Movies, video games, and other popular media are seemingly obsessed with the idea of bows and arrows being comparable to actual guns or super powers. I think it’s dumb.
Let’s look at Hawkeye, for example. Arguably incredibly lame, but a superhero nonetheless. An original Avenger to boot. So what makes him such an exceptional addition to the team? Nothing. From his own Wikipedia page:
” Hawkeye has no superhuman powers… -he is at the very peak of human conditioning. “
They literally picked this dude up from the circus. He’s just really fit, that’s about it. Out of all the weapon specialists S.H.I.E.L.D. could have chosen they went with the guy who can do arrows good. Because they really liked The Hunger Games, probably.
There are a whole bunch of minor reasons why this bothers me, but my main one is this: what happens when you run out of arrows? It happens to Hawkeye in the first Avengers movie. He gets stuck on a rooftop beating the aliens, equipped with laser guns, with his now useless bow until he’s nearly blown up. This isn’t The Lord of The Rings, and Jeremy Renner is a poor substitute for Legolas.
At this point, I’m sure lots of you disagree with me. You’re too caught up in your Robin Hood fantasies, and my minced words won’t change your mind. But you know who does agree with me? Human History. Crossbows happened because people unilaterally decided bows were crap. And then they moved on to firearms and then I assume in the case of the Marvel Universe, laser guns. So Hawkeye, you can aim? Cool. Aim with a laser gun. Stop running out of arrows, and stop letting down your team because it feels cooler.
Now look, even I’m willing to admit, anyone that can pull a William Tell is cool in my book. And yes, archery makes for some pretty cool scenes. But can we stop pretending that it’s a better alternative to anything a bit more useful?