WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Old Man Hawkeye #9 by Ethan Sacks, Marco Checchetto, Andres Mossa and VC’s Joe Caramagna, in stores now.
In 2008, writer Mark Millar and artist Steve McNiven introduced readers to the Old Man Logan universe, a dark, dystopian future where the world’s superheroes, from the Avengers and the X-Men to the Fantastic Four, were all killed by the supervillains under the leadership of the Red Skull. As a result, the United States was left a wasteland, with people fighting for scraps to survive. Outside of Logan and a blind-but-just-as-deadly Hawkeye, there were no superheroes left.
However, Marvel’s latest venture into this alternate reality, Old Man Hawkeye, has expanded upon that world. Taking place a few years before the events of Millar and McNiven’s Old Man Logan, Old Man Hawkeye finds Clint Barton embarking on one last mission of vengeance before his sight is completely gone. As readers discover more about this dystopian world, it has been revealed that Kate Bishop, former Young Avenger and Clint’s old sidekick, is also alive. Moreover, Bucky Barnes, the Winter Soldier, was also kept alive (although he was back to his murderous ways thanks to the Red Skull).
Now, in Issue #9, we get a hint that another superhero might still be alive in the Old Man Logan universe: Matt Murdock, Daredevil.
Old Man Hawkeye #9 finally brings us the showdown that has been teased ever since Issue #1. The cybernetically-enhanced Bullseye finally catches up to Clint Barton, and the two marksmen start a brutal fight. Hawkeye fires arrow upon arrow, and Bullseye arms himself with dual sais, weapons that have been associated with the villain ever since he killed Daredevil’s love interest, Elektra, with one.
When Bullseye gets the upper hand, he tells Hawkeye that he hasn’t killed a proper superhero in 41 years. He says that the last hero he killed when Earth’s Mightiest Heroes fell was Daredevil, whom he stabbed with one of his sais. But here is where things get potentially interesting: Bullseye follows up by saying that before he could cut out Matt Murdock’s heart out as a trophy, Daredevil threw himself off a waterfall.
If there is one rule in fiction, whether it be comic books, television or movies, it’s that if there is no body then the character simply isn’t dead. A fall, especially one down a waterfall, essentially means that we will see this character again. It might have been more than four decades since he was stabbed by Bullseye, but there is a solid chance that Daredevil is still be alive in the Old Man Logan universe.
It’s important to note, however, that in 2016’s Old Man Logan #8 by Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino, a flashback sequence showed us that Daredevil was killed by Polaris right before the Punisher was murdered by Kraven the Hunter. However, a few months later saw the publication of Old Man Logan Annual #1 by Ed Brisson, Ryan Cady, Simone Di Meo and Hayden Sherman, which featured a storyline starring Old Man Punisher. Given that, and the fact that Old Man Hawkeye #9 mentions that Bullseye was the one to fight Daredevil (and not Polaris), it sounds like Marvel may simply be ignoring the events of Lemire and Sorrentino’s Old Man Logan #8.
Although Bullseye mentions his confrontation with Daredevil in passing, it might be all the more noteworthy. Now, the idea is installed and, if Old Man Matt Murdock shows up in one of the last four issues of the series, it won’t come out of nowhere. But what role could the former Devil of Hell’s Kitchen play in the series? Well, as we all know from Millar and McNiven’s original Old Man Logan miniseries, Hawkeye may be blind in this alternate future, but he is still a deadly archer with incomparable skills — one who can even drive a car with ease.
Throughout the Old Man Hawkeye series, we’ve seen Clint’s uncanny marksman skills start to fail him… meaning that, once his sight goes completely, he will find himself in need of a mentor to teach him about being a blind superhero — and who better to fill that role than an aging Matt Murdock?
If Murdock is still alive, and if he shows up before the end of Old Man Hawkeye, then we might be looking at the latest potential spinoff of the Old Man Logan universe. Once this latest chapter concludes, could Old Man Daredevil be around the corner?
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