Like his friend Steve Rogers, Bucky Barnes is a man out of his time, having spent decades as the brainwashed puppet of Hydra before eventually returning a world he no longer recognized. But as the character’s arc has seen him progress from unwilling villain in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, to ally to Earth’s Mightiest Heroes in Avengers: Infinity War, his prosthetic arm has done a little adjusting, too.
On a visual level, you may have noticed that the Winter Soldier’s black, vibranium-enhanced arm sported in Wakanda is a little different from the shiny metal design we’ve seen him utilize in previous films. Speaking on Earth’s Mightiest Show, Sebastian Stan observed how the changes undergone by his replacement limb in some ways mirror the development of Bucky himself.
“The funny thing is the arms have changed throughout the movies. It’s just very interesting because it almost fits with where the character is.”
The actor went on to explain how he’s felt these changes on a practical level, too, saying:
“The first arm that was in the Winter Soldier movie, the material was really hard and it was very hard to actually move in it… but it actually informed the way I was moving at the time because it was just like carrying this thing so it totally affected me in a great way,” Stan said. “It made me discover the character in a way. And so I guess to some extent, so does he. He’s just becoming more comfortable in his own shoes and arm as he’s progressively getting older.”
Sadly, both Bucky Barnes and his vibranium appendage perished in the climactic genocide of Avengers: Infinity War, leaving his buddy Cap to grieve while denying Rocket the Racoon the chance of ever buying that arm. All the same, the saga of Bucky Barnes and his various limb designs may well continue, with Avengers 4 hitting theaters on May 3rd, 2019.