Hawkeye has ended – but the show’s final bow has only left us scratching our heads.
The hour-long finale has potentially given us surprise fates for major characters, set up spinoffs, and wrapped up Clint Barton’s arc from Avengers: Endgame. There’s a lot to dig into – including why one comic book series could be the answer to the question everyone is asking after the Hawkeye episode 6 ending.
But, before all that, let’s get everyone up to speed on what went down in the Hawkeye finale. There was a lot to take in, from LARPing to millions of dollars in property damage – and Kingpin’s grand entrance. So join us as we grab our Marvel-shaped quiver, drawback, and hit a bullseye on all of your big Hawkeye questions.
And here's your obligatory spoiler warning! We're deep-diving into absolutely everything that happened in the Hawkeye finale.
The Hawkeye ending explained *spoilers*
Hawkeye episode 6 begins where the previous episode’s cliffhanger left us: Eleanor and Kingpin (Vincent D’Onofrio, reprising his role from Netflix’s Daredevil) having a meeting. Eleanor says that her daughter, Kate, is sniffing around and getting too close to the truth. She reveals that she was the one who "handled" Armand, and set up her fiancé Jack to take the fall for Sloan’s shady dealings. Despite Eleanor owing her late husband’s debt to Kingpin, she wants out.
Later, Maya speaks to her ‘Uncle’ Kingpin, saying she needs to clear her head and that she won’t be chasing after her father’s killer any longer. Once she leaves, Kingpin explodes with rage, saying Maya has "turned on us."
Kate and Clint, meanwhile, attend Eleanor’s Christmas party – but so does Florence Pugh’s Yelena. Across the street, Kingpin’s henchman Kazi attempts to assassinate Clint and Eleanor. With help from the LARPers dressed as waiters, Hawkeye clears the Christmas party and sets his sights on taking down Kazi.
Kate and Yelena fight, with Yelena eventually gaining the upper hand, abseiling down the building and trying to kill Clint. Clint makes his way over to Kazi, subdues him, and escapes – straight into 30 Rock’s towering Christmas tree. Kate then shoots the wires holding the festive decoration up, and the two unite in the middle of an ice rink and help fight off the Tracksuit Mafia.
Kate goes off in search of her mother while Hawkeye does battle with Yelena. Elsewhere, Maya and Kazi’s relationship comes to a brutal end: Kazi says he only wanted to protect Maya from the world of crime; Maya wants him to leave, but Kazi says that Kingpin won’t let him. The two fight, Maya stabs Kazi, and he seemingly dies in her arms.
Kingpin finds Eleanor and is about to kill her, but Kate intervenes and shoots Kingpin with an arrow. Unfortunately for her, it has no effect. What has more effect, however, is Eleanor running Kingpin down in her car. After a lengthy tussle, Kate blows up Kingpin – though his body is not found – and she then calls the police on her mother, who is arrested for murder.
Hawkeye and Yelena eventually patch things up – with Clint explaining to Yelena how her sister, Natasha, sacrificed herself to save the world. Yelena tearfully accepts Clint’s version of events. Clint apologises, then Yelena leaves.
In the episode’s most controversial scene, Maya confronts Kingpin and appears to shoot him dead off-screen.
The finale ends with Clint finally making it back for Christmas, with Kate and Lucky in tow. Clint returns the mysterious watch to Laura, who reveals it’s engraved with a SHIELD logo and the number ’19.’ Clint then burns his Ronin costume – symbolically putting an end to that chapter in his life.
If you stick around the Hawkeye post-credits scene then you’ll witness the full uncut musical number "I Can Do This All Day" from the Rogers musical first seen in the premiere. You’re in for a treat.
Is Kingpin dead?
The cardinal rule in comic books and comic book-adjacent media is that if you don’t see a body then, chances are, that person isn’t dead. In Hawkeye, Kingpin is shot off-screen. In fact, we don’t even know if that was Maya’s gun being fired – or if her shot hit the target.
There’s a possibility that someone – potentially Daredevil, who is now officially part of the MCU – intervened. Kingpin also took an insane amount of damage in the finale and lived to tell the tale. One bullet might not be enough to stop him.
The biggest indicator that Kingpin isn’t dead, though, comes from the comic storyline "Parts of a Hole," which formed part of Maya’s comic debut.
There, she finds out that Kingpin killed her father – much like here – and shoots the crime boss. That doesn’t kill him and instead the bullit leaving him temporarily blinded.
We’re pretty certain that’s going to be the case here. For one thing, you don’t bring Vincent D’onofrio back for a one-and-done deal. There’s also the small matter of Kingpin’s final line: "Sometimes family doesn't see eye to eye." If you ask us, that’s setting Wilson Fisk up for some serious dramatic irony.
What does Laura’s watch mean?
The owner of the Rolex watch, first seen in Maya’s apartment, was one of Hawkeye’s mini-mysteries. The finale revealed that it belongs to Clint’s wife, Laura – and that it has both a SHIELD logo and the number ‘19’ on it.
What does that mean? If you know your comics history, you’ll know that Agent 19 is a SHIELD agent better known as Mockingbird. In effect, Hawkeye confirms that Linda Cardellini’s character worked alongside Clint in the field.
It might not be good news for Agents of SHIELD canon truthers, however. There’s also a character called Mockingbird there. It could, of course, just be the latest holder of the Mockingbird codename – but Hawkeye's Mockingbird is likely to take precedent in the MCU going forward.
What’s next for Maya/Echo?
Alaqua Cox’s character made a brilliant impression on the MCU during her debut in Hawkeye – and she’s back for more soon.
While it doesn’t yet have a release date, Marvel has confirmed that an Echo series is in the works. If Kingpin did survive, expect them to go toe-to-toe again.
Did Yelena forgive Clint?
In a sense, yes. Yelena accepted that Clint wasn’t the one who killed Nat, despite Julia Louis-Dreyfus Val planting that seed in her head during the Black Widow post-credits scene.
The big question now, then, is where does Yelena go from here? She no longer has an employer, has likely cleaned up the mess of Black Widows that were brainwashed across the globe, and finally has some closure on the one open wound in her life.
There’s every chance she goes freelance – and could pop up more in future Marvel side stories. The fledgling friendship with Kate was also great to see. We’d for them to team up again in a future project, potentially as part of the Young Avengers or to face off against another street-level threat.
Right now, there isn’t much coming up that feels like an inherently great fit for Yelena, though we imagine she’ll be back in some capacity in the next few years. Keep an eye on future post-credits scenes, just in case.
Are Hawkeye and Kate Bishop coming back for new Marvel projects?
As of right now, neither Hawkeye nor Kate Bishop are confirmed for a return. Hailee Steinfeld’s archer made such a big impression, though, it would be ridiculous not to expect an imminent return for her. Maybe think of a better name than Lady Hawk, though.
With Hawkeye being an original Avenger, the door is also open for him to make a grand return should the circumstances require it. If that doesn’t come to pass, we can at least rest easy in the knowledge that his story has been wrapped up – with a bow, no less – and that he made it home for Christmas.
Will Jack go LARPing?
God, let’s hope so.
It’s been a big few weeks for Marvel. Find out more about the MCU’s other big New York-set caper: here’s our guide to the Spider-Man: No Way Home ending, as well as a collection of all the Spider-Man: No Way Home Easter eggs you may have missed. Once you’ve read those, be sure to check out what’s next in the MCU with our comprehensive run-through of Marvel Phase 4.