Despite the intense excitement for Avengers: Endgame has remained largely cloaked in mystery, and the new trailer for the Marvel Studios sequel has introduced one more: the identity of the girl being trained in archery by Clint Barton.
No doubt, given the scenario, speculation immediately went to a certain fan-favorite archer from Marvel Comics, Kate Bishop, who also goes by the name Hawkeye. However, she's almost certainly a character we first met four years ago.
Back On the Farm
The girl is undoubtedly Lila Barton, Clint's eldest child. The brief trailer sequence appears to take place on Clint Barton's secret homestead, introduced in 2015's Avengers: Age of Ultron. If you look closely, you can see Laura Barton and their sons Cooper and Nathaniel in the background. Considering the dark turn Clint makes toward becoming Ronin, many fans have speculated he lost some, if not all, of his family when Thanos snapped his fingers in Avengers: Infinity War.
If this scene is a flashback to just before that moment, it would explain why this Clint Barton is so happy, as opposed to the angry, bloodthirsty one we've seen previously in the Endgame marketing.
However, the timeline doesn't quite add up. The events of Age of Ultron took place in 2015, the year of the film's release, but, according to Marvel Studios, Infinity War unfolds in 2017. When we met Lila in Age of Ultron, she was considerably younger than the apparent teenager in the trailer, perhaps no more than 8 or 9 years old.
The Real Hawkeye
No matter her age, the archery scene is clearly intended as a nod to Kate Bishop, the young woman introduced as Hawkeye in 2005, in Marvel's Young Avengers.
A world-class archer, even before she was trained by Clint, Kate was the leader of, first, the Young Avengers and then the West Cost Avengers. Seeing a young woman training with Clint is immediately evocative of that character, even though it almost certainly isn't her. This could just be a shout-out to the character, but it could turn out to be more.
With many of the original Avengers expected to depart the Marvel Cinematic Universe with Endgame, it makes sense for the film to set up a next generation that could take up the torch and become heroes in their own right. This moment in the trailer may suggest Lila could pick up her father's bow. For all we know, Bishop is the name adopted by the Bartons so they can live in anonymity, providng Lila with a new identity, should Marvel seek to introduce the Young Avengers as part of its Phase Four plans.
Directed by Joe and Anthony Russo, Avengers: Endgame stars Robert Downey Jr., Josh Brolin, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Olsen, Chadwick Boseman, Sebastian Stan, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Bettany, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Benedict Wong, Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Pom Klementieff, Scarlett Johansson, Tom Holland and Anthony Mackie. The film arrives April 26.