The loooooong-awaited trailer for the Disney+ series ECHO has dropped, stunning most Marvel fans. If you expected this, your pals at CoveredGeekly would like to offer you a gambling column. This thing screams TV-MA, and thank the ghost of Stan Lee for it!
But, ECHO is a tier-three character in the Marvel Pantheon. Do you understand her connection to the Hell’s Kitchen world of Daredevil, and the more extended reach into Marvel? Let’s learn who is ECHO after this banger!
A moment of applause for Disney removing the stick from Mickey’s @$$ for showing us that the Netflix/Marvel bravery and boldness have a place on his streamer. On with the show…
Who is ECHO?
In 1999, David Mack and the ingenious penciler Joe Quesada got a little inclusive within the Daredevil franchise. It was a simple connection if one has no vision, then remove someone’s hearing. But the depth of Maya Lopez makes that an awful understatement. The beauty of the ECHO trailer is it begins with her origin but still maintains its mystery.
“Maya. I see everything that you are. I always have.”
When Wilson Fisk/Kingpin bellows that thought (Dear God, it’s so great to see Vincent D’Onofrio back in a white suit), he speaks volumes for the casual fan. Maya Lopez is a 3rd grader there, so there is some toddler-age knowledge of her.
Maya had a father named Willie “Crazy Horse” Lincoln–the operative word is “had.” He worked for Kingpin, and, as fate has it with a few in his employ, Crazy Horse was put out to pasture and made into glue by Fisk personally.
From there, he cares for Maya and creates an amazing girl–and a monster.
It was all said in six simple words, right there in the trailer. The entire story leads up to that moment:
“You and I…are the same.”
Maya walks out of school in a grade-issued uniform. In New York, that shouts “private school!” Does Maya come from money? Sorta’.
Wilson Fisk is paying for her to be there. Canon had young Maya previously at a school for the disabled–only she’s a profoundly talented mimic. She can mirror anything.
That’s the brilliance of David Mack’s quill, and it’s such a pity that casual comic and MCU fans miss it. Her name is ECHO.
What are echoes? Same sounds. What does a mimic do? Creates the same of anything. Maya Lopez is an echo of action! This unique skill is what creates the full-circle moment in that wonderful trailer.
Add to that mimicry, she has lightning-fast reflexes and mutant-like strength, all fueled by rage. She’s a chip off the ol’ block. Way to go, “Dad.”
If you thought Daredevil and Elektra had a fun relationship, wait until we get into what Echo thinks of Charlie Cox. And for funsies, Wilson Fisk is 100% behind it as some twisted puppeteer.
The next section discusses “regret,” and more on that in a minute. However, if you watched the magnetic Netflix series, it’s clear Elektra Natchios is a multifaceted character with a torn heart and a twisted mind that needs unraveling desperately. As she lives with The Hand, she fulfills her destiny as a mercenary of death and destiny.
Then, comes Matt Murdock.
Dude screws everything up and she can’t decide what side she embraces. Similarly, Echo has the same web of deceit and destination to face as well.
On one hand, she’s a little girl taught by a mongrel, a devastator incarnate. As a prodigious mind, she mirrors his violence and experiences his steel trap of a mind. Her focus is eagle-eyed and hell-bent. The problem is that the rage, which fuels the ferocity, is innate–not learned. And she doesn’t know it, yet.
On the other hand, she ends up falling hard for a friend introduced to her by Wilson Fisk — Matt Murdock. The twist is he is behind the introduction to have her kill Daredevil, telling her that he killed her dad. But, as you can see in that picture, her hatred of the man without fear lasts only so long.
And that connection should be a concentrated centerpoint in this series.
Understanding a little more of her story, it’s immediate to tell how dope that trailer Marvel and Sydney Freeland (Reservation Dogs) made. However, there are three colossal regrets about that vantage point and the comic character of Echo.
Look at her face! Alaqua Cox is a lovely actress. She is the product of remarkable casting, a trait synonymous with Marvel Studios. When she appeared in Hawkeye and that Yuletide special, the girl ate up the screen. It took serious time to even know she was deaf (and yes, the prosthetic is hers in real life).
However, it takes seconds for comic fans to know what is missing–and it is such a tragic miss. The handprint on Echo’s face isn’t just a couture make-up job. That is her father’s dying, bloody handprint as he reaches up to her face with his last breath. That entire moment is removed from her origin, which is crucial to a vengeful void she spends a life trying to fill.
How Joe Quesada and David Mack didn’t whoop up on someone’s tail at Marvel Studios is beyond any serious comic enthusiast. The hell?
And then there’s this…
Ronin was introduced in Avengers: Endgame, and again in Hawkeye. Of course, Ronin is attached to Clint Barton. One problem: Ronin was Echo. At least, she was the first to become the alter-ego assassin. Similar to Daredevil, Ronin is a vicious personification of street justice, which is what follows when she learns the truth about Kingpin and her father.
If Echo was never introduced in the MCU, seeing Clint as Ronin was a massive surprise. It created a surprise and a surge of fan service. However, as the Daredevil and Avengers franchise converge on screen, this was bound to be a conflict. Given the trailer is her genesis and she’s beating down Murdock, we may never get Maya as Ronin (much less, a host of Phoenix Force).
That would be a shame, but gaining insight into the emotional traffic jam vexing Maya Lopez is the foundation of what appears to be a dynamic, kick-ass series. Thanks to Echo, Marvel Studios could be back with a vengeance!