The Phoenix has returned and taken on a new host. Can Echo learn to control the Phoenix entity that now inhabits her body? Find out in Phoenix Song: Echo #1 by Marvel Comics!
PHOENIX SONG: ECHO #1 (OF 5)
Writer: Rebecca Roanhorse
Artist: Luca Maresca
Colorist: Carlos Lopez
Letterer: VC’s Ariana Maher
Editor: Sarah Brunstad
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $4.99
Release Date: October 20th, 2021
Previously in Phoenix Song: Maya Lopez’s father was murdered by Kingpin but believed that Daredevil was the killer. She ended up living with Kingpin until she figured out the truth. She then became a superhero with her power of photographic reflexes. Then, Phoenix Force looked for a new host for the Phoenix and they pitted heroes against each other. Even though Maya lost her fight to Namor, she was chosen to become the new Phoenix!
CONTROLLING THE ANGER
Phoenix Song: Echo #1 starts with Echo stopping a robbery in Hell’s Kitchen. Unfortunately, during her anger she burns a thief to a crisp and sets a whole building on fire. After a brief run-in with Electra as Daredevil, she flies off to the moon to try and gather her thoughts. There, she is contacted about an energy signature that is similar to the Phoenix and flies off to investigate. The signature though was created by Forge to get her attention. Forge warns her of the power she possesses and asks her to give up that power. When Maya refuses, Forge tries to trap her underground and fails but Echo chooses to spare him. Maya then looks for guidance by searching for an elder who once helped her. But the mentor she was looking for had passed. Instead, she finds his grandson, a man named Riverwalker. Riverwalker has the power to allow people to see their past ancestors. He also warns her of a new enemy, an enemy who wishes to kill her entire ancestral line!
A LITTLE CONVULTED
I like Maya Lopez as Echo and I think it is a cool spin for her to become the host of the Phoenix. However, Phoenix Song: Echo #1 is all over the place. It starts off very strong. Maya accidentally kills a man out of anger and causes a lot of collateral damage. We get a good grasp on her emotions, why she did what she did, and what she hopes to fix. What I struggled with was the introduction of so many characters that were only touched on. We get Electra for a few pages, Forge for a bit, and then Riverwalker. And then we learn that none of these people aren’t actually the antagonist of the story. Which sucked. We get such a great inciting incident and introduction to Maya/Echo/Phoenix that isn’t supported by the rest of the book. There are so many good ideas here, but I needed to focus on one or two points rather than trying to pack in so much. Not to say that this isn’t a cool concept, the pacing just felt a little off.
BOTTOM LINE: GREAT PROTAGONIST
Maya is a great protagonist for Phoenix Song: Echo #1. Sadly, Maya is introduced to character after character in short form without any real indication if these plot points are relevant. This is still a solid story, but I have a hunch it would read better as a trade paperback as opposed to individual issues. 3.5 out of 5 from me.
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Phoenix Song: Echo #1 (of 5)
Phoenix Song: Echo #1 does a tremendous job introducing Maya to us but lacks support from any of the other characters.