By Janie Walenda
The Hawkeye finale marks the last MCU release of 2021. In my opinion, “Hawkeye” was one of the best MCU Disney+ shows of the year. By going back to the incredible Matt Fraction Hawkeye comic run, the show breathed new life into one of the least popular Avengers. It balanced character development with amazing action scenes and had the most satisfying conclusions to each of its plot points.
Here’s hoping for a season two so we get more of Clint and Kate’s dynamic.
The heart of this show was Clint and Kate’s dynamic, and it was great to see them officially working together as a team. The finale contained a lot of moments that cemented their bond. Hearing Clint call Kate his partner with no hesitation was a great payoff to an earlier episode and his speech to her at the end was touching. I’m also glad Kate finally expressed why she looks up to Clint. The finale scene was really sweet and is a great example of how well the show has balanced Clint being a father figure to Kate with their more chaotic friendship.
Yelena continues to be an absolute scene-stealer and this episode highlighted how amazing Florence Pugh is in the role. I love her fashion sense and it’s good continuity from “Black Widow,” where her fashion choices represented her newly found autonomy. I was curious about how they were going to sell her change of heart and I have mixed reactions to the final product. On the one hand, the scene was well done from an emotional standpoint, and hearing Nat and Yelena’s secret whistle was an absolute gut punch. I do wish it was made clearer why Yelena changed her mind. From my understanding, Yelena’s change of heart came when she realized that Clint and Nat were close and that Nat sacrificed herself for Yelena. I think the biggest problem comes from not knowing where Yelena falls on the morality spectrum. Will she eventually join the Avengers? Or is she going to continue working for Val? As entertaining as the character, she’s not very well defined, so I hope we see her again soon.
Yelena is one of the best new characters out of the MCU in 2021
One of this show’s greatest strengths has been its cast of supporting characters. Jack was an absolute delight and him joining the LARPers is an amazing conclusion. It was obviously better for Kate to have Christmas with the Barton’s, but I hope that she and Jack continue to interact. Speaking of the Barton’s, this episode seems to confirm that Laura Barton was Mockingbird without actually calling her Mockingbird. I’m happy with this twist, but I do have sympathy for all the “Agents of SHIELD” fans, as the show is on thin ice in the MCU.
Of course, we have to talk about Kingpin. While his first scene with Eleanor was perfect, I think the finale made some missteps in his characterization. He lost a lot of the darkness and danger that the character had in “Daredevil.” I understand that this was a relatively lighthearted series, but so was “Into the Spiderverse,” and Kingpin was plenty dangerous there. We’ll see how he’s developed in the future because he’s definitely not dead. Not only did we don’t see the body, but his encounter with Echo is taken straight out of the comics, where she shot him in the eyes.
Kingpin will likely return in ”Echo,” probably hunting down Maya.
Echo got a bit overshadowed these last couple of episodes, but everything she’s done has made me excited for her upcoming series. I am sad that she killed Kazi, as that character was sinister in the comics and I was looking forward to that.
“Hawkeye” is over and it was everything I hoped and dreamed of. A little over dramatic maybe, but I’ve been a Hawkeye fan for years. This show had everything: great comedic and dramatic beats, amazing action scenes and character development. The buildup and reveal of Kingpin was perfect, even if the execution was a little sloppy. Even with a few fumbles, the finale was entertaining, heartfelt, and festive.
Hawkeye is now available to watch on Disney+
Janie Walenda is a freshman Global Business major and an A&E writer for Cedars. She enjoys watching musicals and movies as well as rereading the same books ten times over.