Fans were very excited when leaked pictures from the sets of Avengers: Infinity Wars came out showing Jeremy Renner in the Hawkeye costume. The master archer of the Marvel universe was expected to appear in the movie, but strangely never made an appearance. Directors Russo brothers were then quoted as saying that the MCU was taking the long view with Clint Barton. While we did not know what it meant then, with the leaked pictures from the Avengers 4 sets, we now have some idea. Renner was seen not in his Hawkeye costume but in black boots with a gold trim, something that we know is Ronin, another of the characters that Barton took on in the comics. Ronin was first introduced in New Avengers #11, and was played by Maya Lopez who was Echo in the Daredevils comics if you remember. However, Hawkeye took on Ronin’s identity to keep his own self safe and his true identity a secret. In any case, if you are a fan of the archer, it is an exciting time for you. Here are some things we know about Hawkeye in Avengers 4:
1. Ronin means masterless samurai:
The word Ronin is Japanese and refers to samurais who have lost their masters or have lost favor with the rulers of Japan. They were known to carry two swords and weapons that would make it clear where
they were trained. Ronins have been part of the popular culture for a long time, appearing famously in Akiro Kurasawa’s movie Seven Samurais. A number of cowboys in the American Wild West also resemble these warriors.
2. Ronin’s mask has been taken by four different people:
While Maria Lopez was the first Ronin, the character has had four different identities over the years. Clint Barton is the most famous but he was only the second. When he took back his Hawkeye costume, it was Black Widow’s ex-husband who became Ronin. He used his character to lure Widow, Hawkeye and Mockingbird into some sort of trap. After him, it was the unlikely Eric Brooks, or Blade, who became Ronin to join the Mighty Avengers.
3. Ronin was made to be a mystery:
The character’s creator Brian Bendis has said in interviews that he created Ronin as a way to introduce something of a mystery knight whose identity is neither known to readers nor to the characters in the comics. Also, it was not Maya Lopez or Echo who was intended to be the first Ronin, but rather Matt Murdoch himself. However, that did not happen because Daredevil was in jail at the time.
4. Ronin was deaf:
When the character of Ronin was introduced initially, it was promised that it was someone hugely popular. This we know was a tease for Daredevil but as it turned out it had to be Maya. Fans did not really get what the deal was with making a big deal out of Ronin. Interesting, Maya is one of the top nemesis to haunt Daredevil. Called Echo, she first appeared in Daredevil Vol. 2 #9 in 1999. Like Matt is blind, Maya is deaf and only fights because she has an enhanced photographic sense. She can not fight in the dark because of that, and in more than one ways she is just the opposite of Murdoch.
5. Photographic reflexes:
This is something that Maya has similar to Taskmaster. She needs to see an action performed in front of her only once to duplicate it. She became a concert pianist and a dancer just looking at people play and dance before her. She used this skill to become a master martial artist. This is a common thread with all Ronin characters – they give up their previous expertise to take up martial arts. Maya, Clint Barton and Eric Brooks all do that when they don the Ronin’s costume.
6. Ronin was also a supervillain:
The third guy to take on the role of Ronin was Alexi Shostakov, previously the Red Guardian. He was once the Captain America of Soviet Union and husband of Black Widow. In 2010-11 Widowmaker series, a new Ronin appears and Black Widow sends for the help of Hawkeye since he was the last man to don the role. WIth Mockingbird, the two discover that the Red Guardian is back to take his revenge on his ex-wife and turning the hallowed Ronin costume into a super villain.
7. Moon Knight was also Ronin:
This was not in the regular but the Ultimate Marvel Universe. Moon Knight is known to be not quite right in the head, and he does have multiple personalities. Using this idea, the Ultimate Marvel Universe made him Ronin in one of his identities. He plays an anti-hero who defeats Spiderman to prove he is loyal to the Kingpin whose organization he is trying to defeat.