Hawkeye (2021) mini-series review
Hawkeye is the latest Disney+ series from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This series follows the titular Clint Barton as he teams up with Kate Bishop, a young archer who ends up in over her head in a strange plot she stumbles upon. (There is a Christmas joke to make in here, and it would have felt appropriate if this review weren’t almost a month late…) While the series was well received, if I am not mistaken, the viewership for this series was significantly lower than those of the other live action MCU shows.
Now I’m not going to talk spoilers because- frankly I don’t really feel like it. But that means this will be a fairly bare-bones review. So would you like Hawkeye if you haven’t seen it? If you either set yourself to watching everything in the MCU so you don’t fall behind? Yes. That or you don’t mind a liter story that almost feels trivial even compared to the downright whimsical tone that Loki (2021) had to offer. Hawkeye does manage to be an easy watch, but a forgettable one that- well might deserve to be the least watched MCU series… You know what, it is better than Falcon and the Winter Soldier (2021)…
The series takes a bit to settle in, as Jeremy Renner essentially co-leads with Hailee Steinfeld’s Kate Bishop. However introducing a new character opposite a character we already know and splitting the screentime between them felt jarring at first. Neither really got a chance to breathe or grow as a character for the first few episodes, despite solid performances from both leads. At first Renner feels like he doesn’t even want to be there, but whether intentional or not, it really works for the “get home for Christmas” timer the series uses!
As far as the supporting cast? There’s far too many characters and far too much going on for this six episode series to feel trivial enough to sit back and enjoy, but the weight of the events feels so inconsequential that you end up feeling confused about what the importance of anything that happened actually is. This could be rectified depending on what Marvel does with these setups, but for now it feels like they had a solid story and packed in a bunch of additions because they didn’t know how else to introduce X, Y, and Z.
The other major issue I have with the series is the action. I’ll put it bluntly: The fight scenes were badly shot, badly lit, poorly edited, and at times not even properly choreographed. There’s one car chase that is quite good, so I’ll give the action overall a little credit. But every time the series wanted to do hand-to-hand combat I just knew we were in for nothing of substance. And that’s even by Marvel standards…
That said if there’s one major redeeming quality, it’s the tone. The lighter atmosphere of the show combined with the almost trivial story and Christmas backdrop made the series admittedly enjoyable. I laughed plenty and spent a considerable amount of the series smiling. On top of that, the series has hands down one of the most subtly moving scenes in the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe. So there’s that…
And if I had to decide between a 5/10 for its poor fight scenes and crammed character roster or a 6/10 being a downright entertaining series, the inclusion of certain aspects like Clint slowly losing his hearing and a completely deaf antagonist- on top of a few very memorable moments solidify that, as average as as the series is, it’s not a bad time. I do wish it stuck the landing in a more coherent way, but I didn’t dislike it. 6/10.
So Hawkeye? Did you watch it? What did you think? And what’s your favorite and least favorite MCU shows so far? Be sure to leave a like or a comment below and let us know! Thanks for reading!
-review by Ryan Prince