"This is Kate Bishop. She is without a doubt the finest and most gifted bowman I’ve ever met but she’s like nine years old and spoiled rotten.
She’s pretty great.”
Clint: Y’know what, never mind. Here.
Bobbi: Well there you go, Clint Barton. You’re now officially divorced. Happy Valentine’s Day.
Clint: Aww, really? That today?
Bobbi: That wasn’t me. The last time I saw you… I saw anyone, was before… that. Whatever you thought… whatever was said…
Clint: It was a skrull.
Bobbi: I came back to tell you it was over, Clint. I had filed divorce papers. I’m not your wife anymore.
Continuity is nearly always a slippery thing, never quite an exact science. For Clint and Bobbi’s marital status, things are made more complicated by the fact that twenty years after Bobbi’s death, her final moments were retconned into being those of her Skrull duplicate’s. McCann and López’s Reunion went a long way to iron out those kinks, reframing the last few issues of “Bobbi’s” life to fall in line with her abduction and subsequent return.
The biggest clarification made in the Reunion was this—Clint wasn’t a widower, as he’d thought for so many years. Bobbi had filed the papers before she was abducted, before she “died,” and therefore the two of them were legally divorced. Over the course of that series, this destabilizes a lot of what Clint knows about himself and his relationship to Bobbi, but it ultimately allows the two of them to start over with less complications.
Flash forward a few years to Fraction’s Hawkeye, and we have this scene—Clint and Bobbi, signing divorce papers. Does that contradict, then, what McCann had established a few years before? Not necessarily. I don’t have a hard time believing that “was though dead but had in fact been abducted by alien invaders” is a legal status that complicates paperwork. And Clint, who had no knowledge of Bobbi filing the earlier papers, would have had to officially sign the documents at some point.
Ultimately, though, I think this scene works as a grounding point. It reminds us of where Bobbi and Clint stand, digs in the pain of their crumbling relationship just a bit more. In the Reunion, we didn’t know what Bobbi and Clint were to one another—and neither did they. In Hawkeye & Mockingbird, they were an established couple, boyfriend and girlfriend. In Hawkeye, there’s no doubt about it—Bobbi’s the Ex. But that doesn’t preclude her from being a big part of Clint’s life.
From Hawkeye Volume 4 #08 (Matt Fraction & David Aja) and New Avengers: The Reunion #02 (Jim McCann & David López)
SECRET AVENGERS #9 ALES KOT (W) MICHAEL WALSH (A) Cover by TRADD MOORE DEADPOOL 75TH VARIANT COVER BY TBA • TLÖN? TLÖN! How many more secrets are going to be uncovered? In this issue? Like, right now? MANY! • Hawkeye and Deadpool work together to stop a deranged mullet-wearing ex-wrestler! But Deadpool has a SECRET! • Maria Hill figures things out! DOOMED ESCAPE ATTEMPT! DESPERATE SCIENTIST! LAST HOPE! Erhmagerd, is BLACK WIDOW alive? 32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99
HAWKEYE VS. DEADPOOL #1 (of 4) GERRY DUGGAN (W) • MATTEO LOLLI (A) Cover by JAMES HARREN VARIANT COVER BY Jason Pearson • Trick or treat! It’s Halloween in Brooklyn, and that can only mean one thing -- disaster is right around the corner! • Why are the bad guys dressed as good guys? And will Deadpool and Hawkeye kill each other before they figure it out? The blockbuster comic event of the fall returns for its official #1 issue (even though this is really issue 2, but what does a number really even MEAN anyway?)! 32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99
HAWKEYE #22 MATT FRACTION (W) DAVID AJA (A/C) • Hawkeyes vs. Tracksuits. Final Round! 32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99
Clint: Don’t thank me for getting arrested for you too much, or people will start to talk… I’m in trouble with this. Please don’t yell at me. Stark already called. Cap too, as in— America. I wonder if anybody’s ever been fired from the Avengers before. Stark says there’s a behavior and morals clause in the contract… Shoulda read this before I signed it…
Cap has only really appeared in one issue of Hawkeye so far, but that doesn’t stop him from being a presence in this book. Way back in issue #01 Clint defined his code in relation to Cap’s— it’s all fine and well to be a boy scout when you’re standing next to the Captain, but when you aren’t the rules can be bent.
And then in this issue, Clint brings up the association again. The leaders of the Avengers are calling Clint to tell him not to get arrested— and though he may claim otherwise, that matters to him. He doesn’t want to be the guy constantly being called out for screwing up. Again, that moral high ground is gone— he can’t really articulate why he’s doing what he is, so there’s no fair response to give Steve and Tony. (Or the other Avengers, who show up in the next issue.)
This book is so much about Clint and his persona while he’s “alone,” but even that is crafted by comparisons. Kate, Steve, Jessica, Natasha, Barney, Bobbi… even Danny Rand, who doesn’t actually appear. All of them have some bearing on Clint’s day-to-day, and therefore he’s never truly just a man in isolation. The thing of it is, he doesn’t seem to get that, yet.
From Hawkeye Volume 4 #08 (Matt Fraction & David Aja)
Clint: Um. I’m an Avenger?
Officer: Are you Iron Fist?
Clint: Jeez why does everybody keep asking me that—
Officer: Get down!
Clint: Okay, okay— Seriously though I’m an Avenger. I.D. and everything is in my— WAAHHHH— But it’s okay. It’s all okay. Good guys win. …right?
Clint has never really broken his habit of getting arrested, and those arrests usually happen because he’s picked up a cause— something he cannot or will not let go of, for whatever reason. He went to jail for the Thunderbolts because he believed, wholeheartedly, that doing so would give them a chance at redemption. During Dark Reign he was on the opposite side of the law because he knew a world run by Norman Osborn couldn’t be right.
But what’s his cause, here? Yes, the Tracksuits are his enemies, and yes, he wants to help Penny out of the goodness of his heart. But there’s no real moral backing for what he’s doing, and perhaps that’s why is overall position is so confused.
Good guys win… but only if Clint’s still doing the right thing. The self-doubt here is telling, not in that it tells us that Clint’s wrong, but because it says he doesn’t know if he’s right. And that’s a novel position for Clint Barton: Self-Righteous Superhero Extraordinaire.
From Hawkeye Volume 4 #08 (Matt Fraction & David Aja)
There’s a few different ways to follow comics— you can buy individual issues as they come out monthly, or wait until these issues are collected and released as bound volumes, or trades.
From there, you’ll want to grab volume 3—LA Woman—which will collect the next group of issues. However, that volume won’t be available until this October.
You can always order the issues individually from sites like Midtown or Things From Another World. You can also purchase and read the issues digitally through comiXology. Or you can always stop by your local comicbook shop and see if they either have the issues in stock, or can order them for you.
Basically, you’ll be looking for issues #12 onward either way, but how you get and read them is up to you.
HAWKEYE #19 Matt Fraction | David Aja | Matt Hollingsworth 07.30.2014 ( x )
HeroesCon Sketch - Hawkeyes by Marcio Takara