The New Trailer For “Captain America: Civil War” Is Even More Good Guys Fighting

It’s a bad year to be a superhero who’s friends with other superheroes, apparently.

The second full trailer for Captain America: Civil War dropped this afternoon, and, while there’s a cool kicker at the end (see above), the core of the trailer delivers exactly what you might expect: Captain America and Iron Man talking tough and doing a whole lot of punching each other.


Characters who are ostensibly on the same team fighting each other is kind of a theme in 2016–maybe it’s because of the presidential primary?–but the look at it we get in the new trailer lays out more than just the fact that your first- and fourth-favorite Marvel movie characters are fighting, too. Specifically, it shows that, while Civil War takes place in the expanded universe that Marvel’s been busy fleshing out for the past half-decade, it’s also specifically a sequel to Captain America: The Winter Soldier. That’s something that can get lost in a film with so many characters, most of whom could (or did) helm their own Marvel movie, but the trailer reveals that much of the impetus for the titular civil war is as a direct response to the climax of Winter Soldier.

That bodes well for Civil War, which is the first in the “Phase Three” era of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Up until now, heroes have had cameos in each other’s films–The Falcon popped up in Ant-Man, Black Widow played a big part in Winter Soldier, and so on–but outside of the Avengers films, each movie has been led by the guy (so far, it’s always been a guy) whose name is in the title. Civil War, on the other hand, stars almost every character who appeared in the last Avengers movie (as well as Ant-Man and franchise newcomer Black Panther)–so one of the things to watch is how much it actually feels like a new Captain America installment. The two trailers combined provide some guidance–it’s about the friendship between Cap and Bucky that was established in the franchise’s first feature, and it’s about the aftermath of the destruction that occurred in the second one. If Iron Man, the Black Panther, Ant-Man, and–in the trailer’s coolest reveal–Spider-Man can all fit into that story organically, Marvel’s “Phase Three” should manage to continue being about consistent storytelling, rather than overstuffed plots and too many familiar faces.

We’ll find out how well all of that plays out on May 6, but for the time being, it looks like they’ve got a handle on things.

About the author

Dan Solomon lives in Austin with his wife and his dog. He's written about music for MTV and Spin, sports for Sports Illustrated, and pop culture for Vulture and the AV Club.