Echo’s most significant MCU connections

Echo branches out from Hawkeye, delineating a clear Marvel Cinematic Universe connection. But are there other links to the ever-growing superhero franchise?
(L-R): Vincent D’Onofrio as Wilson Fisk/Kingpin and Darnell Besaw as young Maya Lopez in Marvel Studios' ECHO, releasing on Hulu and Disney+. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2023 MARVEL.
(L-R): Vincent D’Onofrio as Wilson Fisk/Kingpin and Darnell Besaw as young Maya Lopez in Marvel Studios' ECHO, releasing on Hulu and Disney+. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2023 MARVEL. /

Echo changes pace for the Marvel Cinematic Universe by dropping all its five episodes simultaneously. It is also the first true Disney Plus spin-off show, with the titular Echo branching off from the Hawkeye limited series.

Alaqua Cox made her MCU debut in Hawkeye and was so effective as the deaf anti-hero that she earned her place as the star of Echo.

Echo’s MCU roots

The beginning of the series opener connects the dots to Maya's introduction in the archer Avenger’s story. It includes a previously seen flashback with her father, and the return of the remarkable Zahn McClarnon. Entire scenes from Echo’s precursor in Hawkeye are fleshed out to immerse the audience into Maya Lopez’ world. This includes a shot of Jeremy Renner (something the Black Widow movie conspicuously lacked) and Maya’s relationship with Kingpin.

Vincent D’Onofrio was a surprise adversary in Hawkeye’s climax and marked the first transition from Marvel’s Netflix universe to the MCU proper. He is the primary antagonist in Echo, similar to his role in Daredevil. And the man without fear likewise puts in an appearance in Echo.

The Netflix connection

Charlie Cox starred in Netflix’s Daredevil and then proceeded to launch his MCU career as a blind lawyer in Spider-Man: No Way Home. Next, he guest starred in the Disney Plus show She-Hulk, teaming up with Marvel’s other famous lawyer superhero. Now he fights against Echo, during her time working for Kingpin, before claiming his own Disney Plus MCU series. Kingpin’s rise to dominance is hinted as a main conflict in that story, during Echo’s credits’ scene.

Whether or not the Netflix Marvel series Daredevil claimed a place in MCU canon was not critical as Matt Murdock and Wilson Fisk entered the scene. They are played by the same actors, only with some costume modifications, and Kingpin is evidently powered up in this cinematic universe.

Shows like Daredevil and Jessica Jones mentioned the Battle of New York that took place in The Avengers, but after that, it was too much for Marvel Studios (the MCU production company) and Marvel Television (creators of the Netflix shows) to keep up the correlations. For example, Daredevil Season 3 was released after millions of fans watched Thanos snap away half of existence in Avengers: Infinity War, yet such disastrous details were left out of the Netflix series.

In Echo’s first episode, Fisk explains to a younger Maya that his father was killed years ago. Anyone familiar with Daredevil will recall that the eventual crime boss was the one to do the deed. In the penultimate chapter, Fisk hands Maya the exact hammer he used in the Daredevil show, further solidifying the history of the Netflix universe into MCU canon. On top of that, in the finale, Fisk flashes back to his childhood and the white wall that he would stare at when his father abused his mother – this traumatic backstory was depicted in Daredevil.

Other MCU tie-ins

In Echo’s sophomore chapter, Maya’s cousin Biscuits brings up Madripoor when comparing the various quality of merchandise depending on its origin. Apparently Madripoor, a southeast Asian city, is not held in high regard, even in the Midwest. It was the shady locale visited by Sam and Bucky in their own Disney Plus series, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.

In the last episode, Echo takes a pitstop at a Roxxon restaurant. Although the company would seem to uneventfully pop up in the background of various Marvel content, the significance here is how Echo bridges the gaps between the prime MCU and adjacent Marvel television projects. While the Roxxon logo can be spotted in the Iron Man trilogy and a Roxxon store is the setting for an impactful event in Loki’s first season, a Roxxon executive also figured into one of Agent Carter’s subplots, and then, most relevantly, a Roxxon business partner played a part in the Netflix Daredevil series.

One of Maya’s most personal relationships in Echo is with her cousin Bonnie. Their childhood closeness is divulged in the series opener, making their re-connection as adults meaningful. While Bonnie was not previously positioned in the MCU, she is played by Devery Jacobs, a Native American actress of growing popularity, and one of several Reservation Dogs cast members in Echo.

Devery Jacobs quickly joins the likes of Gemma Chan and Linda Cardellini as another actress with multiple parts in the MCU. Devery Jacobs voices the new Marvel superhero Kahhori in What If…?, the MCU’s first (and currently only) animated effort. The indigenous heroine was a bright spot in the show’s second season, triggering a likelihood that Kahhori can be brought into live-action, and if so, would Jacobs take on the challenge?

Aside from Daredevil and Kingpin, curiosity abounds for the future of the other Echo inhabitants, primarily the titular anti-hero turned hero, with her newfound powers.

Next. Loki Season 2 MCU connections. Loki Season 2 MCU connections. dark