Marvel Studios has been recognized for its authentic depiction of disability.
Disney Plus’s Hawkeye and Chloe Zhao’s Eternals have each been awarded the Seal of Authentic Representation from the Ruderman Family Foundation, which advocates for the inclusion of people with disabilities throughout society. According to the foundation, the Seal of Authentic Representation is awarded when ‘productions meet two criteria: they feature actors with disabilities with a speaking role of at least five lines; and they are in, or on the verge of, general release.’
In Eternals, Makkari (Lauren Ridloff) is deaf by design: the ability to hear would hinder her use of super-speed. Hawkeye’s Maya Lopez aka Echo (Alaqua Cox) runs her own underground empire and is expertly skilled in combat, besting nearly everyone who crosses her path. Both actors are deaf, with Cox also being an amputee who uses a prosthetic leg.
The ninth round of recipients for The Seal also includes HBO Max’s And Just Like That, NBC’s Ordinary Joe, and Hulu’s Only Murders in the Building. Previous recipients of the award include films like A Quiet Place II, Godzilla vs. Kong, and TV shows such as Fear the Walking Dead, Grey’s Anatomy, and Sex Education.
Cox will reprise her role and star in an upcoming Hawkeye spin-off titled Echo, though we don’t know if the series will pick up directly after the events of Hawkeye.