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Finally, Moon Knight tries to tell a different kind of Marvel story, and it doesn’t go well. 

There is a show on Disney Plus that wants you to become a fan. 

Moon Knight is about gods. During the third episode, “The Friendly Type,” Steven Grant (Oscar Isaac) and everyone in his head go on a trip to Egypt. We learn that the Egyptian pantheon is real, and they all hate Khonshu. 

When the Marvel Cinematic Universe starts to think about God, this kind of thing happens more and more often. In Eternals, the movie about eternal heroes and their Celestial creators, Shang-Chi found a hidden land of folkloric magic, and Loki’s time police were continuity-worshiping time cops. During this phase of the MCU, it’s looking at how superheroes and villains act as pawns in a game of divine chess where the players aren’t very clear and it’s hard to figure out who they are. 

In particular, that’s true when it comes to Moon Knight’s take on the Egyptian gods. Like the Eternals, they’ve vowed not to get involved in people’s lives. Because the Eternals aren’t even on Earth, they don’t live there. Instead, they live on a plane of existence called the Othervoid. They wouldn’t be around if they didn’t use avatars, human stand-ins who watch the world for them. This is mostly to make sure their domains aren’t disturbed and the true nature of the gods isn’t revealed. Khonshu, the moon god who is voiced by F. Murray Abraham, has chosen Marc Spector to do his work. This isn’t very unusual, but it is unusual that this work is so direct. It turns out Khonshu is the other avatars’ temperamental little brother, and none of them believe him when he tells them Arthur Harrow (Ethan Hawke) is going to try to bring back Ammit. 

Finally, Moon Knight tries to tell a different kind of Marvel story, and it doesn't go well. 

It’s at this point that Moon Knight gets messy. It asks the viewer to suddenly believe in a system of deity that doesn’t make sense, especially when the tribunal’s main reason for rejecting Khonshu’s argument is to ask the accused if he did it, and Arthur Harrow’s simple “no” is apparently enough for them. However, there could be something important here, too. It’s not just Harrow’s testimony that turns the gods off to Khonshu, but his choice of avatar. When someone asks about Spector’s mental health, Spector falls to the ground and admits that he isn’t well; he isn’t well. If Khonshu doesn’t do what the gods say he should, he will be put in prison. 

Moon Knight hasn’t said where it stands when it comes to the mental health of its main character up until this point in the game. Gods tell Marc what Steven Grant fears: that Marc is broken. And he can’t be trusted because he is broken. There are some things that make it a little less gut-wrenching, but it’s still a heartbreaking moment. “The Friendly Type” has another trick up its sleeve. 

Afterward, Marc and Layla El-Faouly (May Calamawy) go on a search for a new way to stop Harrow, by beating him to his goal. This is the only way they can stop him. The episode moves into full adventure mode. It stops by the home of antiquities collector Anton Mogart (the late Gaspard Ulliel) to look for an old clue to where a ritual was held in the desert, and it’s a beautiful place. To be useful, Marc and Layla need to know what the night sky looked like 2,000 years ago. 

Finally, Moon Knight tries to tell a different kind of Marvel story, and it doesn't go well. There is a lot of praise for Marvel projects because they aren’t like the one before them. I don’t agree with this kind of praise. There is so much richness in movies that the MCU hasn’t seen yet, and there will be new things for the MCU for a long time. 🙂 What’s more important to talk about is whether Marvel shows use their aesthetic themes for different reasons, or to look at different ideas in a different way. I think this is very rare. This is why the end of each MCU movie or TV show always looks and sounds the same. 

The end of “The Friendly Type,” on the other hand, points to a world where this doesn’t have to be the case. 

Marc and Layla can’t find the clue they need in the sky at night, and they don’t know why. However, Steven can. A supernatural event that everyone can see happens when Khonshu gives Steven the power to rewind the night sky. Marc gives it back reluctantly. An important moment doesn’t happen because of violence, but because of the episode’s two main themes: God and mental illness. Still, Marc and Steven trust each other when they have no one else. Khonshu, who may also be a person in Steven’s mind, has a lot of power over the natural world through them. 

Steven said that because ancient Egyptians lived in a desert, they had no choice but to use the stars instead of landmarks to find their way around the world around them. Then, why don’t we pay attention to them, too? Isn’t there already a god of the night? He shows us a glimpse of that awe in “The Friendly Type,” which is an expression of myth in the way we thought about the world when we were young. 

For a third time in a row in the last few episodes, Moon Knight has to start over. The show Moon Knight is still not clear where it wants to go. It’s well-made, with good performances and confident direction from Mohamed Diab putting a complicated script on top. It’s very different from other MCU movies in terms of tone. Episodes are different, but “The Friendly Type” seems to be Moon Knight’s favorite. That could quickly change. I don’t know if this is a good or bad move. Who knows what show will be on next week?

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