'Hawkeye' Episode 4 introduces a key Marvel character promising a major impact
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I had high hopes for Hawkeye, but I didn’t expect it to be this good. The fourth chapter has an especially great balance of heart, character moments, and action, culminating in a cool reveal (Hi Florence Pugh!) that will no doubt have a major impact on the final two episodes of the season.
But I’m getting ahead of myself…
We start exactly where we left off in episode 3, with Jack Duquesne (Tony Dalton) holding Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner) at swordpoint. What follows next is unexpected: after Jack and Eleanor (Vera Farmiga) realise they’re in the presence of an Avenger, they all have a sit-down with Kate (Hailee Steinfeld) to try and figure out exactly what’s going on.
It’s here that we get another fun dose of Clint/Kate banter — Kate calling Clint “CB-One” was particularly funny — before Eleanor sees Clint out and makes a call. Exactly who she is calling may be significant (more on this later)…
The call Clint makes is also of some significance. Not only do we learn that his wife Laura (Linda Cardellini) is fluent in German, but she also asks about whether a certain Rolex has gone missing. That mysterious watch has barely been mentioned since the underground auction in Hawkeye’s first episode, and I’m intrigued to find out where this subplot leads.
We find out later that the watch belonged to someone Clint used to work with who’s been out of the game for a long time and whose cover might be blown if someone discovered it… could this tie back to Laura’s past, or is it someone we haven’t met yet?
In any case, I continue to love the fact that Laura is fully aware and supportive of Clint’s extracurricular activities. Pepper Potts and Tony Stark (RIP) are no longer a thing. Despite two Spider-Man films, Peter Parker and MJ have barely started. Clint and Laura may currently be the best power couple in the MCU. So in sync are they that Laura can tell Clint is rundown and needs to ice his legs just by the sound of his voice.
It’s advice that Clint takes back at Kate’s safehouse, and it leads to arguably the best scene of the episode as Kate comes over bearing pizza, Pizza Dog, and holiday cheer. Not only do we get more great humour — Kate defacing an A Chance of Love poster and eventually learning Clint’s coin trick are two such highlights — but we get some real talk too, as she correctly guesses that her idol was Ronin and Clint admits to it.
It was always a given that the truth would come out sooner or later, but having Kate find out this way is smart. There had been enough hints at the truth that Kate not figuring it out would have made her seem a bit clueless. And rather than have the reveal be something that temporarily regressed the mentor-mentee relationship — a tactic many a film and TV show has used in the past — it actually strengthens it.
Clint opening up about Ronin is just a small part of a conversation in which he talks about loss, the Blip, and recruiting (and losing) Natasha (the use of Alan Silvestri’s ‘Not Good’ cue, which plays as Natasha sacrifices herself in Avengers: Endgame, is a beautiful touch). As Kate noted earlier in the episode, CB-One doesn’t really open up. The fact that he is this emotionally vulnerable around Kate is a major sign of how far this relationship has come, and both Renner and Steinfeld are brilliant in this sequence.
Our bow-and-arrow wielding duo don’t have much time to think on the past though, as they have a few problems to deal with in the present. Clint tries to persuade Maya’s friend Kazi to tell her to stop going after Ronin, while Kate enlists the LARP-ers of episode two to help her retrieve their trick arrows from Police lockup (and make new Hawkeye costumes that we will no doubt see at some point in the final two episodes). They’ll need them for their new mission: retrieving the stolen watch that ends up being in Maya’s apartment. Cue a tripping of a silent alarm and a big fight, as Maya goes after Kate and Clint finds himself in a fight with a black-clad ninja.
Anyone who’s seen the post-credits scene of Black Widow knew that Yelena would be showing up on Hawkeye at some point. The question of exactly how she would enter the fray is satisfyingly answered here. Yelena is clearly carrying out the revenge mission that Valentina Allegra de Fontaine (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) sent her on. The fight itself is pretty innovative with everyone utilising their skillsets: Yelena and Maya have the upper-hand in close combat, while Kate inflicts most of her damage from range.
When it’s all over, Yelena and Maya flee to fight another day, and Clint tries to dissolve the Hawkeye partnership. After making a promise to Eleanor to keep Kate safe and getting a flashback to Natasha dying when Kate gets thrown off a balcony mid-battle, he can’t take much more loss.
Unfortunately for him, Kate is not in the habit of following his orders. Exactly what this means for our favourite duo going forward will be fun to watch.
From the quiver
There were a few more references to “the big guy” in this episode. We’re getting closer to a Vincent D’Onofrio Kingpin cameo…
Not only do we get Alan Silvestri’s aforementioned Avengers: Endgame cue, we also get one of Lorne Balfe’s Black Widow motifs when Yelena is unmasked. I love musical MCU synergy.
Clint doesn’t seem to know that Yelena is Natasha’s sister. That conversation will happen sooner rather than later – exactly what circumstances hunter and prey will be in when it takes place will be interesting to see.
Watch a Hawkeye featurette