After six episodes, the adventures of Steven Grant and Marc Spector (Oscar Isaac) have come to an end, but what did we make of the finale? Well, to be honest, I’m slightly underwhelmed; like watching a lunar eclipse, there was plenty of hype, but it lacked any real substance, and you had to get up at a daft time to watch it.
The episode begins not where we last left off but at the end of episode 4, with Harrow (Ethan Hawke) looting Marc’s body like a greedy MMO player looking for boar tusks. Once he has Ammit in his mucky little paws, Harrow’s powers grow, and his walking stick evolves into an axe. It’s a cool little prop, but you never really shake the notion it was the one concession Hawke made when negotiating whether or not he’d wear a superhero suit.
From there, we follow Layla (May Calamawy) on an adventure as she witnesses first-hand just how powerful Harrow has become. Luckily Harrow’s new powers leave a trail of dead bodies behind him (sentences you never thought you’d write) that allow Taweret – the Hippo god from last week – to tell Layla she needs to free Khonshu.
Coincidentally, to free Ammit from her vessel Harrow needs to take her statue to the same place Khonshu is being held, so Layla sneaks on his jeep, presumably because UberPool is a nightmare to use in the Egyptian desert. The newly empowered Harrow arrives at the Great Pyramid of Giza, and in a delightfully cathartic scene, he turns the smug council of gods into corpses and smashes the statue containing Ammit.
Something that deserves praise is how committed the production design and VFX teams involved in Moon Knight were. Ammit is a giant crocodile-headed lady, and she’s really impressive looking, intimidating while also strangely seducing (Editor: Pardon?); you get why Harrow would want to follow her.
Anyway, during all of this commotion, Layla manages to free Khonshu from his own porcelain prison. The bird-headed god immediately offers to make Layla his new avatar, but she turns him down, forcing him to confront Ammit directly in the episode’s first action scene. I actually quite enjoyed the deities’ brief scuffle. Despite being completely CGI creations, they felt like they had real weight to them, and it was cool to see them use their divine powers in battle.
Unfortunately for Khonshu, his lack of followers and faith means he’s no match for the reptilian reprobate, and he gets his boney old behind kicked. Just when it seems all is lost, though, he feels something happen and teleports away, leaving Layla alone with Harrow in the pyramid.
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Meanwhile, in the Egyptian afterlife, Marc decides he’s going to go back into the desert and rescue Steven, who was trapped at the end of the last episode. I wrote last week that Steven’s death wouldn’t be dead for long, and sure enough, Marc manages to reunite with his adorable alternate in one of the episode’s best scenes.
Isaac really does deserve every bit of praise he’s been getting for Moon Knight. He plays these absolutely bonkers roles with such enthusiasm and sincerity you’d be forgiven for thinking he actually was two people. True, Steven’s accent sounds like something you’d hear in a particularly inept local village production of Oliver Twist, but we don’t care. We love the timid little fella.
Incredibly, it turns out that the true way to escape the afterlife was the friends we made along the way, and as the pair reconcile – with a little help from Osiris – both Marc and Steven return to the land of the living. There awaiting, Khonshu wraps them in the healing armour, saving the pair from the gunshot wound, and they prepare to confront Harrow.
Things have changed, though. With Steven and Marc now in balance, they’re able to shift at will between Moon Knight and Mr Knight, something Kohonshu doesn’t seem all too happy about. The pair negotiate with the moon god, demanding that in exchange for stopping Harrow, Khonshu will release them from the job of being Moon Knight.
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With no other choice, Khonshu agrees, and it’s time to enter the third act. What about Layla, though? Well, last we saw her, she was in the Pyramid with Harrow, and he’s decided the place could do with an explosive remodel. Things look grim for Layla until Taweret returns and offers her the chance to become her avatar. Accepting Layla is transformed into a new superhero complete with Wonder Woman style armour.
This was probably the part of the episode that really excited me. As far as I can tell, this is an original MCU character, and she kicks ass. Seriously, after several episodes of a man throwing boomerangs at bad guys, seeing someone with a distinct set of powers was really refreshing. Marvel also deserves credit for going out of its way to create an original Egyptian superhero, although the back-patting moment where they point that out may have been a little much.
Unfortunately, while it’s cool seeing Marc, Steven, and Layla triple-team Harrow and his followers, it was here the episode lost me. After all the build-up and waiting, we finally get to the epic confrontation between the Avatar of Khonshu and Ammit, and then Marc blacks out. As he comes too, Harrow is lying wounded at his feet with all his men defeated.
What! I’m sorry, but no, I know we’re trying to preserve the mystery of the third personality but seriously. We don’t get to see Marc and Steven end the threat that’s been driving the entire series?
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I’m genuinely flabbergasted. I feel like I’ve been cheated. What’s the point of committing to a superhero show if I’m not going to see the guy in the cape who I like hit the man in the cape who I don’t like. I demand a refund! Ok, it’s not quite that bad. It was genuinely shocking, but mock outrage aside, the decision to subvert the normal formula here felt pretty unearned.
Oh, we forgot to mention while all this has been going on, Khonshu and Ammit have grown to the size of Godzillas and are having a fight in the car park of the Great Pyramid of Giza. While the first fight between the gods was great, this one is pretty lifeless. The giant figures lack any weight, feeling more like paper dolls than colossal abominations. As such, the whole thing feels lifeless.
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Not that any of this matters because with Harrow knocked out, Marc, Steven, and Layla begin the ritual to seal Ammit. With relative ease, they seal the god in Harrow, but Marc refuses to kill his nemesis, telling Khonshu he can do his own dirty work. As the episode draws to a close, Marc and Steven are released from their deal with Khonshu and set about a new life living in harmony. We won’t discuss Moon Knight’s post-credit scene here, but needless to say, it answers a question we’ve had since episode 3.
Honestly, the Moon Knight finale was fine, if a bit underwhelming. The decision not to show the battle between Moon Knight and Harrow was a bizarre one, and the conclusion to the series felt oddly pedestrian for such a bizarre show. Still, it was nice to see Layla do her Wonder Woman tribute act, and the final tease has us excited for whatever comes next with Moon Knight.
Moon Knight ends not so much with a bang but not really a whimper either. It’s more underwhelming than anything else which is in some ways worse.