Hawkeye episode 3 recap and review: About that ending

Jeremy Renner stars in Hawkeye on Disney Plus
(Image credit: Disney Plus/Marvel Studios)

We've all watched Hawkeye episode 3, right? Wow, what an episode. That ending left us room to ask questions, and everything else gave me all of the emotions. There may not have been an actual rollercoaster, but it was pretty impressive how much the team fit into 43 minutes.

So, it's time to break down the latest adventure of Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner) and Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld), who continue to thrill in the Disney Plus series.

Hawkeye episode 3 recap: Who the heck is Jack Duquesne?

The stories of Hawkeye episode 3 are simple. First, we get a flashback to formally introduce Maya Lopez aka Echo. It's one of the more endearing villain origin stories yet: deaf as a child, Lopez is going to school with non-handicapped kids even though her father promised that she could go to a school for the deaf. It turns out they didn't have that money. 

Her handicap and her father's mentorship, seem to have combined to give Echo a hardened edge that drives her to be skilled in martial arts (much like how Kate's father's death pushed her to archery). There's also a bit about her uncle, which my Hawkeye fan theory article pokes at. She also has a synthetic right leg. Flash forward to her father's death, which appears to be taking place during a fight between the Tracksuit Mafia and Ronin, we see Echo grieve and develop her grudge.

Hailee Steinfeld as Kate Bishop in hawkeye

(Image credit: Disney/Marvel)

Then, it's off to the races back in the present day. Echo identifies Clint's hearing aid, Kate gets some compliments about how she's too good at fighting goons to be obviously not in on the Ronin stuff and chaos boils over. Clint escapes from being taped up (while Kate struggles to free herself) and does all the normal Hawkeye things. Really cool arrow shots, anticipating everyone's moves and knocking everyone down, but not before Echo stomps on Barton's hearing aid, and the episode gets far more complicated. This progresses to a chase sequence and communication issues ensue due to Clint not being able to hear Kate. And while Bishop is impressed by the first trick arrows she fires, it's the Pym arrow that made me nearly jump out of my seat. 

Kate and Clint continue to bicker and bond, most interestingly when the youngest Barton calls dad to ask about when he's coming home. Eventually, our Hawkeyes get back to Bishop's mother's home, but there's someone waiting for them. As you may recall from the black market auction, Jack Duquesne has stolen the Ronin blade. He's also proven an excellent fencer. And these two plot points convene with Jack holding Barton's own blade inches from his face as the show cuts to black.

To explain this, let's travel back to 1965, in The Avengers Vol. 1, issue 19, where The Swordsman was introduced. That character, whose secret identity is Jacques Duquesne, seems to be a very different one than the guy that Tony Dalton is playing. Jacques actually mentored a young Clint Barton. But as Swordsman, he would be rejected from joining The Avengers, and later help them out when fighting Kang the Conqueror.

It will be very interesting to see what elements of this character make it to the show.

Hawkeye episode 3 review: The best yet

I didn't expect I'd be crying watching a TV show before 9 a.m. today, but that's the life I led. When Kate acts as intermediary between the hard-of-hearing Barton and his own son, I was floored by the emotions of the moment. Steinfeld hit the mood of being sad about how Barton had sacrificed his holidays for her, and it makes a ton of sense for her to be emotional considering how Kate Bishop lost her father. Their diner scene was also a winner for the burgeoning mentorship.

As mentioned above, the action was the other star of the episode. The fight sequences at the Tracksuit Mafia hideout and the chase sequence with all the trick arrows were highly entertaining, and the "aim high" line leading to the stunt with the Pym arrow? Truly impressive stuff. Curious if/how the Hawkeye show can top that. By my count there should be one more super-dangerous arrow we haven't seen in action yet.

Hailee Steinfeld and Jeremy Renner star in Hawkeye

(Image credit: Marvel Studios/Disney Plus)

Alaqua Cox (as Echo/Maya Lopez) and Zahn McClarnon (as William Lopez) truly hit all the right beats in their scenes together. It established a whole heck of a lot of why Echo is the way she is, and made her a character worthy of her own upcoming Marvel series. We didn't see Kazi's evolution to The Clown yet, but Fra Free did well with the moments he was given on screen negotiating business with Cox.

My only gripe about the episode? No Yelena Belova. Black Widow's sorta-sister was due for an appearance — not just by my opinion, but IMDb listed her as appearing in four episodes, and this was the third of six — and we didn't get her. That Black Widow post-credits scene made her incoming appearance pretty obvious, so I'm wondering how long we'll be waiting.

Hawkeye outlook

Just like with Hawkeye episodes 1 and 2, we had a winner here. I'm excited to see where things go with Jack Duquesne, and what twists we'll have in store for Eleanor Bishop (Vera Farmiga). How much does she know about his underworld work?

Further, this episode, and specifically Steinfeld's scene in the diner with Renner, continued to solidify her as a big player going forward. If she's not the new Hawkeye in the next Avengers team, and wearing some version of the outfit she sketched on that napkin? Someone messed up.

Henry T. Casey
Managing Editor (Entertainment, Streaming)

Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.