Episode 5 - "Maya"
We start with another flashback, this time to Maya's childhood. We see her hit a woodpecker with a rock and bring it to her mother, claiming she didn't mean to hurt the bird but to only see if she could hit it from a distance. Her mother explains to her that "we don't harm living things", and tells her some Choctaw teachings. Taloa, Maya's mother, then heals the bird and we are forced to witness the car accident scene all over again.
And here we are, back to the present. We see Chula visit Skully at his store, looking for an old sewing machine. After some flirty moments, he gives it back to her and she goes about her business. She then goes to the postal office and bumps into none other than Kingpin. Since she doesn't know who he is, they strike up a conversation about the Choctaw powow happening later tonight. He sees her necklace - it has the ASL sign for "I love you" on it. She reveals she learned it for her daughter but, since she's gone, she maintains it for her granddaughter, Maya. But he already knows that.
Despite leaving town in episode 4, Maya heads back to Tamaha after receiving texts from Biscuits mentioning that Bonnie and Chula are both missing. A woodpecker's arrival reminds her of her mother's childhood lesson about the Biskinik seen in the beginning of the episode, signaling danger nearby. She goes home trying to find Chula but instead has a vision of her mother, who reveals a family legacy of special women with supernatural strength. This vision empowers Maya, connecting her to her Choctaw roots and the strong women in her lineage. Maya gets a new red suit designed by Chula, symbolizing her Choctaw heritage and honoring her ancestors. This suit is so much more than just a costume - it's a part of her newfound powers.
This is also when we learn where the name Echo comes from. Maya's mother tells her she's not alone, and that those who came before her echo through her. Maya is the echo of all the powerful women in the lineage, and she's able to channel them because they are one with her. And, without warning, the vision of her mother disappears again. We see Maya attend the powwow, dressed in the beautiful new red suit we saw her mother give her. She blends in with the dancers in a gorgeous scene, spotting where she needs to go thanks to the trusty woodpecker, or Biskinik. The scene quickly shifts to Henry and Biscuits talking about weapons and strategy - and Biscuits is still as precious and funny as always.
We're not surprised when Kingpin appears to confront Maya, and we learn that he has both Chula and Bonnie held hostage. During their confrontation, he uses Bonnie to interpret so they can talk since Maya threw away the special contact he'd given to her. The fact he makes Bonnie sign to Maya that he's going to kill her entire family is savage.
As Maya finally understands the assignment, she channels the power of all the women who came before her, telling Bonnie to just trust her. Maya transfers her powers to Bonnie and Chula, helping them fight Kingpin's men and break free. Biscuits destroys two of the bad guys' vans by driving over them with his new monster truck, while Henry completely ruins Zane's plans of attacking the event by shooting him instead. Then, Maya faces Kingpin, using her energy to confront him emotionally rather than physically.
Kingpin experiences a vision where he chooses not to repeat a violent act from his past. This encounter with Maya seems to change him, making him less violent, though he manages to escape before the police arrive. This is the big lesson here - people can change. One can break free from the cycle of violence, of abuse.
The episode wraps up with Maya and her family enjoying a "Fast and Furious"-style cookout, working to find peace and trust after these crazy events.
The post-credit scene
What a wonderful scene to leave us craving more and begging the gods of Marvel to hurry up and bring forth Daredevil: Born Again. Kingpin, now seemingly more empathetic, listens to a news report about the open race for New York mayor. This hints that Maya's actions might actually fuel Kingpin's political ambitions.
With The Man Without Fear's return imminent, it looks like the old rivals will face off in New York City once again. What's more is that it looks like the series may take some cues from Devil's Reign and feature the Kingpin as the Mayor of the city.
Episode 5 ranking: 1st place.