Disney must have a good feeling about their upcoming Hawkeye series. Well before the Disney Plus show even comes close to premiering, the media colossus has apparently decided it deserves a spinoff of its own, based on the new character known as Echo.
It’s unknown how Echo will play into the Hawkeye series, but the comic book version of the character is an adept martial artist capable of perfectly mimicking any opponent’s fighting style. She was the first to hold the title of “Ronin” before Hawkeye (real name Clint Barton) took on the name. Since Barton (played by Jeremy Renner) briefly adopted the Ronin moniker in Avengers: Endgame, that throws the original order of events into a bit of disarray, leaving fans to wonder what role Echo will play in the show’s story.
Hawkeye stars Renner as the titular bow-and-arrow marksman hero, with Hailee Steinfeld joining the party as his protegee Kate Bishop. Not much else is known about the series save for the time frame, which sets the story after the events of Endgame, hence the difference in timeline compared to the comics. Alaqua Cox will play Maya Lopez, aka Echo, in the series as well as the spinoff. Canonically, Lopez is a deaf Native American character, which would be a first for the Marvel Cinematic Universe in terms of diversity.
It’s a bit unexpected for a spinoff to be confirmed before the original show even launches like this, but considering Disney’s recent smashing success with WandaVision, it’s not exactly surprising to see them shoot for the stars and beyond. Husband and wife team Etan and Emily Cohen will reportedly write and executive produce the series, though they seem to be the only two confirmed staff members at the moment, so that just further shows how early on in development this spinoff is.
Like The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Hawkeye looks like it will explore life for its characters following the earth-shaking events of Avengers: Endgame. The opportunity for more intimate stories can really go a long way in keeping audiences engaged with not only the characters, but the world itself. Clint Barton himself, whom many argue the MCU never really figured out, should get some long-awaited development as well. That’s not to mention Echo, whose deaf status and Native American heritage could end up providing some much needed representation for people of both groups. Everybody deserves to see people like themselves in the media they enjoy, after all.
However the spinoff turns out, fans still have to wait for Hawkeye to premiere later in 2021 before getting their first glimpse of Echo. Turns out patience is its own superpower, and audiences everywhere are about to be tested for it.