Shipping isn’t easy when the ship doesn’t sail in the media, especially when it is a LGBTQA+ ship. The characters in this case are usually broadcasted as a bromance. However, there tends to be a fine line between bromance and romance. This is true for Stucky ship. For those that don’t know, that’s Steve Rogers/Bucky Barnes from Captain America.
When I first watched by Captain America: The First Avenger, I felt that the friendship between Steve Rogers and James (Bucky) Barnes is one for the ages. The more I watched it, the more I started seeing how well they would have been together. When the movie Captain America: The Winter Soldier was out in the theaters, I watched it. Surprise, I left the showing shipping those two men. Hence, I ship Stucky! This ship concentrates on Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes. Except the idea is that Bucky is the same age as Steve and not a child as he was in the comics. Although my imagination may not be limited to situations related to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, this ship’s fanfiction and Art usually revolves around the MCU and is developed from there.
Who are the characters?
Steven Grant Rogers is a skinny sick lad with an attitude larger than life. He is from Brooklyn and was desperate to enlist to the army to make a difference. He allowed the military to experiment on him by introducing the super soldier serum into his system to become Captain America. James Buchanan Barnes is also a lad from Brooklyn. He was healthy and strong so he was able to enlist and fight the Nazis in Europe with no resistance from the military. They are childhood friends that cared for each other and continued to fight for each other. However, during the war, Bucky is presumed dead and Cap freezes in the ocean in an attempt to defeat Hydra. Seventy years later, Captain America is thawed and is participating in avenging activities until he is attacked by the Winter Soldier. Behold! It is Bucky who was brainwashed into forgetting who he is and becoming the perfect assassin for Hydra. Steve is the reason why he starts to realize that he is more than an asset, which in turn propels Cap into wanting to help and restore his best friend. After that summary, you should all be ready for Captain America: Civil War!
(If you wanna know more, you should watch the Captain America series because it is arguably the best superhero cinematic story out now. Though you should watch all of the MCU; the stories fluctuate in quality, but they are overwhelmingly entertaining).
Why They Work Well Together (In My Mind)
Stucky works because the relationship is built on years of friendship. They were friends since they were children. Steve was sickly, small, and fighting battles he won’t win. Bucky was protective, charming, and caring for Steve through the highs and the lows. Their relationship expands from their shared experience from the beginning. The depression means that many had to share small apartments and single beds, if they were lucky. When Steve sees Bucky again as the Winter Soldier, he never gives up in order get his friend back from the brainwashing and helps him through his trauma.
The idea is that Bucky would do anything for Steve and vice versa. This may be interpreted as friendship. However, their love can be developed into something more romantic and it would be equitable, respectable, and inspirational.
Why They Don’t Work Well Together (In Real Life)
Stucky totally works in my head and has actual potential to work in real life. I have to admit, with the current narrative in popular media, it would be hard for it to sail. To top it off, the characters are currently being portrayed as completely straight. This is especially true with how Bucky is always surrounded by women before the war and Steve’s relationship with Peggy Carter. It also may not work if Bucky Barnes is traumatized beyond the capability to be in a healthy relationship. Though I believe every person has the capability to heal, but it takes time.
Beyond that, although I don’t believe they actually have these kinds of prejudices, they were raised in an environment that had rampant racism, homophobia, and gender stereotypes. So they might not be open to having a relationship. Also, if Bucky is a child, like he was in the comics, then he would be too young for the Captain. That is just the beginning of all the things that may go wrong in relationships. This makes anything beyond friendship impractical.
Is It A Standard/Popular Ship? Are There Alternate Ships Involving The Characters?
The Stucky ship has been gaining popularity, especially after the return of Bucky Barnes. It is arguably the most shipped homosexual couple in the Marvel universe followed by Stony (Tony Stark and Steve Rogers). Though many who ship the later imagine the couple as parents to Spiderman, creating the ship Superfamily. Others ignore the conventional monogamy and produce polyamorous relationships between Steve, Tony, and Bucky. This works for those who would believe that Steve turned to Tony for help after being introduced to the modern world and is still in love with Bucky. Though this may be interesting, I believe Steve is more of a monogamous relationship, while Bucky may be open to more!
Dream fantasy (keep it PG though!)
I would always imagine Stucky either having at relationship since before the war or they would finally admit their relationship to be more nuanced, after the Winter Soldier restores his memory. Bucky would yell “Punk”, Steve will yell “Jerk”, and they would smile. Then they would fight side by side for the greater good. I believe they would be feminist, LGBTQA+, mental health, and racial equity icons. They would be able to defeat bigots by being leaders and showing how an average person can make a difference.
In the end, Stucky is made of damaged men out of time with loads of trauma. They have shared experiences and lives. They would understand each other the most. If they become overbearing towards each other, there is always Natasha Romanoff, Sam Wilson, Clint Barton, and the rest of the avengers to support them. The characters are amazingly supportive towards each other. They kind of need each other to grow and learn to be happy again in the modern world, so why not have a romantic relationship too?