Perhaps more than any other Marvel Studios project to date, the recently-released Disney+ and Hulu series Echo is a glimpse into what fans can expect from the much-anticipated Daredevil: Born Again series… and not just because the hero briefly appeared in the show. With Born Again still some months away — and reportedly restarting production very soon — it’s time to ask ourselves: what can we learn from Echo’s example?
Be warned: Spoilers for Echo follow.
Born again… but who?
The final episode of Echo sets up a very interesting new status quo for Daredevil’s arch nemesis, Wilson Fisk (Vincent D’Onofrio) — a status quo that, perhaps surprisingly, might imply that the subtitle of the new Daredevil series might not actually refer to the hero himself, but the villain of the series.
In her final confrontation with her former employer and mentor, Echo surprises everyone — including herself — by choosing to not only not kill the Kingpin, but instead healing his childhood trauma in an attempt to help him. It didn’t necessarily work, not least of all because he didn’t actually consent to the experience, nor fully understand it, as can be seen in his reaction, shouting “What did you do?” over and over again.
In the mid-credit scene, a still visibly shaken Fisk finds himself distracted by a news report about the New York mayoral race, with the scene ending as a reporter explains that it could be anyone’s race.
Freed of his formative trauma — certainly a form of being “born again,” surely — and with political ambitions? Wilson Fisk might end up being more of a wild card (and, as a result, more dangerous) than ever before… especially if the MCU goes the same route as Marvel’s comic book universe and actually has Wilson Fisk win the mayoral election.
But what about Daredevil?
It has to be said, there’s really not that much Daredevil in Echo; he shows up for a fight scene in the show’s first episode for a flashback, and doesn’t reappear after that. That means, in terms of chronology, the most recent appearance of Daredevil actually comes from She-Hulk: Attorney at Law… which saw Matt Murdock out East, working as Daredevil in a yellow-and-red suit when not in court. He also seemed surprisingly… happy…?
Fans of Daredevil’s comic book history know that neither thing is certain to last very long. Could it be a mayoral bid by Wilson Fisk that leads Daredevil back to New York, and is that the rebirth that the subtitle refers to…? The possibility is certainly out there.
How did the show play out?
As the first Marvel Spotlight show, Echo was being looked at by some as a tease of the tone and atmosphere of similarly “grounded” shows like Daredevil: Born Again. If that’s the case, then expect something that works with muted tones and an abundance of shadow, and moves somewhat slower than might be expected.
Not unlike the Netflix Daredevil series, then… if somewhat less violent. But then, who knows how bad things will get when the Kingpin and Daredevil finally get to share the screen again, given their (perhaps canonical) shared history…?
Everything you want to know about how Echo ended explained, right here.