Marvel’s Upcoming “Echo” Series Will Kickstart New Chapter in the Marvel Cinematic Universe
While Marvel Studios’ upcoming new series Echo is directly connected to their previous series, Hawkeye, featuring Jeremy Renner’s ace sharpshooter and his unasked for protegé, Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld), it also represents a new approach to how Marvel will handle some of their upcoming series. Echo, which stars Alaqua Cox as Maya Lopez, was a nominal villain in Hawkeye, a gifted fighter who was thrust into the underworld at a young age and was a ferocious enforcer. Echo follows Maya, who is Native American and hearing impaired, after the events in Hawkeye and centers her reconnection to her Native American roots as she tries to chart a new path forward. It will be a dark path, as is evident in the first trailer, one that has been shaped from the time she was a little girl by one of Marvel’s most notorious villains, Wilson Fisk, aka Kingpin (Vincent D’Onofrio). The series will also include the return of Charlie Cox’s Matt Murdock.
Yet despite these connections to the MCU, Echo will be the first series to fall under Marvel’s new Spotlight Banner, which won’t require viewers to possess previous MCU knowledge and which will be darker and grittier in tone and substance than previous Disney+ series. They will, in fact, be more in line with Marvel’s previous TV era on Netflix, specifically Daredevil and The Punisher, and will be geared directly towards a TV-MA audience.
The Spotlight Banner might be new to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but it’s actually got a long, rich history within Marvel Comics. Spotlight was an anthology series that began in 1971 and launched new characters with a more grounded approach.
Marvel Studios’ head of streaming, television, and animation, Brad Winderbaum, explained the approach on Marvel.com:
“Marvel Spotlight gives us a platform to bring more grounded, character-driven stories to the screen, and in the case of Echo, focusing on street-level stakes over larger MCU continuity. Just like comics fans didn’t need to read Avengers or Fantastic Four to enjoy a Ghost Rider Spotlight comic, our audience doesn’t need to have seen other Marvel series to understand what’s happening in Maya’s story.”
At a press screening of scenes from Echo, series director Sydney Freeland said that viewers can expect a very different tone, considering that, unlike previous Marvel TV installments on Disney+, Echo follows an ostensible villain.
“People on our show — they bleed. They die,” Freeland said. “They get killed, and there are real-world consequences.”
Those consequences are on vivid display in the trailer, which you can see below. Echo arrives on Disney+ on January 10:
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Featured image: Alaqua Cox as Maya Lopez in Marvel Studios’ Echo, exclusively on Disney+. Photo by Chuck Zlotnick. ©Marvel Studios 2022. All Rights Reserved.