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Hawkeye's Finale Included A Cool Twist That Has Big Implications For Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. Fans

Linda Cardellini as Laura Barton in Hawkeye series
(Image credit: Marvel Studios)

Warning: SPOILERS for the Hawkeye episode “So This Is Christmas?” are ahead!

Well, folks, Hawkeye is over, and while it hasn’t been officially clarified yet if “So This Is Christmas?” is a season finale or series finale, there was nonetheless a lot to enjoy in this episode, from Vincent D’Onofrio’s Kingpin causing mayhem after being teased at the end of “Ronin” (and wearing an amazing Hawaiian shirt) to Clint Barton and Kate Bishop defeating the Tracksuit Mafia with all sorts of trick arrows. But one of the show’s subtler cool moments involved Linda Cardellini’s Laura Barton, Clint’s wife, and a connection she now has with the Marvel source material. That being said, this moment has big implications for fans of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., and not necessarily in a good way.

Hawkeye viewers will recall back in “Never Meet Your Heroes” that a Rolex watch was among the items retrieved from the Avengers Compound wreckage that was up for sale at that black market auction Kate Bishop discovered. Then in “Partners, Am I Right?,” Clint Barton told Laura that the watch could reveal the identity of someone who’s been “out of the game” for a long time. Fortunately, Kate found the watch in Maya Lopez’s apartment later in the same episode, and in “So This Is Christmas?,” Clint gave the watch to Laura when he returned home for Christmas. She thanked him and then turned the watch over, revealing a S.H.I.E.L.D. logo and the number 19 engraved on the back.

Laura Barton's SHIELD watch in Hawkeye series

(Image credit: Marvel Studios)

To the casual MCU fan, this implies that like Clint Barton, Laura Barton used to be an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D, but there’s more to it than that. You see, in the comics, Agent 19 is the codename Bobbi Morse used during her time with S.H.I.E.L.D. If that name doesn’t ring a bell, you might recognize her superhero identity, Mockingbird. Bobbi also goes way back with Clint in the comics, with the two of them having been married for a time. So in that sense, it makes sense why Laura would be classified as the MCU’s Mockingbird.

Here’s where things get problematic for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. fans: The Orville’s Adrianne Palicki appeared as Bobbi Morse in two seasons of the ABC series. Now to be fair, Palicki’s Bobbi was never actually called Mockingbird, and even if she was, it’s possible in the MCU, this is a codename shared by numerous characters, much like how we have various women who go by Black Widow. That being said, S.H.I.E.L.D., which was a production from the now-defunct Marvel Television, has never really been acknowledged by Marvel Studios projects, and the show’s ties to the wider MCU diminished in later seasons. So with the watch reveal in Hawkeye, it seems more likely that this is the MCU’s way of saying that Laura Barton is officially its Mockingbird, and no one else.

This isn’t even the first time this year that an aspect of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has been retconned, as the end of WandaVision saw Scarlet Witch reading the Darkhold, which looked way different than the version shown in S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 4. Still, now that the multiverse has been thrown open thanks to Loki, Spider-Man: No Way Home and the upcoming Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, it’s easy enough to envision the events in S.H.I.E.L.D. unfolding in another universe. Each reality can have its own Mockingbird, and at least Adrianne Palicki’s version had a decent amount of time to shine on TV.

As far as Linda Cardellini’s Laura Barton goes, it’s unclear if/when we’ll see her in the MCU again, though with that watch tease, it at least seems plausible she could return. What went down in Hawkeye didn’t require her to drive to New York to assist Clint Barton and Kate Bishop, but her past as a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent could be enough to loop her into one of the MCU’s forthcoming Disney+ shows, like Secret Invasion or Armor Wars. It word comes in that Cardellini will appear elsewhere in the MCU, we’ll let you know.

For now, the entirety of Hawkeye can now be streamed on Disney+. It hasn’t been announced what MCU show will hit the platform next, but you can learn what this franchise has coming up in our upcoming Marvel TV shows guide.

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.