Despite having been greenlit and originally released to their eponymous streaming platform in its uncensored form, Disney has stealthily censored at least two instances of violence from an episode of Marvel’s The Falcon and The Winter Soldier.
Respectively discovered by Reddit users /u/MooninMoulin and /u/Arkham4321 on the /r/MarvelStudios subreddit, the pair of censorious edits were made to events depicted during Sam and Bucky’s excursion to Madripoor in the series’ third episode, Power Broker.
The first can be seen during Sam, Bucky, and Zemo’s interrogation of Doctor Wilfred Nagel (Olli Haaskivi), the scientist who successfully recreated the Super Soldier Serum for Hydra, when the villain amongst the trio shoots and kills the man in order to prevent him from falling into the hands of a fast-approaching legion of bounty hunters.
In the original release of this scene, when shot by Zemo, Nagel can be seen spitting up blood as he falls backwards:
Before eventually falling, eyes open and chest adorned with blood splatter, dead on the ground behind him:
However, in the version of the episode currently available on Disney Plus, not only does Nagel fall back without any visible bloodshed:
But he also now ends up on the floor completely, his body devoid of wounds and his eyes shut, thus conveying the possibility he may not have been shot dead, but rather simply knocked over and rendered unconscious:
The second edit comes just moments later when, just after the three men are joined by Sharon Carter and they attempt to flee capture, Bucky puts an end to one of their pursuers by meeting her bullets with a thrown metal pole.
Originally, Bucky’s projectile impaled the woman, visibly nailing the bounty hunter to the shipping container standing immediately behind her:
In Disney Plus’ updated version, the rod simply bounces off of her, with the scene cutting noticeably just short of the single frame confirming her being pinned to the shipping container:
Interestingly, just a few weeks ahead of its move from Netflix to Disney Plus, Luke Cage creator Cheo Hodari Coker voiced his fears concerning the series’ potential censorship under its new ownership.
“[Disney is] going to do what they do. It’s theirs,” admitted Coker on February 21st. ”I just hope they don’t sit on it for years to allow for an easier reboot, or re-air it with a different mix, or the N-Word muted.”
As of writing, Disney has not provided any public explanation for these edits. Further, there have been no announced plans to release the series on home video in any form.
What do you make of Disney’s stealth editing of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier? Let us know your thoughts on social media or in the comments down below!