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Moon Knight episode 3 review – Khonshu, we hardly knew ye’

Marc, Steven and Khonshu finally make it to Egypt in an intriguing Moon Knight episode that doesn't exactly dazzle but definitely entertains

Moon Knight episode 3 review

Our Verdict

Moon Knight continues to entertain but it's far from marvellous

In an action-packed and intriguing third episode, Moon Knight finally makes it to Egypt, and these new Marvel Cinematic Universe characters finally get some development. ‘The Friendly Type’ kicks off with Layla (May Calamawy) making her own plans to follow Marc to the Middle East. I liked this scene – short as it was – it showed Layla’s resourcefulness and drive without going into girl boss territory.

We then catch up with Marc (Oscar Isaac) as he hunts for clues that’ll lead him to Harrow (Ethan Hawke). Unfortunately, Steven (also Oscar Isaac) isn’t too keen on his alternate identity’s brutal tactics and demands he stop.

This leads to one of the best gags of the episode, where Marc blacks out halfway through an attack on one of Harrow’s followers and then wakes up in a cab on the way to the airport, forcing him to go back and find the man all over again. Still, as funny as this moment was, it led to a far more sinister one worthy of the best horror movies.

After Marc finds Harrow’s henchman again, he’s bonked over the head and blacks out. When Marc comes too, he finds himself surrounded by corpses. Neither Marc nor Steven have any memory of the attack. Could there be another personality floating around in Marc’s head? It certainly seems so. Although, there’s another option.

As we learn during the meeting of the other gods, it is possible for Khonshu to directly possess Marc’s body. Might the Moon god be taking a more direct role in the affairs of mortals than we’ve been led to believe?

Speaking of Khonshu, the council of the Egyptian gods and the trial of Harrow was the highlight of the episode. I loved how Isaac played ‘Khonshu-possessed Marc’.The voice was deliberately pompous and silly, as you’d expect a god to sound, however, what really sold it was Isaac’s body language.

He looked uncomfortable, terrified, and surprised by every word that came out of his mouth, as though something really had slid under his skin and taken control of his body. So when Harrow appeared and accused the bird-headed god of taking advantage of a sick man, you can’t help but kind of agree.

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As he fell to the ground, Even Marc had a look on his face that said he knew that Harrow was right. Khonshu is taking advantage of Marc, and it’s only that Harrow’s genocidal plans are arguably worse than what the Moon God’s doing that justifies his actions. Still, no time for utilitarian philosophical musings because the gods find Harrow not guilty leaving Marc with no options.

Well, almost no options because Layla catches up with him here and points him in the direction of an arms dealer named Anton, who may know where Ammit’s tomb is. This leads to a nice quiet moment between Isaac and Calamawy, where they get a break from running, screaming, and punching to have a real conversation.

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I thought Calamawy was brilliant during their brief chat. There’s a real melancholy to Layla who longs to understand what her husband is going through. It plays nicely with a scene that comes later where Layla demands to know what Marc is hiding from her, where her obvious affection turns to suspicion.

Alas, there’s little time for this scene to breathe because this is a Marvel TV series, and there are bad guys to punch. Luckily Anton provides plenty of mooks for Moon Knight to introduce his fist to in the first scene that demonstrates just how powerful Moon Knight really is.

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We knew he was strong, but we didn’t quite understand how god-like he truly is. The Fist of Khonshu is capable of being impaled multiple times and walking it off like he’s got a paper cut. I don’t think amping Moon Knight’s powers to such high levels was the best idea.

It does sort of remove the stakes if the main character can quite literally be skewered by several spears and be absolutely fine. Still, with what happens at the end of the episode, it’s unlikely to be a problem for much longer.

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Anyway, despite Anton’s best attempts to stop them, Marc and Layla do manage to steal the map to Ammit’s tomb. Their problems don’t end there, though, the map is pretty much useless to Marc as he can’t read ancient Egyptian, luckily Steven does so after a quick brain swap the Moon Gang is back in business. Oh, wait, no, they’re not because the map uses stars as coordinates and cosmic drift means the constellations no longer match up.

Thankfully there are benefits to knowing the Egyptian god of the Moon, and Khonshu is able to rewind the sky to show them how the stars looked when the map was written. The only thing is Khonshu isn’t allowed to interfere with the affairs of mortals and rewinding the sky is a big no-no in the god’s book, so they imprison him robbing Marc and Steven of their powers in the process.

While I was kind of sad to see Khonshu go (he’s been a delightfully mischievous presence through the first two episodes), I won’t lie; there was part of me that was glad to see the back of his bony old behind. It’s become evident during the last few episodes that the Moon God isn’t quite evil, but he’s certainly not benevolent.

As the episode draws to a close, we see Harrow having a conversation with the statue Khinshu’s trapped in. Surprisingly it’s revealed that, like Thanos before him, Harrow actually believes in what he’s doing, and Hawke delivers a bone-chilling final line reminding Khonshu that when he frees Ammit, what happens will be all his fault.

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‘The Friendly Type’ ultimately continues the trend with Moon Knight. I’m just waiting for the series to kick into gear. It’s not bad. It’s just so far, so Marvel.

If you can’t get enough Marvel goodness, check out our guide to MCU’s Phase 4 for everything you need to know about the future of this epic franchise.