Hawkeye landed on Disney Plus this morning and didn’t disappoint. The show established Hailee Steinfeld’s Kate Bishop as a future MCU mainstay, gave us an amusing peek into Clint Barton’s everyday life, and contained some extremely fun action scenes. But, as yet, we don’t have any idea who the show’s big bad will be.
The internet is hot with gossip that Vincent D’Onofrio is back as Kingpin, with his adoptive daughter Echo appearing and already confirmed for her own spinoff. We also know that Florence Pugh’s Yelena and Julia Louis Dreyfus’ Contessa will play some role in the show. But, for now, at least, the antagonist appears to be Kate’s stepfather-to-be, Tony Dalton’s Jack Duquesne.
So far we know he’s obsessed with swords, is likely implicated in the murder of his uncle Armand, and is hiding his true skills with a blade. More revelations are likely coming soon, though fans of Marvel comics have a better idea than most where this might be going.
On paper, Duquesne is better known as the longtime Hawkeye/Avengers villain The Swordsman. The character made his debut in 1965 and was originally designed as a villainous counterpoint to Hawkeye himself. In fact, as per his original appearances, he taught Clint all he knew about blades.
The pair fell out when Clint discovered Duquesne was stealing money to pay his gambling debts. Though, things really came to a head when Clint blocked his application to join the Avengers on the basis that Duquesne was wanted in several states and previously had threatened to kill Captain America.
Despite this, he eventually weaseled his way into the ranks of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, though was soon revealed as a double-agent for the Mandarin. But, in a decision that may be echoed in the Disney Plus show, Duquesne couldn’t bring himself to commit any truly evil acts.
Since then, The Swordsman has been a reluctant villain, often joining forces with the heroes when the situation becomes truly dire. Whoever is really pulling the strings in Hawkeye likely has some power over Duquesne, though if he’s commanded to kill Kate or her mother, it’s almost certain he won’t be able to go through with it.
Here’s hoping for some answers in episode 3 of Hawkeye next Wednesday.