While the first episode of Hawkeye set the stage for where the series currently finds Clint Barton and who Kate Bishop is, the two didn’t cross paths until the final moments. Episode 2 picks back up immediately where the previous left off, and Clint and Kate’s adventures finally begin — including a flame-broiled apartment, a dog who loves pizza, a LARPing extravaganza, a probe into Jack Duquesne’s secrets, and another dicey run-in with the Tracksuit Mafia. Let’s dive into this episode’s major events.
Clint Barton, meet Kate Bishop
“Who the hell are you?”
“Um … Kate Bishop.”
After rescuing Kate from the Tracksuit Mafia, Clint is appalled to discover that the person running around in his Ronin suit is just a kid. A talented kid, though. Kate explains that she started doing martial arts when she was just five years old. They return to Kate’s apartment so Clint can take the suit and get back to his kids. Kate tries to keep her cool over the fact that her idol is in her apartment, but she can’t stop herself from asking him to sign her bow.
Clint proceeds to, predictably, slip into Hawkeye’s signature disgruntled dad mode. He asks whether or not the Tracksuit Mafia would have a way of tracking her down … and his question is answered shortly after when Molotov cocktails begin flying in through the windows. Clint, Kate, and Pizza Dog make a hasty exit as the apartment goes up in flames. After grabbing some supplies (which were way less cool than Kate was anticipating), Kate decides to hole up at her aunt’s place since she’s away in Florida for the winter.
Clint’s deafness is finally canonical in the MCU
Up until now, Clint’s deafness in the comics was unnecessarily overlooked in the MCU. However, Hawkeye finally brings this important aspect of his character into canon, and the series also finds a way to explain why it’s just now being mentioned.
When Clint and Kate are walking together at one point, he tells her that he needs to have her on his left side so that he can hear her (because of his hearing aid). When she asks him what happened, we see a series of flashbacks of Hawkeye in the midst of battle in previous Marvel films. So Clint’s deafness in the show is a direct result of the harrowing battles (and accompanying explosions and bodily trauma) he experienced over the years.
In some of the different comic iterations with Clint, his hearing was similarly affected through fights with various villains. Ironically, one of them was Kazimierz Kazimierczak aka the Clown, who appears in the show.
Clint goes LARPing
I never knew how badly I needed to see Clint Barton LARPing until it happened, and it was just as excellent as it sounds. When Clint returns to the charred remains of Kate’s apartment to get his Ronin suit, he’s confused to see that it’s missing. After seeing a sticker for the NYC LARPers on the side of a firetruck, a bit of internet sleuthing leads him to discover that a firefighter has stolen the suit. The next day, Clint ships his kids off to the airport to go home to Laura so he can handle the mess in NYC. He promises them that he’ll be home for Christmas. Then, he drops Kate off at Bishop Security, and he leaves her his phone number … for emergencies only.
Clint treks through the woods to find the NYC LARPers. Looking sorely out of place with his street clothes and backpack, even Clint Barton isn’t allowed to just waltz in while a game is in session. Forced to register and carry around a fake sword and armor, an entirely unenthused Hawkeye effortlessly makes his way through the fighting crowd and over to the man that’s wearing his Ronin suit. After agreeing to let the other man defeat him in “battle” (because how often can you say that you “killed” Hawkeye while LARPing?), Grills hands over the suit.
Fun fact: Grills is more than likely a nod to Clint’s neighbor in the comics!
Jack Duquesne has a secret
Much to Kate’s dismay, her mother is engaged to Jack Duquesne. But there may be even more to worry about when it comes to him, beyond the typical “stepdad issues.” Kate agrees to have dinner with her mother and Jack, fuelled by her ulterior motive of finding out what exactly he’s hiding. And upon learning that they both share a mutual love of fencing, they have a brief match inside of the house, despite Eleanor’s protests.
Following the tense moment at the end of their game of fencing, Jack later offers Kate a butterscotch candy. She’s horrified to realize that it’s the same type of candy that she saw inside of Armand’s house. Given Armand’s threats to Eleanor and his stormy relationship with his nephew, Jack is certainly beginning to look like a suspect in his uncle’s death.
While it’s unclear how much will be carried over, it’s also worth noting that in the comics, Jack is a villain-turned-hero known as the Swordsman. This ties in neatly with his affinity for swords in the show. And he’s even the person that trained Clint to become a skilled fighter.
Capturing two archers for the price of one
In an attempt to clear things up with his “old Tracksuit friends,” Clint waits around for them to come find him and capture him. They bring him back to their lair, and despite the fact that he’s sorely outnumbered, he’s calm as he reveals that he managed to free his hands from their restraints and asks to speak to their boss.
The Tracksuit Mafia demands to know where Kate Bishop is. Clint attempts to act like he has no idea who she is, which doesn’t work out very well when she comes crashing through the ceiling in an attempt to rescue him (thanks to her ability to track his phone with Bishop Security). They both end up tied up … with duct tape this time.
In the final moments of the episode, we get our first look at Maya Lopez aka Echo (who will be getting her own Disney+ series). A member of the Tracksuit Mafia tells her that they have Clint and Kate, and she waves him away.