In the leaked Age of Ultron footage, we see Tony and Steve have a slight word-fight. In this, they talk about Scarlet Witch's visions, where the conversation goes:

Tony: I don’t trust a guy without a dark side. Call me old-fashioned.
Steve: Well, let’s just say you haven’t seen it yet.

What is Steve referring to here? Is there any reference to this in comics & other canon sources?

  • 5
    Based on the two lines spoken, Steve is flat out telling Tony that he not only has a dark side, but that he has yet to show it to anyone. Basically, it's Steve's variant of, "You don't want to make me angry"
    – Robert
    Dec 16 '14 at 16:45
  • 12
    His dark side surfaces when he thinks about how he isn't "Lt. Colonel America" after all these years....
    – Oldcat
    Dec 16 '14 at 17:58
  • 1
    It's most probably because they are building a basis for Cap showing his 'unworthiness' to wield Mjolnir, making it a plot point and twist where at the end he ends up being the one to wield the Hammer and ultimately prove his worthiness! Also, I didn't DV, but I'm assuming it's because you are asking about something that hasn't come out yet?
    – Möoz
    Dec 17 '14 at 0:44
  • 2
    The line makes me immediately think of "Civil War".
    – user31178
    Apr 23 '15 at 20:29
  • 1
    [Mild Spoilers and Occasional Fantasy Violence] Apr 28 '15 at 12:46

As far as I know, we haven't seen an "evil" side of Captain America, but that doesn't mean he doesn't have a "dark" side.

enter image description here

The best example from the MCU is in The Avengers, when he and Tony Stark are butting heads. Tony is goading him, but Steve gives as good as he gets: "Big man in a suit of armor. Take that away, what are you?" The implication is "You're nothing," which is a pretty intense, even "dark" comment to make to a fellow team member.

And when push comes to shove, it's the upstanding Steve who first challenges him to a fight, not the arrogant Tony:

[Stark turns to leave but Steve stops him]

Steve Rogers: You're not going alone!

Tony Stark: You gonna stop me?

Steve Rogers: Put on the suit, let's find out.

Tony Stark: I'm not afraid to hit an old man.

Steve Rogers: Put on the suit.

If Hawkeye hadn't interrupted, Steve was literally prepared to beat down an unpowered non-combatant on his own side, simply because he was being annoying and arrogant.

Now, it's pretty safe to say that this behavior was influenced by the "angrification" of Loki's staff, but given that Cap is still butting heads with Tony in the scene you mentioned from Age of Ultron, it's clear that that impulse is truly within him. No doubt it stems from his "I don't like bullies" doctrine.

But if that confrontation had played out, and Cap had attacked his old friend's son just for being disrespectful, I think that would count as a touch of "darkness" in his character.

  • 4
    in this particular instance, had he attacked Tony, I think that would've been attributed more to the Scepter's effects rather than his innate darkness..
    – Stark07
    Dec 17 '14 at 5:19
  • 1
    I mentioned that in the answer, but as far as we've seen the Scepter's passive influence (as opposed to the direct mind-control) taps into pre-existing resentments and impulses. Banner resents SHIELD for "capturing" him, Fury gets irritated with the team for being naive, etc. They're all pre-existing feelings, just inflamed by the Scepter. Hence, we can assume that Cap secretly does want to stop/punish the arrogant and condescending people of the world, he just normally controls himself.
    – Nerrolken
    Dec 18 '14 at 17:08
  • 6
    "If Hawkeye hadn't interrupted, Steve was literally prepared to beat down an unpowered non-combatant on his own side, simply because he was being annoying and arrogant." - in fairness, Steve is specifically making sure that the more vulnerable human is covered head to toe in a solid metal suit filled with weapons before fighting him. Jan 13 '15 at 13:37
  • 3
    @DrRDizzle True, and that's an important point. But I think, given the context, when Cap insisted that Tony put on the suit it was less about protecting the weaker man and more about "I can take anything you can throw at me, and still beat you down."
    – Nerrolken
    Jan 22 '15 at 20:01
  • 1
    @DrRDizzle Fury was referring to the Greatest Generation, Cap's whole age bracket, not anything that Cap or the Howling Commandos necessarily did themselves. He was talking about nukes, and the Cold War, and Japanese internment camps, etc. I don't know of any ethically questionable things Cap himself did during the war.
    – Nerrolken
    Jan 23 '15 at 23:23

As far as I know and researched, no.
It doesn't mean the producers can't give us something new, but I didn't find any reference to Captain America's evilness. I'd probably presume he isn't talking about a evil side, just a less "polite" side.
Also, don't forget the Scarlet Witch is a very powerful mutant and we may be presented with something new.

  • 1
    "Also, don't forget the Scarlet Witch is a very powerful mutant" Not necessarily.
    – phantom42
    Dec 16 '14 at 17:43
  • 7
    A 'Dark Side' doesn't mean you are evil. It just means that there's a part of you that you don't particularly like. Maybe Cap knows that if he sees an old lady crossing the street, he may not want to help her. Like everything else in psychology, it's relative and differs from person to person.
    – Jeff
    Dec 16 '14 at 17:49
  • @phantom42 Yes, I know she's not Magneto's daughter, but I thought calling her a mutant would be better as she was always known as the daughter of Magneto. Anyway, thanks for your comment! Dec 16 '14 at 19:51
  • @MateusGuimarães - not really looking for "evilness" here... More like what Jeff mentioned... I'm looking for a chink in his armour so to speak...
    – Stark07
    Dec 17 '14 at 5:21

I have a strong feeling that this is in reference to the upcoming civil war film.

In the equivalent comic story line:

Captain America defects from shield to resist the registration of super powered heros. In the comic Iron Man takes a dark rite to achieve his goals, but perhaps this is reversed for the movie?


As far as the movies go, I think the dark part of him is that he's a soldier at the core and the war is never over for him.


We forget that a 'dark side' doesn't necessarily mean evil. It can also mean the obverse side of a trait which can also be positive.

Tony's genius, for example, is that he's intuitive and can make large leaps forward to conclusions. Sometimes, that works for him -- take, for example, his being able to intuit where Loki will strike in the Avengers. However, the dark side of that talent strikes when he fails to think past that conclusion -- Ultron being a shining example there.

Cap stands for what he believes is right. He's an incredibly tenacious person; any lesser person faced with what he's been through would have been huddled in a corner gibbering, not going out and trying to protect people.

That said, the flip side of tenacious is stubbornness, and idealism without realism is incredibly dangerous. Also, while Cap is loyal to those he cares about, he is loyal first and foremost to what he believes is right and, as he's said in the comics, the American Dream -- i.e., the ideals of what America is supposed to stand for, or rather, what immigrants like his parents dreamed America was - freedom, opportunity, equality.

Which means that loyalty to people -- even those closest to him -- comes second after loyalty to principles and to what he perceives as his duty.

He crashes a plane to save millions rather than ditch the plane and go back for that life with Peggy, for example.

And no matter what we see in the trailer re: Bucky, he also would and could have killed Bucky if that was the only way he could have brought those helicarriers down. Granted, he tried his very best not to do so and it would have killed him to do it, but there's no doubt he WOULD have, if that was the one and only way he could have saved millions of people. Only AFTER the helicarriers are safely taken care of does he stop fighting and focus on trying to break Bucky's brainwashing. And this is the guy who would have (some would argue, did) die to save Steve on the train AND the guy he loves like a brother.

So it's small wonder he'll fight Tony if he must. Also, that view is not something Tony would understand. Tony's a man with few friends and once he's given his loyalty, it's to people first, principles flexible.

Also, Cap absolutely does not surrender and he's worse at compromising.

The problem with that is that it inevitably leads to Pyrrhic victories and endings like Thermopylae. Sometimes, no ideal is worth fighting to the last man. Sometimes, it's better to compromise, to have balance.

And Cap can't always do that. Although his goal is to protect people, his idealism and stubbornness means he can lose sight of that and put principles above people.

In the comic Civil War, in fact, that's exactly what happens -- Cap's winning, but realizes, far too late, that innocent people are getting hurt because he's done exactly that -- stuck by his principles without counting the cost to others. It's why he stands down, but by then, it's too late.

And putting principles above people can be fatally easy for him because he has nothing to lose, especially in the MCU. No home, no significant other, nothing BUT those principles.

IMO, that's why, to me, lawful good people (to use the old D&D term) can be far, far more terrifying than any form of evil. Good at any cost can be even more devastating than evil.


Another theory, and again, this is all me, is that we might be getting a hint at a Skrulls story line (Secret invasion anyone?)

Maybe the Cap that says that is in-fact a Skrull agent already infiltrated?

  • Wow... that I had not considered!
    – Stark07
    Jan 21 '15 at 12:00
  • Considering that the reason the aliens in Avengers Assemble were Chitauri rather than Skrull due to complex legal issues between Marvel Stuios and 20th Century Fox, if they ever were to do Secret Invasion (which I would consider unlikely), they almost certainly wouldn't use Skrull. Jan 23 '15 at 8:26

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.