Steven Grant is having a difficult time.
He works at a museum in London, and seems to know a lot about the new Egyptian exhibit. Too bad he just works at the gift shop.
His pattern of living is simple. He wakes up, untethering himself to the bed and taking tape off the door. Thing is, he prefers not to sleep because he seems to wake up in odd places, and in stranger situations. Someone is also following him, a guy with a scales tattoo who thinks he is destined to save the world.
Welcome to the world of the Moon Knight, a very different Marvel super-hero.
After two episodes, fans are starting to get a handle on this guy. For one thing, it’s hard to say who he really is. Is he a gift shop employee, or a mercenary who’s done bad things but now serves Khonshu (F. Murray Abraham), the Egyptian gold of the Moon? Does he have a lonely life, or a wife that’s not sure if she should stay with her husband?
It seems to be all of the above. Although it hasn’t explained fully, Marc Spector (Oscar Isaac) seems to have an alternate personality named Steven, and both are under the thumb of Khonshu.
Steven is having a tough time accepting this other life he doesn’t know. He is stunned to find a storage unit with a cot, weapons, money and a passport with his face and a name he doesn’t recognize.
Meanwhile, the voice named Marc wants Steven to sleep while “he” takes over. Steven refuses, even if means his own life. It’s a difficult relationship neither man can resolve. Viewers may wonder how that can happen, or how long it’s been happening.
The main plot is Marc/Steven must stop Arthur Harrow (Ethan Hawke), who serves another Egyptian goddess named Ammit. He thinks he can make Earth a perfect place by eliminating evil. To do that, he needs a golden scarab that Marc was able to get.
Problem is, Harrow thinks it’s best to kill people before they are evil, even kids. Even Steven has a problem with that. Harrow wants to find Ammit’s tomb to destroy all evil in her name. He also knows Marc/Steven has “chaos in him” because of the three personalities.
Along for the ride is Layla (May Calamawy), Marc’s wife. She is somewhat aware of Marc’s situation and the fact he can “summon the suit” to battle evil. She doesn’t know abut his alter, however, and Marc’s worried Khonshu will recruit her next.
The story starts with a strange story line so fans can experience the same confusion and shock Steven is having. One moment, he’s being chased by a jackal, then he is chased by Harrow’s goons at a village. We can hear the voices inside Steven’s head, either Khonshu or Marc, trying to keep him from getting killed.
Still, what do the voices expect from Steven? He knows he’s real…right?
It’s not until late in the first episode that Moon Knight appears to put down the jackal, but there’s no proof of it in the security cameras. The only sign is Steven seeing his own face and thinking that’s not him.
The second episode looks at Layla wondering why Marc has a terrible English accent, and Harrow explaining his plan. It also does a good move and lets Steven enjoy the role of the Moon Knight, although the suit isn’t quite right. He even gets a good slug against the jackal, although only he can see it. Some may think the jackal is just in Steven’s mind until it causes a lot of damage while invisible.
Oscar Isaac is a great actor who’s well known in the Star Wars sequels and several other movies. He does a wonderful job changing character gears on the fly, from scared gift shop employee to hard-bitten spy. Eventually, Steven will have to pretend he’s Marc if he hopes to survive. If he succeeds, what does that mean for Marc (even if he is the real personality)?
Hawke also makes a indelible mark as Arthur Harrow. He is convinced Ammit has chosen him to cleanse the Earth, even before the dirt exists. There’s no question he’s right in his mind because he’s the avatar but keeps his identity. It’s a lot better than his old job….serving Khonshu.
Still, is he still the sane one according to Khonshu, who considers himself “real justice”?
Both men may think they’re in charge, but they’re both pawns in a proxy war between gods. Khonshu reminds Marc/Steven of that, saying he was only a corpse after allegedly killing archeologists in Egypt. There may be more to the story, but we don’t know yet. All we know is Marc/Steven is now in Egypt. He has to find Harrow, who now has the scarab.
It’s also not certain how this fits into the bigger Marvel Cinematic Universe. There is a mention of the Global Repatriation Council from Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and that might be the start. The show still works as a battle on its own terms. It’ll be interesting what place this six-part series will eventually have in the ‘verse.
Moon Knight airs Wednesdays on Disney Plus through May fourth.