Hawkeye season 1, episode 5 review: Ronin

Alaqua Cox as Maya Lopez in Marvel Studios' HAWKEYE. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.
Alaqua Cox as Maya Lopez in Marvel Studios' HAWKEYE. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved. /

Spoilers for Hawkeye season 1, episode 5, “Ronin,” follow. Please do not read until you have watched the episode. 

Hawkeye episode 5, titled “Ronin,” has just dropped on Disney Plus, and as expected, the threads are all coming together.

In last week’s episode, Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld) was thoroughly chastised by her mother Eleanor (Vera Farmiga) and Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner) after the Hawkeyes hacked into Eleanor’s laptop.

Jack’s (Tony Dalton) unnatural friendliness is further undermined by the realization is that he’s listed as the CEO of a sketchy-looking shell company.

Also, everyone got into a big fight at Maya Lopez/Echo’s (Alaqua Cox) apartment that ended in a draw, and dealing with the arrival of Black Widow Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh).

What is an Avenger, anyway?

As one character comments in this episode, “What does being an Avenger mean, anyway?” And what does it mean when you’ve gone on a vigilante spree to cleanse the world of gangsters and various never-do-wells?

These are questions that Clint grapples with throughout the miniseries in general and in Hawkeye episode 5 in particular, which involves another phone call to Laura (Linda Cardellini) for a pep talk and a stop by the Battle of New York Memorial.

“Natasha….you were the bravest of us. Loyal, stubborn…you always had to win, didn’t you? …I miss you.”

This comes just before another trip in the Ronin suit where he has a rematch fight with Maya.

“I’m not a superhero.”

Kate shares a tender moment with her mother Eleanor at the beginning episode, getting a reminder that she isn’t a superhero, even though it was her longtime dream of hers to, essentially, ,become an Avenger.

“I thought i could be one of them,” she muses. This is picked up later on as she stops by her own apartment, which Yelena has crashed, and they share a night of girl talk over a dinner of boxed macaroni and cheese.

“He came to protect his reputation,” Yelena tells Kate.

What’s a Black Widow to do?

When viewers last saw Yelena in Black Widow, in the post-credits scene she was visiting Natasha’s grave as Val sent on on her next assignment to take out Clint Barton.

Following the breakup of the Black Widow program as a whole, she was still traveling the world and trying to rescue the other Widows, where she is Snapped in 2018.

Upon waking (and learning that Natasha is dead), she has apparently become a mercenary, and went shortly afterward from to the Black Widow post-credits to Maya’s apartment.

Where do we go from here?

In other plot developments, Jack was far too accepting of being arrested for tax evasion, and Yelena tails Eleanor and discovers that she’s working with Wilson Fisk, the Kingpin of Daredevil notoriety (played by Vincent D’Onofrio).

Whatever Maya and Kazi are planning as well, Fisk will not be a fan of, apparently.

While this episode was full of dramatic reveals and to-be-examined-further-later musings on character, reputation and the like, it was also really heavy on exposition and didn’t quite mesh well as a whole. Still, it will be interesting to see how everything comes together next week and where that will lead the MCU in the future.

Hawkeye episode 5 thoughts

  • A lot of this episode took place in apartments – Kate’s, Grylls’s, Maya’s, Eleanor’s house,
  • Kate’s GPA of 3.8 is pretty amazing, though not entirely surprising. It’s still unknown what her double major studies are in, however.
  • Grylls the firefighter was dogsitting Lucky the Pizza Dog for the past several days, though he also gets to celebrate several holiday meals with Clint and Kate.
  • Grylls also picked up the new LARPer-inspired Hawkeye outfits from his police officer friend, though the reveal was kept offscreen.
  • There must be some clever reason for “You’re a Mean One, Mr Grinch” being the credits song besides the fact that this miniseries is set at Christmastime, but that hidden Easter Egg meaning is escaping me.

Next. Five good reasons to join the MCU fandom if you haven't already. dark

All episodes of Hawkeye will be streaming on Disney Plus when episode 6 drops next Wednesday.