Spoilers for Avengers: Endgame and the MCU reside below.
Chris Evans finished his run as Steve Rogers/Captain America in Avengers: Endgame. The finality of the move resonated with Cap handing the shield to Anthony Mackie’s Sam Rogers/Falcon, and while we won’t talk about how Bucky Barnes may have deserved that honor first, it’s clear that the torch has been passed. In addition, the movie took several moments to say goodbye to a real Marvel institution, however crude it might seem, with the “America’s Ass” jokes. Cap’s rear end has been a full-blown fan obsession ever since his Avengers punching-bag scene (don’t tell me that Joss Whedon didn’t realize what was going on with the lighting there), which launched countless memes, and let’s just say that followup shots throughout the MCU haven’t been subtle.
That’s why that super-meta reference landed in Endgame, and ComicBook.com connected some dots on how Evans (in October 2018) vaguely referenced the jokes, which were apparently done as reshoots. As a result, Evans’ last filmed utterance as Steve Rogers involved his 2023 incarnation gazing down at 2012 Captain America on the ground and admitting, “That is America’s ass.” And just like Steve, audiences could do this all day. Here’s what Evans said during last year’s ACE Comic Con:
“[It was] something really stupid, it was something really dumb. Which I also probably can’t give away … Well, you know, it was reshoots, so you’re doing these little picks and pops, and it’s just little things that they need. It might have been a line to Paul Rudd. He wasn’t there, but it was a stupid line. The line wasn’t memorable to me [laughs]. The day was more memorable than the line.”
Prior to that line, Tony Stark and Ant-Man travel with Cap back to 2012, and Stark comments upon how Cap’s old costume “did nothing for your ass.” Rogers wasn’t amused and stated, “No one asked you to look, Tony.” Of course, the tiny Ant-Man thought differently: “I think you look great, Cap. As far as I’m concerned, that’s America’s ass.” Who says that reshoots mean bad news?
Co-writer Stephen McFeely recently told told the Los Angeles Times that Evans wasn’t a fan of his 2012 Avengers costume, “so in the rearview, it’s a little way to wink at how that was then, and this is now.” He added, “[B]y the time we got to the fight scene where he defeated himself, his butt is on the ground, and he was just sitting there for a callback.” Well, that’s quite an MCU exit.