Echo Ending Explained: a Well Deserved Redemption


Maya, dressed in the outfit Chula made her, stands with her ancestors flanking her.

I’M NOT CRYING. YOU’RE CRYING. All right, yeah, I’m crying.

Echo, the new Marvel Spotlight series on Disney+ and Hulu, dropped all five episodes tonight, and it’s a heart-wrenching story of trauma, alienation, and redemption. So let’s dive into that ending!

Warning: massive spoilers for Echo ahead!

Maya gains a new identity, and a superpower

At the end of Echo, Maya (Alaqua Cox) faces off against Wilson Fisk, a.k.a. Kingpin (Vincent D’Onofrio). Fisk managed to brainwash Maya for years, keeping her isolated from her true family and convincing her that violence was the only way to get what she needed. After she gains some distance, though, Maya realizes that Fisk was never the family she needed in her life, despite his genuine love for her.

However, after Maya declines to kill Fisk for real in episode 5—using the very hammer he used to kill his father!—Fisk kidnaps Maya’s cousin Bonnie (Devery Jacobs) and her grandmother Chula (Tantoo Cardinal). While Fisk’s goons search for Maya at the Choctaw Powwow, Maya has to figure out how to save her family from Fisk.

Luckily, she’s got her mother and a long lineage of ancestors to help her (and a gorgeous new outfit, courtesy of Chula). Before her confrontation with Fisk, Maya has a vision of her mother, who repeats Chula’s words of wisdom: the generations of women that we met in previous episodes are there to help and guide Maya. We find out that Maya’s mother had healing powers, and those powers manifest in Maya and Bonnie.

But Maya’s healing powers have an unexpected dimension. In a surprise “attack,” she heals Fisk—not physically, but emotionally. She visits him in a traumatic memory of hearing his mother being abused through his bedroom wall, and tells him it’s okay to move on.

We’ll get back to Fisk in a minute, but what’s important here is that Maya—or Echo, as her mother dubs her—isn’t just a fighter. She’s now a healer who can soothe the old wounds of trauma. That’s a powerful gift.

Maya reunites with her family

The first three episodes of Echo make it seem almost like Maya abandoned her family, even though we know that her father took her to New York when she was just a kid. We see Bonnie texting her after her dad dies, and Skully (Graham Greene) urges her to contact Chula.

In the last two episodes, though, we learn that the situation isn’t as one-sided as the series makes it out to be. Maya feels like her uncle Henry (Chaske Spencer) and Chula abandoned her, and neither of them deny it. Instead, each of them explains that they let Maya go because they were hurt and angry after Maya’s mother was killed. It turns out there’s plenty of pain to go around. Maya, Henry, and Chula all have some long-overdue confrontations, and some much-needed catharsis.

The final scene (before the post-credits tag, that is) of Echo is simple: the family is having a backyard picnic, and Maya joins them. The implications are massive, though. Maya is ready to come home. She’s ready to reconnect with her true family, and leave Fisk’s criminal empire behind.

And what about Kingpin?

After Maya seemingly heals his traumatic memories, Fisk seems confused and disoriented. What exactly did Maya do to him? How is this new development going to play out? After all, Fisk is carrying some pretty hefty trauma: he brings that hammer to Oklahoma with him, and encourages Maya to “free him” by using it. Until Maya’s intervention, Fisk is trapped in the past, playing out his childhood over and over again.

Fisk escapes the powwow and gets on a plane back to New York. He seems like he’s not giving up his criminal endeavors anytime soon, telling his assistant to schedule a meeting with all his “remaining heads before the situation spirals out of control.” He’s visibly nervous, picking at his fingernails. Then, on TV, he sees an opportunity: the New York City mayoral race.

Does that mean Kingpin’s going to run for mayor of New York? I’m guessing we’ll find out in Daredevil: Born Again, whenever it actually comes out.

In the meantime, Maya’s back with her family, and she’s got a whole new life ahead of her to explore. She deserves the world, and I hope she gets it.

(featured image: Disney+)

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Echo Ending Explained: a Well Deserved Redemption

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