Last week’s big revelation that Kate Bishop’s mother was in league with the Kingpin was big enough of a development in itself. The fact that it was Vincent D’Onofrio back in the role – following his peerless turn as the character in the Netflix Daredevil show – near enough sent the internet into meltdown. Couple this with a certain character’s appearance in Spider-Man: No Way Home (which is too soon to spoil, so I’ll have to be vague – sorry, Marvel fans) and it’s been an exciting few weeks for keen followers of the MCU.

With the conspiracy exposed, Clint and Kate prepare to take down Eleanor Bishop. With Kingpin also on the scene – and his part in the death of Maya Lopez’s father also revealed – as well as Yelena itching to carry out her mission of taking Clint out, the stage is set for multiple showdowns. Plus, there’s the matter of the watch to resolve too…

If all that sounds like a bit much, well…it is. It’s certainly far too many subplots for this series finale to bear, especially as this has all come together over the course of just six episodes. Despite the stratospheric level of excitement surrounding D’Onofrio’s return to the role of Kingpin and his decent amount of screen time here (plus: has he been digitally embiggened? He looked cartoonishly huge!), he feels shoehorned in and by the end of the episode – even though he gets some excellent scenes – the Kingpin just seems like an unnecessary extra element to add to an already busy narrative. The resolution to his subplot feels far too definitive too, though there are ways in which this can be retconned.

The watch – which was so highly sought after by the tracksuits in the opening episode – also ends up feeling like an afterthought, with the briefest of scenes to explain who it belongs to, raising far more questions than it answers.

That said, the episode has some great action and Kate Bishop is a welcome new addition to the MCU’s ever growing stable of heroes. It’s just such a shame that the series couldn’t stay focused on its titular hero/heroes instead of introducing – or reintroducing – so many other characters and plots; it just ends up feeling like it’s setting up other stuff, rather than just giving us the passing of the torch from Clint to Kate as expected.

The post-credits scene is beautiful though, giving fans a longer look at a sequence from one of the earlier episodes that was far too brief at the time.

In contrast to the two sharpshooting main characters who never miss, Marvel’s Hawkeye feels overall like a misfire – all the more disappointing as the other Disney Plus MCU shows have been so strong. It was bound to happen sooner or later, but it’s just a shame to end 2021’s MCU TV shows on a disappointing note.

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