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Hawkeye’s Vincent D’Onofrio Addresses Fans’ Criticisms Of The Biggest Change Made To Kingpin

Vincent D'Onofrio's Kingpin wearing Hawaiian shirt in Hawkeye series
(Image credit: Marvel Studios)

Spoilers for Hawkeye and Spider-Man: No Way Home lie ahead.

Bringing Vincent D'Onofrio's Wilson Fisk (a.k.a. Kingpin) into Hawkeye was one of the best decisions Marvel Studios has ever made. It allowed for the Netflix Marvel continuity to finally cross over to the mainstream universe. Of course, Charlie Cox’s Matt Murdock popping up in Spider-Man: No Way Home was the cherry on top. But the reintroduction of Fisk was met with some unexpected backlash, though. Upon his debut, the character drew heavy criticism from Daredevil fans due to a change that's been made to him. Now, after hearing some of the fans’ qualms, D’Onofrio has addressedd their comments.

As with any character introduction (or re-introduction, in this case), there are bound to be some who might find fault with a creative decision. While watching Hawkeye, many viewers noticed that Kingpin was stronger than usual. With this, many took to social media to let Marvel and Vincent D'Onofrio himself know how they felt. When discussing the criticisms with Comicbook.com's Comic Book Nation podcast, the actor provided some diplomatic thoughts: 

You know I learned recently, a couple of the fans, they were very excited about it, they were commenting about the strength that I have. Because I'm throwing Kate [Bishop] around and stuff. But I totally forgot. I just saw a clip on Twitter of me and Charlie [Cox] fighting in [Stephen] DeKnight's first season. Obviously, he's an incredible director. He helped develop the character of Wilson Fisk.

So according to the Daredevil alum, the Big Bad has always been that strong, and it's actually not too surprising that this would be the case. Throughout his history in television, film, and comic books, Wilson Fisk has always been regarded for his tremendous strength. The actor added further emphasized his point using a scene from the original Netflix series:

There's a scene that we shot on an alley, in a street in Brooklyn, where I'm literally throwing Daredevil (Charlie) through the air. Like, I'm picking him up and swinging him 15 feet into a garbage can. I do it a few times in that fight. It's no different, it's really not. So, I keep saying that it's the same Fisk that was in Daredevil. It's the same canon, but people get confused about things. I understand.

Despite the criticism, the Hawkeye star understands where the confusion could happen. Of course, Vincent D’Onofrio isn’t the first actor to show off the crime lord’s physicality. Michael Clarke Duncan manhandled Ben Affleck’s Matt Murdock similarly in the 2003 film.

One would assume that the fan backlash won’t keep Vincent D’Onofrio's Wilson Fisk from popping up in the MCU again. Based on the social media response, it seems that most were just happy to see the character, in some form, again. The changes also appeared to be welcome, especially one alteration that D'Onofrio really wanted to use to differentiate his Kingpin this time around. Let's hope it won't be too long before the iconic bad guy is on our screens again.

Hawkeye is currently available to stream on Disney+.

Adreon Patterson

A boy from Greenwood, South Carolina. CinemaBlend Contributor. An animation enthusiast (anime, US and international films, television). Freelance writer, designer and artist. Lover of music (US and international).