Image Source: Everett Collection
The first episode of “She-Hulk: Attorney at Law” addresses a nosy query MCU fans have had about the movie’s canon for a very long time: was Steve Rogers a virgin? Bruce Banner, aka the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), has finally given a resounding answer: no, he was not.
During the episode, which premiered Aug. 18, Jennifer Walters, aka She-Hulk (Tatiana Maslany), is going on a road trip with her cousin Bruce. Viewers see her midrant, though it seems Bruce is struggling to follow Jennifer’s train of thought. “Steve Rogers did not have a girlfriend before he went into the service,” she points out, explaining that he was too busy saving the world after he came out of the ice in 2011 to have time for love, romance, or sex in the years that followed. But just as they get to the crux of her theory — “Obviously Captain America was a virgin” — the pair are attacked by a mysterious spaceship. Bruce later reveals that the ship was piloted by Sakaarans, an accident that leads to Jennifer getting her She-Hulk powers, so it seems they have more important things to discuss than Steve’s sexual past.
But at the end of the episode, the show revisits Bruce and Jennifer’s time together, cutting to a night when the duo are drinking and Jennifer is intoxicated and questioning her cousin about it again. “Steve Rogers did so much for his country, and he never got to experience sex. Did you see that ass? Like, that ass did not deserve to die a virgin. It’s, like, so sad,” she says, slurring her words.
Bruce has had enough and says, “Steve Rogers is not a virgin. He lost his virginity to a girl in 1943 on the USO tour.” Jennifer then reveals that she was just pretending to be drunk and responds, “Yes, I knew it. Captain America fu—” Her sentence is cut off by the credits.
On the day the episode was released, Chris Evans, who plays Steve in the MCU, tweeted about the revelation with a string of emoji.
— Chris Evans (@ChrisEvans) August 18, 2022
What woman is Bruce referring to? In “Captain America: The First Avenger,” there’s a montage of Steve performing with a group of USO girls in order to drum up support for war bonds shortly after he first takes the super-soldier serum. There’s a moment where a blond woman who watched the show is very flirty with him, but Bruce’s comments lead us to believe it’s actually one of the women he worked with. None of them have names or even any lines in the film.
Perhaps most significantly, Bruce’s comments point away from Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell), who many fans have long conjectured was the first person Steve was intimate with. But a close reading of the timeline of “Captain America: The First Avenger” shows that there’s basically no time for Steve and Peggy to be together. They meet before he takes the super-soldier serum in 1943, but they don’t begin to fall for each other until 1945, and they kiss for the first time not long before the movie ends. And when Steve pilots his ship into the ice — seemingly killing himself but actually preserving his body so he can appear in the future — he tells Peggy over the radio, “I’m gonna need a rain check for that dance.” They weren’t a couple — yet.
Of course, Bruce doesn’t list every person Steve has had sex with, so it’s possible he and Peggy did get it on in 1945 (and they were definitely together for good after the events of “Avengers: Endgame”). Plus, some fans will never give up their theories about Steve and Bucky.
Jennifer’s comments also reflect that, in the MCU, most people believe Steve is dead. Bruce doesn’t address that implication, so we’ll probably have to wait for “Captain America: New World Order” to find out his ultimate fate.