Jeremy Renner’s Clint Barton and Hailee Steinfeld’s Kate Bishop ran into a lot of trouble during their time together on Hawkeye, and one of their more notable opponents was Maya Lopez, a.k.a. Echo. Created by David Mack and Joe Quesada, Echo has been a major player in the Marvel Comics space for more than two decades, and long before Hawkeye premiered to Disney+ subscribers, we knew the MCU’s version of the character had a bright future ahead of her. That’s because in March 2021, it was revealed that Echo was getting her own spinoff show.
Echo is now officially slotted in the Phase 5 lineup and will premiere on Disney+ in early 2024. The series, which premiered its bloody trailer in early November, will see Maya returning to her hometown in Oklahoma following the events of Hawkeye to, as the official plot synopsis from Marvel says, “come to terms with her past, reconnect with her Native American roots, and embrace her family and community.” That's just one of the handful of other things we know about Echo, including Better Call Saul’s Marion Dayre attached as the head writer, Sydney Freehand and Catriona McKenzie being among the show’s directors, and more importantly in this case, the actors who are making up the cast.
On that note, let’s go over who’s in this lineup, including Alaqua Cox reprising the title character and Vincent D’Onofrio returning as an important figure in Maya’s life, albeit not in a good way.
Like her comic book counterpart, Alaqua Cox’s Echo is deaf and able to perfectly copy another person’s movements (similar to Taskmaster), making her a formidable opponent. Cox, who is also deaf and has a prosthetic leg, made her acting debut bringing Maya Lopez to life in Hawkeye, with the character leading the Tracksuit Mafia and seeking revenge on Clint Barton for the death of her father, William Lopez. By the end of the series, Maya learned the full story behind William’s demise and carried out her revenge on the person who orchestrated the hit. Now the time has come for Echo to take center stage and embark on a personal journey that will see her reconnecting with people from her past and dealing with threats both new and familiar.
During the Blip, i.e. the five years between when Thanos wiped out half of all life in the universe and Smart Hulk undid the genocide, William Lopez was killed by Clint Barton, who was murdering criminals as Ronin during that time and had been tipped off about the Tracksuit Mafia’s operations in New York City. William, who raised Maya to be observant and had her trained in martial arts, urged her daughter with his dying words to flee before she met the same fate as him. Reservation Dogs and Westworld’s Zahn McClarnon is confirmed to be reprising William in the Echo series, so it stands to reason the character will appear in flashbacks, although I wouldn’t rule out Maya seeing her late father in a dream sequence or hallucination.
Three years after Daredevil Season 3 premiered on Netflix, which was followed shortly thereafter by the show’s cancellation, Vincent D’Onofrio returned as Wilson Fisk, a.k.a. Kingpin, in Hawkeye. Kingpin was first teased as Maya’s “uncle,” and in the show’s penultimate episode, the crime boss was outright identified as the man in cahoots with Kate’s Bishop’s mother. By the Hawkeye finale, we finally saw D’Onofrio in the flesh again as Kingpin, and along with him trying to kill Eleanor Bishop for betraying him, it was also revealed that he orchestrated having Clint Barton kill William Lopez. Maya Lopez learned about this and confronted Uncle Fisk with a gun pointed at his face, and as the camera panned away from them, a shot was heard. Fans of the character can take comfort this wasn’t a kill shot, as D’Onofrio is back for Echo, with footage of the Disney+ series screened at D23 showing that Kingpin is now wearing an eyepatch. We also don’t have to worry about him dying in this series, as it’s been confirmed he’ll return in Daredevil: Born Again, which brings us to our next entry.
December 2021 was a big month for Daredevil fans, because in addition to Vincent D’Onofrio’s Kingpin’s returning in Hawkeye, Spider-Man: No Way Home featured a cameo from Charlie Cox’s Matt Murdock, who Peter Parker and his Aunt May hired as their attorney after his secret identity was leaked to the public. Matt is next set to appear in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law both interacting with Tatiana Maslany’s Jennifer Walters as a civilian and teaming up the title hero as Daredevil, though his costume has a different color scheme these days. Cox is also reportedly appearing in Echo, which makes sense given both Kingpin’s involvement and Matt’s ties to Maya Lopez in the comics. Presumably Matt gets involved in Maya’s affairs when Kingpin resurfaces, but it’s also rumored that the show will see him trying to track down a former ally, who is supposedly either Jessica Jones or The Punisher. After the events of Echo conclude, Daredevil and Kingpin will clash again in Daredevil: Born Again.
Now we come to the fresh faces who’ve joined Echo. Starting off, there’s Chaske Spencer, who’s arguably best known for playing Sam Uley in all of the Twilight movies except the first one. If you’re more of a TV buff though, you may recognize him for his roles on shows like Banshee, Sneaky Pete and Blindspot. Additionally, along with co-starring alongside Jesse Eisenberg and Kate Bosworth in Wild Indian, Spencer also already has a little Marvel experience under his belt from playing Jace Montero in two episodes of Jessica Jones’ final season. In Echo, he's playing a character named Henry.
Tantoo Cardinal has been in the acting business for almost 50 years, with some of the older entries on her resume including Dances with Wolves, Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, Legends of the Fall and Moccasin Flats. More recently, Cardinal has either recurred or had guest roles on shows like Longmire, Outlander and New Amsterdam, she was a series regular on the short-lived ABC series Stumptown. , and she took part in Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon, which is playing in theaters and will later be available to stream with an Apple TV+ subscription. Her Echo character is named Chula.
Devery Jacobs kicked off her acting career in the late 2000s with roles in The Dead Zone and Assassin’s Creed: Lineage, but in terms of widespread recognizability, she’s is best known for her leading role as Elora Danan in the Hulu show Reservation Dogs, which has been renewed for a third season. As such, she already has experience working with Zahn McClarnon, though it remains to be seen if they’ll have screen time in Echo. You may also remember Jacobs for playing Sam Blackcrow in Starz’s American Gods. Her Echo character, who's called Bonnie, is reportedly described as a "strong willed and resilient" person.
In 1998, five years after he made his acting debut in the TV movie Geronimo, Cody Lightning played the young Victor Joseph in Smoke Signals, which scored him a Young Artist Award nomination for Best Performance in a Feature Film - Supporting Young Actor. Then in 2007, he starred in Four Sheets to the Wind, and he won the American Indian Film Festival for Best Actor for his performance as Cufe Smallhill. Along with Echo, where he'll play Cousin Biscuits, Lighting will appear in Hey, Viktor! and Dusk & Dawn.
One of Tantoo Cardinal’s co-stars in Dances with Wolves was Graham Greene, who played Kicking Bird in the 1990 movie and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Greene’s other notable film credits include Die Hard with a Vengeance, The Green Mile, The Twilight Saga: New Moon, Wind River and Antlers, while on TV, he’s appeared in Being Erica, Defiance, Longmire, Goliath, American Gods, the Yellowstone spinoff 1883. and HBO’s The Last of Us. Echo will see him playing someone named Skully.
Echo will premiere on Disney+ January 10, 2024, and unlike other Marvel shows exclusive to the streaming platform, all the episodes will be released at once rather than on a weekly basis. Keep your eyes peeled here for more additions to the series' cast, as well as CinemaBlend in general for updates about the upcoming Marvel TV shows.
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