Summary

  • Red Guardian’s long-standing claim about fighting Captain America could finally become true in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
  • Red Guardian will appear as a survivor in the Marvel Zombies animated series, giving him the opportunity for a showdown with Captain America’s zombified corpse.
  • Marvel Zombies may provide other twisted showdowns, including the Hulk versus a zombie Abomination and Ms. Marvel versus a zombie Captain Marvel.


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An Avenger replacement can finally pay off a Captain America lie 4 years after it was told in the MCU. Set to release in 2024, Marvel Zombies will be a limited 4-episode animated series featuring various Marvel heroes and villains as various survivors as well as the members of the undead. To that end, this may provide a rare opportunity for Red Guardian ahead of his next live-action appearance in 2025’s Thunderbolts.

Set to effectively replace the Avengers, Marvel’s Thunderbolts will debut a new team of more grounded and morally questionable heroes presumably under the control of the CIA and US Government. Featuring notable characters such as Bucky Barnes’ Winter Soldier, Yelena Belova’s Black Widow, and more, Alexei Shostakov’s Red Guardian is confirmed to be a member as well. However, Red Guardian is also confirmed to be one of Marvel Zombies’ survivors. As such, it’s possible that one of Shostakov’s biggest lies from his past can finally become true in the MCU timeline (or at least an alternate version of it).

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Red Guardian Has Always Claimed He Fought Captain America (But It’s A Lie)

The MCU Timeline Doesn’t Add Up

Captain America Red Guardian which super soldier is stronger

As seen in 2020’s Black Widow, Red Guardian continually claims that he once fought and beat Steve Rogers’ Captain America. Existing as the Soviet Union’s counterpart to the First Avenger, Alexei sees himself as a rival and even a colleague to Rogers, though it’s highly unlikely the two ever met, let alone fought each other in the MCU. With Rogers having been frozen from 1945 to 2011, there was no period of time in which Captain America and Red Guardian could have interacted seeing as how Shostakov was only broken out of prison in 2016.

Nevertheless, Red Guardian is committed to his tall tales to the point where it seems as though he’s come to believe his own false narrative as actual reality. Regardless of the obvious fiction that is a past Captain America/Red Guardian showdown, Shostakov clearly believes it to be fact. While it’s possible that Red Guardian may have fought a time-displaced Captain America during his mission to return all the Infinity Stones as seen in Avengers: Endgame, it’s highly unlikely. However, Red Guardian may finally get his wish in the near future.

Marvel Zombies Can Finally Give Red Guardian What He’s Always Wanted

In The Most Horrifying Way Possible

While Red Guardian has been confirmed as one of Marvel Zombies‘ survivors, Steve Rogers will be making an appearance as one of the show’s zombies. However, it’s worth noting that promotional art only depicts Rogers’ top half as his body was severed in two by his own shield thanks to Bucky Barnes as seen in the Marvel Zombies episode of Marvel’s What If…? season 1. All the same, this does mean that both Red Guardian will be making an appearance in the same projects as Captain America (what’s left of him).

While it would certainly be happening in a far darker and more disturbing way, Marvel Zombies could finally provide the Captain America showdown Red Guardian has always wanted. Likewise, the fact that Captain America won’t be whole likely won’t matter to Shostakov. He’d likely take a win as a major victory regardless of the advantage. While horrifying and quite unorthodox, it would finally turn Red Guardian’s lies into a reality (at least for this particular timeline).

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Other Twisted Showdowns Marvel Zombies Can Provide

It Could Go Beyond Cap and Guardian

Hulk roaring at Abomination in The Incredible Hulk.

Marvel Zombies could also feature more showdowns beyond Rogers vs. Shostakov. Due to his unknown fate in the What If…? zombie episode, the Hulk could find himself finally getting the rematch he and Abomination were denied in She-Hulk as Abomination is confirmed to be one of the undead. Additionally, Kamala Khan’s Ms. Marvel will be a key survivor who will likely have to fight and kill her idol Captain Marvel who will also be a zombie in the upcoming Marvel Zombies show, and the same goes for Kate Bishop potentially having to fight Zombie Clint Barton or Yelena Belova having to fight an undead Black Widow.

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