Marvel released its first official trailer for its upcoming Disney+ series Moon Knight. If you don’t watch football or never heard of Moon Knight, you are not alone. Most of the people who watched the football game were probably wondering who this sleepy lunatic who didn’t seem to be able to tell night from day was, even after his costumed identity showed up in the final frames. Moon Knight is being played by Oscar Isaac who will be opposed by Ethan Hawke, who’ll take on the role of the main villain (who is currently unknown) in season one.
Marvel Entertainment having banked on the B-list Avengers and the C-list Guardians of the Galaxy and the D-list Eternals, has decided they would go into the mystery barrel and bring forth a relative unknown, a hero who is barely recognized even in the heroic comic reading community.
I know what you’re thinking.
WHO IS MOON KNIGHT?
Moon Knight, either you’re a fan, or you aren’t. His fans, while not exactly legion are ardent followers of the Fist of Khonshu and no matter how he changes, whether he is the hard-hitting mercenary, Mark Spector, covert operative, millionaire Steven Grant or cab driver Jake Lockley, the only thing you can be sure of about Moon Knight, is nothing is certain.
Over the five decades of his existence, he has had periods where the character has had NO significant metahuman abilities and others where he is causing Thor to question his life choices. He started as a marvelous analog to Batman, but as his creators and later writers began to expand him, his magical nature, his connection to Khonshu and his connection to the empyrean realms, grew stronger and he has become a force to be reckoned with
Moon Knight is a strange character in that he has dissociative identity disorder. This means he becomes other people whenever he is under stress. His core identity was Marc Spector who was a highly paid mercenary who was left for dead. As he lay dying he was discovered by a moon god in need of a worshipper. The moon deity tasked Spector to protect those who travel at night making him the titular high priest and the fist of Khonshu.
MOON KNIGHT, MARVEL CINEMATIC UNIVERSE
The trailer does not show our hero at his best, claiming to be Stephen, presumably Grant, who in the series may or may not be a millionaire. Even if he isn’t, his Spector identity is more than enough to keep up with as he appears to be switching involuntarily between the two.
If the take on the character is true to the comics, we will also see Jake Lockley, a cab driver with an undue knowledge of the criminal underworld of New York City. There are also several other characters who work with Spector, who was for a time a US Marine, a CIA operative and with his friend “Frenchie” Duchamp became a soldier-for-hire in Africa and South America. Spector lover, Marlene Alraune, worked with him as his lover and handler during his psychological crises.
Spector’s resume includes mastery of every military weapon imaginable, a crack pilot and a highly proficient martial artist. He is also an accomplished linguist. There have been times in his career when exposed to the light of the full moon, he exhibited a degree of superhuman strength.
IF YOUR NEED TO KNOW HAS INTENSIFIED…
Moon Knight has never been a regular comic, coming out in new series whenever a writer believes they can bring something new to the character. While he may have started as a response to the Silver Age detective version of Batman, he has evolved into a distinctive character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
If you are interested in a far more comprehensive analysis of the character from his origins in 1975 until some of his most recent adventures, read the Answer-Man’s comprehensive essay on the character: How was Moon Knight created for Marvel Comics?
The series will be streaming in March.
Thaddeus Howze is an award-winning writer, editor, podcaster and activist creating speculative fiction, scientific, political and cultural commentary from his office in Hayward, California.
Thaddeus’ speculative fiction has appeared in numerous anthologies and literary journals. He has published two books, ‘Hayward’s Reach’ (2011), a collection of short stories and ‘Broken Glass’ (2013) an urban fantasy novella starring his favorite paranormal investigator, Clifford Engram.