If it hasn’t already been made clear from the Captain America movies thus far and from the trailers for Captain America: Civil War, there’s a deep love between Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) and Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) and there’s supposed to be. Granted, any non-romantic relationship between two characters in any fandom will inevitably turn romantic in the hands of fan fiction writers, and they’ll have plenty to work with when Civil War comes along.
Speaking to Empire, co-director Joe Russo says that “What’s fascinating about the Cap-Bucky story as well is it’s a love story,” although he means it’s the fraternal kind. “These are two guys who grew up together, and so they have that same emotional connection to each other as brothers would, and even more so because Bucky was all Steve had growing up.” The two characters also share a unique bond as they’re the only two men “out of time”, both plucked from a different age and made into weapons for war.
For his part, Stan isn’t so much into calling it a “love story”, but likens it more to the relationship Martin Lawrence and Will Smith have in the Bad Boys movies:
“I think it’s easy and generalising it to say that they’re lovers, when you’re forgetting that one has a lot of guilt because he swore to be the protector of the other, the father figure or older brother so to speak, and then left him behind.” Adds the actor: “I have no qualms with it but I think people like to see it much more as a love story than it actually is. It’s brotherhood to me.”
I think it’s fine either way. It’s not like anyone really thinks the next Captain America movie is going to feature Steve and Bucky running a bed and breakfast in Vermont, but if some fans want to view the relationship that way, there’s no harm in it.
Captain America: Civil War opens May 6th.