Who’s the better archer — Jeremy Renner’s Clint Barton or Hailee Steinfeld’s Kate Bishop? Well, just as comic book fans are sure to passionately debate the question of which superhero could beat other superheroes in a fight, there’s sure to be fans on either side of the question of whether Barton or Bishop would take home the archery trophy. But in the meantime, the actors got together and determined which one of them was the better marksman for a fun new Hawkeye promo that Disney+ posted this week.
The competition pits Jeremy Renner and Hailee Steinfeld against one another in three challenges — Darts, Cornhole, and Bow & Arrow. Steinfeld kicks things off with some smack talk, and she backs it up by grabbing the lead with Darts. The actors are given a wall of balloons to pop, with points increasing the closer to the center they hit. Renner has a clear lead at first, but Steinfeld pulls out an upset by hitting the center balloon. In honor of Hawkeye‘s Pizza Dog, their version of Cornhole is pizza-themed. Renner dominates in Cornhole, but everything is decided with the third challenge. You can watch the video below.
Both Jeremy Renner and Hailee Steinfeld are tasked with knocking down four Marvel action figures with toy bow and arrows, with each figure giving them two points. The figures are of Loki, Ultron, Thanos, and Taskmaster. Renner takes down all the figures except Ultron, earning six points. Unfortunately for Steinfeld, the younger actor only manages to take down Loki — well that’s the only action figure she takes down according to the rules. She knocks the other three down by hitting them with the bow. Considering the actors’ archer characters are often called upon to use their bows as clubs, you might argue those last hits should count, but otherwise Renner takes home the gold. Clearly, playing Marvel’s most famous archer for a decade — since his cameo in 2011’s Thor — has rubbed off on Renner.
The fact that Disney+ made the promo may be an indication that ratings for Hawkeye haven’t improved. After the first two episodes aired, word emerged that Jeremy Renner’s new series had the weakest audience numbers of all five original Marvel series that premiered on Disney+ this year. In spite of the connection to Black Widow, stellar reviews, and the long-awaited return of one of the Marvel Netflix series’ most popular villains, Hawkeye didn’t grab viewers like WandaVision or Loki did.
On one hand, Jeremy Renner’s hero has never been the most popular in Marvel — either in the comics or in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. While it’s only speculation, it could also be that as far as Hawkeye is concerned, Marvel may have shot itself in the foot in a couple of ways. First, Jeremy Renner’s new series premiered during the lead-up to Spider-Man: No Way Home, and may have been overshadowed by it, particularly since there were few obvious direct connections between the stories. Second, everything with the MCU right now seems to be all Multiverse, all the time, and — with the exception of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, which was bolstered by Captain America’s popularity — Hawkeye is one of the only Marvel Disney+ series released this year that has nothing to with the cosmic drama of alternate realities.