Marvel Moon Knight Episode 3 Recap: “The Friendly Guy”
In episode three of moon knight, directed by Mohamed Diab, former partners and lovers reunite to stop Harrow (Ethan Hawke) from going to Ammit’s grave. It turns out that working together is trickier for them, with Marc (Oscar Isaac) having to learn how to work with Steven (also Oscar Isaac) and Khonshu (F. Murray Abraham). As Layla (May Calamawy) begins to understand why Marc pulled out, Harrow uncovers truths that prove she may never have really known him.
Read our Disney+ episode two recap and marvel studios series here.
Regular in her mission to retrieve the beetle, in “The Friendly Type” Layla overcomes her fear of returning to her past in Egypt for the sake of the lives at stake if Harrow finds Ammit’s tomb before her or Marc. We get a bit of her backstory here as she interacts with an associate who falsifies papers for her and seems to go back in time with her family. They mention that Layla was her father’s little beetle who shouldn’t have grown up on his dig sites. As an adult, Layla is an archaeologist who hustles by returning black market artifacts to their rightful owners – and yes, keeping a few coins to pay the bills. Calamawy exudes confidence with self-aware pathos as a virtuous grave robber. (Did we mention Layla is our favorite?) We loved the banter in this scene and want more from the associate. The little details – like the jar of Turkish Delight candy – and the later scenes where she meets Marc at a market really imbues her. moon knightIt is a world with a culture that is not artificial because it is authentic.
Just before they end up in the market, Marc races across the rooftops in pursuit of Harrow’s followers for more information to beat. Steven arrives, having had enough of the violence, and tries to put them back on a plane until another identity takes over. When Marc arrives, blade in hand, he stands over the bodies as Steven lunges at him for the kill. Before they can try to understand who did it because neither remembers doing it, Khonshu makes Marc hang one last follower on a ledge to get more information. We should note that he wears a red scarf and cuts it to choose death over betraying Ammit. Later, we see Harrow donning crimson for this episode as a color that binds divinity to his followers.
Khonshu demands Harrow’s trial by the Ennead and causes the sky to signal them an eclipse, which does not please the gods but compels them to listen. A portal to the Giza pyramid opens and Marc (along with Steven GEEKING) appears to gather the gods through their avatars. It should be noted that he meets the avatar of Hathor, the goddess of music and love, who shares a past with Khonshu and later suggests that he search for Senfu’s tomb. It turns out that an unarmed man (because Harrow conveniently forgot his staff) who accused Khonshu of exploiting his avatars before would plead innocent and suggest that Marc is too broken to be trusted. The gods don’t even really let Khonshu make a deal or let them know to go check out the worship Harrow has in the desert. Simply: They’re done with Khonshu’s petulance and inclination to deal with humans, so they let Harrow walk. Khonshu accuses the gods of abandoning them as the gods say it was mankind who did it first. They leave him an ultimatum, spoil the sky again, and he will be banished from the stone.
At the market, when Layla and Marc meet, they agree to work together as she progresses in solving the mystery – and they ultimately share the same goal of protecting endangered lives from Harrow’s corrupt judgment. As they travel to meet a former associate of Layla’s, Marc apologizes for walking away as they see a party on a boat playing music that reminds him of their wedding night. Layla expresses that if she had known what was in her head, she could have understood. Marc retires and Oscar Isaac did that thing where he talks with his eyes but you get too lost in it to figure out those secrets! He and Calamawy are enchanting as heck. They’re a solid new amalgamation of archetypes of all those sorts of high-profile adventurers with pasts who must overcome their feelings for each other on another mission that could be their last. Steven must save this marriage!
Speaking of Steven, when Layla and Marc meet underworld collector Mogart (played by the late Gaspard Ulliel), he could have been really useful if Marc didn’t want to be in charge as “Rufino Estrada”. I’m sorry, I love that his fake name is Rufino. So delicious. Either way, Mogart and Layla were dealing with Madripoor (yes that place where we discovered Sharon Carter was the Power Broker in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier) who may have gone south and their visit to see Senfu’s tomb was contingent on peace if it could be maintained. With Marc not letting Steven out, things quickly get complicated when Harrow shows up to offer to let Mogart on his adventure to Ammit’s grave. He also hints that Layla shouldn’t trust Marc if he doesn’t tell her what he has to do with her father’s death. As everyone is gassed, Harrow destroys Senfu’s grave. This is where it gets really suspicious, because if Senfu was a loyal follower of Ammit, why destroy the tomb? I still don’t believe Harrow is honest about who he serves.
As a fight breaks out and we see Marc hit that crescent moon superhero landing, Steven bursts in as Mr. Knight and quickly gets shish-kabob’ed. He’s a darling who needs to know his role, and it finally comes into play after they flee with the remains of Senfu’s map to Ammit’s grave. Steven reconstructs it and reveals the night sky from a few thousand years ago. The Moon deity reveals that he remembers each night and decides to make a great sacrifice. Khonshu manipulates the sky once more to lead them to the grave but seals his fate as a stone statue. Before he disappears completely, he asks Steven to tell Marc to release him. The sequence is incredibly cinematic and beautiful to behold with an incredible score. It’s so cool to see the celestial supernatural magic mixed with the heist technology that Layla uses to create her just-in-time map.
At the end we see Khonshu tied to his statue in the pyramid at Giza as Arthur cruelly speaks to him about enjoying causing suffering on his behalf – and expresses his gratitude for being broken by him for knowing the value of the healing. He leaves, swearing to do what Khonshu could not.
moon knight drops on Disney+ every Wednesday.
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