One of the most irredeemable villains from Netflix’s Daredevil could end up replacing Hawkeye on the MCU’s Avengers lineup.
In 2015, Marvel Television began to release a number of series starring some of their smaller-scale heroes onto Netflix. The first series to be released, Daredevil, proved to be a critical success, and it was followed up by several other shows starring some of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s street-level heroes. In the years since then, the canonicity of the Marvel Netflix shows has been a subject of heavy debate. However, this may all change with Marvel Studios’ upcoming Spider-Man: No Way Home, which has been heavily rumored to feature Daredevil star Charlie Cox returning as Matt Murdock.
If the rumors are true and Cox returns, that could open the door for a number of fan-favorite characters from the Netflix shows to join the MCU. One of the most interesting potential returns that could come from this is one of Daredevil’s most irredeemable foes: Benjamin “Dex” Poindexter, better known in the comics as Bullseye. Should the MCU follow the route of the comics if they bring back Dex, there is even potential for him to join the Avengers as the newest incarnation of Hawkeye.
When audiences last saw Dex (Wilson Bethel), the villain had been defeated by Daredevil and Kingpin (Vincent D’Onofrio) and his spine had been broken. However, in the final shot of the entire series, Dex was seen having his spine reconstructed with Cogmium steel as his irises turned into bullseyes, hinting at his return as Bullseye in a potential fourth season that never ended up happening.
In the comics, Bullseye is a recurring thorn in Daredevil’s side and is widely regarded as one of the Marvel universe’s greatest assassins. As part of 2008’s Dark Reign event, Norman Osborn created the Dark Avengers and placed Bullseye on the team, giving him Hawkeye’s equipment and codename. His new heroic title did not dissuade Bullseye from his more psychotic tendencies, and the assassin continued to leave a path of destruction in his wake. This led to the infuriated Clint Barton revealing his identity to the world, and a vicious rivalry developed between himself and Bullseye.
In the MCU, Barton is arguably the most “human” superhero, with a family and a sense of humor about his choice of equipment compared to the threats the Avengers face. Replacing him with a vicious serial killer could certainly shake up the dynamic of the Avengers and could allow Marvel to take the character of Hawkeye in a completely different direction. There has already been a lot of speculation that the Dark Avengers are coming to the MCU, and if the rumors prove to be true, then Bullseye is a perfect candidate because of his comic history with the team and his status in the universe.
Dex’s potential return could also set him up for a long-overdue rematch with Matt Murdock. With a rebuilt Cogmium spine and some deadly new equipment, the villain may pose more of a threat to Daredevil than ever before. In addition, should Marvel choose to keep Clint Barton alive and active in the MCU, a showdown between the Hawkeyes would certainly be something to see, especially considering their comic-book rivalry.
If characters from Marvel’s Netflix shows truly do start popping back up, the MCU is in a prime position to have Bullseye take over as Hawkeye. Jeremy Renner’s time as Clint Barton seems to be coming to an end, and while the Hawkeye Disney + series will be introducing Barton’s comic successor, Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld), there’s ultimately no telling what will happen. Marvel Studios certainly don’t have to bring back everyone from the Netflix shows, but there’s no denying that there’s a lot of untapped potential in several of their characters, particularly ones whose storylines were left unresolved like Dex.
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