Following next week’s Loki finale, the next of the upcoming Marvel TV shows to mark on your calendars is Echo. The series centers on one of Hawkeye’s most intriguing characters, Alaqua Cox’s Maya Lopez, as she is trailed by Wilson Fisk’s criminal empire on the streets of New York City. Ahead of the series coming to both Disney+ and Hulu this January, CinemaBlend learned more about how the MCU’s first TV-MA series is leaning into its rating.
Disney invited select press, including CinemaBlend, to Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, California recently to preview scenes from Echo and speak with the show’s head writer/director, Sydney Freeland. When Freeland was asked about how Echo’s mature rating will play into the tone of the series, here’s what she had to say:
If you're coming off a Hawkeye, and you have to keep in mind she's a villain, right? She's a villain and so tonally we wanted to lean into that. I think in talking with the executives, our approach and building [its] visual style, it was sort of like, ‘Oh yeah, lean into that.’ …I love the Netflix Daredevil, it's great. And so we certainly took the Daredevil level fight, it was a little bit of a nod to that series. But, then also we wanted very, very adamantly to show that these are people in our show. They bleed, they die, they get killed and there are real world consequences. And again, it's not the fate of the universe at stake, ‘cause I think once you go that broad, you can sort of lose sight a little bit, and, so that kind of dictated the tone a little bit.
Considering Maya Lopez was one of the main villains in Disney+’s Hawkeye, and the writers and producers were eager to tell a more intense story focused on Echo’s trauma, Freeland shared that production decided to fully lean into the more bloody and brutal tone of the series, as the Echo trailer already showcases. Check it out below:
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As Freeland also touched on, Echo will also take audiences back into the world of Netflix’s Daredevil over five years following the series being cancelled after three seasons. The series will heavily explore Maya Lopez’s connections with Vincent D’Onofrio after Kingpin takes her under his wing when she is a young girl. Echo’s cast will also feature Charlie Cox’s Matt Murdock back yet again following his return to the MCU in 2021's Spider-Man: No Way Home and last year’s She-Hulk, and ahead of his own new series, Daredevil: Born Again.
Freeland told us that she was a big fan of Netflix’s Daredevil and most definitely drew from the series’ tone when making Echo. When CinemaBlend watched some footage from the series, we witnessed a fight scene between Maya Lopez and Daredevil that absolutely called back to the series too. It’s safe to say that Echo is a must watch for fans of the Netflix series, even if it serves as a mere appetizer to Charlie Cox’s upcoming journey as Matt Murdock ahead.
Echo is set to be five episodes, all of which will premiere on both Disney+ and Hulu on January 10. The series’ home will remain on Disney+ moving forward, but will leave Hulu on April 9, per a Disney press release. Between Echo’s release and confirmation that Deadpool 3 will be R-rated, the MCU is showing us in 2024 it’s not afraid to spill some more blood and guts.