Bucky Barnes in the MCU is a character that many fans love, although he hasn’t had all that much screen time over the years. While he has been a supporting character, the details about him are relatively few and are mostly learned through the eyes of Steve Rogers. The history of Bucky Barnes in Marvel comics is a substrate and much more complicated story.
His origins and appearances in the comics vary, and the MCU version took inspiration from a couple of different comic runs. Here are 10 things about Bucky from the comics that the MCU hasn’t revealed yet or might not ever reveal.
10 IN THE COMICS, BUCKY WAS DEAD FOR DECADES
Most comics fans, even the more casual ones, are aware that characters in comics very rarely stay dead. In fact, it’s kind of a running joke that you can expect many main characters to die and return almost all of the time. However, Bucky was once one of the few exceptions to this rule. For many years he was one of the few comic characters who died and then stayed dead.
There literally was a Marvel trope known as the Bucky Clause which read, "No one in comics stays dead except Bucky, Jason Todd, and Uncle Ben." Of course, this hasn’t held true for either Bucky or Jason Todd,
9 THE ORIGINAL COMICS BUCKY WAS MUCH YOUNGER
As with many other comic book characters, origin stories can sometimes be a little messy. In Bucky’s case, he started out in the comics much differently than how he appears in the MCU.
He was actually a much younger character who was a teen when Steve was an adult. He was more of a sidekick in the traditional sense. This version of the character is the one who ended up dying and not being brought back.
8 THE MCU VERSION OF BUCKY IS PARTIALLY BASED ON ARNIE ROTH
The origin of the MCU version of Bucky Barnes has multiple elements to it. While the original comics Bucky did play some role, there is another inspiration who was never Bucky Barnes at all.
In Earth-616, Captain America had a friend growing up named Arnie Roth who would stick up for young, skinny Steve when he was being bullied in Brooklyn. Later, during the war when the two saw each other again, Arnie remarks how Captain America’s physical appearance has changed after the serum. This character was also one of the first gay characters in comics.
7 HE IS CREDITED WITH OVER 100 ASSASSINATIONS
In the MCU, it’s made pretty clear in Captain America: The Winter Soldier that Bucky has been used by HYDRA over many decades as a deadly assassin.
However, the extent of his killing ability isn’t really explored except in brief flashes when Steve Rogers and Black Widow visit the secret HYDRA base in Camp Lehigh. The Winter Soldier was a weapon of HYDRA for over 70 years, and he racked up a lot of kills, including some very important people.
6 HE & WOLVERINE HAVE A HISTORY
In Marvel comics, Bucky has interacted with a lot more people than he has in the MCU. His story in the MCU has kept him fairly sequestered away from most of the other Avengers, and we’ve really only seen him have friendly contact with characters like T’Challa, Shuri, and Sam Wilson.
In the comics, he has had both positive and negative connections with many more people, including Wolverine. Wolverine isn’t exactly a Bucky fan, considering that Bucky killed his wife, Itsu.
5 HE TRAINED BLACK WIDOW
When Ed Brubaker reinvented Bucky for Marvel comics, a version which the MCU Bucky is most directly taken from, he gave Bucky direct ties to Russia and the Red Room. While it’s mentioned in the MCU that Black Widow and the Winter Soldier know each other, the extent of that isn’t talked about.
In the comics, however, Bucky was assigned to the Red Room Academy on one of his missions and trained Black Widow there. They also have a romantic relationship in the comics.
4 HIS GUNS ARE SPECIALLY MADE FOR HIM
The MCU does give a bit of insight into Bucky’s skills as a marksman. Even in Captain America: The First Avenger when Bucky is a soldier, it’s shown that he has sniper skills.
However, in the comics, his guns are much more advanced. He has many guns that are made just for him, including guns that will explode if anyone else tries to use them. It’s clear he takes his weapons seriously and doesn't want anyone messing with them.
3 HE BREAKS THE TESSERACT
The Tesseract, called the Cosmic Cube at times, is a powerful object in both the comics and the MCU. In one comic, Captain America Vol. 5 #14, Bucky actually breaks the Tesseract.
During this comic, he was still brainwashed, and Steve uses the Cosmic Cube to get Bucky’s memory back. While this does work, the guilt of remembering what he did as the Winter Soldier causes him to break the Cube.
2 BUCKY'S REVIVAL IN THE MCU WAS THANKS TO ED BRUBAKER
As mentioned briefly already, Bucky was gone from Marvel after he was killed off and then never brought up again. This changed, however, when Ed Brubaker started writing Capital America comics.
He had grown up loving the character and wrote his own fanfiction about Bucky being captured by Soviets. His desire to do the character justice led to Bucky being brought back to life and becoming the Winter Soldier character we all know and love.
1 HE WAS A SIDEKICK TO BATMAN
While comic book characters from Marvel and DC Comics rarely team up, there are a few instances when they have. There was a time in 1996 when a one shot of Batman and Captain America was created.
This created an alternate World War II reality, and Batman and Cap decide to trade sidekicks. Sadly, Bucky dies off-panel in this comic.