So, Why Is Hawkeye A Christmas Show?

The latest MCU TV show isn't quite a holiday special, but it's certainly festive. Here's why according to producer Trinh Tran.

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The MCU TV show slate on Disney+ has given Marvel Studios the opportunity to explore some of the many heroes in the shared universe who haven't had a chance to stand in the spotlight. Thus far, shows like Wandavision, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, and Loki have taken great pains in giving some of the most popular characters their own voice and centralized stories that may have been missing in the large ensemble movies--and they've done so by busily hopping across genres and tones to create an eclectic mix. From international spy-thrillers to vintage nostalgia to time-traveling sci-fi, the MCU TV shows seem boundless in their potential.

But the most recent entry into the roster, Hawkeye, a solo series focusing on Clint Barton and the newly introduced Kate Bishop, has taken a different direction. Rather than trying to one-up any of the previous shows in terms of genre-bending or stylization, it's gone for a more streamlined approach: It's a Christmas story. Set in December with the pressure of the holidays in full swing, Hawkeye pits bow-and-arrow wielding superspy Barton against his own past as the killer vigilante Ronin and the hope that he can make it home for the holidays. On the surface it's an odd mix. But the strangeness is very intentional, according to executive producer Trinh Tran.

In speaking with GameSpot, Tran opened up about the choice to set Hawkeye over the holidays, explaining that it was, in part, a tactic to help "differentiate the show from the other MCU TV shows." Which certainly makes sense--the MCU has been extremely busy and crowded after a slowed down 2020, with the release schedule more packed than ever before. Having a hook that sets Hawkeye apart from the rest seems like a given. But there was more to it, Tran went on, saying that the key to the show is its scale.

When asked what exactly she hoped fans would take away from the Hawkeye viewing experience, she spoke plainly to that effect. "It's more of an intimate story," she explained. "I think what sets this show apart from bigger projects like Endgame or Infinity War is that it's more of a family story. There's so much heart and emotion in the struggles that our heroes face that makes it different. [...] I think it's the reliability factor that I want audiences to identify with because these are heroes without superpowers."

Of course, we couldn't conclude our conversation without asking about the teaser at the end of Black Widow, which featured Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh) being apparently sent off after Barton by Valentina Allegra de la Fontaine (Julia Louis Dreyfus)--but Tran was unsurprisingly coy.

"I can't give anything away," she said, "there is a reason why she has seen that photo, right? It's a matter of figuring out what makes sense in this story. What I can say is to expect a lot of twists and turns."

Hawkeye is currently airing on Disney+ every Wednesday.

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