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The Abandoned An’ Forsaked – What’s the Deal With Hawkeye’s Hearing?

by  in Comic News Comment
The Abandoned An’ Forsaked – What’s the Deal With Hawkeye’s Hearing?

In this feature we examine comic book stories and ideas that were not only abandoned, but also had the stories/plots specifically “overturned” by a later writer (as if they were a legal precedent). Click here for an archive of all the previous editions of The Abandoned An’ Forsaked. Feel free to e-mail me at if you have any suggestions for future editions of this feature.

Today, we look at the surprisingly complicated story of whether Hawkeye is hearing impaired or not…

In the final issue of Hawkeye’s first mini-series (by Mark Gruenwald and Brett Breeding), Hawkeye and Mockingbird (who he met for the first time in this series) are captured by the evil Crossfire, who uses an ultra-sonic device to drive them to attack each other, forcing them to battle each other to the death. He gives them a break just to torment them a little more and Hawkeye comes up with a way to stop this…




In the end, Mockingbird and Hawkeye marry and in Avengers #239 (by Roger Stern, Al Milgrom and Joe Sinnott) we learn that Hawkeye’s hearing is now permanently damaged and Hawkeye now needs a hearing aid (which he chooses not to use during the Avengers visit to see David Letterman to help promote Wonder Man’s acting career)…




Over the years, however, the hearing aid was very rarely addressed. When it did, it was pretty much as a plot device (like a bad guy is using a sonic attack and Hawkeye turns his hearing aid off or something like that).

Finally, following Heroes Return (the follow-up to Heroes Reborn, with the heroes coming back to Earth after seemingly dying in Onslaught), Avengers Annual 2001 (by Kurt Busiek, Ian Churchill and Norm Rapmund), we learn that when Franklin Richards brought Hawkeye back, he fixed his hearing (Franklin similarly fixed Teen Tony and Mutated Wasp)…


So that’s that, right?

Not so fast! Go to the next page to see how this was re-visited…

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