By now, you may have figured out that Captain America is very much in Spider-Man: Homecoming. His appearance is a bit unconventional, though, since he only appears in a variety of instructional videos in the film. One video in particular, the Cap Fitness Challenge video, brings Homecoming into the MCU even further by weaving it seamlessly with the ongoing narratives of the rest of the MCU. It also gives up a much lighter look at Captain America and how his persona has been appropriated by the mainstream culture.
The Cap Fitness Challenge video looks like an absolute delight to watch. For Moviepilot, Homecoming director Jon Watts discussed how he arrived at the decision to include Captain America after Sony and Marvel reached an agreement to let Spider-Man appear in Marvel film.
"As soon as that door opened up, I just couldn’t stop brainstorming more and more things. Then I made a very – I think you see it for like a split second in the movie, but we made a whole detailed DVD case of like, ‘Rappin’ with Cap’ or ‘Rappin’ With the Captain’ and it was just messages from Captain America to the youth of today as if somehow the government had Captain America make all these PSAs for kids."
In the case of the Cap Fitness Challenge, the inspiration is pretty clearly coming from the real-life President's Fitness challenge, a program many Millennials might recall as pure torture, but was actually for school-age kids who were given the chance to meet certain health and fitness benchmarks during their gym classes. From the looks of the video, it would seem that Captain America got put to work before he went on the run from S.H.I.E.L.D. This video is, without a doubt, an amusing way to bring the Cap into the 21st century and give him something a bit more light-hearted to do.
There was a fair amount of confusion when the first clips of Captain America surfaced in the Homecoming trailers. With questions about continuity and whether or not the Cap is a fugitive from the law (because how can you star in a video for high schoolers and be on the lam?), it's fair to say curiosity about the Cap is caused some fuss. ScreenRant argues that, for what it's worth, Captain America probably made the videos after he was thawed out and right before he got pulled into The Avengers because S.H.I.E.L.D. may have been confused about what to do with a thawed out superhero.
But, if we ignore for a moment the glaring continuity issues, we can focus on the gloriousness that is the Cap Fitness Challenge and by extension, the gloriousness of Captain America. It's good to see you again, Cap.