Mild Spoiler Warning: This article discusses episode 3 of Hawkeye.
The Marvel Studios’ Disney+ series always know how to hold fans in a chokehold. First, Evan Peters sped onto the screen in WandaVision as Quicksilver, while Loki gave us Kang the Conqueror. As for Hawkeye, the third episode, titled ‘Echoes’, makes it seem as if the series is setting up the return of The Kingpin, and will reintroduce him into the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).
Wait, a return or a reintroduction? But the Kingpin, aka Wilson Fisk hasn’t appeared before… kind of.
In ‘Echoes’, viewers take a deep dive into the early years of Maya Lopez aka Echo, and audiences see the young child interact with her father William Lopez, who drops her off at the karate academy. William later tells her that “Uncle will pick you up after class”. A giant man later steps into frame, chuckles and extends his hand to lovingly play with the cheeks of young Maya.
Although we never get to see Maya’s uncle’s face, many comic book fans know that Maya adoptive father is Wilson Fisk, aka, the Kingpin. And he was memorably played by Vincent D’Onofrio in the Netflix-Marvel series, Daredevil.
In the comics, William Lopez was a member of the Tracksuit Mafia (the goons we met in the first two episodes of Hawkeye) and was murdered by the Ronin after the Snap. Who runs the Tracksuit Mafia, you ask?
Well, Clint Barton says Maya reports to someone. “Someone you don’t wanna mess with.” And that could be Wilson Fisk/The Kingpin.
We see the Tracksuit Mafia come for Kate Bishop in the earlier episodes because they mistook her as the Ronin. Though their intentions for running after Kate have yet to be explored, it could be that they’re seeking revenge on the death of William.
In the Hawkeye series Ronin is the one responsible for William’s death. In the comics, the Kingpin is responsible for the death of William.
In the comics, Fisk then raises Maya as his own daughter, making her the formidable villain she is, though her main opponent tends to be Daredevil himself. In a showdown with Daredevil, Maya learns the truth of her father’s death and attempted to avenge him by confronting and shooting her uncle in the eye. It is during this horrendous time Maya went on a soul-searching journey and later down the line, take on the Ronin mantle.
So is it Fisk? And more importantly, will D’Onofrio return? Since we never get to see Maya’s uncle face, and there’s no concrete evidence that the uncle is in fact Wilson (Marvel does love pulling tricks here and there), the little chuckle is far too similar to D’Onofrio, to not be him.
For a long time, Marvel Studios doesn’t associate itself with the Marvel series made for Netflix. In fact, President Kevin Feige even dismissed the Netflix Iron Fist series in an interview with Geek Culture back in August. However, the connections between these Netflix shows and the larger MCU are getting closer and closer and Fisk may just be the first character to make the jump from the Netflix-verse to the MCU.
It’s probably safe to assume that he won’t be the only one too. Aside from D’Onofrio’s anticipated return as Kingpin, Charlie Cox’s Matt Murdock is also heavily rumoured to appear in Spider-Man: No Way Home.
Interestingly enough, the new Spider-Man movie debuts on Dec 16, and there are still three more episodes of Hawkeye remaining. How amazing would it be, if both D’Onofrio’ and Cox make their official MCU debut at around the same time?
Guess all we have to do is keep our fingers crossed, and keep tuning in to Hawkeye on Disney+.