I normally do weekly Moon Knight reviews but I wanted to let Episode 5 and 6 play out before I wrote up another review. The reason for doing so is that a lot of times things happen in Episode 5 that spill over into 6 before fully playing out. In the end, we did get some of that from this show. Taweret’s role increased dramatically and we finally got the third personality, Jake Lockley, even if it was in a post-credit scene. So, in the end, what did we get from Moon Knight?
Not a whole lot, if we’re being completely honest. The show failed on most levels.
Focusing on the Episode 5 events, I will say that I didn’t hate how they chose to develop the personality of Marc Spector and Steven Grant. Tying everything back to the abuse at the hands of his mother was actually one element of the show that I found really compelling. As someone who’s suffered at the hands of an abusive parent, I can tell you that I found those scenes to be some of the most compelling of the show. It was a great way to explore the Dissociative Identity Disorder and why Marc developed it.
Unfortunately, that was about the coolest thing that the writers did with this show. Everything else really seemed to be taken from bits and parts of other superhero shows/films, even the behavior and mannerisms of Khonshu were taken straight from Sony’s creation of Venom. The character even referred to his “others” as idiots over and over again. There really wasn’t an original thing about Khonshu other than his appearance. Everything else was straight from the mold.
The sixth and final episode really failed to deliver, as well. Everything played out as you’d normally expect. Our hero seemed dead — just like Thor did in his film — but him finally accepting who he is enabled him to come back to life and play a role in defeating the big bads. You know, just like Thor did in his film. At least in this film, we got to see a giant crow fight a giant alligator, even if the battle between those two was rather bland. We never saw any cool uses of powers, it was just an anthropomorphic crow fighting an anthropomorphic alligator for supremacy of… killing people? I’m not fully sure, since both of them seem to be gods who hate evil.
The show even went so far as including a very specific line to make sure people knew Layla was an “Egyptian superhero.” Despite the fact that she neither wanted to be nor was supposed to remain one, at least according to the plot of the show at the time, Layla couldn’t answer “yes” fast enough when she was asked if she’s an Egyptian Superhero. It’s like the line was specifically shoved in there to tell people what we already figured out over the course of six episodes; that she is Egyptian, speaks Arabic, and is a badass. The moment was really awkward, felt completely forced, and shows that Marvel has a real problem with organically defining their own characters.
On no planet would a kid stop to ask someone “are you an Egyptian superhero” while all hell was reigning down on the direct area because four supernatural beings were destroying the shit out of everything. It’s a really forced line of dialogue and that is just part and parcel of what was wrong with this show. They really seemed married to the idea of having things like this happen throughout the show no matter how out of place they seemed.
At the end of the day, Moon Knight was an experiment that didn’t work for me. The show could have both been much shorter or much longer and I’m not sure that leaves it in the best of places. The show did very little to explain who Marc. Steven, or Jake even were. If anything, it focused more on Layla than anything. There was one point in the show where I was legit wondering if they were going to kill Marc and have Layla take over the role. I actually got excited for a minute until I realized Marvel was doing that thing where they make every main character a superhero at the end.
And that’s pretty much how I would describe Moon Knight as a whole. It was a show spent waiting for something to happen. It was a show where the directions they could have gone in were more interesting than the directions they have taken. It was a show that appeared to be cut from the cloth of everything that came before it, a show that took few chances, few leaps, and ultimately came up short of the promise fans were given when the show was announced.