One big question fans have as they anticipate the return of familiar Marvel TV characters like Daredevil and Kingpin is: “Will they be soft rebooted for the proper MCU?” Both characters have an elaborate backstory inclusive and exclusive of each other in the three seasons of Daredevil we got and a good amount of fans want those stories intact when we see them butt heads with movie characters.
While we won’t get a clear answer until we see these stories onscreen, Avengers producer Trinh Tran had some very interesting things to say about Hawkeye’s premise. In an excerpt from TV Guide, her quote reads:
The six episodes take place after the events of 2019’s Avengers: Endgame, when the five-year disappearance of half the population – including Clint’s wife and kids – was reversed. “The city has, in many ways, recuperated and continued thriving. But the same can’t be said for all its citizens.”
Let’s put things into perspective. That premise sounds uncannily the same as the first season of Daredevil, where the destruction from the first Avengers film left New York and Hell’s Kitchen in an unfortunate spot. All that damage to the economy and infrastructure essentially allowed people like Fisk to take over people’s lives.
Now, this isn’t a novel idea. Most transitional stories about a status quo change deal with some sort of fallout from that said change. Hawkeye dealing with the economic effects of the snap on a micro-level makes a ton of sense. But what makes this premise really fascinating is the reported involvement of Kingpin in the show. Vincent D’Onofrio is said to make his proper MCU debut at some point in the first season, presumably the big bad pulling the strings. With that and Tran‘s premise in mind, it seems like Marvel Studios is doing a full retread of what the first season of Daredevil did, with the OG villain behind the scheme.
This feels like an indication of a soft reboot in some way in that it’s Marvel Studios cherry-picking the good ideas from the Netflix shows and spinning them in a new way that involves the larger universe. We know that Echo is going to be in Hawkeye and given her ties to Kingpin, the rumors regarding D’Onofrio’s inclusion in her upcoming Disney+ show make sense. It’s also sound to think that Daredevil may appear in that show as well, in addition to his rumored stint in She-Hulk. Looking at the big picture, there’s a through-line that links all these street-level stories that a soft reboot would serve perfectly.
“Kingpin’s gonna kingpin,” you might say. Just because Marvel Studios is redoing the Daredevil Season 1 premise doesn’t mean it’s a reboot. For all we know, Kingpin could just be redoing what he did all those years ago after the Battle of New York. While that’s certainly a possibility, the premise of him getting out of jail after his definite imprisonment in Season 3 and reattempting the thing that jailed him in Season 1 in a show where there are Avengers around to stop him sounds too reckless for a twice-convicted felon.
But who knows?