The Real Plot of Marvel’s Moon Knight

A rare original copy of Marc Spector: Moon Knight Issue 1.

Photo by big-ashb

A rare original copy of Marc Spector: Moon Knight Issue 1.

2022 is the year for Marvel fans. We have “Doctor Strange in The Multiverse of Madness” which promises many character reveals and stunning fight scenes. “Morbius” could tie into everyone’s favorite early-2010s Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man, and “Thor: Love and Thunder” seems to be setting up a new era for Asgard and their legacy. However, there is one upcoming Marvel Studios project whose plans are not quite obvious: “Moon Knight.”

New “Moon Knight” episodes will be released every Wednesday on Disney+ starting on March 30, and fans are looking forward to another of the TV mini-series that Marvel Studios is becoming famous for. Announced at Disney Investor Day in 2019, “Moon Knight” seems unrelated to any previous projects. The official synopsis from reads “Moon Knight follows Steven Grant, a mild-mannered gift-shop employee, who becomes plagued with blackouts and memories of another life. Steven discovers he has dissociative identity disorder and shares a body with mercenary Marc Spector. As Steven/Marc’s enemies converge upon them, they must navigate their complex identities while thrust into a deadly mystery among the powerful gods of Egypt.”

This synopsis doesn’t seem to reveal very much about the plot of the show. There are also two trailers that have been released, but they don’t make very much sense as they are composed of video clips without context. However, all Marvel Studios projects use Marvel comics as their source material. “Moon Knight” comics have been published on and off from 1975 to 2016, and we can take information from them combined with what we see in the trailers and synopsis to reveal the full scope of the show.

The first trailer, released on January 18, 2022, starts with Steven lying in a bed while throwing a rubik’s cube up in the air and catching it repeatedly. While his motions remain the same, his surroundings flash between an apartment and a mental facility. He tries to get out of his bed in the apartment, but it flashes to the mental facility where a chain on his ankle trips him and he falls on his face. This scene demonstrates two of his different personalities. Based on the synopsis and trailers, there are at least three of these that will be in the show. There’s gift shop employee Steven Grant, former mercenary Marc Spector, who believes himself to be in a mental facility, and Moon Knight, who appears to be a superhuman in New York City. However, there is also a fourth personality, shown only in a shot released in Empire Magazine’s special on the show. It shows a character known to “Moon Knight” comic fans as Mr. Knight. Rather than being one of the identities that shares Spector’s body, Mr. Knight is a sub-personality of Moon Knight. He’s basically a classier version of the anti-hero. Issue 2 of the 2016 “Moon Knight” comic run clarifies that while they are separate personalities, Moon Knight has to be the current dominating identity in order for Mr. Knight to appear.

It was interesting in the second trailer when Grant is shown in an elevator, presumably in his apartment building, cowering in fear as a nine foot tall jackal monster runs toward him. However, right before it would attack him, the camera angle shifts and the monster becomes a harmless old woman. While this would seem to indicate that the monster was a hallucination, issue 4 of the 2016 comic run shows a similar creature shapeshifting to disguise itself as none other than an elevator operator. While it may seem at a glance that the series will be about the three personalities stated in the synopsis battling for control, further research into the comics seems to indicate that it will take all four of the actual personalities to defeat a greater villain: Arthur Harrow, played by Ethan Hawke.

Harrow was the main antagonist in the 1985 “Moon Knight” comic run. The plot of this comic series reveals that he was a brilliant scientist who used his intellect to develop what he called The Pain Theory. He ran illegal experiments on people and eventually developed a way to simply turn the pain off in someone’s body without causing mental or physical damage. He attempted to do this to an already mind-controlled Moon Knight to turn him into the perfect soldier. However, it turns out that when someone has 3-4 personalities, controlling one of them does almost nothing. Moon Knight regained control and defeated Harrow. The comic ended with Harrow in a fictional mental hospital/prison called Brynmore Psychiatric Facility, rotting as a shell of his former self.

Harrow was shown in both trailers, both times telling Grant/Spector that there’s chaos inside of them, and that they need to use it. This seems to indicate that Harrow is trying to manipulate and control Moon Knight somehow, and it seems reasonable to assume that, based on a shot of Harrow on top of a pyramid shooting lightning everywhere, he is up to no good. I therefore present this new theory that not only will there be four Moon Knight personalities, as opposed to the three in the synopsis/trailers, but they will be battling a deranged Arthur Harrow for control of the gods of Egypt, as well as each other for control of their shared body.

While we now have a reasonable outline of how the plot will probably unfold, the exact details are still unclear. The only way to be sure will be to watch the Disney+ original series as it comes out. Given that the trailers have a combined 35 million views already, it’s sure to be another stunning and popular Marvel Studios project.