Much like Scott Lang and Hope Van Dyne, Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye didn’t feature in Avengers: Infinity War whatsoever, and it turns out the Russo Brothers never had any intention of including Marvel’s wayward archer to begin with.
There’s a good reason for that, of course, as screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely have seemingly carved out a much bigger role for Hawkeye in Avengers 4 – word is it’ll involve that long-rumored transformation into Ronin, as previous set photos teased Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and their run-in with the Yakuza. Be that as it may, the wait to see the character back in action again hasn’t been easy and making it even harder now is Renner himself.
Taking to Instagram, the actor shared a photo of Hawkeye (seen in the gallery below) which in and of itself, wasn’t particularly exciting. However, it was his caption that’s got people talking, as Renner teased his return in next May’s blockbuster, writing: Got this feelin I need to SUITup soon …. #comingINhot #missmyfriends #lovemyfamily #marvelous #hawkeye #nestunknown
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Of course, how exactly Clint Barton will be brought back into the fold remains unknown, but a popular theory says that Thanos may be responsible for his return. You see, once the Mad Titan had successfully obtained all six Infinity Stones, snapped his fingers, and reduced half of the universe’s population to dust, only a few members of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes remained: Cap, Iron Man, Thor, Hulk, and Black Widow, along with Nebula and Rocket Raccoon.
Could it be that Thanos’ mass genocide also affected Hawkeye’s loved ones, though? Remember, Joss Whedon toyed around with Clint’s family home during Age of Ultron, and we all know how much the Russo Brothers like to call back to the MCU of old (see: Red Skull). Perhaps the sudden death of his wife and kids is enough to bring him back then?
Chalk that up as speculation for now, as details of Barton’s significant role in the as-yet-untitled Avengers 4 remain under lock and key, and with Captain Marvel still waiting in the wings, it’ll be some time yet before we know the full details of Hawkeye’s evolution. Again, Ronin appears to be the safe bet, but in a sequel that’s said to include elements of time travel and alternate timelines, we can’t be too sure…