My first try, my first catch: I got SEBASTIAN STAN aka the Winter Soldier of CAPTAIN AMERICA “Civil War” during the shooting in Berlin.
(and I saw Chadwick Boseman aka Black Panther sitting in his car, I waved happily and greeted back - he was slightly surprised someone recognized him, hehe)
SW: Must have freaked you out, coming home after the whole defrosting thing. SR: Takes some getting used to. It’s good to meet you, Sam. SW: It’s your bed, right? SR: What’s that? SW: Your bed: it’s too soft. When I was over there, I’d sleep on the ground and use rocks for pillows like a caveman. Now, I’m home, lying on my bed and it’s like- SR: Lying on a marshmallow. I think I’m gonna sink right to the floor. How long? SW: Two tours.
I just want to take a look at this scene and just how deft Sam is at reading this man. Steve spent enough time as a soldier to enjoy the cameraderie and banter with the Commandos, back in the day. They poked fun at him, and vice versa, with snark abounding. And this opening scene of the film shows that Steve has been missing having the banter. It’s not the same with the Avengers (as Tony said “we’re not soldiers”), but he sees and pokes at this guy.
And hey, a fellow-soldier. That’s good right? But the second Sam brings up the ice, he - and we - see the way Steve immediately pulls back and prepares to leave. A lot of people who come back from wars with post-traumatic stress tend to keep people at arm’s length about it. A lot of people don’t want to face it or even admit there’s a problem.
Steve always has been someone who doesn’t want to be a burden on people. My theory is that because he was so sickly and physically frail in his youth, he always felt guilty because people had to take care of him: his mother, Bucky, Bucky’s parents. He never wants to bother people when he’s feeling bad about stuff. He always, always tries to push on through it like it’s nothing. He hides behind a wall of dry, bitter sarcasm and broken smiles.
Most people don’t look beyond it, because hey! Captain America! He won’t have any of those problems regular guys have. But Sam knows these kind of people. Hell, Sam is one of these kinds of people, who came back from a warzone with ‘baggage’ as he calls it. And he clearly realises that Steve is one of his kind of people, and will isolate himself.
So instead of watching Steve bolt, he offers him an alternative reason for being freaked out: a bed. A simple thing that every soldier returning from a war zone would have to get used to again. A simple opening. Also allowing him to say “this was my experience. Let me open up to you”.
And in doing so, in showing some of his own memories and problems, Sam has done more for Steve than anyone else could have done. He’s given him a point of contact who has has similar experiences, a touchstone, someone who might know a little of what he’s going through, not as Captain America, but as Steve Rogers, US soldier. Also, I like the touch that he lets the sentence hang, giving Steve the opening to finish it, to continue their interaction.
He doesn’t push Steve to spill his guts. He doesn’t demand to know what’s bothering him. He lets Steve take charge in the conversation, ask the questions, learn more. This is so important, because he knows Steve needs someone to talk to, but he also knows this isn’t a conversation you can force someone to be a part of, especially not someone like Steve who is more likely to walk away than admit anything. When Sam does ask questions, they’re general ones, about the time, not about the soldiering or the war.
And when Steve leaves for real, he’s smiling and teasing. He’s not “nice to meet you bye” this time. This means that when Sam basically offers him the opportunity to talk - on his terms - it comes easily. He makes it sound like it’ll be good for himself (looking awesome in front of the girl at the front desk), and it would be Steve doing him a favour.
And the fact that Steve doesn’t immediately say no (I’ll keep it in mind) means that Sam has done what he intended to do: he offered Steve a line, if he ever needs it, but did it in a way that came with no strings attached and no pressure. Rather than saying “come to the VA, I can help you”, he framed it in a way that means Steve knows it’s an option, but isn’t obliged to do anything.
One of the most important parts about needing help is being ready and willing to ask for help. Sam just gave Steve a place where he can go for help if he needs it without making it sound condescending, and without Steve needing to feel guilty about it, and I love that.
Imagine: Using old slang phrases from the forties around Steve to make him feel more comfortable, and to confuse Tony as well because he doesn't “understand that reference.” [x]
Y/N: Hey, Steve. Steve: Oh, hey, Y/N. Is our movie marathon still on, for later? Y/N: Hell yeah! It’s going to be the cat’s meow!  Steve: *looks surprised* Really? *smiles* The cat’s meow? Y/N: Sure, dreamboat.  Steve: Where’d you learn all this new langugage? Y/N: None of your business, meatball.  *smirks* Tony: Cat’s meow? Dreamboat? Meatball? What the hell are you guys talking about? Y/N: Why don’t we take a powder , Steve? Steve: Sure. Tony: What? Where are you going? What just happened?
I know a lot of people say he’s nothing without the super serum but it never would have worked if he wasn’t such a good man.
That’s what I think he truly brings to the Avengers. He’s not the strongest. He’s not the most powerful. He doesn’t have the most gadgets, the funniest lines and it’s a known fact that he’s a terrible liar. But he’s the one with the biggest heart and at the end of the day, it’s his goodness that is his strongest asset (the shield doesn’t hurt though).