rescue him, finds him Strapped to an Operating Table. Word of God says Zola was Playing with Syringes. This explains how Bucky survived the fall off the train, and the sequel suggests that that whatever torture Bucky underwent was the first conditioning towards becoming the Winter Soldier of the 21st century.
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Catastrophic Countdown
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Catastrophic Countdown: The Azzano HYDRA base briefly explodes before stopping and then resuming the self-destruct explosions. Justified in this case, as the reason for the delayed explosions was because Zola interrupted Red Skull's arming the self-destruction devices when expressing shock that he's blowing up the base before pointing to a video monitor and telling Zola that their forces are outmatched before resuming the arming of the self-destruction devices.
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Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_440d1d0b
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Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: The reason Steve Rogers moves out for his first real mission and succeeds. Also, why he lies on his enlistment papers four times. (One presumes the first time he got rejected, he told the truth.) And just to emphasize his strength of character, this trope gets later averted when he immediately submits himself to Colonel Phillips for disciplinary action. This is actually how soldiers are supposed to conduct themselves if they disobey orders that they feel compromise their personal morals.
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Becoming the Mask
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comment
Becoming the Mask: Inverted. The characteristic red head that Red Skull has is in fact his true face, and the human face is in fact a mask resembling his original self. It is also stated in an interview with Hugo Weaving and implied in the movie itself that the red head was the result of his undergoing the first Super-Soldier serum project, due to a combination of the serum being imperfect at the time and his dark inner nature. Played straight with Captain America himself. He starts out as a USO propaganda figurehead playing the heroic Captain America in stage productions and films and then becomes the real deal. At one point, he even comments to Bucky how the shtick has grown on him.
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Small Steps Hero
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Small Steps Hero: Stop the Nazi spy escaping with a serum that can make an army of Super Soldiers or rescue a drowning boy? Trick question, Steve — the boy can swim.
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Found the Killer, Lost the Murderer
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_44a7bea2
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Found the Killer, Lost the Murderer: The HYDRA assassin kills himself with a cyanide pill after his submarine getaway doesn't exactly turn out as planned.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_44fc28e8
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Honor Before Reason
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_44fc28e8
comment
Honor Before Reason: Steve will not abandon 400 men (amongst them his best-friend Bucky) to torture and death, even if he must skydive into a barrage of cannon-fire to save them all by himself. This selfless decency is yet another quality for which the Good Doctor Erskine selected him to become the ultimate warrior.
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Human Popsicle
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comment
Human Popsicle: Captain America is implied to be frozen in the block of ice containing his shield in the beginning of the film. One of the characters says that he was "in a coma," and it's not outright stated he was frozen. However, the time gap usually associated with the trope is intact. The Avengers makes this explicitly clear and shows a brief flashback of Rogers lying, suit and all, unconscious in a half-thawed block of ice with a group of scientists standing around him, in shock at discovering that he's still alive.
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Shirtless Scene
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Shirtless Scene: Steve gets quite a many... but they aren't really noteworthy until after he gets the serum.
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In-Universe
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In-Universe for Steve:
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Latex Perfection
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comment
Latex Perfection: The Skull's flesh mask resembling his original face. Except for those creepy flaps behind his face. Brrr... At least in this case, he actually has the bone structure to make it work, and it's depicted as being rather difficult to peel off.
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You Have Failed Me
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_474e3977
comment
You Have Failed Me: Red Skull executes an officer after one of HYDRA's bases was destroyed by the Howling Commandos (including one of their tanks). Surprisingly averted in the beginning scene in a demonstration of his Pragmatic Villainy: Several Nazis are trying to remove the coffin lid to no avail (with one of the officers shouting that they have to remove it before he gets there). Instead of executing them, he just removes the lid himself. He fully understood 3-4 men could not move over a ton of sculpted rock with bare hands, but the idea of an officer failing to do his duty — and, even worse, fleeing his men to remain the sole survivor — was a different kettle of fish.
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Jerk with a Heart of Gold
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4781adbb
comment
Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Col. Phillips makes it clear in no uncertain terms that he feels Rogers would be nothing but a hindrance to the cause, and even feels that way to an extent once he undergoes the transformation, but once Rogers succeeds in rescuing 400 allied soldiers from a POW camp against his orders, he gains his respect.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_478343d6
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Planning for the Future Before the End
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comment
Planning for the Future Before the End: After Cap makes his choice to sacrifice himself, he and Peggy make plans for a date. A tearful Peggy tells him, "Don't you dare be late." He agrees, and reminds her that he can't dance, and worries about stepping on her feet. He gets cut off mid-sentence as he crashes into the ice.
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Butt-Monkey
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_47fea76b
comment
Butt-Monkey: Steve, before he gets the Super Serum and becomes Captain America. Even after he gets the Super Serum, he's still put-upon until he finally proves himself in battle. He expresses his chagrin at being stuck as a USO dandy by sketching a circus monkey wearing his costume. This doubles as a subtle Continuity Nod to the comics, where Steve Rogers was a comic book artist. Tønsberg, Norway. Centuries before, they nearly got obliterated in another war between awesome powers... and all they apparently got from being a living battlefield was some powerful ancient artifact they themselves couldn't use. Strangely, they hold onto it, and the results are equally traumatic when Johann Schmidt arrives looking for it.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_48081842
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The Stinger
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The Stinger: There's only one movie left to tease. Notably, while the other films had teasers, this ends on an actual trailer. Sadly, some preview screenings didn't show it.
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The Resenter
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comment
The Resenter: At first, Red Skull makes claims that his lack of a human face is no consequence, and that he's actually better for it, going so far as to refer to himself as Erskine's "greatest success". However, when he later has Cap at his mercy after the two have been nemeses for years, he says Erskine "gave [Cap] everything" and asks Cap what made him "so special". So much for the Blatant Lies. Also averted. Bucky seems like he'll turn into this, particularly in the scene where Peggy snubs him, but he's never anything but a loyal friend. Played straight with Col. Phillips, once Steve is turned into a Super-Soldier. He thinks little of him and doesn't see much use for Steve outside of being a guinea pig. Though he decidedly changes his tune once Steve rescues the 107th from HYDRA's clutches.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_489f14dd
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Glamorous Wartime Singer
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_489f14dd
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Glamorous Wartime Singer: They're a part of the USO stage show that Steve's put in.
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SceneryPorn
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_49d59be9
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Scenery Porn: Magnificent snow-covered Alpine landscapes.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_49d59be9
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_49d59be9
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_49fb5ccb
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Combat Pragmatist
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_49fb5ccb
comment
Combat Pragmatist: Cap's shield has important symbolic value, as it establishes that his goal is to be a defender, not an aggressor. He still packs a gun because, you know, there's a war going on out there. He also has no problem with throwing enemies out open bomb bay doors or into spinning rotor blades.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4a0ec526
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Harmless Freezing
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4a0ec526
comment
Harmless Freezing: After Steve crashes the Valkyrie into the Arctic to stop it from destroying New York, he is frozen inside the wreckage for almost seventy years before he is found. Not only does he survive this — being in a comatose state for all this time — but he is completely alright when he wakes up, with no physical or neurological repercussions. Well, apart from the culture shock and finding out that everyone you loved is either old or dead. Justified with the implication that the Super Serum is the only reason why Steve survived this ordeal, and in a flashback in The Avengers, the people unthawing him clearly assumed that they were dealing with a corpse, and were in shock when they realized that he was still alive.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4acee1ed
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Fish out of Temporal Water
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4acee1ed
comment
Fish out of Temporal Water: We see Steve waking up to some serious culture shock in the present day at the end of the film. S.H.I.E.L.D. tries to ease Cap into the 21st century at first, but he sees right through the ruse almost immediately when he recognizes the baseball game on the radio as one he'd been to.
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Personality Powers
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Personality Powers: The Super-Soldier serum "amplifies everything inside: Good becomes great, bad becomes worse."
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4c6f26c
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Socially Awkward Hero
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4c6f26c
comment
Socially Awkward Hero: Steve, even after he gets serumed. He has no idea what "fondue" is and thinks it's a sex metaphor (which it is, in a way).
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All of the Other Reindeer
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4c8e8078
comment
All of the Other Reindeer: Even after becoming the peak of human physical perfection, Steve still struggled with gaining respect, with Col. Phillips seeing him nothing more but a lab rat, and soldiers thinking of him as a fool in star-spangled tights. However, once Steve starts using his abilities for more than selling war bonds, his courage, character and prowess gain him deep respect from his peers.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4d7df5e2
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Bringing Running Shoes to a Car Chase
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4d7df5e2
comment
Bringing Running Shoes to a Car Chase: As soon as he gets his new physique, Steve Rogers takes off after a bad guy. Bad guy steals a car and Steve runs after him and catches up. Then, Up to Eleven, the bad guy climbs into a submarine and Steve swims after him and catches him.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4da6ac
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Rated M for Manly
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4da6ac
comment
Rated M for Manly: After the hi-tech flying action of Iron Man, the monster mashing of The Incredible Hulk and the mystic smashing of Thor, we have Captain America and the Howling Commandos as a more down-to-earth war movie with normal soldiers clashing with others, and it is no less manly for it.
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I Can't Dance
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4db088ab
comment
I Can't Dance: Part of what makes Cap so Adorkable. It also forms the basis for the plot involving Steve and Peggy's budding relationship, where the plans the two make for a "dance" acts as a metaphor for their growing closeness.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4db088ab
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4de1a4f7
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Improvised Weapon
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Improvised Weapon: While chasing down a HYDRA spy, Steve uses a car door as a shield. This serves as the inspiration for giving him a shield in the first place, though they didn't expect him to actually use it as a weapon. And before that, the skinny pre-serum Steve picks up a trash can lid and tries to use it as a shield during a back alley brawl.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4e7c4536
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Wham Line
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4e7c4536
comment
Wham Line: During the Nazi officer's visit: In-Universe for Steve:
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Wham Shot
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4e7f703c
comment
Wham Shot: When the Red Skull takes hold of the Tesseract, it opens a portal into space in a manner that resembles the Bifrost. This particular shot became much, much more important when the Tesseract is revealed to be holding the Space Stone.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4e7f703c
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Insert Grenade Here
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4ebb6a0
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Insert Grenade Here: Cap drops a bandoleer of explosives into a three-story-high tank.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4ebb6a0
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The Atoner
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The Atoner: Dr. Erskine works with Americans to create an American super-soldier because he was responsible for the creation of the Red Skull... even if it was at gunpoint.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4ef92d0b
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Beneath the Mask
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comment
Beneath the Mask: During Red Skull's first confrontation with Captain America, he takes off his false skin and consigns it to the flames, at last revealing and fully embracing his identity and further dispensing any pretenses to Nazi loyalty.
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Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4ffde1e0
comment
Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Goes into overdrive as the movie goes on, protecting large areas of people and/or equipment behind it as HYDRA agents seemingly can't help but shoot right at it. During the motorcycle chase at the end, the only section of Cap's bike that gets any gunfire is right on the shield.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_4ffde1e0
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The Big Guy
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The Big Guy: Dugan.
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Body Horror
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comment
Body Horror: The procedure gives Steve a dramatic change in height as well. That means that even his bones were growing along with him, from the limbs and digits to the spinal column... Bear in mind that while Bruce Banner is only conscious for about half of the transformation into Hulk, Steve was very much aware during the whole thing. Shown in a trailer, you can see Rogers getting taller inside the Vita ray chamber. Say nothing of what happened when Schmidt gets turned into Red Skull.
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Disproportionate Retribution
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Red Skull immediately turns on his Nazi overseers the moment he is able to produce Tesseract-powered weaponry for himself. (That, and it's his revenge for their referring to him as "Red Skull".)
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Technology Porn
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Technology Porn: The filmmakers really enjoyed all the cool HYDRA tech.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_51640e80
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Bond One-Liner
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Bond One-Liner: "Cut off one head, two more shall—" (Phillips shoots him with a shotgun) "Let's go find two more!"
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_51640e80
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Non-Action Big Bad
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_51c28ba3
comment
Non-Action Big Bad: Minor example. Red Skull is technically Cap's physical equal and is superhuman, but unlike the experienced Cap, Red Skull clearly treats direct combat as a last resort; beneath him. This shows when they do fight, as Red Skull relies either on factors like his advanced technology, or the other agents to give him an advantage, and if forced into direct one-on-one, he doesn't have the same fighting prowess Cap does.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_51c28ba3
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Drowning My Sorrows
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_52488c54
comment
Drowning My Sorrows: Steve after Bucky goes missing in action, except he can't get drunk because his enhanced metabolism burns alcohol as fast as he consumes it.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_52488c54
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_52d1f46e
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Not What It Looks Like
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_52d1f46e
comment
Not What It Looks Like: A female secretary aggressively puts the moves on Steve, and Peggy walks in, assuming that he's become less selective. Steve protests in vain.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_52d1f46e
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Riding the Bomb
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_52f74379
comment
Riding the Bomb: Done with the Valkyrie's plane bombs, which are designed to act as both a plane for the various HYDRA members to pilot to the targets and a bomb to blow targets up with, with the targets' names being written on them. A slightly less straight example is when Captain America sends a mook plummeting to his death when he opens the bay doors and releases the locks on one of the plane bombs before the mook can even get himself secured in the cockpit.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_52f74379
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Yellow Peril
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_52fbbe7
comment
Yellow Peril: Averted and Defied; In Morita's backstory he endured a lot of harassment for being Japanese after Pearl Harbor, but there's no mention of his race in the movie itself, and he's just as loyal and dedicated to bringing down the Nazis / HYDRA as the other Commandos.
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Book-Ends
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5313c266
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Book-Ends: Just after becoming Captain America, Steve is forced to rush out of a building and run through the New York City streets. At the end of the film, after waking up from being frozen in the ice, he does it again. For bonus points, he's even dressed almost identically.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_53528185
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Piggybacking on Hitler
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_53528185
comment
Piggybacking on Hitler: Schmidt does this to set up HYDRA.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_53528185
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Rip Van Winkle
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Rip Van Winkle: Steve, who was asleep for 70 years.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_53833817
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Jumped at the Call
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Jumped at the Call: Steve, even before learning of Erskine's experiment. He tried to enlist four different times, a fact which intrigues Erskine enough to give him a pass. He is thrilled at the idea of finally being able to serve his country. The future Howling Commandos, too. They even lampshade that Steve is asking them to jump back into the very danger he just rescued them from, but they will do it anyway.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_53b6ab6a
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_548bd053
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Guns Akimbo
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_548bd053
comment
Guns Akimbo: Done by a HYDRA mook on a couple of occasions. But with flamethrowers!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_548bd053
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_56725578
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Driving a Desk
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Driving a Desk: In-Universe, we see during Rogers' tour as a performer a shot of him and some other actors playing soldiers pretending to walk through a European forest.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_56725578
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Super Serum
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_571bfe2
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The Vita-Rays used in combination with the Super Serum cause the chamber to glow from within as Steve undergoes his transformation.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_575fd5e2
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Dark Is Not Evil
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_575fd5e2
comment
Dark Is Not Evil: Steve realizes the SSR room he's woken up in is fake, but starts fighting the moment two black-clad S.H.I.E.L.D. guards enter. Having spent the entire movie fighting HYDRA mooks dressed in black, and seeing a bunch of agents in dark suits outside, it's no surprise that Steve doesn't stop running until he gets to Times Square and realizes he really is back in the USA.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5798bfbf
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Reassigned to Antarctica
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5798bfbf
comment
Reassigned to Antarctica: Hitler does this to Schmidt, whom he considers an embarrassment, by assigning him to a fortress buried in the German Alps. It backfires spectacularly, as with no one to watch over his shoulder, Schmidt doubles down on his doomsday weapon research and even starts carrying out his own operations in Norway, America, and along the Western Front. By the time the German government realizes what he's up to, he's completely beyond their control, and would have wiped them out along with the Allies if Cap and his comrades hadn't stopped him first.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5798bfbf
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_57ceb8f6
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BreakingLecture
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_57ceb8f6
comment
A more subtle instance: Red Skull delivers a Breaking Lecture, then is incensed by Cap's flippant response and resorts to simply punching him.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_57ceb8f6
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5963b221
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Eviler Than Thou
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5963b221
comment
Eviler Than Thou: Notably, the Skull takes this Up to Eleven by trying to do this to Hitler. And what's worse is that he comes chillingly close.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5963b221
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5a40d6a
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Adaptation Distillation
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comment
Adaptation Distillation: Like Thor, the story takes several elements from both the mainstream Marvel Universe (Earth-616) and the Ultimate Marvel universe (Earth-1610). Like his Ultimate counterpart, he and Bucky were best friends before the war and Bucky defended him from bullies. Also, some elements of his movie costume are lifted from the Ultimate version (in particular, a helmet with his signature "A" on it). However, the similarities are slim beyond that. Supporting characters like Colonel Phillips, the Howling Commandos, Red Skull, Peggy Carter, Gilmore Hodge, Steve being an orphan and his Wide-Eyed Idealism ring true to his mainstream incarnation. In the original universe, the Red Skull had been a brilliant spymaster born around 1920 and brought up via training from an uneducated street punk. In the film, Dr. Erskine describes him as a brilliant scientist and chief of HYDRA (51-year old) — which is an advanced military research unit. It takes literally a lifetime of learning, since elementary school begins, to become a scientific researcher. It can't be done in a few months or years. This means the entire biography of the Skull has to be rewritten from scratch to fit this new personality.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5a40d6a
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5a65ba8c
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Flirting Under Fire
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5a65ba8c
comment
Flirting Under Fire: Employed dramatically when Steve and Peggy share a kiss in the hangar while trying to catch the Red Skull's plane, and again when they talk about going dancing while Cap attempts to safely crash-land the plane in the Atlantic.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5a65ba8c
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5a8c9252
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Disrupting The Theater
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5a8c9252
comment
Disrupting The Theater: After failing to enlist in the army, Steve goes to a theater for a showing and sees a news reels of World War II on it. Some jerks in front of him however complain about wanting to get to the main feature already much to the annoyance of the other theater goers till Steve tries to tell them to knock it off. This does get them to stop but results in Steve getting beaten up in an alley outside the theater till Bucky comes to save him.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5a8c9252
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Meaningful Background Event
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5b565147
comment
See Meaningful Background Event above.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5b6e57e
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Required Secondary Powers
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5b6e57e
comment
Required Secondary Powers: It is mentioned that Captain's cells have a healing layer over them, most likely to combat the damage super strength would cause to the human body. Of course, this has the side effect that Steven cannot get drunk.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5b6e57e
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5bdcc85a
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Disney Villain Death
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5bdcc85a
comment
Disney Villain Death: Several HYDRA Mooks during the Final Battle.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5ca80293
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Pragmatic Villainy
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5ca80293
comment
Surprisingly averted in the beginning scene in a demonstration of his Pragmatic Villainy: Several Nazis are trying to remove the coffin lid to no avail (with one of the officers shouting that they have to remove it before he gets there). Instead of executing them, he just removes the lid himself. He fully understood 3-4 men could not move over a ton of sculpted rock with bare hands, but the idea of an officer failing to do his duty — and, even worse, fleeing his men to remain the sole survivor — was a different kettle of fish.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5d753b19
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The Smurfette Principle
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5d753b19
comment
The Smurfette Principle: Outside of the secretary that hits on Steve and out of all the support crew for Captain America, Peggy Carter is the only significant female member of the SSR's personnel. She, however, is arguably one of the main characters of the movie.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5deb34da
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Ace Pilot
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5deb34da
comment
Ace Pilot: Howard Stark is specifically described as being one of the best civilian pilots in the world, and is certainly not afraid to fly a small, unarmed passenger plane into German airspace and through heavy anti-aircraft fire just to get Captain America where he needs to be.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5deb34da
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5e7eb915
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Clarke's Third Law
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5e7eb915
comment
Clarke's Third Law: Brought up by the Red Skull when a Nazi agent calls his technology magic.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5e7eb915
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5e7eb915
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5f91efd9
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Creative Closing Credits
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5f91efd9
comment
Creative Closing Credits: The end credits incorporate 3D-ified versions of famous WWII posters like Uncle Sam and Rosie The Riveter.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5f91efd9
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5fcb9ad1
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Time Skip
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5fcb9ad1
comment
Time Skip: Cap finally wakes up in the 21st century at the very end.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5ff9310b
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Painful Transformation
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5ff9310b
comment
Painful Transformation: Two of them. Firstly, Johann Schmidt: he is shown injecting himself with the unfinished Super Serum in a flashback — fire then burns around him and it cuts to his face twisting in agony, turning into Red Skull. Secondly, Steve Rogers. During Project Rebirth, he has the serum and Vita-Rays pumped through his body, making his muscles and bones grow — about half way through the procedure it becomes a lot more intense and he is heard screaming from within the pod. The scientists immediately get up to shut down the machine — but Steve yells at them to keep going despite the pain (becoming a freaking man mountain when it's done).
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_5ff9310b
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_603f1a80
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Pragmatic Adaptation
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_603f1a80
comment
Pragmatic Adaptation: First to note is Captain America's costume. The first time he suits up, he's basically wearing the exact outfit from the comics, and it looks hilariously campy. When he gets his actual suit proper, it's radically different, with a helmet rather than a cowl, mere decals for the head wings, body armor rather than scale mail, red utility straps rather than gaudy red stripes, and no "buccaneer" gloves/boots. It actually looks like a plausible outfit for a propaganda soldier. The Avengers◊ version drives a bit closer to the comic vision, though it's still different. It's more of a modernization of his WWII gear, replacing and stripping away outdated and unneeded equipment with 21st century equivalents in order to be lighter and more flexible in battle. Second is Bucky's character. In addition to being an underage teenager, he was essentially a joke in the comics and archetypal of the whimsical, brightly-colored sidekick who's always getting captured. In this story, he and Steve are friends before the war, about the same age, and Bucky is a sniper. He also serves as a foil to juxtapose Steve with before and after his transformation. A lot of this persona is taken from The Ultimates and Ed Brubaker's run on Captain America. Bucky had been retconned and re-imagined to be older and much more competent, not to mention lethal, for several years by this time, and the influence is cited by the filmmakers themselves. Also of note is the fact that neither Rogers nor Bucky have secret identities. This was a standard trope for comics in the 1940s, but it doesn't really make much sense A) to have special forces risk court-martial for doing the jobs they're actually there to do, and B) to keep commanding officers in the dark and run the risk of them unwittingly sending two of your top special forces into the line of fire as Cannon Fodder.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_60b21fa3
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The Lancer
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_60b21fa3
comment
The Lancer: Dernier.
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The Leader
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_60e49895
comment
The Leader: Falsworth.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_60e49895
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BigDamnKiss
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_61375e57
comment
Big Damn Kiss: In a speeding, rocket-powered car, no less.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_61375e57
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_617f0563
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Heel–Face Turn
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_617f0563
comment
Heel–Face Turn: Dr. Zola to some extent.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_617f0563
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_61c683d2
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We Have Reserves
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_61c683d2
comment
We Have Reserves: Red Skull's rationale for deciding to work the POWs to death building their weapons, and later when causing their base to self-destruct.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_61c683d2
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6293c185
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Sequel Hook
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6293c185
comment
Sequel Hook: Nick telling Cap that he's still needed in the present. Then there is the end credits finishing with: There are some other things that remain self-contained, though: Bucky being discovered tied to a table in Zola's lab then falling to his "death" and Schmidt having an uncertain endgame when he touches the Cosmic Cube. All good jumping-off points to work with in future Marvel Cinematic Universe entries.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6293c185
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Freeze-Frame Bonus
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_62f9d08e
comment
Freeze-Frame Bonus: When Schmidt is having his portrait painted, you can see Schmidt's mug in all its gory glory for a fraction of a second after he's switched off the lights. And when you look closely at Steve's enlistment form: his birthday is July 4th, 1918.
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Cyanide Pill
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6363937b
comment
Cyanide Pill: HYDRA agents have a false tooth filled with cyanide so they can't be taken alive. So, to review, great dental plan, lousy retirement package. This later tips off Phillips that Zola can be bargained with, since he didn't make the crunch-crunch. Funnily enough, the comic canon states that only AIM has dental.
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Old Soldier
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6366f900
comment
Old Soldier: Jacques Dernier.
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Drill Sergeant Nasty
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6375f746
comment
Drill Sergeant Nasty: Peggy Carter dabbles in it during boot camp. There is also an actual drill sergeant in the boot camp sequences.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6375f746
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_63b12059
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Villainous Friendship
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_63b12059
comment
Villainous Friendship: Red Skull's interactions with Zola imply this. Despite his contempt for those he views inferior, Schmidt is almost always polite to the doctor and always treats him with respect. He even seems to regard him as a friend or at the least as a close confidant, asking his opinion on a portrait of him. Schmidt even gives the doctor his personal car to drive out of the exploding base. Though he gets annoyed by the doctor's failure to stop Cap, he instead vents his anger on a soldier. Of course, this could fall under Pragmatic Villainy as he requires the doctor's scientific expertise. Also, Zola knows that Schmidt is a certified psychopath and knows full well the Skull will not hesitate to kill him if he finds him to be a liability. But even then, the sequel shows that Zola is still carrying on Schmidt's legacy in a roundabout way.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_63b12059
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6411dac8
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BadassNormal
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6411dac8
comment
Badass Normal: Steve's allies may not be super soldiers like himself but they are still mighty soldiers. Bucky, and the Howling Commandos. Peggy Carter is certainly no slouch herself in this department either. Col. Phillips definitely has some badass tendencies too, if the, "Let's go find two more!" bit during the attack on the main HYDRA base is any indication.
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Comic-Book Movies Don't Use Codenames
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_643879c7
comment
Comic-Book Movies Don't Use Codenames: The Red Skull is the most prominent example. He is only called that once, as an insult. The rest of the movie refers to him by his full name, Johann Schmidt. Technically, Montgomery Falsworth is based on the character of Union Jack from the comics, but he isn't a costumed hero in this story. Here, he's an RAF paratrooper. Steve is an iffy case. He assumes the name for a USO stage show and uses it the most while on tour. During the rescue operation, Steve introduces himself to the POWs as Captain America, and the Red Skull calls him Captain America without any qualms. The rest of the time, he's called by his real name. However, unlike in the original comics, "Captain" is Steve's official rank in this film, lacking his secret identity as "Private Steven Rogers". Since "Captain" is both his superhero title and his official rank (it is the rank that Sen. Brandt bestowed on him), it's hard to tell when people are using "Captain" or "Cap" in reference to "Captain America" or "Captain Rogers".
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_643879c7
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6439de78
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Heroic Sacrifice
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6439de78
comment
Heroic Sacrifice: Cap himself crashes the plane with city destroying bombs, at the climax of the movie, setting up the opening scene and the impetus for his presence in the future.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6439de78
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[Verb] This!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_64536542
comment
[Verb] This!: A soldier in Italy says, "Hey Captain! Sign THIS!" before proceeding to moon Captain America during a USO tour gone sour.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_64536542
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Black Vikings
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_64a5e4f
comment
Black Vikings: Lampshaded when Dum Dum Dugan notices that another POW, future Howling Commando Jim Morita, is Asian. Mistaking him for a Japanese national, Dugan asks, "Are we taking everybody now?", only for Morita to flash his dogtags and respond, "I'm from Fresno, Ace." Morita belongs to one of the Nisei (American-born Japanese) battalions that fought in the US Army's European theater during World War II. The US Armed Forces avoided sending them to the Asian theater of the war in case they had conflicting loyalties about fighting Japanese nationals, and to avoid being shot by friendly fire. Ironically, if you were an Allied soldier from a white or other colored division in Europe and you saw a division of Asian troops, you'd instantly know they were Allies and didn't have to question whose side they were on.
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Manly Tears
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_64e975cf
comment
Manly Tears: Steve has obviously been crying before Peggy finds him drinking alone.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_64e975cf
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I'm a Doctor, Not a Placeholder
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_658854ee
comment
I'm a Doctor, Not a Placeholder: Zola's response to Red Skull, when he asks him why he can't defend HYDRA's facilities from Captain America's raids. "I'm a scientist, not a soldier!"
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_658854ee
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He Knows Too Much
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_65acf9db
comment
He Knows Too Much: Col. Phillips warns a captured Zola that Schmidt will see him this way.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_65acf9db
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Produce Pelting
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_669c4caa
comment
Produce Pelting: This is what the American unit stationed at Italy eventually does to Rogers during a USO war bonds tour after a performance gone sour. One has to wonder where that tomato even came from, except they are in Italy, and they do use tomatoes in pizzas and pastas there...
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_669c4caa
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_67013b78
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Aluminum Christmas Trees
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_67013b78
comment
Aluminum Christmas Trees: In the scene where Red Skull is making his escape, he makes his getaway in a weird-looking aircraft that was powered by three jet motors on a spinning rotor placed on the center of the aircraft. Sounds like something out of a sci-fi movie? Real Life military prototype logs say otherwise. In fact, many of the designs HYDRA uses in the movie are based on actual Nazi prototypes that were either too costly to mass-produce or lacked sufficient power (such as the Tesseract) to be effective. Surveillance cameras. Germans pioneered TV and regular TV broadcasts in the late 1930s. (They even understood it was too expensive for ordinary customers, so they used large TV sets in a sort of mini-movie-theaters.) They built a TV-guided anti-ship missile in 1944. It would be the most logical choice for the Red Skull to use on his factory.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_67013b78
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_68424916
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Eating the Eye Candy
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_68424916
comment
Eating the Eye Candy: Peggy had the sudden urge to touch Steve's abs after his transformation. For bonus points, that wasn't scripted.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_68424916
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_69391768
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Expecting Someone Taller
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_69391768
comment
Expecting Someone Taller: During Stan Lee's cameo. Also when Steve shows up for the Super Soldier experiment. As soon as they gaze upon him, the entire room falls silent. Inverted when Bucky sees Steve for the first time since he shipped out.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_69391768
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_697b5232
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Those Wacky Nazis
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_697b5232
comment
Those Wacky Nazis: Oddly downplayed, emphasizing the threat as HYDRA more so than plain ol' Nazis. In fact, HYDRA is even a threat to the Nazis, making the Red Skull demonstrably worse than Hitler. Deleted scenes (such as this one that shows the circumstances under which Bucky and some of the other Howling Commandos are captured) show HYDRA attacking both the German army and the Allied troops at the same time.
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Mentor Occupational Hazard
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6b6556ee
comment
Mentor Occupational Hazard: Dr. Erskine.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6b6556ee
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6bd689ca
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Meaningful Echo
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6bd689ca
comment
Meaningful Echo: Steve and Bucky: "You're late." Peggy at Cap and later Cap at Peggy. "I could do this all day." "Is this a test?" "It was his choice/This is my choice." "Waiting for the right partner."
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6bd689ca
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6c22a57b
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Jumping on a Grenade
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6c22a57b
comment
Jumping on a Grenade: Pre-Captain America Steve does so in boot camp with what turned out to be a dummy grenade. Phillips threw it as a character test, but was hoping one of his favored men would jump on it, but they all just ran away.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6c22a57b
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6c275297
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The Fettered
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6c275297
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The Fettered: Steve. His uncompromising devotion to his principles is exactly why Dr. Erskine picked him.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6d2afccf
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Audible Gleam
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6d2afccf
comment
A bright-faced girl greets Steve at his propaganda show, with a camera flash providing her Audible Gleam. She looks set up to be a possible romantic foil to Peggy, but after her two seconds she's never seen again.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6d2afccf
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Wearing a Flag on Your Head
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6d6dfca1
comment
Wearing a Flag on Your Head: Not only are Cap's outfits based on the Stars and Stripes, but the Chorus Girls in the war bonds drive wear short dresses based on the flag.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6eb4e408
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Artistic License – Military
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_6eb4e408
comment
Artistic License – Military: To varying degrees. Averted example: Steve addresses his drill sergeant as "Sir", which is correct for that era in the US Army and is still used by the US Marines. Averted again when, after going AWOL to rescue Bucky and the rest of the men of the 107th, the first thing that Rogers does upon his return to the base camp is to voluntarily submit himself for discipline. Of course, who's going to court-martial someone who singlehandedly rescued 400 POWs? Steve salutes Phillips and then lowers his hand without Phillips ever saluting him back. Military etiquette is that the junior salutes first but holds the salute until it is returned. Despite being awarded the Medal of Honor, Steve never wears the appropriate ribbon. The USO arranged his exemption from the usual regulations regarding his uniform. He also wears an American Defense Medal ribbon which he would not (as an active member of the US Army) have been eligible for. Most likely done deliberately: Hollywood tends to avoid putting actors in 100% accurate army uniforms, out of respect. A subversion: The Red Skull (Dr. Erskine flashback scene, 25 minutes in the film) in his guise as Johann Schmidt wears an Allgemeine SS uniform with SS-Obergruppenführer (3-star General rank) collar tabs, but a SS NCO peaked cap (black chinstrap, not the silver-braid chinstrap of officers) and no visible shoulder boards. This would be an unacceptable breach of uniform regulations and etiquette for a German officer, but given his attitude towards the Nazi party, one assumes that he doesn't give a damn whether his uniform is correct or not. Out of the 3 senior officers coming from Berlin to inspect HYDRA facilities and credited as Roeder, Schneider and Hütter, their chief Roeder wears the insignia of SS-Oberst-Gruppenführer (4-star General rank) on a field-grey, Waffen-SS uniform, with battle decorations suggesting he earned them previously on the front. The scene is set in early 1943. Only 4 men in the entire Reich were promoted to the rank, and only in mid-1944 were promoted those from the Waffen-SS, Sepp Dietrich and Paul Hausser. There was no need for 4-star officers during the times the Waffen-SS was limited to a few divisions. There were no integrated US Army units before 1948: this was probably a deliberate choice to make the unit seem more special. No integration of Black troops below platoon level (and that only late-war) only. For Asians and Latinos by comparison, there was no official policy (especially in units built around national-guard cadre they weren't that uncommon). Japanese Americans were "combed-out" of other units to provide replacements for the 442nd RCT from around 1944.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_70391857
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Anti-Climax Cut
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_70391857
comment
Anti Climax Cut:
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_70391857
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_70391857
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7089d02e
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All Germans Are Nazis
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7089d02e
comment
All Germans Are Nazis: This film averts it in several ways. HYDRA breaks away from the Nazis early on in the film, though it's unclear if they disagree with the Nazi views or just think they have bad leadership (with Johann calling the fuehrer a fool). This trope is outright defied by Dr. Erskine, himself an exiled German, who states that many people forget that the first country the Nazis conquered was Germany.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7089d02e
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7089d02e
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_71a223fc
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Up to Eleven
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_71a223fc
comment
Up to Eleven: In addition to giving physical levels in Badass to Steve and Red Skull, the serum is said to do this to personality traits. Hence, Steve's natural compassion and altruism are amplified while Red Skull's greed/rage/evilness is amplified.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_71a223fc
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_71a223fc
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_729c69f3
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Politically Incorrect Villain
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_729c69f3
comment
Politically Incorrect Villain: Hitler is stated to have sent Schmidt to his position just because he doesn't look like the Aryan ideal anymore. Schmidt himself seems to not be a white supremacist anymore, in that being a super soldier, he thinks everyone else is now beneath him (hence why he's willing to nuke Berlin along with allied cities).
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_72f98935
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Heroic Build
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_72f98935
comment
Heroic Build: Steve Rogers has this body post-transformation.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_72f98935
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_72f98935
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_736d791f
type
Adaptational Badass
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_736d791f
comment
Adaptational Badass: Bucky Barnes starts out as much more of a badass than he did in the comics. Instead of starting out as a Kid Sidekick like in Earth-616, he's a year older than Steve note in Winter Soldier, a Freeze-Frame Bonus in the Smithsonian exhibit says that Bucky was born in 1917, while later in the same film a talking computer mentions that Steve was born in 1918, he starts out as a Badass Normal soldier who's a hit with the ladies, to boot. And instead of being Steve's spokesman/medic like in the Ultimate Universe, he's the sniper, coming to Steve's aid when his guard is down.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_736d791f
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7570a10c
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Bond Villain Stupidity
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7570a10c
comment
Bond Villain Stupidity: Averted surprisingly well by the Red Skull, who immediately attempts to kill Steve nearly every time they meet. The worst thing he does is just assuming Steve and Bucky will die in his exploding weapons factory the first time they meet face-to-face, and even then it seems that he just doesn't have anything on his person that's powerful enough to immediately take Steve out.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_75fa8a59
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All-American Face
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_75fa8a59
comment
All-American Face: Played with (see Captain Patriotic below).
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_75fa8a59
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_766de4dc
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To Absent Friends
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_766de4dc
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To Absent Friends: During the V-E Day montage, the survivors of the Howling Commandos can be seen drinking to the Captain's memory.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_77a19ddf
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Strange Salute
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_77a19ddf
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Strange Salute: HYDRA has their own version of the Nazi salute, done with both arms and closed fists. As though its soldiers are spontaneously sprouting an extra two heads.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_77a19ddf
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_78f6bb9b
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Translation:
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_78f6bb9b
comment
Translation: "Yes": Dernier and Jones, again, on joining the Howling Commandos.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_78f6bb9b
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7969f21e
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No One Gets Left Behind
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7969f21e
comment
No One Gets Left Behind: The Captain's raid to rescue the Allied POWs who are being held by HYDRA. Also, Bucky refuses to leave without Steve when the two get separated in the exploding factory.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7969f21e
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7a163538
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Brooklyn Rage
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7a163538
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Brooklyn Rage: Averted. Steve may be from Brooklyn but he doesn't have much of a temper (and neither does Bucky, for that matter).
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7a163538
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7a265daa
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Eagleland
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7a265daa
comment
Eagleland: Invoked (Type 1-style) with the Captain America character cooked up for the USO shows in-universe but subverted by the movie itself (it doesn't gush about Captain America's role as the ultimate patriot, instead just letting him be a genuine superhero who fights a terrible evil). Something of an opposite effect was averted as well. When the show went into the international market, countries were given the option of simply calling it The First Avenger. Despite America's less than stellar reputation in the world right now, most kept the Captain America in the title, with only the Ukraine, Russia, and South Korea deciding not to.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7a3dd888
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Real Men Wear Pink
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7a3dd888
comment
Real Men Wear Pink: Sort of, as Steve's USO costume includes tights and a knit mask. And the helmet that becomes part of his official uniform was stolen from one of the dancing girls. Steve is also a talented artist who carries a sketchbook with him. In the comics Steve was a comic artist before volunteering for Project Rebirth and even drew comic books based on Captain America as well as illustrating children's books as his civillian job.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7abd339f
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Black and White Morality
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7abd339f
comment
Black-and-White Morality: This is one of the few Marvel movies to follow this morality exactly (in fact, aversions include this movie's own sequel). This is justified in-story through the Super Serum that created both Captain America and his enemy the Red Skull, as it enhances people's true qualities — good becomes great, bad becomes worse. Steve Rogers is an idealistic, friendly guy who just wants to do his duty for his country by fighting bad guys and helping the helpless, and becomes a Super Soldier. Red Skull is a bullying Nazi extremist too evil even for Hitler, is so narcissistic as to have a god complex, and becomes an Omnicidal Maniac.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7b0fddcd
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Battlecry
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7b0fddcd
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Battlecry: Dugan does a "WAAAH-HOOO!" when he, Gabe Jones and Montgomery Falsworth commandeer one of the HYDRA tanks at the POW camp.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7b8b3def
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Celebrity Paradox
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7b8b3def
comment
Celebrity Paradox: Averted. Captain America comics exist, and when we see them, they're nearly identical to our own... Except that Bucky, who is present on the cover of the first Cap comic cover is missing.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7b8b3def
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7c1207c1
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Weapons Understudies
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7c1207c1
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Weapons Understudies: In-universe, one of Cap's war films features an M3 Stuart standing in for a German Panzer.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7c1207c1
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7dbfa45b
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Spy Speak
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7dbfa45b
comment
Spy Speak: When Peggy takes Steve to the secret military lab in Manhattan.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7dbfa45b
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7e226b8a
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Orbital Shot
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7e226b8a
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Orbital Shot: Cap gets one at the end when he escapes the S.H.I.E.L.D. holding area in Manhattan and ends up utterly bewildered by modern-day Times Square.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7e226b8a
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7e74d66f
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Politically Correct History
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7e74d66f
comment
PCing history accusations were also made about the inclusion of Asian-American soldiers, as well as female intelligence agents. Probably from people who had never heard of the 442nd RCT or Nancy Wake and Julia Child.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7e74d66f
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7ea1e7c9
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Badass Mustache
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7ea1e7c9
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Badass Mustache: Dugan has one and is clearly the one enjoying blowing up HYDRA soldiers the most.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7ea1e7c9
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7eb49b31
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Almost Kiss
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7eb49b31
comment
Almost Kiss: Steve and Peggy, after Peggy saves Cap's bacon by gunning down a HYDRA flame-thrower, before they remember that Steve was in the process of chasing down Red Skull.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7eb49b31
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7eb73553
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Bullying a Dragon
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7eb73553
comment
Bullying a Dragon: Two of the Nazi officials who arrive to inspect Red Skull's progress spend a bit too much time insulting him, and they pay dearly for it.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7eb73553
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7fab3dae
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Pineapple Surprise
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7fab3dae
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Pineapple Surprise: Rogers pulls the pin on a grenade being carried on the back of a HYDRA bike during a bike chase.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7fab3dae
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7febc23b
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Establishing Character Moment
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7febc23b
comment
Establishing Character Moment: Steve Rogers: Steve gets one on his first appearance, sitting next to another Army volunteer who is reading a newspaper. Steve repeatedly mentions getting beat up, and if those other times were for the same reason as in the theater, it sets up that Steve happily goes into situations that're way over his head because it's the right thing to do. He later saves several hundred soldiers by doing just that, except with a HYDRA base. After Phillips praises Gilmore Hodge as a big, tough, obedient soldier, Erskine condemns him as a bully. Phillips then says Nice Guys Finish Last, and throws a dud grenade to make his point. Steve Rogers not only dives right onto it but cradles it as the rest scatter. Hodge is also the first to scatter. Steve gets one that completely sums up Captain America when Erskine asks him if he wants to kill Nazis. One of these moments occurred during his transformation into a Super Soldier. Further into the procedure, it becomes a lot more intense and he starts screaming in agony. This causes everybody to panic, Peggy orders Erskine and Stark to shut down the machine (which they attempt to do so in haste) — but suddenly they are stopped by no other than Steve: Also, Peggy Carter's first on-screen appearance. She shows up all brisk and no-nonsense and, when Hodge starts mocking her for being English and makes various crude comments to her, she easily knocks him on his ass. And slightly later in the scene, she's the only other one besides Steve who goes toward the dud grenade, though he got to it first. And Dum Dum Dugan's first line: First thing Bucky is seen doing is defending Steve from a beating. In his first appearance, Schmidt sees three strapping young Nazis struggling in vain to open a stone sarcophagus. He simply hands his hat to a subordinate and opens the sarcophagus himself, establishing him as: 1) superhumanly strong; and 2) a Reasonable Authority Figure as Nazi mad scientists go.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_7febc23b
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_80251be3
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How We Got Here
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_80251be3
comment
How We Got Here: After the HYDRA bomber is found in the arctic, the film flashes back to Steve becoming Captain America, and finally crashing the jet to avoid hitting any cities. Then the film resumes in the present with Steven being unfrozen and alive.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_80251be3
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_805deb6e
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Small Role, Big Impact
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_805deb6e
comment
Small Role, Big Impact: Red Skull or the MCU as a whole. Despite appearing in only one film, the repercussions of his actions extend far beyond his lifetime. Schmidt's discovery of the Tesseract ultimately leads to Thanos turning his attention to Earth (leading to the events of both Avengers films), and his incarnation of HYDRA later destroyed S.H.I.E.L.D. and plunged the world into a state of uncertainty. It's likely that, without Schmidt's influence on history, the spread of superhuman and world-changing conflicts would not have come to dominate Earth at the turn of the 21st century.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_805deb6e
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Super Soldier
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_80b57bec
comment
Super Soldier: Anyone who has read the comics, or any media relating to Captain America, should not be surprised by this in regard to the title character. Anyone who knows about Red Skull's character, however, is in for a big surprise. It should be noted though, that the Red Skull had been exposed to the Super Soldier serum in that other film about the Captain.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_80b57bec
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8183248
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Never Mess with Granny
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8183248
comment
Never Mess with Granny: An old woman runs the antique shop that serves as the front for the Super Soldier laboratory (a detail from the very first Captain America comic). When the Hydra spy runs out, she grabs a machine gun... and is immediately shot dead by him. Points for effort, though.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8183248
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_823c6e3e
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Large Ham
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_823c6e3e
comment
Large Ham: Tommy Lee Jones as US Army Colonel Chester Phillips. But especially Hugo Weaving as the Red Skull.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_823c6e3e
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_82b48dc
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Stupid Jetpack Hitler
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_82b48dc
comment
Stupid Jetpack Hitler: HYDRA. And in an interesting case of Shown Their Work, HYDRA gets to play with some of the crazier weapons that were being developed by the Nazis during the war, such as Schmidt's getaway jetcopter, the ginormous tank that Cap blows up during his heroic montage, and the enormous Flying Wing Red Skull pilots in the climax. Averted in the sense that Hitler doesn't actually get to play with any of HYDRA's new toys. The moment the Tesseract technology is perfected, HYDRA splits off and starts its own agenda.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_82b48dc
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_82b48dc
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_82d2715f
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Magitek
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_82d2715f
comment
Magitek: Something like it, anyway. HYDRA's machines are powered by energy from the Tesseract, an artifact whose power may as well be magical. Schmidt claims that it's just Sufficiently Advanced Technology, but even he doesn't really know everything about how it works.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_82d2715f
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_82d2715f
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8319aaea
type
Compensating for Something
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8319aaea
comment
Compensating for Something: Not outright stated in the film, but according to the HYDRAmobile's designer, the car is "over 25 feet long... much longer than anything you would consider a car, but he's a dictator, he wants to show his power." Yes. "Power."
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8319aaea
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8319aaea
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_83be25f6
type
Throwing Your Shield Always Works
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_83be25f6
comment
Throwing Your Shield Always Works: Captain America, naturally, once he starts using his vibranium shield.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_83be25f6
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_83be25f6
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_83be25f6
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_84976907
type
On Patrol Montage
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_84976907
comment
On Patrol Montage: The Howling Commandos wrecking HYDRA.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_84976907
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_84976907
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_85557b38
type
Reality Is Unrealistic
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_85557b38
comment
Reality Is Unrealistic: Some viewers (including Roger Ebert, for a time) thought that the bulked up Chris Evans was achieved through CGI. It was actually inverted — the skinny, pre-serum Evans is made by CGI. PCing history accusations were also made about the inclusion of Asian-American soldiers, as well as female intelligence agents. Probably from people who had never heard of the 442nd RCT or Nancy Wake and Julia Child. Some obvious non-German speaking audience members didn't like the fact that Red Skull labeled his bombs "in English". These bombs had the names of New York, Chicago, and Boston on them — three cities that would be spelled the same whether they were written in English or German.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_85557b38
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_85557b38
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8560c16f
type
Fatal Family Photo
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8560c16f
comment
Fatal Family Photo: Played with and likely inverted. Steve has a photo of Peggy in his compass, cut out from a newspaper, and it's the last thing he looks at before Red Skull's plane crashes. Steve wakes up seventy years in the future perfectly all right... but Peggy is now seventy years older by his reckoning. A deleted scene in The Avengers shows that Peggy is just about the only person Steve knew from back then who isn't dead, though he can't bring himself to try to contact her. He does, however, in The Winter Soldier.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8560c16f
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8560c16f
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_857d1626
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Power Glows
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_857d1626
comment
Power Glows: The Vita-Rays used in combination with the Super Serum cause the chamber to glow from within as Steve undergoes his transformation. The Tesseract emits a strong blue glow, as does the energy transference machine when used to empower secondary energy sources, and every single piece of HYDRA technology operated by said source seems to have a bright blue dot on it somewhere.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_857d1626
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_857d1626
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_863fa679
type
What Happened to the Mouse?
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_863fa679
comment
What Happened to the Mouse?: A bright-faced girl greets Steve at his propaganda show, with a camera flash providing her Audible Gleam. She looks set up to be a possible romantic foil to Peggy, but after her two seconds she's never seen again. The US Senator who set Steve up as the face of the USO's campaign isn't seen again after he's "stood up" by Steve in the awards ceremony. Hodge, the bully soldier, actually appears again after Steve returns to the camp with the rescued prisoners. He looks resentful but comes around to applauding Cap soon after, and is never seen again. A HYDRA mook and his fighter plane loaded with bombs fall out of the Valkyrie. They could have caused a load of damage, but they are never heard about again. According to an Avengers tie-in comic, he managed to board the plane in mid-air, gave a "Heil HYDRA!" and promptly crashed.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_863fa679
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_863fa679
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_86af7ab0
type
Badass Biker
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_86af7ab0
comment
Badass Biker: Cpt. Rogers rides into a HYDRA with his shield out front.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_86af7ab0
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_86af7ab0
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_86af7ab0
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_86b21114
type
Badass Boast
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_86b21114
comment
Badass Boast: By Rogers, when going over the plan to attack HYDRA headquarters in the Alps. A conversation that took place between Dr. Arnim Zola and Col. Chester Phillips after the formers capture. Somewhat subverted, because the person Arnim is boasting about, is his boss, the Red Skull.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_86b21114
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_86b21114
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_875615dd
type
Truth in Television
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_875615dd
comment
The Valkyrie bomber is eyebrow-raising to a fairly massive extent: It has twin turbojet engines... and eight propellers. These are justified since they are the bomb aircraft's propeller. If anything, it's more of a redundant feature on the plane. Also Truth in Television: The post-war Convair B-36 bomber, designed during the war to bomb Europe from the States if England fell, had six rear-facing propellers and four turbojets to help it reach takeoff speed.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_875615dd
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_875615dd
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_88088476
type
Cheap Costume
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_88088476
comment
Cheap Costume: Rogers is initially put into USO shows to boost morale and war bonds, wearing a costume that is more reminiscent of the spandex/tights of earlier live-action versions of the character. He generally looks ridiculous, but both the look of the costume and the shield he was given serves as the inspiration for the paint job he gets for his army gear.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_88088476
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_88088476
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8879db82
type
Badass Crew
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8879db82
comment
Badass Crew: And not just any Squad, but the Howling Commandos.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8879db82
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8879db82
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8879db82
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8a295a46
type
Cool Car
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8a295a46
comment
Cool Car: Howard Stark's convertible, which is bulletproof, fires rockets and has a wet-bar.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8a295a46
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8a295a46
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8a7e27b5
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Stab the Scorpion
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8a7e27b5
comment
Stab the Scorpion: We get a brief look at Cap in the crosshairs of sniper rifle... only for it to actually be Bucky shooting an unseen HYDRA soldier.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8a7e27b5
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8a7e27b5
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8b221a63
type
Reed Richards Is Useless
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8b221a63
comment
Reed Richards Is Useless: Averted by Howard Stark, when put into perspective with the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe: When he first appears he shows us the prototype of Iron Man's repulsor technology. Last we see it, he has just got his hands on the Tesseract that he's implied to have tried to reverse-engineer, creating the first arc reactor in the process and failing only because he was limited by the technology of his time. (Tony would later succeed using his data, as the technology had advanced enough to allow him to do the impossible.) And Hydra uses power armors that look like unprotected versions of Tony's Iron Man MkI armor. Also, Captain America is implied to have wrecked Peenemünde, cutting short the development and production of the V-2 flying bombs, and an important Nazi munition facility (see Shown Their Work for more detail). One suspects the whole reason that Steve is not actually fighting in the war until a third of the way into the movie is because a Super Soldier would, putting it bluntly, wreck Hitler's shit. Winning World War II that easily would change the course of human history considerably, not to mention be a mite disrespectful to actual war veterans.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8b221a63
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8b221a63
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8b6de1eb
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Airborne Aircraft Carrier
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8b6de1eb
comment
Airborne Aircraft Carrier: Red Skull's gigantic bomber has several small airplanes/piloted bombs on board.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8b6de1eb
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8b6de1eb
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8b6de1eb
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8d08960c
type
Two-Timer Date
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8d08960c
comment
Two-Timer Date: Captain America ended up having to miss out on a Medal of Honor ceremony. Unlike most other tropes, he had a very good reason for doing so: He had to debrief Allied officers on the situation and tell them that he discovered the locations of various HYDRA facilities throughout Europe.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8d08960c
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8d08960c
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8d6bb79b
type
The Good Captain
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8d6bb79b
comment
The Good Captain: Unlike the traditional comic book version, Steve Rogers is a commissioned US Army Captain.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8d6bb79b
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8d6bb79b
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8d6bb79b
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8dd4a996
type
Identical Grandson
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8dd4a996
comment
Identical Grandson: Howard Stark, aside from being a little younger and having different facial hair, he looks exactly◊ like his◊ son Tony.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8dd4a996
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_8dd4a996
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9056e18d
type
False Crucible
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9056e18d
comment
False Crucible: By Jumping on a Grenade (thankfully an inactive one), Rogers shows to his commanding officer that long before his body is treated, he has the heart of Captain America!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9056e18d
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9056e18d
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_916c72b3
type
Rule of Symbolism
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_916c72b3
comment
Rule of Symbolism: The two-fists of the Hydra salute represent their axiom of two heads growing for every one cut off.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_916c72b3
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_916c72b3
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_916c72b3
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_91835104
type
Motivational Kiss
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_91835104
comment
Motivational Kiss: Steve receives a kiss from Peggy just before he boards the Red Skull's plane. Phillips declines to do the same.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_91835104
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_91835104
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_91835104
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_91a7d252
type
Fake in the Hole
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_91a7d252
comment
Fake in the Hole: When pre-enhanced Steve Rogers and his training unit are confronted by an armed (but actually inactive) grenade being thrown by Col. Phillips, he immediately jumps on it while all his comrades run.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_91a7d252
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_91a7d252
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9203bf6
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Arc Number
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9203bf6
comment
Arc Number: 70 crops up somewhat often.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9203bf6
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9203bf6
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9203bf6
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92587498
type
Five-Man Band
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92587498
comment
Five-Man Band: An early incarnation of the Howling Commandos. The Leader: Falsworth. The Lancer: Dernier. The Smart Guy: Jones. The Big Guy: Dugan. The Face: Barnes.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92587498
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92587498
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_928ca2cc
type
You Have Outlived Your Usefulness
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_928ca2cc
comment
You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Red Skull immediately turns on his Nazi overseers the moment he is able to produce Tesseract-powered weaponry for himself. (That, and it's his revenge for their referring to him as "Red Skull".) Subverted in regards to Zola. Zola (and the audience) think that Red Skull is going to abandon him to die in the exploding base, but he opts to save... his car, by giving Zola the keys. Which makes sense on two fronts: it's a very nice car, and Zola (who is carrying the blueprints of his latest Tesseract-powered weapons) is still useful. Invoked by Phillips to get Zola to talk after he is captured, though.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_928ca2cc
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_928ca2cc
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92dfffae
type
Retraux
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92dfffae
comment
Retraux: The overall aesthetic of the movie, with its slightly blooming colors and light sepia tone. This reverts to a more realistic style when Steve finds himself in 21st Century New York.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92dfffae
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92dfffae
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92e5b254
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Communications Officer
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92e5b254
comment
The Radioman: Jim Morita.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92e5b254
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92e5b254
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_92e5b254
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_93c7525e
type
Cue Card
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_93c7525e
comment
Cue Card: Cap uses them during his first USO show, taped to the back of his shield so he can read them easily. As he settles into the role, he is able to say the lines by rote and no longer needs the cards.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_93c7525e
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_93c7525e
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94680696
type
Shaped Like Itself
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94680696
comment
Shaped Like Itself: Colonel Phillips brings Dr. Zola a steak dinner as a softening-up technique. When Zola asks what's in it, Phillips cheerfully replies, "Cow!"
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94680696
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94680696
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94cce63e
type
Fighting Irish
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94cce63e
comment
Fighting Irish: Dum Dum Dugan. Somewhat averted with Steve, who although Irish-American (in the comics and presumably here, too), isn't that big on fighting (which isn't to say he'll ever back down from a necessary one).
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94cce63e
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94cce63e
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94e4c8ab
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Betty and Veronica
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94e4c8ab
comment
Betty and Veronica: Subverted. It looks like Steve and Howard are going to be competing for Peggy, but Peggy and Howard have no interest in one another.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94e4c8ab
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94e4c8ab
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_94e4c8ab
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_95265081
type
Leeroy Jenkins
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_95265081
comment
Leeroy Jenkins: Averted, since Captain America does succeed in rescuing those 400 troops from HYDRA, alone, despite Col. Phillips' orders to back off. Subverted in the climax. Steve runs at HYDRA's front door and is captured. As it turns out, it's a diversion for the rest of Howling Commandos to get into position.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_95265081
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_95265081
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_95713538
type
Outside Ride
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_95713538
comment
Outside Ride: Rogers does this briefly during his chase for the Hydra spy. Slightly more justifiable because Steve is superhuman and the windows were broken, meaning he had something to hold.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_95713538
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_95713538
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_95713538
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_957e5fc2
type
Villainous Breakdown
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_957e5fc2
comment
Villainous Breakdown: "YOU ARE FAILING!!!!" A more subtle instance: Red Skull delivers a Breaking Lecture, then is incensed by Cap's flippant response and resorts to simply punching him.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_957e5fc2
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_957e5fc2
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_957e5fc2
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9633f14b
type
Badass Bystander
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9633f14b
comment
Badass Bystander: Krueger's hostage, a young boy who after being thrown in the river, tells Rogers to go after the bad guy because, "I can swim!"
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9633f14b
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Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_967edd3a
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Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: Steve and Peggy in the bombed out pub where Peggy consoles Steve after Bucky goes missing in action.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_967edd3a
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_967edd3a
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_96ecc67e
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Shotguns Are Just Better
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_96ecc67e
comment
Shotguns Are Just Better: Dum Dum Dugan's weapon of choice.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_96ecc67e
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_96ecc67e
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_970c790a
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Big Bad
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Big Bad: The Red Skull is The Leader of HYDRA and the one that the good captain needs to stop.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_970c790a
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9751f6eb
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Tanks, but No Tanks
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9751f6eb
comment
Tanks, but No Tanks: In-universe: In one scene of Steve's propaganda film, a knocked-out Nazi tank is "played" by a Stuart with an Iron Cross painted on the turret — which makes perfect sense, given the period...
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9751f6eb
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9751f6eb
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_978379ad
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Token Enemy Minority
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comment
Token Enemy Minority: Jim Morita and Dr. Abraham Erskine.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_98576799
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Throw the Dog a Bone
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_98576799
comment
Throw the Dog a Bone: After five different tries in five different states to get into the army, Steve is approved by Dr. Erskine, who also specifically recommends Steve for the Super-Soldier project, to Col. Phillips' disbelief (who also almost says this trope word-for-word).
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_98576799
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9858c391
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Chick Magnet
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9858c391
comment
Chick Magnet: Howard Stark is the more straightforward "ladies man" example, as shown in his first appearance. One can see where Tony Stark got it. Post-procedure Steve is a more subtle version; the combination of his stage celebrity, beefcake physique, courageous spirit, and all around Nice Guy attitude attract Peggy, a foxy secretary, and a doe-eyed starstruck blond. Bucky is also one back in New York. He laments the loss of this status around Post-Serum Steve.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_98f5de00
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Let Me Get This Straight...
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_98f5de00
comment
Let Me Get This Straight...: Almost said line for line by Timothy Dugan, when Steve is recruiting the Howling Commandos. Effectively, Steve is asking freshly-liberated POWs to march right back into Hell with him. They all accept.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_98f5de00
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_993cf18f
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Not So Different
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_993cf18f
comment
Not So Different: The Red Skull seems to view Cap in this manner, especially considering they're both somewhat a product of the same science. Red Skull tries this speech on the Tesseract's Norwegian custodian, who quickly refutes this in a Shut Up, Hannibal! manner. The Skull admits they aren't alike, but have similar views on mythology and the occult not really being so mysterious.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9ae0ead1
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Villains Out Shopping
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9ae0ead1
comment
Villains Out Shopping: Red Skull mentions upon meeting Captain America that he's a great fan of his films.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9ae0ead1
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9ae0ead1
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9af54b9d
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Double Take
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9af54b9d
comment
Double Take: An SS officer ends up experiencing this when he notices the targets on Schmidt's map. When he checks for a closer confirmation, he then expresses shock and anger at the fact that Berlin is on the map (likewise revealing that Schmidt intends to retaliate against Hitler). See Wham Line for the line in question. Also the blonde secretary who was reading the newspaper about Captain America's heroic rescue of POWs, only to realize that Steve Rogers is standing in the room right there.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9af54b9d
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9af54b9d
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9afa05c7
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Family-Unfriendly Death
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9afa05c7
comment
Family-Unfriendly Death: We get a rather graphic (and gory) shot of a HYDRA mook getting thrown into a airplane propeller. At least, it goes fast enough not to show any organs — just a gigantic spray of blood. Still very unsettling though. The film establishes very early on that it's not going to be 100% family-friendly, though. The first death shown is quite graphic.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9afa05c7
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9afa05c7
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b1da792
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Montage
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b1da792
comment
Montage: Besides the Training Montage and On Patrol Montage, we get: "The Star Spangled Man" song plays with a montage of Captain America's propaganda. The supporting cast around VE-Day when Steve is "dead".
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b1da792
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b1da792
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b1e50bd
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During the War
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b1e50bd
comment
During the War: World War II to be exact.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b1e50bd
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b1e50bd
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b2923bc
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Mooning
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b2923bc
comment
Mooning: Done by one of the soldiers stationed in Italy when his performance for them at the USO goes sour. (They like the dancing girls more than Captain America himself.) It's off screen, but the fact that he turns around and says something insulting and bends down before panning back to Cpt. Rogers makes the fact unmistakable.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b2923bc
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b2923bc
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b54d536
type
Evil Counterpart
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b54d536
comment
Evil Counterpart: Doctor Zola to Howard Stark: both are genius engineers decades ahead of their time designing weapons and equipment for their respective governments (before Zola defected to HYDRA). Certainly, the Red Skull is Captain America's evil counterpart. Both were injected with a Super Serum and became superhumans, but the similarities end there. Captain America is the embodiment of patriotism, an Ideal Hero who fights for freedom. Red Skull was originally a Nazi who embodied fascism, and if that wasn't enough he ends up betraying his own country and seeks world domination.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b54d536
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9b54d536
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9bcd82c0
type
Took a Level in Badass
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9bcd82c0
comment
Took a Level in Badass: Steve Rogers goes from nice guy to Captain Freakin' America.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9bcd82c0
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9bcd82c0
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9c1d1e31
type
Black Box
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9c1d1e31
comment
Black Box: HYDRA's Tesseract-powered technology. Not even Howard Stark, one of the best mechanical engineers and inventors in the United States and in the world as a whole, understands how it works. HYDRA doesn't understand their own technology much better. They only know (and care) that it works. HYDRA's technology only works because of the Cosmic Cube, and nobody understands how it works. The implication exists that Howard Stark's Arc Reactor designs (which Tony then miniaturized) came from the study of the Cube as well. He did, after all, boast about "making the nuclear reactor look like a Triple-A battery".
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9c1d1e31
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d12bbc1
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Foreshadowing
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d12bbc1
comment
The Red Skull abuses the powers of the Tesseract throughout the movie and ultimately ends up getting... somethinged by it. He was even warned about it beforehand.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d12bbc1
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d12bbc1
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d17b859
type
Made of Iron
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d17b859
comment
Made of Iron: Special mention must be made of Heinz Kruger, the Nazi spy who gets shot a couple of times and still outruns anyone that isn't post-procedure Steve.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d17b859
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d1a935f
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Brought to You by the Letter
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d1a935f
comment
Brought to You by the Letter "S": ... or "A". Steve's costume, both before and after Becoming the Mask.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d1a935f
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d1a935f
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d723582
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Shield Bash
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Shield Bash: A symbolic weapon for Captain America, since he's more about defending the weak than defeating the strong.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d723582
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9d723582
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9dab0a6e
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Continuity Nod
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9dab0a6e
comment
Continuity Nod: The Norwegian town of Tønsberg, in the Red Skull's first scene is the same one seen early on in Thor, some centuries earlier — which neatly explains how the Tesseract got there.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9dab0a6e
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9dfb8296
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This Is Gonna Suck
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9dfb8296
comment
This Is Gonna Suck: See Meaningful Background Event above. At the end of the rescue at the first HYDRA base, as Cap's about to leap a fiery chasm, he steels himself for an unpleasant experience.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9dfb8296
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One-Man Army
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9e943076
comment
Cap himself pulls off a one-man attack on another HYDRA base to rescue Bucky, as well as the other members of the 107th, who had been captured and used for slave labor.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9e943076
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Mr. Smith
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9ebca7d9
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Mr. Smith: Johann Schmidt's name is German for "John Smith"—suggesting that "Johann Schmidt" is just an alias.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9ebca7d9
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Elite Mooks
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comment
Elite Mooks: The heavy-weapons HYDRA soldiers.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9fbe06a5
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Badass in a Nice Suit
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9fbe06a5
comment
Badass in a Nice Suit: Peggy Carter wears a tie to battle!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9fbe06a5
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_9fbe06a5
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a0e3acee
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Training
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a0e3acee
comment
Training "Accident": Grenade!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a0e3acee
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a1a1491e
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Homage
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a1a1491e
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Homage: To the opening scene of A Matter of Life and Death. Peggy herself even resembles June from the same scene.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a1a1491e
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a1b76006
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Nerves of Steel
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a1b76006
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Nerves of Steel: Peggy steadily taking aim at the car barreling directly towards her.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a1b76006
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a1d70162
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I Just Shot Marvin in the Face
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a1d70162
comment
I Just Shot Marvin in the Face: During the prison revolt at one of the HYDRA bases, one of the soldiers, when picking up one of HYDRA's weapons, becomes a bit careless as to how one is supposed to operate it. It's even lampshaded. Thankfully, he misses.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a1d70162
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a2022cc9
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Killed Mid-Sentence
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a2022cc9
comment
Killed Mid-Sentence: Happens to the SS officer that is chewing out Schmidt when Schmidt decides to demonstrate his weaponry. Specifically, he is telling Schmidt that because of the discovery of his plan to nuke Berlin, he will be brought before the Führer for his actions, but doesn't get a chance to finish his sentence before Schmidt disintegrates him. During the assault of the Hydra base: Also Cap, from the perspective of Peggy and Col. Phillips. In reality, it's more like "the radio died mid-sentence before Steve froze over".
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a2022cc9
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a39d6056
type
Nice to the Waiter
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a39d6056
comment
Nice to the Waiter: Steve gets up to buy his newly minted squad a round of drinks.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a39d6056
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a39d6056
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a4414a05
type
Adaptation Dye-Job
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a4414a05
comment
Adaptation Dye-Job: Subverted with Steve himself. He has brown hair on the poster, but is blonde in the film itself. Played straight with Johann Schmidt. His hair is brown in the movie, red in the comics. Peggy Carter has blonde hair in the comics, which gets changed to brown in the film.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a4414a05
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a4c37cbe
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Mood Whiplash
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a4c37cbe
comment
Mood Whiplash: Quite a few. Most notably the cut between Steve and the USO showgirls performing in the US and his first impression with soldiers on the front line. Needless to say, they are not amused. And then there's the Bittersweet Ending cutting to a rather happy and uplifting ending credits.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a4c37cbe
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a4c37cbe
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a4ef135d
type
Preemptive
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a4ef135d
comment
Preemptive "Shut Up": When Phillips rejects Steve's request to go and save the 107th (which includes his best friend):
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a4ef135d
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a4ef135d
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a590182a
type
Disintegrator Ray
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a590182a
comment
Disintegrator Ray: HYDRA's energy weapons work this way — which conveniently give us a lot of Bloodless Carnage by disintegrating bodies when they strike human flesh and causing explosions when they hit solid material. Not that there aren't a lot of other, messier deaths in the film. Captain America's indestructible shield is the only known thing that can completely ignore a shot from the ray guns.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a590182a
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a65288e2
type
Ascended Extra
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a65288e2
comment
Ascended Extra: Howard Stark is a very minor character in the comics, hardly making any appearance, if at all. While Peggy did show up in the comics, she was a minor character, little more than a Designated Love Interest. Here, she is more prominent and has become an Adaptational Badass. Jim Morita and Jacques Dernier were only recurring characters in the Howling Commandos series, but in the movie they're promoted to full-fledged team-members.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a65288e2
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a6a6de9a
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Humble Hero
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a6a6de9a
comment
Humble Hero: This is part of the requirement Dr. Erskine has for who should be given the super soldier serum.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a6a6de9a
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a6b14ee1
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Hollywood Tactics
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a6b14ee1
comment
Hollywood Tactics: The American troops just kind of run at the fortified HYDRA base in a big crowd, in keeping with the pulp aesthetics of the film. Of course, they take terrible losses, but they get there, because Cap softened HYDRA up first, and HYDRA was prepared for small-unit raid tactics like the Commandos typically use.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a6c69bd
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MacGuffin
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a6c69bd
comment
MacGuffin: The Tesseract/Cosmic Cube, introduced briefly in Thor, and seen (as a sketch) in Howard Stark's notebook during Iron Man 2. Doesn't actually do much here except power everyone's laser guns and super vehicles and such. Has a more important role in The Avengers, where Loki has it. It might also have done something a bit more exotic than "simple" disintegration to Johann Schmidt. And as it turns out, it did.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a74d419a
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Unfinished, Untested, Used Anyway
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a74d419a
comment
Unfinished, Untested, Used Anyway: Schmidt used the super soldier serum before it was ready. While it did give him the physical powers Steve has, it deformed his face.
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Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a796d2a6
comment
Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: "Look, it's Captain America! Everyone, aim directly for his shield!" HYDRA troopers prove quite capable of killing regular soldiers, and his shield is a bullseye that would attract the eye, and would certainly distract enemy soldiers in combat situations. Without his shield they don't even seem to bother aiming at him, such as when nobody shoots him at close range after he charges into the middle of a pack of HYDRA troopers and starts throwing his shield instead of using it defensively. It is, however, in keeping with the pulpy tone of the film.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a7c904c3
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America Won World War II
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a7c904c3
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America Won World War II: Averted. Not only are other fronts and allies mentioned in passing, but the Strategic Scientific Reserve and Howling Commandos are both multinational, and eventually, things evolve into a feud between the SSR and HYDRA. HYDRA's defeat saves the world, but that is unrelated to World War II proper. Additionally, Schmidt also planned to bomb Berlin along with the other major cities.
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Role Called
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comment
Role Called: Captain America: The First Avenger
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Super Strength
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a8c6a317
comment
Super Strength: Enough to pick up an armored HYDRA soldier and throw him 20+ feet through the air. Presumably, the war bonds performance where Steve holds a motorcycle with three showgirls sitting on it over his head is not accomplished by 1940s stage effects, either. Right in the beginning of the film, Johann Schmidt/the Red Skull manages to effortlessly remove the lid from a coffin that even four of his own men could not move an inch. A simple punch from the Red Skull dents Steve's metal prop shield like it is cardboard. He doesn't even flinch while doing it.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a922f8de
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To Be Lawful or Good
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a922f8de
comment
To Be Lawful or Good: Obey orders to stay out of the battlefront (Lawful), or single-handedly rescue 400 POWs (Good)? Steve Took a Third Option — save the POWs and then surrender for disciplinary action. But considering that he gets results, the Colonel doesn't particularly care by that point.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_a9b10a62
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Think Nothing of It
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Think Nothing of It: When the flirty secretary commends Steve on rescuing the POWs, he replies that he was "just doing what needed to be done." This only entices her more.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ab5eea65
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Dramatic Irony
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ab5eea65
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Dramatic Irony: Howard Stark is this trope packed into a single person. It's rather painful to see this kind, happy heroic character in WWII when the audience already knows from Iron Man 2 that he grows to become the neglectful and borderline abusive father that Tony knows.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_abdc0b3f
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Held Gaze
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comment
Held Gaze: Steve and Peggy after he proves her faith in him by liberating the prisoners, and after Peggy saves Steve's life from the HYDRA mook with twin flamethrowers. Both instances also include the "You're late" quip.
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Four-Star Badass
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Four-Star Badass: Even prior to becoming a super-soldier, the film version of Schmidt is a General in the SS.
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Chekhov's Skill
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Chekhov's Skill: Prior to his transformation, Steve mentions that he grew up in the area of Brooklyn in which the experiment will take place, and knows the streets well. Shortly afterwards, when he has become Captain America, he uses this knowledge to take shortcuts that let him catch up to and intercept Kruger's getaway taxi.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ad1db87c
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Oh, Crap!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ad1db87c
comment
Oh, Crap!: There's a subtle one at the start of the movie when Steve has just submitted a falsified enlistment form (again). The doctor examining him steps out, and an MP steps in. Fortunately, he's not in trouble. During his first face-to-face encounter with Red Skull, when he sees the fist-print impression left in his steel shield after he blocks Skull's punch. Even funnier as just seconds before he demonstrated his strength to the Skull with a punch... which barely made his opponent flinch and tore a bit of his latex mask. Phillips has one when he's interrogating Dr. Zola when Zola says that Johann Schmidt was targeting "everywhere". That beautiful look on the S.H.I.E.L.D. agent's face when Steve says, "The game. It's from May 1941. I know because I was there." The men sent to inspect the progress of Red Skull's operations have this when the only one of them not too busy insulting Red Skull bothers to glance at his map of targets and sees that Berlin is on it. It quickly gets worse once he starts zapping them.
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Standard Sci-Fi Army
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ae1d84f7
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Standard Sci-Fi Army: HYDRA, with its mythical artifact-powered weapons.
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Deadpan Snarker
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ae3d6438
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Deadpan Snarker: Colonel Phillips, especially at Rogers' expense. Bucky has his moments, too. Howard Stark, too. So do Peggy and Steve for that matter.
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Cool Helmet
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_affbcbb
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Cool Helmet: Arguably, Cap's blue combat helmet with the signature "A" on it, incidentally "borrowed" from one of the USO performers.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b032e4ed
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Ms. Fanservice
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b032e4ed
comment
Ms. Fanservice: Three words: Peggy in red.◊ On an unrelated tangent, the USO singers◊ during the tour montage are quite the lookers themselves and are examples in-universe. We even see the soldiers in Italy demanding that the USO "bring back the girls" to the stage, after Steve's performance goes south.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b252f072
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Megaton Punch
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b252f072
comment
Megaton Punch: In Captain America and Red Skull's first meeting, Captain America punches Red Skull hard enough in the face to upset his latex face mask (the right eye is knocked out of position slightly, showing the red beneath), and Red Skull retaliates by punching Captain America's steel shield, denting it in the process.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b2cdd776
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Bottomless Magazines
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b2cdd776
comment
Bottomless Magazines: Averted in the train shootout. Bucky's Thompson submachine gun runs out of ammo, he reloads, runs out, switches to his pistol, and that runs out too. Steve tosses him a loaded pistol so that he can take out the last HYDRA soldier in their car. Played straight when Kruger keeps firing his eight-round pistol for five minutes straight, but averted again when the spy tries to shoot Cap after taking a kid hostage, only for the gun to click empty, and then played straight again. Sixteen times with an eight-round gun would be enough for two magazines were Kruger not driving a car during the time he fires rounds eight and nine. There also isn't nearly enough time between those shots for him to reload even if he weren't driving. The only other explanation is that there was a second gun in the car.
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The Mind Is a Plaything of the Body
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b426973b
comment
The Mind Is a Plaything of the Body: Averted: even after he gets super-serumed, Steve still acts dorky, and as Peggy notes, still has no idea how to talk to women. In fact, this was actually why Erskine picked Steve, and he tells him as much. To some degree inverted: it is implied that Schmidt developed his... unusual features in response to the serum because he was an evil man at heart. Cap, however, is noble, so he undergoes no such transformation.
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Gilded Cage
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Gilded Cage: Red Skull believed that his position as head of the Nazi science division is this. He feels that Hitler is hiding him in the remote base in the Alps because his appearance prevents him from representing the Aryan ideal. Because of this point of view, he swears to mold HYDRA into a force of terror beyond even that of the Third Reich. And he almost succeeds.
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It's Raining Men
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It's Raining Men: Cap is shown jumping into an unnamed Danish island from a C-47, which promptly gets blown up. Falsworth is a former paratrooper.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b5ba2c2b
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b5c562be
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Face Framed in Shadow
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comment
Face Framed in Shadow: Before The Reveal of his true face, the Red Skull is shown having a portrait done while his face is obscured in shadow while light is shining from a window behind him.
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Evil Overlooker
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Evil Overlooker: Some posters have Red Skull's eyes looming over Cap.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b60f7d43
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Badass Bandolier
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b60f7d43
comment
Badass Bandolier: Invoked in one of Captain America's propaganda films. Played straight with Gabe Jones.
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Blood Knight
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b7c53a22
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Blood Knight: The Howling Commandos, particularly Dugan and Falsworth. They spend periods of days to months in a POW camp, get liberated, and sign up to go back to fighting the same people that captured them again.
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Five-Token Band
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Five-Token Band: The Commandos.
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Turbine Blender
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Turbine Blender: A HYDRA soldier meets his doom in this fashion. Unusually, the resulting splash of gore is explicitly shown on screen.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b9922ce5
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Literal Ass-Kicking
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b9922ce5
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Literal Ass-Kicking: Bucky pulls a bully off Steve, punches him, and then sends him packing with a kick to the tuchus.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b99bed67
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No-Nonsense Nemesis
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b99bed67
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No-Nonsense Nemesis: Red Skull doesn't mess around when it comes to facing Cap. When he sees Steve rampaging through the base, he immediately activates the self destruct sequence to kill him and the escaping prisoners all at once. When he captures Cap at his mountain base, there's no elaborate death trap or Cold-Blooded Torture, just a quick No-Holds-Barred Beatdown and a Tesseract-powered pistol to the head. And when Cap arrives on the Valkyrie and reaches the control room, Red Skull sneaks behind him to get off another Tesseract-powered shot.
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Storming the Castle
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_b9f472b
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Storming the Castle: The allied assault on HYDRA HQ in the climax. Cap himself pulls off a one-man attack on another HYDRA base to rescue Bucky, as well as the other members of the 107th, who had been captured and used for slave labor.
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Busby Berkeley Number
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comment
Busby Berkeley Number: "The Star-Spangled Man with a Plan" is this from what we see of the USO show that Steve's a part of. This is most evident during the performance in New York City, where we see dancing showgirls, tanks that shoot out confetti, and a very elaborate (and very patriotic) stage. This plays very well in bond drives and Special Services displays at home. Not so much to war weary veterans on the front lines who've lost many of their comrades in combat.
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Sadistic Choice
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_babc974
comment
Sadistic Choice: Subverted. A HYDRA agent, on the run from Steve, captures a small boy to use as a human shield. When the agent realizes he's out of bullets, he pitches the kid into New York harbor and flees. Steve edges over to the lip of the quay... to see the kid treading water. Played straight in the beginning of the film, where Schmidt persuades the Norwegian monk to direct him to the Tesseract's hiding spot in the church with the strong implication that he will order a tank shell the entire town of Tønsberg if he doesn't comply. Predictably, as soon as he gets the Tesseract, Schmidt orders the town shelled anyway to destroy evidence, and then executes the monk. To be fair, the monk had refused and Schmidt found the Tesseract himself, so he was only doing what he'd promised.
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Cool Bike
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_bb0197af
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Cool Bike: HYDRA troops have retro-futuristic ones, while Cap's souped-up Army Indian is a bit more old school.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_bb0197af
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Cool Boat
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_bb01ad0e
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Cool Boat: The HYDRA assassin's mini-sub is pretty cool. Too bad Steve has to wreck it to get to him.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_bb01ad0e
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_bb040b01
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Cool Guns
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_bb040b01
comment
Cool Guns: Par for the course, Schmidt uses a Luger, which he later upgrades to be Tesseract-powered. The Howling Commandos use Thompsons and M911s. Falsworth and his Sten.
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CoconutEffect
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Coconut Effect: The vibranium shield, when it's hit, thrown, or touched, or moved around slightly for display, makes a sound like a cymbal or gong being swept.
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Reluctant Mad Scientist
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_bbc8a85d
comment
Reluctant Mad Scientist: Dr. Erskine. He only initially developed the Super-Soldier serum because Johann Schmidt forced him to. Dr. Zola would rather build his designs in a environment that did not require chanting "Hail HYDRA". The sequel reveals that he was only "reluctant" to work for Red Skull; he's quite happy to be a Mad Scientist and is ideologically proud to work for HYDRA, especially since it's implied that the Skull's successors treat him with more respect than the Skull did himself.
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Strapped to an Operating Table
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Strapped to an Operating Table: How Cap finds a semi-delirious Bucky in the HYDRA base. The room is apparently part of Zola's lab, so god knows what happened to him there. Watchful viewers will notice that during the confrontation between Steve and the Red Skull on the way out of the base, Bucky is staring in anger/horror not at the Skull but at Zola. When Zola himself is captured, he's put in an interrogation room with a hospital gurney, and is disturbed to see a patch of blood on the floor beneath it. It's possible this was set up just to mess with his head so he'd be more willing to co-operate.note Known in psychology circles as priming. By showing items (classically) related to torture — dark rooms with single glaring lights, a gurney, the blood spatter — the interrogators can introduce the concept of torture without having to say it (or do it).
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Putting on the Reich
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comment
Putting on the Reich: HYDRA was originally a Nazi organization, but then they take OFF the Reich and branch out on their own. This is shown in the double-fisted air salute, which represents the two heads of the Hydra that pop up when one is cut off, and when Red Skull decides to wipe out even the major cities in Germany.
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Improbable Aiming Skills
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_bcd27e37
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Improbable Aiming Skills: Peggy makes some improbable shots with a handgun. Also Steve and his shield, true to comic form. Dugan, Jones and Falsworth gun down several HYDRA troopers without hitting Cap who is standing right in the middle of them. Jones is using a machine gun freehand and Dugan is using a shotgun, weapons that even at short range, aren't made for pin-point accuracy. A brief example when Red Skull is escaping to the Valkyrie — he arms himself with one of HYDRA's disintegrator rifles and starts taking down soldiers with pinpoint aim. But then, like Cap, he is enhanced.
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Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_bce16d24
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Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: Averted; Red Skull has no problem just shooting his enemies. In their second confrontation, he pauses to ask Steve a small question that one can forgive him for asking (what about Steve made Erskine choose him to get the serum), and then he pulls out a sidearm and decides to get it over and done with. Later when Steve infiltrates his aerial bomber, Skull hides and ambushes him with a rifle, and when disarmed of it resorts to his sidearm again.
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Big Applesauce
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Big Applesauce: Skull/Schmidt was originally targeting several cities, but once Steve pissed him off by calling himself "just a kid from Brooklyn", it became personal, and he targeted New York City specifically, bypassing the European cities along the way. When Steve reaches the bomb bay, the camera pans over several bombs labeled with American targets like Boston and Chicago. But the dramatic musical sting doesn't play until it reaches the more prominently displayed bomb destined for New York - Steve's hometown. The dramatic music that just started? That means It's Personal.
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Mission Control
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Mission Control: Howard Stark.
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Dead Sidekick
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Dead Sidekick: Though the term "sidekick" isn't explicitly used, and it isn't made an official designation, the dynamic with Steve is the same. Yes, Bucky Barnes "dies", but they never found the body.
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Blunt
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Blunt "Yes": Dr. Erskine's answer to Steve's first time asking "Is this a test?"
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Break the Fake
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Break the Fake: Schmidt smashes the fake Tesseract before finding the real one.
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Sexy Secretary
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Sexy Secretary: Pvt. Lorraine.
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Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_c0e3994b
comment
Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: Peggy Carter violently punches a soldier in the face early in the film and shoot bullets at Captain America later, all without any reprimand. Justified by the film's time period, as it was considered shameful upon a man to be assaulted by a woman in those days and punishing Peggy for this would be a tacit admission that this happened in the military.
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Outrun the Fireball
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Outrun the Fireball: Cap rides a motorcycle out the window of a barn, as the barn is blowing up.
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Subverted Trope
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A conversation that took place between Dr. Arnim Zola and Col. Chester Phillips after the formers capture. Somewhat subverted, because the person Arnim is boasting about, is his boss, the Red Skull.
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Chaste Hero
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Chaste Hero: Steve Rogers, even after becoming Captain America.
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Big Heroic Run
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Big Heroic Run: The very first thing Steve Rogers does after his procedure is to chase down Heinz Kruger, barefoot, while the spy is driving a stolen taxi.
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A Nazi by Any Other Name
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A Nazi by Any Other Name: Invoked: HYDRA is blatantly Nazi-like in its imagery, as they were originally the Nazi's Deep Science division before they went renegade.
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Cutting the Knot
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comment
Cutting the Knot: The drill sergeant entices the Super Soldier prospectives with a ride back to base in the Jeep with Carter if they can take a flag down from the top of a flagpole (which no one has ever accomplished in 17 years). All the recruits clamber up and slip down the pole. As the sarge tells them to get back to jogging, Steve simply pulls the pins out of the flagpole's base mount, and topples the flagpole, and wins the free ride.
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Pink Mist
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Pink Mist: The goriest part of the movie is on the New York bomb-plane, after a HYDRA soldier falls into the propeller.
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Never Gets Drunk
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Never Gets Drunk: Quite literal in Cap's case, due to his accelerated healing factor and increased metabolism. Unfortunately, this means he's unable to drown his sorrows.
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Car Fu
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Car Fu: First, Kruger attempts to use his stolen cab to run over Peggy Carter, but Steve tackles her out of the way in time. Later, Steve himself rides a motorcycle up to HYDRA's main base and "knocks on the front door" with it, leaping off to blow up the main entrance.
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True Companions
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True Companions: The Howling Commandos.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_c335b9ec
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Irony
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Irony: The HYDRA army, essentially Nazis, are defeated by Captain America who greatly resembles the archetype of the Aryan race: a blond-haired, blue-eyed man of perfect physique. Depending on who you ask, this was the point of the character in the first place. The character created by two Jewish guys.
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Boom, Headshot!
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Boom, Headshot!: Peggy impedes Kruger's getaway by drilling the getaway car driver in the back of the head. From nearly two blocks away with a pistol.
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You Said You Would Let Them Go
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You Said You Would Let Them Go: When raiding the Tønsberg church in Norway, Johann Schmidt/Red Skull forces the Monk to reveal where the Tesseract is actually hidden with the strong implication that he will order a tank to shell the entire town to the ground if he refuses. After finding it, he orders them to shell the town, anyway, before shooting the monk as he protests. Of course, the monk doesn't tell Schmidt where the Tesseract is. Schmidt figures it out by himself (by looking where the monk looked or something). He then does exactly what he said he would do, but it's still For the Evulz.
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Appropriated Appellation
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comment
Appropriated Appellation: "Captain America" was the name given to Rogers when doing the USO tours and he called himself that name during his first big military operation. The soldiers he rescued, who originally derided him, started calling him that without sarcasm.
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Cunning Linguist
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Cunning Linguist: Gabriel Jones. He also brings the Dakka.
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Nice Guy
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Nice Guy: Steve Rogers is made of this trope. It's the entire point of the movie that he makes a great hero because he was always a great person to begin with.
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Nice Hat
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Nice Hat: Being in a military setting, there are peaked hats, maroon berets, and even a blue M1 helmet, but they all pale in comparison to Dum Dum Dugan's bowler◊. It gets even better! Later on when he gets promoted he puts chevrons on his bowler.
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Offscreen Moment of Awesome
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Offscreen Moment of Awesome: The screen cuts out just before Cap's epic leap to safety during his first mission. Remember that scene is in Austria. Steve leads the POWs all the way to Italy through very hostile territory.
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Final Boss Preview
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Final Boss Preview: In the first fight between Steve and the Red Skull, he manages to knock down Steve and dent Steve's steel shield with nothing but his fist.
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From Zero to Hero
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comment
From Zero to Hero: Steve Rogers enters the movie as a scrawny, weak kid from Brooklyn with poor health, but he really wants to be a soldier. Then, a doctor sees something in him and puts him through the Super Soldier program, giving him superhuman fitness. Donning a suit and a shield, he ends up kicking lots of nazi ass and saving even more people.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_c63e7d67
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Invoked
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_c63e7d67
comment
Invoked (Type 1-style) with the Captain America character cooked up for the USO shows in-universe but subverted by the movie itself (it doesn't gush about Captain America's role as the ultimate patriot, instead just letting him be a genuine superhero who fights a terrible evil).
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Shout-Out
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Shout-Out: Collected in their own subpage for this movie.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_c86a6f38
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Cannon Fodder
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_c86a6f38
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Also of note is the fact that neither Rogers nor Bucky have secret identities. This was a standard trope for comics in the 1940s, but it doesn't really make much sense A) to have special forces risk court-martial for doing the jobs they're actually there to do, and B) to keep commanding officers in the dark and run the risk of them unwittingly sending two of your top special forces into the line of fire as Cannon Fodder.
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Everything Sounds Sexier in French
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Everything Sounds Sexier in French: Gabe Jones admits this is why he switched from German to French in college. "Girls much cuter."
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Magic Pants
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comment
Magic Pants: The uniform trousers that Private Steve Rogers is wearing when he begins the transformation process. They still fit, and are undamaged, when he comes out of the process, having gained 135 pounds of bone and muscle in a matter of minutes. It does look like he's wearing Capri pants, now, though, due to him gaining ten inches of height.
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Flagpole Challenge
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_c9a6385a
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Flagpole Challenge: Steve Rogers is accepted from among the group of candidates because he got the flag by knocking down the flagpole by removing the bolt that was holding the flagpole to the base (all of the other recruits just tried climbing the flagpole).
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca3a6dbd
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Informed Ability
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Informed Ability: Played with. The vibranium shield "completely absorbs all vibrations." A review points out that this should make it unable to ricochet off solid objects, but Cap uses it to do just this as one of his signature techniques. On one hand, Peggy launches a few bullets at him right after he picks up the shield for the first time, and the bullets hit the shield and drop at his feet rather than ricochet with equivalent force. That would argue on the side of vibration absorption. Clearly, the shield is a Vibranium/Phlebotinum alloy of sorts. Then on the other hand, something else happens in The Avengers. When Thor slams his hammer down on the shield, there's a Kung-Fu Sonic Boom which would argue vibration reflection. Both of these attacks are directed at the center on the shield.
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Anachronistic Clue
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comment
Anachronistic Clue: Late in the film, Steve awakens in an unfamiliar room and he realizes that something is not right. A nearby radio is playing the broadcast of a baseball game. A young woman in 1940s period clothing enters the room, and he demands answers from her, informing her that it can't be 1945 since the game on the radio was played in 1941 and he knows this because he attended that game. He is likely also clued in because she's wearing a haircut that didn't come into vogue before the mid-2000s (American professional women in the 1940s did not wear their hair loose like that) and a style of bra that didn't exist before the 1990s (a modern push-up bra that is not properly fitted, so the edge of the cups can be clearly seen through her period blouse).. Steve's own T-shirt is decorated with a stylized eagle over a circle. Decorated T-shirts did not truly come into vogue until 1950.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca803bc0
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca870429
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Power Walk
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca870429
comment
Power Walk: An entire liberated POW camp does so, which also serves as a Call-Back to the propaganda film Steve participated in earlier in the movie.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca870429
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca87e3ec
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No Name Given
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca87e3ec
comment
No Name Given: None of the Howling Commandos get named, except for Cap and Bucky. Even the unit doesn't.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca87e3ec
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca87e3ec
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca895242
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Officer and a Gentleman
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca895242
comment
Officer and a Gentleman: 2nd Lt. Montgomery Falsworth.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca895242
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca95473c
type
Series Continuity Error
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca95473c
comment
Series Continuity Error: This movie states that Camp Lehigh is based in New York, while both Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Avengers: Endgame show that the camp is located in Wheaton, New Jersey.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca95473c
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ca95473c
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cad88fd1
type
Designated Love Interest
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cad88fd1
comment
While Peggy did show up in the comics, she was a minor character, little more than a Designated Love Interest. Here, she is more prominent and has become an Adaptational Badass.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cad88fd1
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cb83d23b
type
I Just Want to Be Special
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cb83d23b
comment
I Just Want to Be Special: Schimdt sees himself as the next step in human evolution. That's why he's so pissed at Rogers. He thinks they're the same, but the captain believes he's just a regular guy. Cap picks up on this little weakness and twists the knife:
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cb83d23b
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cb83d23b
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cbd0ac32
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Environmental Symbolism
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cbd0ac32
comment
Environmental Symbolism: The pub where Captain America drinks with the Howling Commandos. Cap still drinks there in his grief, even after it has been bombed..
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cbd0ac32
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cbd0ac32
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cbd5e41a
type
Vehicular Turnabout
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cbd5e41a
comment
Vehicular Turnabout: HYDRA's advanced weapons and technology are turned against them by Allied POWs. The opening seconds of the breakout is a Zerg Rush, but with every soldier taken down, the escapees get access to weaponry and vehicles.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cbd5e41a
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cc427069
type
Hard Work Hardly Works
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cc427069
comment
Hard Work Hardly Works: Due to his multiple health issues, Steve would never have been able to sprint several miles, run down a car on foot, fight a guy, then out-swim a submarine and capture him. These are the first things he does after getting the Super Serum. He still has to pass through military training too harsh for his scrawny body before taking the serum.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cc427069
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ccf46587
type
Redshirt Army
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ccf46587
comment
Red Shirt Army: US Army members that aren't comic book characters don't do too well initially, considering they're up against Tesseract-powered HYDRA technology. But they Take a Level in Badass after Captain America and the Howling Commandos return from their missions with intelligence and stolen weapons.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ccf46587
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd23ee7d
type
Colonel Badass
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd23ee7d
comment
Colonel Badass: Phillips. More like Colonel Jerkass, but hey, he's Tommy Lee Jones. When he goes into combat, he shows that he's very much a badass: he joins the fray in the final fight and coins the response to HYDRA agents' "cut off one head, two more will take its place" evil creed.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd23ee7d
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd23ee7d
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd3ebc8e
type
What Year Is This?
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd3ebc8e
comment
"You're in a recovery room in New York City." Technically, yes, but she leaves out one important thing...
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd3ebc8e
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd3ebc8e
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd427ce1
type
A Man Is Always Eager
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd427ce1
comment
A Man Is Always Eager: Steve is shown as being quite reluctant to rush into anything regarding women. He does try to brush away the aforementioned secretary, but definitely not with the effort that Peggy would have liked to have seen from him. (In his defense, she was played by Natalie Dormer.)
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd427ce1
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd427ce1
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd809603
type
Tank Goodness
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd809603
comment
Tank Goodness: Gabe, Dum Dum and Falsworth (all of whom later join the Howling Commandos) manage to hijack a tank so that they can aid their fellow prisoners in eliminating the HYDRA guards in a prison revolt, even destroying some of the vehicles. Later on, Captain America and the Howling Commandos, while storming and taking down various HYDRA bases indicated on the European map, manage to blow up a tank that's about three stories high. The super-giant tank is based on the real-life (but never completed) Nazi "Maus" and "Ratte" projects.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd809603
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd809603
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd8c578c
type
My Eyes Are Up Here
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd8c578c
comment
My Eyes Are Up Here: Though Peggy doesn't notice it, Bucky's eyes wander when she shows up in that red dress.◊ Steve himself is not above flicking his eyes briefly downward.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd8c578c
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_cd8c578c
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ce104b8e
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Serial Escalation
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ce104b8e
comment
Steve repeatedly mentions getting beat up, and if those other times were for the same reason as in the theater, it sets up that Steve happily goes into situations that're way over his head because it's the right thing to do. He later saves several hundred soldiers by doing just that, except with a HYDRA base.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ce104b8e
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ce104b8e
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ce27dc3f
type
Protagonist Title
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ce27dc3f
comment
Protagonist Title: Captain America: The First Avenger
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ce27dc3f
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ce27dc3f
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ceabe589
type
Incoming Ham
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ceabe589
comment
Incoming Ham: Red Skull barely has a single line in the film that is understated.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ceabe589
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ceabe589
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ceec4df5
type
Roaring Rampage of Revenge
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ceec4df5
comment
Roaring Rampage of Revenge: It never actually comes to it, but Steve claims he won't stop until all of HYDRA is locked up or dead after Bucky falls.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ceec4df5
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ceec4df5
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d01cffbc
type
Badass Longcoat
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d01cffbc
comment
Badass Longcoat: Red Skull really works that Nazi coat, especially after his "normal appearance" mask comes off.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d01cffbc
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d01cffbc
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d0c5fb3
type
Impossibly Cool Weapon
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d0c5fb3
comment
Impossibly Cool Weapon: Captain America's Mighty Shield.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d0c5fb3
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d0c5fb3
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d0f63e83
type
Magnetic Hero
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d0f63e83
comment
Magnetic Hero: Steve saves 400 men from withering away in a work camp and selects five of them for his special crack commando team.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d0f63e83
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d10d5eb5
type
Made of Indestructium
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d10d5eb5
comment
Made of Indestructium: Captain America's shield, naturally.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d10d5eb5
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d10d5eb5
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d139ffaf
type
Genre Throwback
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d139ffaf
comment
Genre Throwback: To '40s adventure films.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d139ffaf
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d240ffa
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Captain Patriotic
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d240ffa
comment
Captain Patriotic: Subverted, as the whole gimmick of Captain America is created by the government as a wartime propaganda device, and Steve has a more complex motivation than patriotism alone.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d240ffa
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d397657d
type
Hoist by His Own Petard
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d397657d
comment
The Skull also had the facial disfigurement, although in the comics it was because of an accident involving his "Death Dust" during his fight with Steve Rogers and John Walker. He was also in a body that had been cloned from Rogers, and thus also benefited from the serum.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d397657d
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d3f8ad06
type
Close on Title
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d3f8ad06
comment
Close on Title: The words, "Paramount Pictures and Marvel Entertainment present a Marvel Studios Production, a film by Joe Johnston: Captain America: The First Avenger" do not appear until during the end credits.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d3f8ad06
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d4bf11d1
type
Dramatic Unmask
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d4bf11d1
comment
The Red Skull spends about half the movie wearing Hugo Weaving's face before he finally dramatically peels it off.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d5c7b415
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Elites Are More Glamorous
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d5c7b415
comment
Elites Are More Glamorous: Mostly averted. Of Cap's team, only Falsworth is from a special unit (British paras), which isn't even mentioned.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d5c7b415
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d63af362
type
Dramatic Ammo Depletion
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d63af362
comment
Played straight when Kruger keeps firing his eight-round pistol for five minutes straight, but averted again when the spy tries to shoot Cap after taking a kid hostage, only for the gun to click empty, and then played straight again. Sixteen times with an eight-round gun would be enough for two magazines were Kruger not driving a car during the time he fires rounds eight and nine. There also isn't nearly enough time between those shots for him to reload even if he weren't driving. The only other explanation is that there was a second gun in the car.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d63af362
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d63af362
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d66cd0e6
type
Training from Hell
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d66cd0e6
comment
At a meta level, things like Red Skull's fighting style and even how he levels his gun ("Unfortunately I am on a tight schedule...") have apparently stayed with Hugo Weaving after the Training from Hell he went through to play Agent Smith.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d66cd0e6
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d7bc08e9
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Superhero Packing Heat
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d7bc08e9
comment
Superhero Packing Heat: This version of Captain America is totally okay with using guns to complement his shield, particularly in the beginning of his career. However, he still seems to do more actual damage with his fists and shield than any bullets.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d7ecbd57
type
You're Insane!
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d7ecbd57
comment
You're Insane!: Invoked twice, both toward Red Skull. The first time is by various Nazi officials (before one of them alerts the others that one of the "enemy targets" that Red Skull plans to vanquish with his weapons is Berlin), when thanking him for proving to them how mad he truly is. The second time is Captain America's response to his Breaking Lecture, noting that Erskine told him that Red Skull was insane.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d848560f
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UnusualEuphemism
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d848560f
comment
Unusual Euphemism: Invoked by Steve with the word "fondue". This kinda gets him in trouble with Peggy.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d848560f
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d848560f
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d88faed2
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Scarf of Asskicking
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d88faed2
comment
Scarf Of Asskicking: Lt. Falsworth wears one.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d88faed2
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d88faed2
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d99d9918
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The Captain
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d99d9918
comment
The Captain: Captain Steve Rogers.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d99d9918
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d99d9918
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d9e9ad7e
type
The Cavalry
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d9e9ad7e
comment
The Cavalry: Later the favor is returned. When Red Skull captures Captain America and is about to execute him, cue Dugan, Falsworth and Jones as they zipline through a window and start gunning down everything in sight.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d9e9ad7e
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d9e9ad7e
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d9ffec82
type
Curb-Stomp Battle
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d9ffec82
comment
Curbstomp Battle: Pre-serum Steve gets curbstomped by bullies on a regular basis, and the Allied army's first major engagement with HYDRA ends up this way as well. Suffice to stay, once Steve becomes Captain America, he starts curbstomping HYDRA.
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_d9ffec82
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_da03b4fb
type
You Can't Go Home Again
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_da03b4fb
comment
You Cant Go Home AGAIN: At the end of the film, Steve Rogers wakes up in the present day, approximitely 65 years after he crashed the Valkerie to prevent the bombing of New York City. Most of the landmarks of New York have changed and almost everyone he knew is dead. He can go back to Brooklyn, but he can never truly return home.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_da03b4fb
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_da03b4fb
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_da3043c5
type
Fake Ultimate Hero
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_da3043c5
comment
Fake Ultimate Hero: The USO attempts to invoke this in regards to Captain America, later subverted when Steve becomes the mask.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_da3043c5
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_da3043c5
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_dae5c997
type
Action Girl
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_dae5c997
comment
This movie's Peggy Carter combines elements of Peggy Carter (Action Girl-ness and the name and relationship to Sharon Carter) with Lt. Cynthia Glass from the Sentinel of Liberty Miniseries (who had the same look and was also Phillips' aide).
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_dae5c997
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_dae5c997
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_daef39ee
type
Elaborate Underground Base
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_daef39ee
comment
Elaborate Underground Base: Technically an "elaborate ground level base hidden behind a bunch of old stores". HYDRA also has a couple of "elaborate bases right out in the open." And the main HYDRA base: It is dug into the Alps mountains and said to be 500 feet underground.
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Aesoptinum
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_db0bcba6
comment
Aesoptinum: The Super Serum. It emphasizes all qualities in the recipient, good and bad, but cannot fundamentally change human nature. Therefore, it is best administered to humble individuals who know what abuse of power is.
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A God Am I
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_dc1761bd
comment
A God Am I: The Red Skull has one hell of a god complex and gets deflated whenever Cap calls him out on it or acts humble despite his own commensurate super power. The fact that he made himself a godlike figure to his followers also suggests that, assuming he was ever aware of it, he sought (somewhat successfully) to hijack the role of "HYDRA god" from Hive.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_dc8ecfda
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Futureshadowing
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_dc8ecfda
comment
Futureshadowing: The Incredible Hulk features the ramifications of the Super-Soldier project. The Hulk is the result of Bruce Banner's attempt to improve on it, while Emil Blonsky is injected with another attempt credited to Dr. Reinstein. Iron Man 2 reveals that Howard Stark was a founder of S.H.I.E.L.D. during WWII, and Cap's shield's prototype/replica is seen in Tony's workshop (and is even used in one of his experiments to prop up a component).
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_dca70c44
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Reasonable Authority Figure
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comment
Reasonable Authority Figure: Character Development turns Col. Phillips into one, starting from the moment Steve surrenders himself to disciplinary action and up to his final scene when he gives Peggy Steve's folder with a heartfelt look of sympathy.
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Just Following Orders
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After Phillips praises Gilmore Hodge as a big, tough, obedient soldier, Erskine condemns him as a bully. Phillips then says Nice Guys Finish Last, and throws a dud grenade to make his point. Steve Rogers not only dives right onto it but cradles it as the rest scatter. Hodge is also the first to scatter.
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Stock Scream
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Stock Scream: A Wilhelm scream is heard during the motorcycle chase scene when Cap is on his way to the Red Skull's last base. Cut short, to keep it from being absolutely ridiculous.
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Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain
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comment
Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Zola is portrayed as this in the film, compared to the amoral mad scientist he is in the comics. With what we know in the sequel, it's implied that this may be an act.
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Decon-Recon Switch
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Decon-Recon Switch: Of the Captain Patriotic trope. Steve only ended up as "Captain America" because Erskine was killed before any more super soldiers could be created, meaning Steve couldn't properly be fielded by the military and ended up as a propagandist selling war bonds. While his Captain America performances charmed the general public, he was very poorly received by actual soldiers, who considered him a joke in a silly costume. However, when Steve learns that his friend Bucky was captured by HYDRA, he leaps into the fray to rescue him and all the other American soldiers captured in HYDRA's facility... while still wearing his Captain America costume and wielding his prop shield. This act of valor successfully earns him his stripes and his own fireteam, and because Steve saved the soldiers as Captain America he gets a battle-ready version of the costume for the battlefield, becoming a real Captain Patriotic.
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Marquee Alter Ego
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Marquee Alter Ego: Steve Rogers spends a lot of time not wearing the half-mask hood — sometimes as himself, and other times with it simply pushed back. At one point he wears a helmet instead. The Red Skull spends about half the movie wearing Hugo Weaving's face before he finally dramatically peels it off.
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_e11b003d
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Translation Convention
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comment
Translation Convention: After the opening scene in the monastery, conversations between non-Americans tend to be in English. Compare the SS officers meeting with Skull to, say, Dernier and Jones' exchange in French done mostly for laughs. It fits with the pulp-adventure genre the movie emulates, where the Nazis spoke German-accented English peppered with "Neins" and "Herrs." The Skull always, even during the most horrible fits of rage, speaks in an eerily formal style, like an old-fashioned university professor, unlike Captain America and Allied commanders. This must have been deliberate on the part of the script writers.
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Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_e154ff08
comment
Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Averted. Phillips cracks Dr. Zola like a quail egg with a few soft words, a Batman Gambit and a steak dinner. Which Phillips ends up eating.
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Know When to Fold 'Em
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_e16cd24e
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Know When to Fold 'Em: Red Skull's reason for setting off the Italian HYDRA facility's Self-Destruct Mechanism. Prison break? No problem. Rampaging Super Soldier? No thanks.
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Technicolor Death
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Technicolor Death: Red Skull attempts to use the Tesseract/Cosmic Cube in his plane after Captain America smashes the device. Predictably, his attempt results in him being disintegrated into a blinding flash of light. Or was he?
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The Cape
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The Cape: One of the very few earnest and well-executed examples in 2000s superhero movies: Steve is an honest and heroic Nice Guy who can't stand bullies, be they thugs or megalomaniacs.
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Last-Name Basis
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Last-Name Basis: Falsworth with Rogers, and possibly the others as well. Could count as Nice to the Waiter since, as their commander and superior officer, he should be addressed as "Sir". Of course, Rogers may be in command, but he's still a soldier, just like the rest of the Howling Commandos, so this makes perfect sense given his personality.
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Made of Explodium
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Made of Explodium: A justified example. A HYDRA tank is blown up by sticking a bomb to the undercarriage. On virtually any land-based vehicle, this is the most vulnerable area.
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The Face
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The Face: Barnes.
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Call-Forward
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Call-Forward: In Arnim Zola's first appearance, we can only see his face through a small magnifying glass. This hints at his eventual appearance in the comics, where he survives into the present day in a cyborg body that's mostly just a giant TV screen with his face on it. The iconic shield is foreshadowed twice. First, when Steve picks up a trashcan lid to defend himself from a bully. Later, when he uses the door of a taxicab to defend himself from a Nazi assassin. (The door reads "Lucky Star Cabs", and it has a big star on it.) Also, the shield's classic design is called forward at the end of the USO stage tour montage, as we see the background behind Steve and the performers with a familiar red-white-red-blue pattern. The first one is then called back to when a kid uses a decorated trashcan lid as his shield in a game.
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Bash Brothers
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Bash Brothers: After Steve's transformation, his Odd Friendship with Bucky becomes this, now that he's taken enough levels in badass to match and surpass his friend's Badass Normal.
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We Need a Distraction
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We Need a Distraction: Steve brazenly storms the front gates of the last HYDRA base, and gets captured just after he breaches the front wall. This means that not only did he break an opening for the rest of his division to get in, but that HYDRA troops are just paying attention to Steve until it's too late.
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Family-Friendly Firearms
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comment
Family-Friendly Firearms: The HYDRA energy weaponry vaporizes its targets cleanly and efficiently. Downplayed in the sense that regular guns and bullets are just as prominent and the movie makes no effort to cut on the gritty scenes.
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Composite Character
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comment
Composite Character: This movie's Peggy Carter combines elements of Peggy Carter (Action Girl-ness and the name and relationship to Sharon Carter) with Lt. Cynthia Glass from the Sentinel of Liberty Miniseries (who had the same look and was also Phillips' aide). Dr. Erskine combines elements of Erskine with the original incarnation of Chester Phillips. Col. Phillips oddly has elements of the mainstream version of Nick Fury. Also, in the comics, Phillps chose Steve Rogers personally for being the Super Soldier test subject, while General Saunders was contrary. In the movie, Phillips fills Saunders role as he opposes the choice until being convinced otherwise. Movie version of Red Skull has elements of Baron von Strucker (leader of HYDRA) and Baron Zemo (responsible for Cap getting frozen). Von Strucker actually shows up again during the credits of Winter Soldier. Composite Group: The film's Howling Commandos team is a hybrid of the Invaders and the comic book version of the Howling Commandos. In the comics, the Howling Commandos were a special forces squad, while the Invaders were costumed superheroes. The movie Howling Commandos are soldiers pulled from various elite groups, have no powers (except for Cap) and wear military gear. note Albeit Stark's improved, semi-customized versions. Presumably, the better to sell action figures with. They include two Invaders (Cap and Bucky), two comics Howling Commandos (Gabe and Dugan), two characters that were allied with the Howling Commandos and one that was allied with the Invaders, who also has become similar to one of the original Howling Commandos. Lt. Falsworth is a composite of Union Jack I/James Montgomery Falsworth (name), Union Jack II/Brian Falsworth (camaraderie with Captain America & Bucky) and Percival Pinkerton (physical appearance, camaraderie with the Howlers).
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Reconstruction
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Reconstruction: Of Golden Age Captain America comics, and do-gooder The Cape superheroes in general. It specifically addresses common quibbles with the character (Patriotic Fervor, Invincible Hero, Unfortunate Implications, etc.) and tries to breathe new life into the concept. It's particularly prominent with the Captain Patriotic trope: The whole image of an invincible American superman bitch-slapping Hitler that the character is usually flanderized into is explained as a propaganda stunt, hated by the "real" Captain America, who has much more depth. Though that moment is also symbolic that Hitler is against everything that Steve, and America, is supposed to stand for (the intention of his creators).
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Expy
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comment
Expy: If it's possible to be one for your own son. A lot of Howard Stark and Steve's interactions foreshadow the relationship Steve will most likely have with Tony later on (even though Steve and Tony spend most of their time bickering in The Avengers, but they start working out the kinks as that movie goes on), although Howard is further from the cynicism end of the scale than Tony, justified in part by the time frame. Howard Stark is also an expy for Howard Hughes. Col. Phillips acts a lot like the Silver Age version of Nick Fury.
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Determinator
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_e567510d
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Determinator: "You just don't give up, do you?" "I can do this all day." Call-Back here, too. The first time is a man who is beating up Steve because he was being a loudmouth movie theater (the guy speaks and Steve replies). The second time is just as the Final Battle between Red Skull and Captain America begins (Skull speaks and Cap replies). Also, when Erskine and Peggy hear Steve screaming in agony while being bathed in Vita-Rays, they demand Stark abort the experiment. Steve tells them not to, that he can take it.
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Star-Crossed Lovers
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Star-Crossed Lovers: Torn apart by time and space, Steve Rogers and Peggy Carter will nevertheless forever be each other's first loves, and despite both eventually falling in love again, will love each other for the rest of their lives.
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Ghostapo
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Ghostapo: While HYDRA is primarily a Stupid Jetpack Hitler organisation, they take a lot of their inspiration from Norse mythology and use ancient Nordic artifacts in their weapons. Except the Marvel cinematic universe seems, so far, to firmly establish Asgardian "magic" as merely sufficiently advanced technology which can be understood with advanced scientific knowledge. There are references to Hitler being interested in magic artifacts as well. Red Skull says it's one of the things they have in common, though their intended use of such objects are different: Hitler for inspiration and Red Skull for direct harnessing.
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Evil Wears Black
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comment
Evil Wears Black: This is the most common color worn by everyone in HYDRA. When Steve wakes up in the future, and catches on to the deception the door opens and black-clad S.H.I.E.L.D. soldiers enter. Steve naturally assumes the worst and throws them through the wall.
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Exact Words
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Exact Words: Howard Stark says in a few years' time, cars won't have wheels. Once the flying car, shortly after gaining air, crashes down into the ground, he then remarks, "I said a few years, didn't I?" "You're in a recovery room in New York City." Technically, yes, but she leaves out one important thing... A group of Nazi officers have come to HYDRA HQ to ask Schmidt just where those superweapons they were promised are. The dynamic of his response does not go unnoticed. An implied instance of this also occurs during the boot camp training. The drill sergeant tells the marchers that if one of them manages to get the flag from the flagpole, they'd get a free ride back to base from the midway point. However, he never actually says how they are supposed to get the flag, resulting in Rogers getting a free ride back to base after getting the flag... by unscrewing the bolts of the flagpole and easily getting the flag after the flagpole collapses to the ground.
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Watch the Paint Job
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Watch the Paint Job: Red Skull gives Zola the keys to his Cool Car to escape the POW-staffed factory, warning him not to scratch it. Later, when Phillips jacks the car to catch up to Skull's flying wing, he winces when the propellers do a number on the paint. Clearly, he loves that car.
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Period Piece
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Period Piece: Unlike the rest of the MCU, it is set during the second World War.
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Ham-to-Ham Combat
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Ham-to-Ham Combat: The first scene between Dr. Zola and Schmidt.
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Sealed Good in a Can
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Sealed Good in a Can: The movie opens with the discovery of the craft that Captain America ditched with himself inside, in order to save New York.
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Big Damn Heroes
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Big Damn Heroes: Captain America earns his military credits this way; single-handedly rescuing 400 POWs (at least until they get some weapons and help him fight the HYDRA troops). Peggy gets her chance to save Cap's bacon when she shoots down a flamethrower-wielding enemy soldier who has a shield-less Cap on the ropes right after the above-mentioned scene.
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Defied Trope
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec02c97e
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This trope is outright defied by Dr. Erskine, himself an exiled German, who states that many people forget that the first country the Nazis conquered was Germany.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec02c97e
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec02c97e
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec0bf4a1
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Take Over the World
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec0bf4a1
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Take Over the World: The Red Skull makes no secret of his goal. As Zola points out, it doesn't matter if he's delusional if he has the power to do so.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec0bf4a1
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec0bf4a1
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec0ce986
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Spotting the Thread
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec0ce986
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Spotting the Thread: Rogers knows something's wrong about the baseball game on the radio because "It's from May 1941. I know because I was there."
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec0ce986
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec0ce986
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ec0ce986
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ee7a60e9
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One Steve Limit
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ee7a60e9
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One Steve Limit: Averted and subverted. James Buchanan "Bucky" Barnes, James "Jim" Morita and James Montgomery "Monty" Falsworth are members of the same unit, in addition to Jacques Dernier—Jacques being the French equivalent. None of them go by James. Also played straight, as there is in fact only one Steve: Steve Rogers.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ee7a60e9
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_ee7a60e9
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_eedee4d
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The Starscream
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_eedee4d
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The Starscream: The Red Skull fully intends to usurp Hitler, and has his minions chanting "Hail HYDRA". Eventually he's revealed to have Berlin as one of his targets for annihilation, and kills the Nazi officers who come to look through his projects.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_eedee4d
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_eedee4d
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_efbfe117
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Complaining About Rescues They Don't Like
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_efbfe117
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Complaining About Rescues They Don't Like: When Cap keeps Peggy from getting run over. He apologizes.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_efbfe117
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_efbfe117
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_eff83d77
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Mundane Utility
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_eff83d77
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Mundane Utility: The Cosmic Cube has the ability to warp the very fabric of reality itself. The best the Red Skull can come up with is to use it as a battery. Seeing as how it is said to "burn" people that try to use it directly, though, turning such an awesome power into a reliable battery in the 1940s is a feat in itself.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_eff83d77
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_eff83d77
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_f10d3363
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Distracted by the Sexy
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_f10d3363
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Distracted by the Sexy: After Steve's conversion the Hospital Hottie has to get him a new shirt, but simply stares at his chest without handing it over. Eventually Peggy (who'd been doing the same thing) grabs the shirt off her and hands it to Steve.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_f10d3363
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_f10d3363
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_f142296a
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 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_f142296a
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"Get out of Jail Free" Card: Steve disobeys orders to rescue the allied POWs, and even turns himself in for discipline after her returns. Yet he saved 400 people, so he's instead given the Congressional Medal of Honor.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_f142296a
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Captain America: The First Avenger / int_f142296a
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_f142aaf5
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Diner Brawl
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_f142aaf5
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Diner Brawl: A pre-serum Steve points out a diner in which he was beaten up.
 Captain America: The First Avenger / int_f142aaf5