2:00 pm EDT, April 15, 2018

Where’s Hawkeye in ‘Avengers: Infinity War’? Theorizing over his mysterious absence

Marvel has been ramping up their marketing for the fast approaching Infinity War. However, eagle-eyed fans have noticed that one Avenger is suspiciously missing: Where’s Hawkeye?!

Several trailers, eye-catching posters and TV spots have already been released in anticipation of Infinity War hitting the big screen in April. However, Clint Barton, a.k.a. Hawkeye, has been missing from every single one.

An original Avenger, Hawkeye has been around since the first Thor movie. While he may not be as beloved, nor as big a player in the Marvel universe as his comic counterpart, he has had some important moments – notably, hiding away the Avengers on his farm, his connection with the Maximoff twins, and busting Wanda out of the Avengers complex in Civil War.

With that in mind, we’re going to theorize over where Hawkeye is and why he might be missing from the marketing — or Infinity War on a whole.

Hawkeye’s death

Perhaps the most obvious of all the potential options. An early death for Hawkeye could suggest why he might not appear in the marketing. After all, if there’s very little footage of him, Marvel wouldn’t want to give it all away in the trailers.

We have previously theorized on which Avengers were most likely to bite the dust in Infinity War, and Clint Barton already ranked quite highly on it. As he continues to remain absent from the trailers and posters, that suspicion that Hawkeye might die gets ever stronger.

Clint has died, and returned, in the comics before. With the MCU moving forward with heroes like Black Panther, Captain Marvel, and Ant Man and The Wasp, it wouldn’t be entirely surprising to see some of the old guard bow out as Marvel transitions out of Phase Three.

Becoming Ronin

Part of Avengers 4, the as yet untitled follow up to Infinity War, is slated to take place in Japan. With heavy speculation that Clint Barton might take on his alter-ego, Ronin, fans suspect that the reason for his absence in Infinity War might be related to the Japanese set storyline – though Clint Barton has, by his admission, retired from the superhero business.

The catalyst for that change could come during Infinity War. Thanos’ aim, as started in the trailers, is to wipe out half of the population of Earth – as well as to get his hands on the Infinity Stones. Clint’s family, still on their hidden farm, could be some of the casualties.

Hawkeye’s MCU trajectory has closely followed the Ultimates comics. In those, Clint’s family was assassinated by Black Widow. This could be the MCU’s interpretation of that storyline and bring Clint out of retirement for good. Though, arguably, might lead him down a darker path than Hawkeye fans might be accustomed to.

Soul Stone

A more recent, but no less prevalent theory, is that Hawkeye might be connected to the mission Soul Stone. The only Infinity Stone that we’ve yet to discover the location of, it is being theorized that Clint might be sent on a mission seeking out information about the Stone.

His absence, then, would make far more sense should Marvel want to keep that information under wraps. It could even tie into the previous point of Hawkeye becoming Ronin.

If there is significant devastation and casualties in Infinity War, the Avengers will need to utilize every single resource that they have at their disposal. Hawkeye has never been the flashy, powerhouse that the other members of the team are. But, as a former S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, he has some experience in going on undercover missions. Sending Hawkeye out to dig up information on the Soul Stone would make a certain amount of sense, especially if has nothing left to go back to.

The Russo Brothers address where Hawkeye is

For what it’s worth, various media including Slashfilm asked the question to the directors on a set visit. “Coming out of Civil War, he’s in the same position that Cap and Falcon are at the end of that movie,” they said. “And Ant-Man. Coming into this movie, you know… Characters on Cap’s side coming out of the Civil War, some made certain decisions and others made other decisions that led to different paths in them dealing with oversight in this movie in a different way. So Hawkeye’s on his own journey in this movie.”

What do you think Hawkeye will be up to in ‘Infinity War’?

Or will he be missing from the movie entirely?

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