Welcome to the Heavy Spoilers show I’m your host Paul aka the guy who’s been watching the newest Marvel show like a Hawk and in this video we’re gonna be breaking down all the easter eggs, hidden details, story and also discussing what we think is happening in the show.
Heavily based on the Matt Fraction run of the same name it follows Kate Bishop played by Hailee Steinfeld as she teams up with Clint Barton. When we last saw Clint he was talking to Wanda at the end of Endgame and then an image of him in the Ronin costume was shown to Yelena Belova in the post-credits scene of Black Widow.
That costume becomes extremely important in these first two episodes but as always we start with the Marvel Studios logo. There have been some slight updates to it including Shang-Chi who now appears in the M right as the text comes into view.
As for the episodes, we actually start all the way back in 2012, namely New York right as the Chitari invasion begins.
The orangey-yellow overlay of the year actually pulls directly from the colour scheme of the comic covers and we’ll talk about how the title sequence leans into it too.
Here we’re introduced to a young Kate Bishop and early on see not only her trophies for Archery but also her one for fencing which appears in episode 2. Kate in the comics was highly trained in Fencing and it’s nice that it keeps showing up.
We also see her rock climbing and doing a handstand which sort of foreshadows her climbing up the bell tower later on.
Kate overhears her mother Elanor and father James who are arguing about how they have to sell the penthouse due to their debts. James doesn’t want to do this and Eleanor says that a solution isn’t going to just fall out of the sky. This ends up being ironic as the penthouse is attacked and later on we can see that they kept it so I’m guessing James life insurance or something stopped them from having to move out.
The argument is interrupted when Kate’s eavesdropping is picked up and her dad visits her in a scene that’s sort of reminiscent of the I love you 3000 one from Avengers Endgame. Similar to Tony this is the last conversation that James has with his daughter and them once more bringing up things not just magically falling from the sky which yeah….subtext for you there, guys.
He instils her with the idea that the only control we have in life is how we deal with things that are thrown at us and the choices that we make. The death of her father very much leaves an empty spot in her life and I think this is why she very much gravitates towards Clint. There’s also the idea she discovers she’s getting a new stepdad and the idea of parental figures is clearly laced throughout the opening entry.
We also see a stuffed Dog toy potentially foreshadowing the dog later on and weirdly though it’s clearly there in Kate’s room, when she returns to it it’s gone. But no…no it couldn’t be him.
Eleanor shows that she’s a crack shot too by catching some food in her mouth and it is possible that down the line they might reveal she’s the villain behind it all.
I know Marvel doesn’t always lean into the comics as it would make it so easy to predict all the secrets and reveals but there might be some clues we can take from the source material.
In the comics, Eleanor was the one who apparently died and not Kate’s father however she popped up years later and it was revealed that she was actually behind the activities of Madame Masque. Now potentially they’ve combined the characters and it is possible that Elanor and masque are one and the same but we’ll talk about that later on in the video.
Just in the same way that Wandavision showed us the chaos that would come from the blip, Hawkeye gives us a view of what the Battle Of New York would be like for a citizen. They do an incredible one-shot take through the house in which Kate looks for her parents. There’s also a great use of purple in the surroundings which later becomes a signature colour of Kate.
During this highly traumatic experience, Kate is saved by Hawkeye and we see the moment that he jumps off the side of a skyscraper from another point of view. Not only was this a massive panel in the comics but it was also a big moment in the Avengers film and to add to this we know from the trailers that it’s going to be happening again but this time with Clint and Kate.
The loss of her dad coupled with seeing a man save her life clearly has a big impact on Kate and we then cut to Kate’s father’s funeral. Potentially they might reverse the Eleanor situation and have James be the one who fakes his death but that’s of course just a fan theory and we know how they tend to turn out.
The funeral scene really brings Kate and her Mother together and the former vows to protect them. Worried that something like the attack could happen again she dedicates her life to training and we see as she progresses through the years as a skilled archer and swordsman. We watch as she goes from 3rd place to first and also learns Karate. It’s easily my favourite title sequence from a Marvel series so far and it brilliantly uses similar iconography to the Mat Fraction run with lots of purples, lilacs, violets, blues and blacks to orchestrate this new hero.
We also catch Stane Tower in the intro before we cut to it in live-action.
I’m not too up to speed on my New York Geography but I couldn’t find this place on Google so potentially it’s a nod to Obidiah Stane though he is disgraced in the Marvel Universe so I dunno if they’d name a school after him.
Let me know in the comments below and also whilst you’re down there can you please click the thumbs up button and also subscribe as we’re gonna be doing weekly breakdowns on the show and we’ve got our episode 2 one dropping later on today.
For Whom The Bell Tolls
Here we catch Kate climbing up a clocktower in order to ring a giant bell after losing a dare.
After the first shot doesn’t work she goes from a simple tennis ball to a clip on the end for the rope and this is somewhat foreshadowing the trick arrows that we know she and Clint will be using later on in the show.
This actually also pulls directly from the comics and they ended up using several trick arrows in order to fight against the tracksuit mafia who show up later on.
The bell swings loose and ends up destroying the tower and because of this Kate is expelled from school.
On Manhattan Island, we cut to central station and this is actually where the famous Avengers Assemble moment happened in the 2012 film.
At the top of the building, we can also catch the first responders monument which was put there after the battle of New York to commemorate all those that helped and gave their lives during the attack.
Like the graphic novel, the series is going to be set at Christmas and it’s got a lot of similar iconography to what was in the original run.
We join the Bartons who are seeing Rogers The Musical, a broadway show about Captain America and the Battle Of New York showing how much its legacy still hangs over the city.
There are some great taglines for it such as an all America musical for an all American hero and we can also see one that reads a timeless story of a timeless hero.
Steve Rogers is actually nicknamed the Man out of time and the poster for it looks somewhat similar to the broadway show Hamilton.
Captain America of course performed the Star-Spangled Man with a plan throughout the country during the second world war and this was very much a comment on how he was used in real life to sell War Bonds.
Captain America has always been somewhat a tool of propaganda and the character has been commercialised over and over to put certain images. Hell, even Falcon and The Winter Soldier was literally about Captain America meant and here we see how he’s been twisted once more.
The bridge just outside of Central Station is the backdrop and we can also catch a cardboard cutout of Loki flying through the air on a back of a Chitari drone ship which you might remember from the Avengers. Clint pulls a bit of a face at that and in the film he fired an arrow at Loki at that point and he caught it but it then exploded.
The mock-up of the Avengers is hilarious and you have Hulk basically being just a guy in a green hoody with face paint on. Think the Thor and Tony ones are the best though and Cap hilariously sings about how he can do this all day. I love how Iron Man also takes off and the character did this at several points in the film, inspiring this pose.
Make sure you Hulk smash that like button.
There’s also potentially the waitress from the deleted scene from The Avengers who also appeared at the end. They also have a guy with a Pym Tech logo on that I think might be Ant-Man and as Hawkeye says he wasn’t even there.
However, it’s Black Widow who brings back bad memories for Clint and both he and she were of course trying to sacrifice themselves so that the other could live and take the soul stone. Clint watched her die and it’s clearly stuck with him. In many ways Kate represents him righting the wrongs of him losing a female sidekick though he doesn’t seem that pleased about it from the trailers.
Hawkeye’s Hearing Aid
Now here we learn that Clint also has a hearing aid and this pulls directly from the comics as in the Matt Fraction run he was starting to go deaf. Up until that point even though Hawkeye was a normal guy he was still regarded as a superhero whereas that run completely deconstructed him.
He was going through a divorce, losing his hearing and it massively grounded him and made him a landlord that had to put up with a lot of crap. In episode 2 we learn that he doesn’t know exactly when this happened but lots of exposure to explosions has clearly caught up to him.
Clint ends up leaving after a girl who has a Widow wig on with a ponytail waves at him and this was similar to how she had her hair when she died.
In the bathroom, we also see some graffiti left behind that says Thanos was right that I swear I didn’t put there even though I say it 8 times an hour. Clint seems to nod almost like if he had a point and if you’ve seen Eternals then you’ll know that the guy may have actually been doing things in our best interests.
He’s asked for a selfie by a fan and though it’s clear he’s been turned into a celebrity he doesn’t want to be one. This is a guy who was an assassin and marksman for many years and he’s just not ready for the commercialisation of his image.
He and the family decide to go to a Chinese restaurant for a succulent Chinese Meal and bloody hell I thought that lad got snapped, guy showed up 30 years old, dear me.
At Central station, Kate returns home to find her mother in the penthouse with her new fiance Jack. Jack not only is a similar name to James but he’s also got slicked-back hair and a moustache whilst her dad had a goatee.
Clearly, he’s been chosen because of his similarities but it rubs Kate the wrong way and when they hide the engagement it just gets her more annoyed than you are when I start pedalling the same Mephisto joke that I’ve been running into a ground for over a year now.
Huh huh huuuuhh it’s Mephisto.
Turns out Jack has moved in whilst Kate has been at school and there are swords now throughout the house which he’s obsessed with. This foreshadows him attempting to buy Clint’s sword later on in the episode. In the second episode he also shows off some of his fencing skills and I love how this theme is kept with him.
We later learn that his surname is Duquesne and if you’re familiar with the comics then you’ll know Jaque Duquesne is a character known as the swordsman. In the source material, he actually met Clint as a child and he’s the person that trained him to be an expert in Melee weapons. It’s gonna be interesting to see if this is brought over to the show and I think this would be a really interesting reveal later down the line.
At the restaurant, we get somewhat of an appearance by Laura aka Clint’s wife played by Linda Cartellini. Also, I’m sure you already know but just in case you don’t, Lila is played by Ava Russo aka Anthony Russo’s daughter.
So, all you need to do if you wanna be in a Marvel movie is have your dad direct some of the biggest movies of all time.
Clint’s normality is once more broken by a waiter who gives him some free food for saving the city and we cut across town to see a party. Due to Kate’s dress, she’s confused as a waitress and this allows her to sneak into the auction later on. This auction is somewhat based on the Matt Fraction Run but instead of Clint’s costume and sword, it was a videotape.
In the comics, Clint apparently assassinated a dictator and it was caught on camera and then this VHS was auctioned on the black market. There were several interested parties including Kingpin and Kate actually disguised herself as Madame Masque in order to sneak in. If Eleanor is Masque then she could’ve been holding the auction and it would explain why she’s not there as she wouldn’t need to buy the things if she’s selling them.
So lots of similarities, namely how Kate uses a costume to get into an auction and at it are items that are linked towards Clint’s darker side. However, where the big change is is that no one knows Clint was the Ronin whereas in the comics it was clearly him on the tape. He also appeared in the Ronin costume at one point kinda tying in with this too to bring everything across in a really cohesive way.
At the party, we also meet Jack’s Uncle Armand Ducaine who threatens Eleanor and he winds up dead. Again she may be behind this though there are of course the theories that its Kingpin, Jack or potentially the little punk Armond. I know it was you kid…I know it was you.
Now Armond actually pulls from the comics and in those he was Jacks father. On his 18th birthday, he gave Jacques a sword and told him the story of the Crimson Cavalier which inspired him to go on to become the swordsman. Armond was killed at one point in order to draw his son out which may or may not be similar to the plotline that we’re getting here.
Kate ends up leaving the party and outside she comes across a one-eyed Dog.
In the comics, this Dog belonged to Ivan of the Tracksuit Mafia and it was hit by a car. Ivan abandoned it and the first issue revolved around Clint saving its life. He took it to the vet and we learned that it was called Arrow but because it was too on the nose he ended up calling it Lucky.
Lucky also lost its eye like what we see and we actually got a full issue from his perspective. He ate a pizza out of the box much like this entry and judging by the posters and cast list he’s gonna be named Pizza dog which is something that Kate called him in the original run.
It was a great little entry and I’d absolutely love it if they did something along those lines later on in the series.
Back in the party, Kate catches Armond threatening her mother and Eleanor downplays even knowing what it’s about. I got a lot of Sharon Carter vibes from this and though it’s possibly a misdirect, it does give her motive to kill him.
Kate follows him to a secret black market auction like what we see in the comics and the Ronin outfit and Blade are put on sale.
That blade would never retract like that and fit in the handle but we did see something similar with Razorfist who too had a retractable one in Shang-Chi.
Jack also gives Armond some cheek and they bid over the sword which we learn was recovered from the Avengers Compound. This was of course destroyed in Endgame and Hawkeye carried it with him through the final battle. Weird they didn’t put two and two together with it being from the Avengers HQ and we learn that Clint also fought several mob bosses in the city. This could potentially introduce Kingpin if the rumours about him returning are true.
It also explains why Val wants him dead and clearly, he got up to a lot of things during those 5 years that we don’t yet know about.
Armond ends up winning the sword and when the suit is brought out the auction is attacked by the tracksuit mafia.
These are some of the main antagonists in the Matt Fraction run and they owned an apartment block that extorted those that lived there. Led by Ivan they say bro all the time which is also something that’s carried over to the dialogue here bro.
The first episode of Loki also had a Skrull in a tracksuit in the TVA waiting room so who knows we might even get that touched upon in this series though I doubt it.
Whilst everything is going Kate ends up grabbing the suit and we learn that the Mafia are after a watch from Avengers HQ. I’m not sure why exactly this is but potentially it might have some Iron Man armour in it like what we saw in Civil War or it might just be a nice timepiece.
Kate puts on the costume and she kicks the crap out of the mafia before they chase her through the wine cellar before she’s able to make her escape. The mafia has clearly had run-ins with the Ronin before as they recognise the costume. Outside after they discover the watch, Lucky who I’m just calling that because of the comics bites one of the mafias and together they flee through the streets.
Lucky is almost hit by a car similar to the comics but Kate manages to save him and together the pair run through the streets whilst the police arrive. It’s also at this point that I believe we see Kaze who is a psychopath from the Matt Fraction run that even dated Kate at some point. In the comics, he also worked for Kingpin and was somewhat of a psychotic clown. Might not be him but that’s who I’m guessing he is off the rumours.
Back at his hotel room, we watch the Bartons who have just returned from the Rockerfella centre. On the news, we see an anchor that you might recognise and he’s appeared in a number of MCU films including the end of Far From Home in which he introduced J Jonah Jameson. During this report, Clint realised that someone has taken up his mantle and we get flashes of his scene from Avengers Endgame in which we saw him take down a mob single-handedly.
Kate returns to her apartment and gives the dog some pizza before heading out and she discovers some butterscotch as well as Arnie’s body.
He was stabbed in the back by the looks of it which is, of course, a sign of betrayal and with the Ronin being at the scene the crime is probably gonna be pinned on Kate.
She heads out into the night and then the Mafia arrive once more potentially introducing Ivan as the leader. Like the comics, he’s wearing a black tracksuit so I think this is probably the leader even though he has hair.
They swarm Kate but Clint arrives donning somewhat of a homemade ninja costume and he takes them out before they flee. We end the episode with Clint unmasking her and if you’ve seen the second episode then you know the two are pairing up. I wanna talk about that more in my breakdown for the second one instead of just jumping ahead though so make sure you’re subscribed for that.
Now as for my thoughts on the episode, honestly I was a bit disappointed in it and outside of maybe the first episode of Wandavision, I think this is the weakest of the MCU shows so far. It had a brilliant opening sequence and title scene and then unfortunately it started to meander for a while and didn’t really get going until the end. I don’t wanna give my full review of episode 2 just yet but I had a lot of the same issues with that and I’m really hoping that the series picks up.
I was talking to Greg Alba over at Reel Rejects and he said that it just kinda feels like a Netflix show instead of a Disney plus one which I definitely agree with.
Lots of unnecessary and lowkey plot points and though I think they did a great job of introducing Kate, I think they didn’t really give her all that much to do.
Now I dunno what the general feeling for the show will be as I’m recording this before it’s been released online but I think based on this and the second episode that this may end up being the weakest MCU series thus far which sucks as the graphic novel is amazing.
Hailee Steinfield is really carrying the show and though Jeremy Renner is doing the best with what he has I’m not sure if they’re quite nailing what makes people like his character in the comics and movies.
Either way, let me know your thoughts below and what you think of the show and as I’ve said 500 times I’ll be back later with another breakdown for you.
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If you want something else to watch then make sure you check out our breakdown of the perfect scene in Spider-Man Homecoming. We break down the entire thing so it’s definitely worth checking out if you wanna know more.
With that out the way thank you for sitting through the video, I’ve been Paul and I’ll see you next time. Take care, Peace