Marvel Studios’ Hawkeye just aired its third episode on Disney+, and with it came the introduction of Alaqua Cox’s Echo and some big teases towards Vincent D’Onofrio’s Kingpin. Rumors have been swirling around his return to the role, and those whispers have a chance of being true. Not only was the villain teased, but viewers seemingly saw his hand and heard his laugh during the scene showing young Maya Lopez at the gym talking with her dad.
D'Onofrio's laugh is quite distinguishable, and fans across the world likely lit up with excitement at the slight glimpse of his criminal genius.
Echo and Kingpin are deeply connected in the comics with Maya being his adopted daughter. So all of those mentions of her uncle are no doubt directed at him—it's a perfect opening for Marvel to bring the villain back into the fold after Daredevil’s cancelation, especially since so many fans loved his portrayal.
There was another significant yet subtle reference to the character which many fans likely missed. But where was it?
Spider-Man's Taunt Makes the Cut
Warning - This section contains spoilers for Episode 3 of Hawkeye.
In the third installment of Marvel Studios’ Hawkeye, there is a crucial scene early in the episode that sees Maya Lopez running into Ronin as he slaughters people fiat an auto repair garage; tragically, one of those victims was Maya's own father.
Besides the apparent plot implications, there’s an exciting aspect to this scene that comic fans may have missed.
The garage where the Ronin massacre happened has a sign on it that reads “FAT MAN.” This may seem like two generic terms, but it seems to be a direct reference to the Kingpin of Crime himself: Wilson Fisk.
In Amazing Spider-Man #542, Peter refers to the villain as such, saying, “At the end of the day, you're just a fat man with an attitude..”
Ultimate Spider-Man #12 sees Spider-Man making more fat jokes at Fisk’s expense.
Another far more obscure piece of evidence lies within 2008’s Spider-Man game Web of Shadows, where a level titled “Fat Man Sings” sees the players fighting Kingpin’s goons in order to get a face-to-face meeting with him.
The Kingpin of Crime is Here
The subtle Easter Eggs that Marvel can pull off are always incredibly entertaining and hugely satisfying for comic fans who know what to look for. The fact that they referenced an obscure 2008 Spider-Man game is a tricky move, but nothing can get past the MCU fans.
Kingpin’s upcoming role in the wider universe is beyond exciting, especially given how organically Marvel is weaving him into the storyline. Tying his criminal reign of terror to Ronin’s war on crime during The Blip is a smart play by the writers. It's also fun to see how they are able to creatively use the time jump before The Blip across all of the MCU projects.
While it isn't known if or when the Kingpin of Crime will show up, fans still have the arrival of Florence Pugh’s Yelena Belova to look forward to. Until then, fans will have to wait to see what the next installment has in store for them.
Hawkeye airs weekly every Wednesday on Disney+.