I'm watching all the Marvel films through for the first time, and I've also never read the comics. I'm currently watching Captain America: The Winter Soldier and I'm not really sure I understand the whole "Dr Zola being alive in a computer" thing.
So Natasha, the Captain and Zola discuss how the US/SHIELD recruited Nazi and HYDRA scientists, and that Zola was dying so SHIELD somehow stored his brain in a computer so that he can still work for SHIELD etc.
But what I don't really understand is:
- After several decades, why is he still stored in ~70's era computer equipment? If he's that valuable to SHIELD, why didn't he ever get "upgraded"?
- Also, why is he still being kept in an abandoned military camp that SHIELD used to have an office in? Again, if he's valuable enough to transfer his brain to a computer, why would they then leave him gathering dust in a very deep basement?
- He's obviously still in communication with the elements of HYDRA within SHIELD, because he seems to be the mastermind behind the algorithm and the new helicarriers, and he knew that Nick Fury had been assassinated. So in that case, how is it that no one at SHIELD is really aware that Zola is "alive"? SHIELD were the ones to transfer his brain to the computer system, so why did they seem to forget about him? Zola alludes to having Howard Stark be killed in the past, but I'm sure Howard Stark wasn't the only person who knew of Zola being transferred to a computer.
- Zola is obviously determined to stay in existence, and yet at the same time also committed suicide by having SHIELD launch the missiles at the basement containing himself, Captain, and Natasha. Why would he do that to himself?
I'm sure this is probably more explained in the comics, but I've not read them.