In its first two episodes, Disney Plus’ Hawk Eye the series introduced us to the world of Kate Bishop and reintroduced us to Clint Barton, successful archer and Avenger.
Now, with its second episode, the series has introduced its third Marvel Comics superhero, played by deaf actress Alaqua Cox.
But is she a friend? Or enemy? While she spends most of the action-packed episode chasing our heroes, Marvel Comics readers know it’s probably a little complicated.
[Ed. note: This post contains spoilers for Hawkeye through episode 3.]
Teased in the final scene of Hawk EyeThis week’s second episode of, “Echoes” gives superheroine Echo her full debut. The episode opens by presenting its backstory, in which she is played by young actress Darnell Besaw. The daughter of a member of the tracksuit mafia, she lost her hearing as a child. Without the money to enroll in a school for the deaf, Maya was forced to develop her lip reading ability in order to interact with the hearing world that would not accommodate her.
And in the series, just like in Marvel Comics, it looks like Maya Lopez’s attention to visual detail has turned into something of supernatural power – reading and copying body language.
Who is Maya Lopez / Echo in Marvel Comics?
Echo first appeared in the pages of daredevil, created by David Mack and Joe Quesada (Mack wrote the series, and he and Quesada both provided the art), as the antagonist. In the comics, she was born deaf and possessed a supernatural ability to perfectly copy the movements of anyone she saw – much like Taskmaster, the Avengers villain who made his MCU debut in Black Widow.
Maya was orphaned when her father passed away while working as an executor for Wilson “The Kingpin” Fisk, which you may remember from Netflix daredevil series or Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse. Fisk took her under his wing in order to develop her abilities, to convince her that he really was a nice guy and ultimately unleashed her against “bad” Daredevil. His most common “superhero” symbol is a handprint on his face, a tribute to his father’s last moments, as was the case in Hawk Eye‘s « Echos ».
As a minor character in Marvel Comics, Maya has gone through a lot of ups and downs. She dated Daredevil, became friends with Wolverine, was the first person to use Ronin’s costume / identity in Marvel Comics, mingled with Elektra and Hand and hung out with Moon Knight. She’s been a member of the Avengers on several occasions, where she was often written with a “supernatural” lip-reading ability even when characters (like, say, Spider-Man) wore full face masks.
Maya has always been a Native American superhero, but recently in the comics she was established as a member of the Cheyenne Nation in particular, joined the Avengers, and – let me check here – became the host. of the Phoenix Force. This part, at least, is probably not go up in Hawk Eye. But Clint Barton’s show won’t be the last time we’ll see Echo.
Maya Lopez is getting her own spinoff show from Disney Plus, and fans are crossing their fingers that the Echo the series will return to the world of Netflix daredevil with the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But they’ll wait a while, because Echo currently does not have a publish window.