Poor Natasha has already been linked with Hawkeye and the Hulk in the Marvel movies, but if Sebastian Stan has anything to say about it, she’ll be moving on to the Winter Soldier.
While we imagine the central relationship in Captain America: Civil War will be that of main character Steve (Chris Evans) and his best-friend-turned-deadly-assassin Bucky (Sebastian Stan), comic book fans are also curious whether the movie will address any of the romantic relationships established in the comics ‘verse.
Notably, Steve Rogers courts Sharon Carter (played in the movie by Emily VanCamp), while Bucky Barnes has a rich and complicated relationship with Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson).
Speaking to fans at last weekend’s Salt Lake City Comic-Con, Sebastian Stan revealed that he’d like to see the movies explore the Winter Soldier’s romance with Black Widow. (Perhaps after he’s picked up the shield and become the new Captain America?)
When asked whether the movies should bring in Bucky and Natasha’s comic book history, he enthused, “Yes they can, yes they should.”
This isn’t the first time Stan has expressed enthusiasm about Bucky and Natasha’s relationship. (One might even call him… a shipper?) Speaking to Vulture last year, he said, “I could talk about the Black Widow all you want! That’s an amazing storyline. I would love for that to happen.”
And it is, undoubtedly, a great arc in the comics. The problem, of course, is that Joss Whedon already paired Natasha Romanoff with Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) in Avengers: Age of Ultron, overriding the romantic bond many fans believed existed between Natasha and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) in the process. She also kissed Steve Rogers in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, although their relationship appears to be strictly platonic.
Hawkeye actor Jeremy Renner actually got into some publicity trouble during the press tour for Avengers: Age of Ultron when describing Black Widow as a “slut” for essentially making her way around the Avengers team. So while the Bucky/Nat (or Winter Widow) relationship is perfectly legitimate in the comic book series, it might not be a smart move for Marvel to give Natasha yet another romance storyline — at least not in this Phase of the MCU!
In fact, one might go so far as to suggest that maybe she shouldn’t have any more romantic arcs at all, as much as we’d like the long-suffering Bucky to finally get some happiness. (But hey, what about Steve?! We’re still hoping that Bucky and Cap will ride off into the sunset at the end of Civil War.)
The next Captain America: Bucky or Falcon?
In the comic books, the title of Captain America does not stay with Steve Rogers. In fact, both Bucky Barnes and Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) have donned the star-spangled suit at some point.
On whether he’d like to see himself or Mackie’s Falcon pick up the Captain America mantle somewhere down the line, Sebastian Stan confessed that he hopes the shield passes to Bucky.
“Having Anthony Mackie be Captain America will be like Biff from Back to the Future II,” Stan joked during his Salt Lake panel.
Mackie, on the other hand, doesn’t think the title should change hands at all.
“I don’t think we need a new Cap,” Mackie said, when asked the same question. “I don’t think Cap needs to change. I think [Sebastian Stan] would be a great Cap, but then we’re left without Bucky. I think I’d be a great Cap, but then we’re left without a Falcon.”
Finally, although the Marvel cast is obviously keeping Civil War plot details close to the chest, Stan also revealed that we’ll be getting more Bucky flashbacks in the third and final Captain America movie.
So even if Stan ships Winter Widow, we can still look forward to some great Steve/Bucky bonding moments, right?