Hawkeye might have not had the big presence in the Marvel Cinematic Universe many fans would have liked, but he was an important element in Avengers: Endgame, and now the MCU doesn’t really need him anymore – nor does it need Jeremy Renner. The MCU as fans had come to know it came to an end with Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame, with Spider-Man: Far From Home closing out the Infinity Saga. Endgame marked the end of the arc of most of the original Avengers, with some of them coming back for one more solo adventure (like Thor: Love and Thunder) and others getting their own TV shows, such as Hawkeye.
Clint Barton aka Hawkeye (played by Jeremy Renner) made his debut in the MCU in Thor, where he had a minor role. He went on to appear in four more films and was one of the notable absentees in Avengers: Infinity War along with Scott Lang, with Marvel trying to justify these by saying they were both under house arrest after the events in Captain America: Civil War, as they were part of Steve Rogers’ team. Although Barton was one of the original Avengers, compared to his teammates he never had a big role in the MCU, which did its best to give more to the character by introducing his family in Avengers: Age of Ultron, which later served as a trigger for his role in Avengers: Endgame.
Jeremy Renner is set to reprise his role on Disney+’s series Hawkeye, which will see Barton passing the Hawkeye mantle to Kate Bishop. The series was great news for those who wanted more of Barton and Renner, but the excitement and interest has decreased as news broke about Renner being accused for threatening to kill his ex-wife. This has prompted fans to ask for him to be replaced in the upcoming Disney+ series, which could or could not happen at this point as the series is still in early development, but the truth is that Clint Barton’s (and with that Renner’s) time in the MCU has come to an end, and he really isn’t needed anymore.
Hawkeye’s Story Ended In Avengers: Endgame
Avengers: Endgame brought together all the current superheroes in the MCU to fight against Thanos and his army, but before they could all be together again, the remaining heroes took on the difficult (and confusing) task of traveling back in time to retrieve the Infinity Stones. At the beginning of the film, viewers reunited with Clint Barton and his family, and witnessed (along with him) how his wife and kids vanished after the first snap. This was a turning point in Barton, who under the identity of Ronin traveled around the world murdering all those he saw that deserved it. Black Widow found him in Japan and managed to convince him to go back with her and join the others in the time heist.
Hawkeye and Black Widow then traveled to Vormir in 2014 to retrieve the Soul Stone. The stone’s keeper, the Red Skull, revealed to them that the only way to acquire the stone was by sacrificing someone they love, which prompted a fight between the two as they each believed they should be sacrificed. In the end, Black Widow sacrificed herself, a loss that deeply affected Hawkeye and one he was still dealing with by the end of the film. Hawkeye ended up reuniting with his family after the final snap, essentially bringing his arc to an end. Hawkeye’s ending works as Marvel had already established his desires to spend more time with his family, and left no more options for him. The only original Avenger set to come back in a film in a near future is Thor, whose arc was left open at the end of Avengers: Endgame, unlike the rest.
The Disney+ Hawkeye Show Should Be About Kate Bishop
Along with the rest of Disney+’s Marvel series, Hawkeye is part of the MCU, but that doesn’t mean Clint Barton’s story should continue. Avengers: Endgame was his final chapter, and his presence in the series should only be to pass on the mantle to Kate Bishop, letting her be the actual protagonist of the series and thus making way for another hero under the Hawkeye name – one that fans have been eagerly waiting for.
In the comics, Kate Bishop is a member of the Young Avengers and the third character to take the Hawkeye name after Barton and Wyatt McDonald. She made her debut in Young Avengers #1 in 2005 and took the name “Hawkeye” to honor the original one, as he was believed to be dead. She went on to co-star with Barton in the series Hawkeye and All-New Hawkeye. The introduction of another character from the Young Avengers in the MCU – Cassie Lang, Scott Lang/Ant-Man’s daughter – made way for a lot of speculation and hope on Kate Bishop finally being added to this universe, and now that it’s finally happening, she should have her very own space.
If anything, Clint Barton’s role in the series should only be to show how and why Kate Bishop will be the one to continue with the Hawkeye legacy (and even that doesn’t exactly require Renner’s presence), as she doesn’t even really need a mentor figure, as much as the MCU loves that. The Hawkeye series should be the place to develop Kate Bishop’s character without the shadow of Clint Barton, get viewers acquainted with her, and hopefully set up a bigger presence from her in other parts of the MCU.
Jeremy Renner Is No Longer Needed In The MCU
The MCU might have not done justice to the character of Clint Barton, demoting him to a supporting role while being one of the original Avengers, and only giving him a truly big moment in Avengers: Endgame, albeit a short one. But Barton’s time has come and gone, the opportunity was missed, and the MCU is now ready to move forward with other characters – neither Clint Barton nor Jeremy Renner are needed anymore. Of course, Renner’s current legal situation isn’t contributing to fans wanting to see more of him in the upcoming phases of the MCU, whether on television or the big screen.
Truth is that, no matter what goes on in Renner’s private life, as nothing is clear on any sides (for now, at least), he’s no longer needed in this connected universe, simply because Clint Barton is pretty much done with his arc after Avengers: Endgame. As interesting as having him back in the series could be, the addition of Kate Bishop is much more exciting and has a lot more to offer to the bigger picture than whatever else the MCU can make out of Renner and Clint Barton. Furthermore, Renner isn't a star name in the same vein as Robert Downey Jr. or Chris Evans, so he's not as necessary to sell a movie or show. It's time for Marvel to bring new characters and storylines after building the Infinity Saga for 10 years – a decade in which they didn’t really do much with Renner and Clint Barton, and it’s too late to make up for it. Hawkeye is still in early development, so anything can happen with Jeremy Renner’s involvement in it and therefore Clint Barton’s presence, but in reality, both are already done with the MCU and can be easily removed from it.
- Black Widow (2020) release date: May 01, 2020
- Eternals (2020) release date: Nov 06, 2020
- Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021) release date: Feb 12, 2021
- Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2021) release date: May 07, 2021
- Spider-Man: Homecoming 3 (2021) release date: Jul 16, 2021
- Thor: Love and Thunder (2021) release date: Nov 05, 2021
- Black Panther 2 (2022) release date: May 06, 2022