TFATWS is all about the shield, for obvious reasons, but have they actually stopped and thought about WHERE that shield came from? I don’t mean Captain America’s shield, I mean THAT SPECIFIC Captain America shield.
Our timeline’s shield gets smashed by Thanos in 2023. Old!Steve shows up, presumably the long way round, with a shield he procured somewhere in their past. Again, while the MCU itself might be getting a handle on the multiverse, Endgame itself has ZERO consistency and zero awareness of the difference between time travel and dimensional travel.
Nebula2009 gets killed by Nebula2023 and nothing happens. Gamora2009 now lives in 2023, therefore making it impossible for Thanos2018 to kill her on Vormir and obtain the soul stone. None of the Avengers remember fighting themselves in 2012, even if that branch of the timeline can’t be “pruned” by returning the stones because Loki2012 disappeared with that timeline’s Tesseract.
If changing the past doesn’t change the future it either a) always happened that way and you just didn’t know it or b) you’re in that moment creating a different timeline.
Back to the shield. While Endgame is CRYSTAL CLEAR that Steve went back to his own past, in his own timeline, and lived his remaining life through linearly from the 40s to 2023 when he shows up after Tony’s funeral, he must have passed through many alternate timelines in other to return all the stones and Thor’s hammer. We can even argue that he quote unquote fixed all of those timelines by returning the stones appropriately, except he can’t fix 2012 because Loki and thinking about him handing the Red fucking Skull the soul stone so his timeline’s Natasha can die for it makes me want to rip my heart out.
In all other timelines, the shield is with another Steve or in the ice with another Steve. So where does the shield Old!Steve gives Sam in Endgame actually come from? Which Steve gave it up? Did Old!Steve just surf dimensions until he found one where he wasn’t Captain America, or he died, and stayed (like an asshole)? I think it’s pretty clear that if TFATWS retcons Steve as having dimension hopped rather than time hopped, well, the shield then obviously doesn’t belong in this timeline.
That’s not what Madame Hydra means when she tells Walker that the shield doesn’t belong to the government at all, I assume, but. This is a whole lot of nerdery to say that I find it a glaring plot hole that no one questions wtf Old!Steve was even doing or how because that shield is not supposed to exist.
He took it off the frozen!Steve he found and killed in the timeline he created
Ignoring the time travel et al comments- that is a longer discussion….
The design is different; it could be from a timeline in which Sam was Captain America which is why when Sam says it feels like it belongs to someone else Steve says No.
Also, didn’t the shield that was all know still have the bullet marks from when Peggy shot at it in TFA? I’m sure it did. Like Steve never asked them to buff those out.
Also what happened to the really cool blue Stealth suit shield? Where did that one go?