How ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Sets Up A Major Shift For Hawkeye

Avengers: Infinity War makes no apologies for being jam-packed with characters. The film dropped last week to an insane amount of hype, and fans around the world rushed to theaters to see the MCU’s biggest heroes team up to take on Thanos. However, a good chunk of fans admitted they were confused by the film’s distinct lack of Clint Barton, but it looks like patience will be the key to that hero’s return.

After all, the end of Avengers: Infinity War sets up a major story arc for the MIA archer, and fans don’t think the shift will be a welcome one for Clint.

So, this is our obligatory spoilers warning. If you have not seen Avengers: Infinity War yet, do not read below this paragraph. Major spoilers for the film lie below! We repeat: MAJOR spoilers for the movie lie below. You’ve been warned.

In light of the latest Avengers movie, fans have good reason to be worried about Clint. The hero who fans know best as Hawkeye might not have appeared in the blockbuster, but he had good reason. As explained by the Black Widow, Clint hung up his superhero identity in the wake of Captain America: Civil War. Hawkeye put up his bow after he was broken out of the Raft and took a plea deal so he could be with his family. Since then, Clint has kept off the MCU radar, but fans know the guy will feature in Avengers 4. The question being asked now is how Avengers: Infinity War sets up his return, and the answer seems to involve a good bit of death.

As fans know, Avengers: Infinity War sees Thanos do the impossible as he gets his hands on all the Infinity Stones. The villain completes his gauntlet and proceeds to snap half of the universe out of existence, taking billions of lives along the way. Guys like Groot are taken out along with countless Wakandan soldiers, and the film’s post-credits scene confirm normal civilians were also killed by Thanos. So, it isn’t difficult to imagine how Clint’s brood might have been affected.

If Thanos’ final led to the deaths of the Barton family, then fans can see why Clint would get back onto the field. The overwhelming loss would surely be one intense motivator for the former SHIELD agent, and Clint only left his job because he needed to protect his family. If they are not there anymore, then Clint has nothing to risk by going back into battle and everything to gain if he can bring them back by fighting.

The vendetta would also help explain the persistent rumors regarding Hawkeye’s comeback in Avengers 4. Set photos were snapped of Jeremy Renner filming the project alongside Scarlett Johansson, and his costume seemed to mimic that of Ronin. In the comics, the alias is one used by numerous characters, and Clint uses it after he is revived in the wake of Avengers: Disassembled. Looking for a fresh start, Clint leaves his Hawkeye days behind and becomes a wayward hero for awhile before he starts up the New Avengers. Fans have been curious why Hawkeye would even consider the alias shift, but the death of his family could be the key.

In the aftermath of Thanos’ snap, Hawkeye could come to resent his former alias or be eager for a new beginning. Any of those reasons may prompt him to take up the name Ronin as he uses his new persona to carve a path towards revenge. Rumors have persisted that Clint’s new role in Avengers 4 will be darker, and sites such as MCU Exchange claims sources have informed them a dark event is what leads to Hawkeye’s shift. If that proves true, then fans will meet a very bitter and bereaved Clint when Avengers 4 drops next year. So, Thanos better watch his back if he winds up pulling the former Avenger out of retirement.

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Marvel Studios' Black Panther is still in theaters, while Avengers: Infinity War hit theaters this weekend. It will be followed by Ant-Man and The Wasp on July 6, 2018, Captain Marvel on March 8, 2019, the fourth Avengers movie on May 3, 2019, the sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming on July 5, 2019, and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 in 2020.