Who is Echo / Maya Lopez in “Hawkeye”? The history of Marvel Comics and the future of the MCU

The following story contains slight spoilers for the first two episodes of Hawk Eye.

The first two episodes of Hawk Eye, the latest limited series set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to land on Disney +, spend a lot of time establishing a new hero (Kate Bishop, played by Hailee Steinfeld) and checking out the post-End of Game pulse of an elder (Clint Barton, aka Hawkeye, played as always by Jeremy Renner).

And while a lot of time is spent on these rhythms of both character development and establishment, there is is an MCU property – and that means we need a conflict. Step into the “Mafia Tracksuit” (which appears in the exact dress you’d probably expect), which has it for both Clint and Kate. But who calls their shots, throughout the first two episodes, is a mystery until the very end, and not someone dressed in athleisure. The second episode ends by presenting viewers with a young woman in a back room, with no name or dialogue as of yet. All that has been established so far is what she looks like, that she is in a back room, and that she, like Clint Barton, is hard of hearing and uses American Sign Language to communicate. But we do know a few answers: It’s about Maya Lopez, also known as Echo, a character who will play a big role in the future of the MCU.

The character is played by newcomer Alaqua Cox (this is her first role), and we know for sure that she will stick around as a Echo The Disney + spinoff series has already been officially announced. Does this mean that in Hawk Eye, Echo will become more of a friend than an enemy? It remains to be seen.

But for now, let’s take a closer look at Echo, and what his contract is in Marvel Comics, and what that might mean for the future of the MCU.

Marvel studios

Who is Echo in Marvel Comics?

Maya Lopez, aka Echo, is a unique character in Marvel Comics canon in that she is deaf and of Native American descent; she made her debut in Daredevil # 9 back in 1999. Its origin story is interesting; his father was called “Crazy Horse” and was killed by Wilson Fisk (aka The Kingpin). When he died, he left a bloody handprint on his face. His father’s last wish was for the Kingpin to raise Maya as his own, and he honored that wish. Kingpin became Echo’s stepfather.

Daredevil / Echo: Parts of a hole

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Fisk sent Echo to a school for people with learning disabilities (not realizing she was deaf), and she completely reproduced a song while playing the piano; she then went to a school for those with special talents.

This is the beginning of the “Echo” power that she possesses; she is a fast learner, has amazing reflexes, and is able to learn and mirror the abilities of others (quite similar to Taskmaster, the classic Marvel Comics villain who was featured in the Black Widow movie). When she’s in her “Echo” character, her signature look is a white handprint on her face, similar to the bloody handprint left by her father in his dying moments.

Echo’s most notable script early in Marvel Comics history was sent by his father to seduce Matt Murdock and fight Daredevil; she falls in love with Matt and fights Daredevil, defeating him easily (she had studied his fights) before realizing that they are the same person and running away. She is mad at the Kingpin and even shoots him in the face (he survives, don’t worry). It really is a whole.

She was also the secret identity of the original Ronin (who was Clint Barton during his killing spree in Avengers: Endgame) during a 2005 New Avengers bow.

The echo will clearly be a key element of the Hawk Eye series.

After a quick look at the end of Episode 2, the entire opening of Hawk Eye‘s Episode 3 was devoted to telling Maya’s story. Although it differs slightly from the comedic origin we detailed above, it remains largely the same: She was deaf as a child and even has a prosthetic leg. But she had a very close and loving relationship with her father, which raised her to believe in herself and to be a strong and determined person.

echo maya lopez

Marvel studios

While the Kingpin killed his father in the comics, it appears that Clint – back when he was destroying organized crime as Ronin – was the one who killed Maya’s father in the MCU, and that she’s the one running the Tracksuit Mafia, working under whom we only can assume is, yes, the Kingpin.

But most important for the future of Echo in Hawk Eye, his own situation seems to mirror that of Clint, our main character. He is newly hard of hearing; she’s been deaf and thrived her whole life. There are already threads of a conflict that will certainly be resolved, because during their first showdown on the series, she told him to do without her hearing aid before knocking it out of her ear and crushing it with it. his foot.

Echo will also clearly be our window to reestablish the Kingpin as a major threat in the MCU.

There is a Echo spinoff series coming to Disney +.

Disney officially announced that Echo, a derivative series centered on Maya Lopez, will come to Disney +.

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This appears to be the first (of what could be multiple times) that Disney + has used the type of “back door pilot” strategy for the MCU that it has already done with Season 2 of. The Mandalorian in the Star Wars wing. Remember this is where Boba Fett and Ahsoka Tano were reintroduced to the public; the two will soon have their own Disney + series.

We don’t know much about the Echo series, but it seems likely that it could serve as an entry into the most entrenched branch of the Marvel Universe for the MCU. Could this be a backdoor for a soft daredevil to restart ? Speaking of…

Does the echo in Hawk Eye means Daredevil or Kingpin arrive?

That’s a good question, isn’t it? As we’ve detailed above, while Echo will of course have a relationship with Clint and Kate, his comedic origin is firmly rooted in both Kingpin and Daredevil.

After episode 3 of “Hawkeye,” it’s pretty much certain that Kingpin – in what form, we don’t yet know – will appear soon. Between “uncle” in the episode’s opening and subsequent references, again to “uncle,” and with Clint talking about someone above Maya who they don’t want to play with, he’s clear that the trail is being laid for Marvel’s great crime lord boss to take off.

It is potentially a slippery slope that we descend; remember that a daredevil The series ran for three seasons on Netflix and has not been directly confirmed in one way or another as officially canon with our main MCU film series or the 2021 Disney + series continuity.

hawkeye episode 2 ending echo

David Lee / Netflix

However, only the rumors (we won’t link to them, as they are largely unconfirmed) have suggested that maybe some daredevil the characters could make a comeback, perhaps a smooth reboot in the right MCU.

Vincent D’Onofrio, who played Kingpin in this series, appeared to give a pretty big clue on his Twitter. “It’s going to be fun,” he wrote. “I love them @Wonder series. ”

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Looks like we could see Echo’s adaptive father in the MCU – and maybe even in Hawk Eyesoon. Daredevil, whether he’s played again by Charlie Cox or a new actor, seems like a slightly trickier nut to solve.

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Lisa M. Horner