‘Moon Knight’ 1×06 Review: “Gods and Monsters”

The finale of Marvel’s latest series, Moon Knight is here with ‘Gods and Monsters’, and it had a lot to love. Is the finally the Marvel series that’s able to break the finale curse? In six episodes, this was another whirlwind series that introduced a lot of new characters, and potential storylines to fit into the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) going forward. Did it all come together? Let’s discuss!

Marvel has always struggled with finales. Essentially what the problem is is that really compelling stories get set up in a limited series that don’t always get resolved in the finale. Rather than focusing on telling a full and complete story, there’s traditionally been more focus on setting up the ways in which the series can be tied into the larger MCU. Moon Knight somehow managed to strike a balance between both of these. While maybe not every story got a tidy wrap-up, this finale ultimately felt like an ending to a complete arc. Even though there aren’t any other Marvel character appearances here, it’s clear these characters can all fit in nicely to the MCU, with a lot of room to grow.

Oscar Isaac continues to astound and amaze with his performance here. Really, he’s proved from the beginning. The heartwarming way in which Marc and Steven were able to re-unite is a testament to the way Isaac has been able to play both of these characters in the most endearing way. Seeing these two re-united, it’s clear that they are truly a part of each other. These two characters complement each other so perfectly, and they are both at their best at the end of the season. The comfort energy they radiate is phenomenal.  

Layla (May Calamawy) finally came full circle. This is one of the show’s best characters, who hasn’t been given nearly enough screen-time. Granted, it’s a limited series, but still. After being teased that this character is the Scarlet Scarab, this episode cements her place as the Egyptian superhero the MCU needs. Her team-up with Taweret was the perfect way to bring the story of the gods full circle. The set-up to have Layla appear in future projects is satisfying. In the meantime, I look forward to delving in to the comic book origin story of this character.

It wouldn’t have been a Marvel series without a big, flashy fight scene near the end. Moon Knight delivered a fight between gods. Fans of the big MCU CGI fights likely won’t be disappointed by this. For those who there’s already to much of this in the MCU, it never felt like the CGI fight was overwhelming the rest of the story. Personally, my only critique would be that the story of Ammit wasn’t set up that well within the series. Sure, they were mentioned, but there wasn’t a tonne of setup as to why the fight between Ammit and Khonshu was an important one. 

Sadly, as predicted, the main villain, Arthur Harrow (Ethan Hawke), came to nothing. Marvel seems to really love setting up villains that good be excellent commentaries on religious extremism and fundamentalism. Unfortunately, they’ve never quite been able to fully realize this vision. Harrow joins the heap of Marvel villains who were set up as incredibly promising, but ultimately came to nothing. 

Harrow’s demise did have one benefit, though, and that was the introduction of Jake Lockley finally. After teasing this character’s presence through the entire series, he’s finally here! If there was any doubt in Isaac’s ability to play Marc and Steven, seeing him as Jake Lockley dispels it definitively. This is another character who absolutely has a place in the MCU going forward. Even if Moon Knight himself is, let’s say taking a break, there’s clearly much more to explore with Jake. 

Sadly, as has been the case with the majority of this series, the Jewish representation in this episode was lacking. The crumbs of representation from Episode 5, including Oscar Isaac donning a yarmulke and two shiva scenes will have to suffice. There is such a depth to this character’s Jewishness in the comics that’s just begging to be explored as this character is adapted for live-action. Hopefully, another opportunity will present itself sooner rather than later. 

Ultimately, Moon Knight was a perfectly enjoyable, chaotic entry into the gargantuan franchise that is the MCU. Oscar Isaac and May Calamawy more than proved themselves as capable leads, worthy of return in future projects. This likely won’t be the last we see of Khonshu, since he still has a hold on Jake Lockley. Moon Knight made a compelling case for why it’s a solid Marvel series of the ones we’ve seen so far. Re-visiting it in the future is a virtual guarantee. 

Moon Knight Season 1 is now available to stream on Disney+. 

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