Hawkeye Episode 4 Review
All Hawkeye wants to do is go home and spend Christmas with the family that he gave up so much to get back. Yet the universe seems determined to keep punishing him for his past actions, both in his S.H.I.E.L.D. Days and as Ronin. As he and Kate keep diving further into conflict with the Tracksuit Mafia, Echo becomes the least of their problems as many fans speculated, the events in the Post-Credit scene to Black Widow tie to Hawkeye.
Warning: Spoilers ahead for Hawkeye and Black Widow
Kate’s Mom’s Sleazy Fiancée Turns Out to Exactly What We Thought’
Picking up where the last episode left off, Clint and Kate get busted by Jack Duquesne and Mrs. Bishop. Left without any options, the time come (partially) clean, telling them the broad details of what they’re doing. Mrs. Bishop is, rightfully, worried about this, leading Barton to tell her that Kate’s not her partner. Finally, however, they get confirmation that all our Kate’s worries about her Mom’s fiancée are well-founded. It turns out he’s the C.E.O. of the company that’s financing the Tracksuit Mafia, effectively making him their leader.
This is actually one of the weaker points of the episode and the series as a whole because it’s not that surprising a reveal. Kate suspected from the start that something about Jack was off, and his behavior did little to discourage this view. It was pretty obvious from the start that he was involved in some pretty shady stuff, and whatever he had planned for Kate and her Mom, it could not be good.
Hawkeye Opens Up About His Past
The most enjoyable part of this episode was actually the breather that Clint and Kate get at their safehouse/Aunt’s apartment. The two continue to bond as they re-enact some of the Christmas traditions that Clint’s missing out on with his kids, with Hawkeye even showing her some of his trick shots. It’s a nice, wholesome moment that captures the spirit of the Holidays.
Then, things get heavy. When Kate continues to call Hawkeye a hero and protector, you can see the shame etched into Barton’s face. As an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., he likely had to do a lot of morally questionable things. Even if it served a greater good, that’s going to weigh on his mind. But his time as Ronin? That was the absolute lowest point in his life. He lost everything, and he responded by taking it out on criminals everywhere and then lost his best friend to get his family back. The fact that Kate still looks up to him as a hero is something that he feels like he doesn’t deserve. So, he lets Kate figure out the truth.
The moment when the realization hits Kate, you can bet that some people were going to tear up over it. Instead, Hawkeye genuinely thinks that he doesn’t deserve to be a role model for kids, and the guilt that he’s been feeling ever since Endgame is eating away at him. The poor man honestly doesn’t deserve any of this.
Unfortunately, Echo soon proves to be the least of their problems.
The Return of Yelena
We saw Yelena Bolova, Nat’s adopted sister and fellow Black Widow, visit Nat’s grave in the post-credits scene to Black Widow. There, she got told by a mysterious woman that Hawkeye was responsible for Nat’s death, spurring Yelena to try to avenge her sister. Thus, while Barton and Kate seek to cover Ronin’s tracks, they get attacked by Yelena.
This was the moment that a lot of fans were hoping would come about in Hawkeye. The reckoning of the hero’s past at the hands of his best friend’s misguided sister. And Yelena is misguided; we know that what she’s been told is a lie. Yet, from what we’ve seen, Hawkeye may not even try to set the record about Nat’s death straight. Given the P.T.S.D. flashback he has when Kate nearly falls off a rooftop, it’s clear that Barton holds himself at least partially responsible for Nat’s death. As a result, he puts his foot down with Kate and tells her to go home. A Black Widow’s someone she’s not ready to fight.
With the addition of Yelena in the mix, this miniseries just got a lot more interesting. While Hawkeye and Kate could handle the Tracksuit Mafia, albeit, with some difficulty, Black Widow may be beyond them. It’s no longer about Hawkeye getting home in time for Christmas. If he doesn’t take care of this stuff now, his family will be in danger.
One thing’s for sure, true believers: things are getting good.