When is Hawkeye set in the MCU?
The new streaming series opens with a major flashback scene. **CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR HAWKEYE EPISODES ONE AND TWO**
The landscape of the Marvel Cinematic Universe post-Avengers: Endgame has really come into focus this year, with several streaming shows and movies propelling the franchise into its most ambitious phase to date.
The latest series to step up to the plate is Marvel's Hawkeye on Disney Plus, which sees Jeremy Renner reprise his role as archer Clint Barton, with Hailee Steinfeld joining the franchise as protégé Kate Bishop.
Just like preceding shows WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and Loki, this festive-themed adventure largely takes place after the events of Avengers: Endgame.
This is evident in the grief Barton continues to struggle with after losing his dear friend and fellow superhero Natasha Romanoff aka Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), which causes him to make an early exit from the Captain America musical.
However, like those aforementioned Disney Plus series, Hawkeye also features flashback sequences, most notably the opening of the episode which takes us back to the events of 2012's The Avengers.
The scene introduces us to Kate Bishop as a young girl, eavesdropping on her parents as they argue in their luxurious penthouse home in the heart of New York City.
Of course, the moment that the timestamp '2012' flashes up, many fans will know where this is going, with the big reveal being that the Bishops were first-hand witnesses to the Chitauri invasion of Earth – later referred to as the Battle of New York.
In fact, Kate was very nearly killed by one of the alien warriors, but an intervention from Clint Barton saved her life and kick-started her fascination with archery.
The only other flashback in the first two episodes is achieved via archive footage from Avengers: Endgame, showing Barton's dark days after losing his family, when he took on the identity of murderous vigilante Ronin.
In this guise, he wreaked havoc throughout the criminal underworld and made countless enemies, with Renner telling RadioTimes.com it was "very, very important" to continue the storyline in this series.
Hawkeye is available to stream exclusively on Disney Plus. Check out more of our Fantasy coverage or visit our TV Guide to see what's on tonight.