Clint: So note to self, then. For the next life: Screw everybody. Oh who am I fooling? Take my hand! Take it!
Clint: I don’t want a next life. I just want a nap.
Clint’s obsession with napping is probably a metaphor for larger things—emotional fatigue being the one that most readily comes to mind. If you’ll recall, in a recent issue of Secret Avengers, he puts off going after the big bads for a day because all he wants to do is go home and sleep. That was after a long, and emotionally draining, mission. So Clint’s desire to recharge like is probably an indicator of just how much he feels things. (Too much, he’d probably tell you.)
This issue put Clint in an interesting position, because the audience is supposed to think he’s killed an enemy of the state for most of it. If that’s the case, why does he care about the fate of a ninja assassin who’s trying to kill him? But he does care—he’s supposed to care, about every human life. This was probably one of the big signs that he hadn’t actually committed the act on the tape. Even as the ninja is trying to kill him, Clint’s reaching out to save him.
And so this scene ends with the jaded sentiment—I don’t want a next life. I just want a nap. Because trying to save people is hard work, work that compromises you emotionally. And even then, it’s impossible to save everyone.
From Hawkeye Volume 4 #05 (Matt Fraction & Javier Pulido)