Hawkeye has yet to disappoint us, and with just two episodes left, it's clear Marvel Studios is going to have an awful lot to squeeze into this series before it reaches its close.
Today, "Partners, Am I Right?" deepened a few mysteries, left us with some big questions, and brought back a character who has set their sights on Clint Barton in a big way. A lot of story will need to be crammed into those final two chapters of the Disney+ TV show, but we now have a better idea of what could be on the horizon.
In this article, we break down the biggest moments Hawkeye delivered today, examine what those mean for the show now and in the future, and even drop a few compelling theories.
As per usual, it should be a given that spoilers follow from this point on...
5. A Major Change To Clint Barton's Origin
In the comics, Clint Barton found himself training to become an archer in a circus under the watchful eye of criminal Jacques Duquesne. Once his sinister nature was revealed, the young Clint turned on his mentor, Swordsman, and found himself left for dead as a result of his attempt at heroism.
Today's episode of Hawkeye brings Clint face-to-face with "Jack," and it's now clear this is an entirely reimagined take on the sword-wielding villain and occasional anti-hero.
The two don't recognise each other and clearly have no shared history; the door is no doubt still ajar for Jack to become Swordsman, but this iteration of the character is more petty crook than swashbuckling foe to The Avengers. It's a shame, but simplifies things for the series and arguably makes it less coincidental that Kate's mom would be engaged to someone from Clint's past.
4. Is That You, Mockingbird?
As Hawkeye has progressed, it's become apparent that Laura Barton knows everything about her husband's life as an Avenger (including the time he spent as Ronin). She's also proved herself particularly savvy at the secret agent game, revealing an ability to speak multiple languages and find Clint the intel he needs.
It sure feels like she has her own past as an Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., eh? A popular fan theory after today's episode is that the watch from the New Avengers Facility may belong to Laura and that she was, once upon a time, better known as Mockingbird. Barbara "Bobbi" Morse was Clint's wife in the comics, so it wouldn't be too hard to retcon this into the MCU.
It's hard to say what significance that watch has and why it would be in the home of Earth's Mightiest Heroes (unless Laura gifted it to Natasha Romanoff), but this should be worth keeping an eye on.
3. Yelena Belova Returns
Near the end of "Partners, Am I Right?", a masked assailant attacks Clint and it soon becomes apparent that they're using Black Widow weaponry. While he assumes someone has just hired an assassin to kill him, we know this is Yelena Belova as Natasha's sister is unmasked during the scuffle.
She's unsuccessful in getting revenge for what happened to Nat (remember that "Val" convinced her that Clint was responsible for what went down on Vormir), but is clearly going to return in the next two episodes. We're hoping Hawkeye gaining her forgiveness will help him move past what happened in Avengers: Endgame as there are several occasions here we see the toll that's taking.
Regardless, Yelena remains as formidable as ever and even just the way she shakes her head at Kate was enough to put the young archer off from firing an arrow her way.
2. Clint And Kate Go Their Separate Ways
Overwhelmed by what happened to Natasha and the fact he now has a Black Widow assassin tracking him down, Clint cuts Kate out of his life and the two go their separate ways. We know this doesn't last because they've been shown teaming up in the show's trailers (at the appropriately festive location of Rockefeller Center), but a big threat will be needed to reunite them.
We're sure you can guess who that is, but this episode also laid the groundwork for Clint to don the costume we've seen so much of in marketing materials for Hawkeye. Kate has enlisted the LARPers to create new suits, and the grouchy Avenger wearing that is likely going to be a touching moment that proves he's finally come around to his partner's way of thinking.
As for Echo, she's now on the run after escaping that rooftop, but what sinister plan could she have up her sleeve after making a note of the names and ages of Clint's entire family?
1. Kingpin Is Coming
Once again, there are a few references to Maya Lopez's boss and the fact he's not someone to be trifled with. There's no denying it feels strange that this is technically the first we're hearing of the Kingpin in the MCU, but future stories set in this world that tackle organised crime appear to be on the horizon.
This episode also confirms that Willie "Crazy Horse" Lincoln was Echo's father, and we know Wilson Fisk was responsible for his death in the comics. On the page, he framed Daredevil for the crime, but what if it was someone else in the Ronin costume the night Maya's father was cut down? Her looking to take down the Kingpin would certainly justify the character getting a series of her own!
Also noteworthy this week was that call Eleanor made to an unknown figure. She's panicking about Hawkeye's involvement in her family's life and we have a feeling it was Fisk on the other end of the phone. The fact he's referred to as "the big man" here is also pretty telling...