Read our previous reviews of Hawkeye here.

At the tail end of “Never Meet Your Heroes,” Kate (Hailee Steinfeld) finds herself in a tough predicament going against the Tracksuit gang. Out of nowhere, Clint (Jeremy Renner) comes to save her, and that’s where “Hide and Seek” picks up immediately. The first part of this episode is where the surrogate daughter/reluctant father relationship begins between Kate and Clint. It works because of how Steinfeld and Renner act off of each other. Clint has no desire to be a teacher to anybody. He’s perturbed to clean up the mess “Ronan” has made and is focused on getting the suit back. Kate is just happy to be around the person she’s looked up to and is eager to help. We’ve seen this mentor/mentee relationship in other action media, but it works because of who plays these characters. Oh, the irony of Kate being in danger when her mom owns her security company.

Clint’s hearing aid is essential when Kate asks him about it. Throughout the MCU, we’ve seen overpowered beings heal and regenerate from blasts and explosions. Tony Stark died withstanding the power of the Infinity Gauntlet in Endgame. It’s important to remember that inside the Avengers, there are humans and these battles take things from you. With that quick montage, it shows that Clint isn’t able to walk away unscathed from both a physical and mental sense. Not everybody can be invincible. With characters like Makkari in Eternals and Echo, Marvel is actively deciding to be inclusive to the deaf community.

They split up on a quest that leads Clint to the NY Larpers – a mid-evil role-playing guild of dedicated fans. Because his whole stature in the episode is serious, it’s funny when he has to walk through a “war” in Gladiator-like fashion. When Clint meets up with the guy in the suit, he asks him to let beat him in the battle. “You’re a superhero in real life. This is as close as I’ll ever get to being one.” One arc that Clint will go through realizes his true impact. Sure, he’s no Hulk or Thor, but he’s one of the original Avengers. Right now, he’s numb to it – even with the admiration that Kate gives him. Maybe as they go through this mission, he’ll appreciate it.

The tension between Kate and Jack (Tony Dalton) hits an all-time high at dinner. Somebody is responsible for Armaud’s death, and Kate has her sights on him. Their sword fight plays into those suspicions. Eleanor (Vera Farmiga) is naïve to many coincidences, which is another trope. It continues their storyline of whom the protector and protected are. Eleanor wants Kate to have a nice, cozy life, but Kate wants something different for obvious reasons – she has an insight into Eleanor’s blind spot, which may work against her later.

“Hide and Seek” gives us some tent poles Hawkeye can build upon for the remaining four episodes. Clint has a fixed amount of time to get out of a growing problem, seemingly. Kate has to go on her own hero’s journey while protecting her mom before the wedding bells ring. The Tracksuit gang has a leader revealed to be Maya Lopez/ Echo (Alaqua Cox) at the very end. We still have to find out how she got up in the chain of command. If the Hawkeye series was over six episodes, these pillars may be a tad too thin, but are currently moving at the right pace.

Photo Credit: Disney/Marvel