Ever since the third episode ended, we’ve been dying to see Hawkeye episode 4. Marvel introduced a brand new character and a delivered spectacular fight sequence while simultaneously teasing a big villain’s MCU reveal. Moreover, the recent Hawkeye leaks said that episode 4 would have a big reveal tied to the previous episode’s teaser. Finally, Marvel released a teaser ahead of episode 4, indicating that we’d see another character in the TV show soon as well as a potential Avengers reunion.
Hawkeye episode 4 is now streaming on Disney Plus, and it indeed delivers the big reveal we expected. But it all happens during the actual episode. There’s no big post-credits scene in this one, despite what rumors led us to believe. That said, it’s still an excellent development for the TV show and the Avengers stories that will follow. Mind you, some big spoilers follow below.
The Avengers in Hawkeye
Hawkeye is the first standalone story for Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner), one of the original six Avengers that has been a pivotal character in everything we’ve witnessed so far in the MCU. However, Marvel hardly had a chance to offer the character, and the actor, their own story.
Despite that, you’ll feel the presence of the other Avengers from the first episode. Whether it’s the fake Rogers musical, the people dressing as superheroes on the street, or the frequent Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) references, you’ll get plenty of Avengers.
The Black Widow parts are the most important ones, as expected. Nat and Clint shared a fantastic friendship, one that probably has no rival in the MCU. Marvel took advantage of it in Endgame to advance a key plot element. Then, we saw the Hawkeye-Black Widow connection in the multiverse via What If…? earlier this year.
It only makes sense to have these many Black Widow references in Hawkeye. After all, Clint is still coping with the massive loss, and episode 4 taps into that very well. Not to mention that all the Nat flashbacks and the musical elements allow the audience to grieve Black Widow alongside Hawkeye.
We were expecting to see Kingpin (Vincent D’Onofrio) in the post-credits scenes of episode 4, but that wasn’t the case. We’re still waiting for this big villain’s MCU introduction, which could arrive in the coming weeks.
The big Hawkeye episode 4 revelation
What we got, however, was something more impressive. Hawkeye and Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld) shared a beautiful, Christmasy night in the middle of the episode. That’s when Marvel delivers a great MCU detail, the kind we’ve been dying to have more information about. And which pays off a few minutes later in the episode.
Hawkeye tells Kate that his best ever shot was the one he didn’t take. He recalled being sent to kill Black Widow several years back, but he couldn’t do it. He felt she wanted out, and his hunch was right.
The two characters have often talked about their early days, but we never got to see their Budapest spying affairs. Black Widow does address the mission that convinced the west to accept Nat’s services. And the movie gave us a Hawkeye voice cameo, though Renner didn’t appear in the film.
We often explained why there’s no Avengers 5 in Marvel’s Phase 4 roster. The studio has to replace the dead and retired heroes with new ones and set up future crossovers that will feature a new team. We’ll need to fall in love with these characters throughout several Phase 4 movies and TV shows before they can band together as Avengers.
Hawkeye is one of the original Avengers who is retired. He might have a mission in the TV show of the same name, but we might not see him in the MCU after that. That’s because Kate Bishop is his replacement.
Similarly, Nat’s Black Widow got a replacement in the movie. Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh) will replace her sister in the MCU. And that’s where the Hawkeye episode 4 magic happens.
Why it matters for the new Avengers
Episode 4’s main and only fight scene occurs towards the end. As Hawkeye and Kate try to recover a watch important to him, they discover they’re breaking into Echo’s (Alaqua Cox) apartment. Yelena drops in around the same time, featuring the goggles we saw in the teaser. As a reminder, Val (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) tells Yelena in the Black Widow post-credits that Hawkeye is responsible for Nat’s death. As such, Hawkeye is Yelena’s new target.
The four characters end up on the same rooftop, and the action is just crazy from then on. At some point, everyone fights almost everyone at the same time. You’ll have to stop and rewind to ensure you don’t miss any of the details. We get a few heartbreaking callbacks to the Hawkeye-Black Widow scene in Endgame, and we see Clint realizing he’s facing a Black Widow assassin.
This is where Hawkeye’s story of sparing Nat pays off. Kate points an arrow at the unmasked, unarmed Yelena. But the Young Avenger decides not to fire. This might be the beginning of a beautiful new Hawkeye-Black Widow friendship featuring two different characters that will inherit these titles.
Also crucial for the episode is that Clint has no idea who Yelena is, and that’s something we’ll want to see explained. Then there’s the Laura (Linda Cardellini) and Eleanor (Vera Farmiga) reveals. We have the stay-at-home mom/German spy and the obvious mini-villain of the series, respectively. These Hawkeye episode 4 reveals are equally exciting, although they pale compared to the new Black Widow’s arrival.