Does Hawkeye's Echo Reveal Tease Daredevil and Kingpin?

Interestingly, the drawback of Maya’s deafness was offset by prodigious learning abilities similar to that of Taskmaster, making her able to mimic (or echo, if you will,) the most complex of skills, complemented by exceptional reflexes. Thus, with the Kingpin as her father figure, said abilities were channeled into making her his deadliest enforcer, and, upon her debut, was dispatched to deal with Fisk’s longtime rival, Daredevil, with the deaf assassin serving as a poetically parallel opponent to the blind hero.

Touting the Echo name, showcasing a face painted with a white hand elegiacally recollecting her father’s bloody handprint, Maya’s efforts to end Daredevil would—in a manner that deadly women like Elektra and Typhoid Mary know all too well—end up taking a romantic turn, except with Matt Murdock initially unaware that he was her crimson-clad quarry. Consequently, upon learning his secret identity, Echo’s scraps with the Man Without Fear would eventually lead to a major change in perspective on her de facto father, Kingpin, culminating in a confrontation that leads to the crime boss’s downfall (at least, one of them, anyway). Subsequently, Maya was left aimless in the initial post-Kingpin, pre-New Avengers days, leading her to briefly operate as a vigilante, becoming the first of several iterations of Ronin (Japanese for a master-less samurai); a mantle that, as the trailer indicates, is pertinent to Hawkeye in its own right.

While we won’t get ahead of ourselves speculating on the ways that Echo’s rather circuitous comic book trajectory (she joined with the Phoenix Force at one point!) could be mirrored in live-action on Hawkeye, it’s worth mentioning that the NYC-set gangster activity at the center of the show’s plot would likely blip the radar of the biggest gangster of them all, Wilson “Kingpin” Fisk. Such a notion would indicate that Echo is ominously hiding in the shadows, watching events unfold, perhaps on behalf of her adopted father, waiting for the perfect moment to strike.

Indeed, this would validate the long-running rumor that Vincent D’Onofrio will reprise his magnificently layered antagonist role as Kingpin (or, at least a version of him), in the MCU. While said return was once speculated for the movie we now know as Spider-Man: No Way Home, it could still bear consequences for the December-scheduled threequel, albeit indirectly. After all, Daredevil himself, Charlie Cox, is strongly rumored to be set for an appearance alongside Tom Holland’s Wall-Crawler for what is believed to be a cameo as Matt Murdock in his capacity as a lawyer.  

Consequently, while the chances of Daredevil showing up on Hawkeye currently seem, to put it generously, small, the prospect of a Kingpin appearance is, by contrast, quite high. While such an appearance—especially given its super-secretive nature—would likely be relegated to a quick cameo of some kind, it would nevertheless be a profoundly consequential moment for the MCU, since it would be the first time that a Netflix character (even a version of one) would be properly christened into the MCU.

While Netflix Marvel shows Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, The Punisher, and The Defenders contemporaneously touted their status as MCU-adjacent—even to the point of including random Easter-eggs referencing MCU events like the Battle of New York—the favor was never returned by the MCU movies or shows in any form whatsoever. Thus, an appearance by D’Onofrio’s Kingpin, regardless of how brief, would be the long-sought acknowledgment of Daredevil and, by proxy, the other inhabitants of Netflix’s proverbial small screen island of misfit Marvel heroes.

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