If you’ve ever thought two people or characters were made for each other, you’ve been part of the “ship” phenomenon. Not constrained by studios, cannons, universes, or even realistic compatibility, shipping explores what it would look like if two characters were best friends, passionate lovers, or soulmates. Things get even more interesting when shipping superheroes (or supervillains), as it usually includes the addition of powers and strong convictions acquired from saving the world in their own fashion. Oftentimes, the shipped individuals have opposing convictions, although much of a ship’s charm can come from how these differences are rationalized and worked out.
Like everything within the grasp of the internet, there are memes out there for almost any superhero ship imaginable. There are memes that point out some ridiculous ship situations, memes that are completely opposed to certain ships, and even some that ask us why other ships don’t really exist. There are memes that make us laugh, memes that make us feel all warm and fuzzy inside, and memes that have us wishing for a few long-dead characters. From these endless possibilities, we’ve found 15 fantastic fan ship memes featuring some of the greatest characters from the MCU, the DCEU, the Arrowverse, and beyond.
15. AVENGERS WEDDING
Opposites attract, which means shipping Tony Stark and Steve Rogers (known as Stony, IronShield, Stark and Stripes, and more) was a no-brainer for fans. When Cap and Iron Man are united, they literally save the world. When they’re divided, heroes pick sides, break rules, and beat the crap out of each other. It might be better for everyone if they just settled down.
Such an announcement would certainly make the news, and fans have already imagined what that would look like. Steve, of course, opted for wearing his uniform (and a bow tie), and Tony, as the more attention-hungry of the pair, capitalized on the opportunity to wear a crown. Just think how different Age of Ultron would have been with a wedding for Ultron to crash.
14. SHE MISSED YOU
Fans have been clamoring for the Natasha Romanoff and Steve Rogers ship (Romanogers) to be canon in the MCU for a while now, and it’s not hard to see why in this meme. Cap and Widow have been through quite a lot, and the idea that a soldier displaced in time and one of the world’s most dangerous spies could settle down and have a kid is a pretty sweet thought.
Steve and Nat had a son named James in some of the comics, so it’s not stretching the imagination too much to put them together in the MCU (and as we saw in Age of Ultron, Marvel doesn’t need any source material to justify their relationships anyway). For real, can this just happen already?
13. DID SOMEONE SAY JUSTICE
Batman may have missed about a million opportunities to declare his love for Wonder Woman during Justice League, but that doesn’t mean that fans have given up hope for the Wonderbat ship in the DCEU (or in any DC Universe, for that matter). Sure, Steve Trevor was a nice guy and it was sad to see him die, but we’d expect a warrior like Diana to fall for someone truly exceptional, like Bruce Wayne.
If it’s justice Diana is looking for, Batman certainly has some thoughts (and some actions) on the topic, plus, he really knows how to turn on the charm. Apart from the fact that Diana’s a goddess who doesn’t age the same as a human, Wonder Woman and Batman are basically made for each other.
It’s not surprising that fans ship Spider-Man and Deadpool pretty hard. They have similar costumes, and they’re both known for their humor, and they even have their own team-up comic. Deadpool’s also been obsessed with Spidey for quite a while, even though their morals and outlooks on life are decidedly different.
So how exactly does the ship work since Wade Wilson is a mercenary with a crazy body count and Spider-Man is a superhero motivated by great responsibility? Sometimes it doesn’t, and that’s half the fun of it. While there is plenty of happy couple Spideypool out there, there’s also quite a bit dedicated to Deadpool’s relentless pursuit of Spider-Man as a best friend or partner, even when Spidey isn’t so keen on it. And if any two characters in the multiverse can make that entertaining, it’s Deadpool Spider-Man.
When you hate someone enough, you become obsessed with them. And if you’re obsessed with someone, you might just end up in love. That’s the idea behind the Batjokes ship. Batman and Joker are a huge part of each others’ lives. What would Batman be without an arch nemesis to give him a purpose? What would Joker be without someone to foil his insane plans?
With the amount of time that these two spend in the hopes of out-thinking and out-doing the other, there’s no surprise that fans ship them pretty hard. Of course, as we see in this meme, if Batman and the Joker were really a pair, they would be that couple that fights like crazy even though they can’t live without each other.
10. BLACK WIDOW AND HULK
Every ship has its enthusiastic supporters, its emphatic opposers, and its bystanders who see it as a great opportunity to amuse themselves. This meme is the product of the latter, and we have to admit that in this case, they’re right.
Even if you loved seeing Natasha Romanov and Bruce Banner (known as Black Hulk, Hulkwidow, or Brutasha) sort out their feelings for each other in Age of Ultron, there’s no denying some striking similarities between Black Widow and Hulk to Shrek and Fiona. A fiery redhead meets a giant green guy; everyone thinks the green guy is a monster, but she gets to know him better and the two fall in love. Their poses here are even similar. Maybe Natasha’s lullaby included some role-playing?
9. OLICITY – TORTURE
It’s one thing to hope for a ship that’s next to impossible. It’s another thing to literally wait years while a couple plays with our heartstrings. The Olicity ship (Oliver Queen and Felicity Smoak), is incredibly guilty of having too many ups and downs. Green Arrow and Overwatch have been on again, off again so many times now that we’ve lost count. Some of their reasons for breaking up over the years come close to soap-opera ridiculous, and fans pulling for the couple have been on a complete rollercoaster since season one.
During the “Crisis on Earth-X” crossover alone, Oliver proposed to Felicity, Felicity told him (quite loudly) she didn’t want to marry him or even marry at all, and then the two eloped. Hopefully, things will settle down now that they’re married. The poor Olicity fans are ready for some stability.
8. I MISS YOU
Professor X and Magneto already have a pretty intense, love-hate bromance going on. While their different views on humanity have always made things between them complicated, there is no denying the feelings the two have for each other run deep. They are both incredibly powerful mutants who have felt the hatred of a primarily human world. They’ve also known each other for decades, and have looked inside each other’s minds.
Strong moral convictions aside, a full-out ship might not be that far from the truth for these two. Considering all the ups and downs that Charles and Erik have had, it wouldn’t be too surprising if, when they finally did end up together, one of them ended up being a little clingy like we see here.
7. IT WAS ONE KISS
One of the fun things about ships is that we can ignore any rules or existing relationships. So even though we were all thrilled when Barry Allen and Oliver Quen FINALLY married the women of their dreams, there’s nothing wrong with a little fan-born speculation about what another relationship in the Arrowverse would look like.
And as we see in this meme, the Flash and Green Arrow (named Boliver, Olivarry, or Flarrow) would make for an interesting couple. And even though Oliver doesn’t have any superpowers, by looks of it, he isn’t going to let Barry push him around. Granted, putting an arrow in someone’s back for moving a little too fast might not be a little extreme, but it would certainly make things interesting.
6. HOW ARE SPIDEY AND WIDOW NOT MORE OF A THING
With all the ships in the super fandom, it’s hard to believe that there’s not much out there about Peter Parker and Natasha Romanoff. Sure, there’s some fan fiction, a few things of artwork, and this meme, but not in the quantities you’d expect. Natasha’s been shipped with nearly every other character out there, so why not Peter?
Black Widow and Spider-Man actually kissed in issue #14 of Ultimate Marvel Team-Up (under a-typical circumstances, of course), but fans haven’t shipped them as hard as other matches (the makers of this meme obviously excluded). This isn’t necessarily a bad thing or a good thing, it’s just strange. With all the ships out there, you’d expect two prominent heroes like Black Widow and Spider-Man to have more of a following.
5. I FORBID IT
When one ship makes another ship impossible, we end up with a ship war. These debates can get heated, but at the end of the day, everyone’s ship still survives and it’s no big deal who’s argument is more compelling. However, making a ship canon is a different matter altogether.
An acknowledged/fulfilled ship is a precious thing, so when Steve Rogers and Sharon Carter (affectionately dubbed Staron) had a bit of a romance during Captain America: Civil War, opinions were understandably charged. Some fans rejoiced while others felt a little like Violet Crawley. No one ship is universally loved. As creations of the internet, they are bound to be debated until the end of time. That does mean we get to see memes like this one though.
4. ATMS AND HEARTS
If there was a romance in DC’s Legends of Tomorrow that was too short-lived, it was the one between Leonard Snart and Sarah Lance. As an ex-assassin trying to find her humanity and a villain trying to become a hero, the two made an interesting and adorable pair.
It wasn’t until the end of the first season that the two were even half-way honest with how they felt about each other, and their first kiss was only seconds before Captain Cold sacrificed himself to save the rest of the Legends (and the rest universe). Snart may have been prematurely killed off (and then replaced by his Earth-X counterpart), but his short time aboard the Wave Rider was enough for fans to start the Captain Canary ship.
3. BEFORE YOU WERE SUPERGIRL
When you get attached enough to a couple, it can be devastating if the ship doesn’t end up as canon. This meme gives us the story of the Kara Danvers and Winn Schott ship (Karwinn, Kwinn, Superwinn, etc.) in a nutshell. Winn was head-over-heels for Kara from the start of Supergirl, even before he knew Kara was the Girl of Steel.
However, when he finally worked up the courage to tell her how he felt about her, Kara shut him down pretty quickly, and everyone in the Superwinn fandom died a little on the inside. The two seem content to be friends at the moment, although basically anything can happen in a superhero TV show, so there may be hope for Kara and Winn yet.
2. THE ONLY THOR SHIP
You have to give some ships credit for just being awesome. There are all kinds of ships that pair characters with similar powers together, although, with the kind of power that Thor and Storm wield, it would make sense that they would understand and respect someone who had powers similar to their own.
As noted above, Thor and Storm have been shipped with other characters numerous times, although as this meme argues, this pairing is by far the best. Whether this is the case is up for debate. Quite a few fans protest that Thor and Storm’s personalities would not work well in a romantic relationship. Perhaps it is the notion of a god and goddess that makes ThunderStruck still sound like a good idea?
1. BLACK WIDOW + HAWKEYE = MERIDA
In the MCU, Clint Barton and Natasha Romanoff were such good friends that everyone wondered if they were a couple (before Clint revealed he actually had a family hidden away on a farm, that is). The two also had more than enough history as a couple in the comics (Hawkeye even fought Daredevil over Natasha once) to warrant a very popular ship referred to as Clintasha, Blackhawk, or Blackeye.
As this meme hilariously points out, we already have a good idea what their children could look like. A girl with Natasha’s hair and Clint’s skills could have a very strong resemblance to a certain Disney Princess/archer. Of course, if she’s Black Widow and Hawkeye’s daughter, she’d also probably be a kick-ass spy as well.
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