TV Recap – Steven Grant’s Life Begins to Fall Apart in Opening Episode of “Moon Knight” on Disney+

The wait is over. After the longest break between new Marvel shows on Disney+ since WandaVision debuted early last year, Moon Knight is finally here to bring us a very different kind of Marvel hero and story. The opening episode introduces us to the lead character and gives us a glimpse at just how out of control is life is and tease how much worse it’s going to get.

Spoilers ahead!

The episode opens with Arthur Harrow performing some kind of strange ritual that sees him drinking a glass of water before smashing that glass and pouring the shards into his shoes. He then slips his feet into those shoes and walks away. At this point, we of course don’t know anything about this man, or even that he is Arthur Harrow, but this is a very ominous opening for this character.

After the Marvel scroll, we get our first look at Steven Grant, who wakes up in his bed. He removes his covers to show that he is wearing an ankle restraint, which he removes. He then stand to show a ring of sand he’s poured around his bed, another security measure to make sure he hasn’t left his bed in the middle of the night. Finally, he removes some tape from his front door, the final precaution put in place. It’s clear Steven doesn’t trust himself after he falls asleep.

He then makes a phone call to his mother and leaves her a long message while he feeds his pet one-finned goldfish, Gus. He tells his mother that he wakes up feeling like he’s been hit by a bus, another sign that he is sneaking out at night without knowing it. As he leaves his apartment and rushes to catch a bus to work, it becomes more and more clear that Steven is… kind of a loser.

He makes his way to the museum where he works and beings to teach a young guest about the mummification process. Egypt plays a huge role with the character in the comics so it’s a nice touch to have Steven work in a museum and be so knowledgeable on Egyptian history.

He is interrupted by his boss, Donna, who makes him get back to the gift shop, which is where he actually works. A woman approaches Steven and asks him if they’re still on for their date at a steakhouse tomorrow, which catches him by surprise. He plays it off though and Donna approaches again, teasing him about it. She asks what he’s going to eat at a steakhouse, pointing out that he’s a vegan.

Later, in a stockroom, Steven and Donna work on inventory while Steven tries to point out a mistake in the museum’s marketing for their new exhibit on the Ennead, the “super group of Egyptian gods.” He lets her know that they are missing two of the nine gods, but she doesn’t care and sends him home. On his way out, he says good night to the security guard, who calls him Scotty.

Steven than talks to a living statue in a park and actually explains his whole sleeping situation. He says his body simply gets up and wanders about at night and he doesn’t know about it until he wakes up “wherever.” The man, who of course doesn’t respond, is actually a character from the comics. Thanks to the credits, we know this man is Crawley, an old homeless man who is both a friend and an informant to Moon Knight in the comics.

Back in his apartment, Steven prepares for bed by pouring some more sand and securing his ankle restraint. He plays some kind of audio that repeats instructions on how to stay awake. He solves a Rubik’s Cube and reads a book as the message repeats again and again before the show cuts to him waking up in a field with his jaw broken.

Steven stands, confused, before hearing a deep ominous voice telling him to go back to sleep and to “surrender the body to Marc. He checks his pocket to find a gold scarab and then looks up to see a man staring down at him. He gives him a wave before a second man shows up and the two start shooting at him.

The voice yells at Steven to run. The dynamic with this voice is very reminiscent of Sony’s Venom films in which Eddie Brock often hears the disembodied voice of his symbiote other. Steven makes his way to some kind of town square where he sees people gathering. They watch as Harrow makes his way past them and onto a stage to hold a ceremony of sorts.

A man joins Harrow on the stage and takes his hands. Harrow says he judges the man in Ammit’s name and Steven watches at scale tattoo on Harrow’s arm moves before turning green. Harrow tells the crowd this is a good man and he allows him to walk away. An old woman approaches him next and says she ”must know.” Harrow goes through the same routine, only this time the scales turn red. He apologizes as she tells him she’s been good her entire life. He says he believes her but that the scales see everything, including this that are yet to come. The woman dies where she stands and some of Harrow’s followers carry her away. Clearly, Harrow has some kind of superhuman abilities.

One of the soldiers who were chasing Steven approaches Harrow and tells him they were ambushed by someone who stole the scarab and killed two of their men. Harrow yells something in ancient Egyptian and everyone drops to a knee, except for Steven who is now sticking out like a sore thumb.

Harrow approaches Steven and calls him a mercenary. Steven tries to tell him he works in a gift shop in London. Harrow asks him to return the scarab and Steven agrees but the voice in his head tells him he will give him nothing. Steven loses control of his body as he tries to give Harrow the scarab and he uncontrollably begins to march away before Harrow’s soldier stop him. they pry the scarab from his hand before he blacks out.

He wakes up with his face covered in blood and hears the voice say “the idiot’s back.” He looks around to see the bodies of the soldier who were attacking him and runs away, stealing a cupcake van while the voice tells him not to drop the scarab. The song “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” plays on the radio as he flees, implying that this whole scenario may just be a dream while also playing on Steven’s apparent sleep disorder.

The soldiers pursue Steven and one of them eventually makes his way into his van. Steven scrambles to defend himself before blacking out again. This time, he wakes up to find that he is still driving while holding a gun and the man who was in the van with him has been shot and killed. The voice tells Marc to wake up and threatens to kill both of them if he loses the scarab, only confusing Steven further.

The soldiers surround the van and Steven Blacks out again. This time he wakes up to find that he is now driving backwards and holding a gun as one more car full of soldiers continues to chase him. The voice tells him to “leave us be” and even calls him a parasite, which is another strange connection to that Venom dynamic. He stops the van and the soldiers get out of their car with their guns drawn before they are taken out by some falling logs from earlier in the chase.

Steven wakes up in a panic in his own bed back at home. He laughs it all off as a dream and begins to go through his normal morning routine until he notices that his fish now has two fins. He interrogates an employee at a pet store who tells him she saw him yesterday, which Steven questions. He then notices the time and panics because he has to get ready for a date.

Steven sits at the restaurant, where is appears he has been stood up for the date. He tries to call the woman we saw earlier and she informs him that he is two days late. Steven is confused to learn that it is Sunday, when he went to sleep on Thursday. He confirms this with the waiter and seems very distraught as he orders himself a steak, despite the fact that he is a vegan.

Steven returns home while leaving his mother another message, this time about the girl he went on this date with. He lies to her, saying he plans to bring her around soon as he throws out the flowers he brought for her and heads into his apartment.

He sits and eats the chocolates he bought for the woman before noticing a scrape on his floor. That leads to him finding a hidden compartment in his wall where he finds a key and a cell phone. Looking through the phone, he sees he has dozens of missed calls from someone named Layla. He is about to redial her number before she calls the phone again. The distraught woman on the phone questions Steven, asking him why he couldn’t have let her know he was ok all this time. The woman asks what’s wrong with him and calls him Marc before hanging up.

Steven is of course confused again and tries to call her back before he is startled by a voice in his apartment calling his name, a different voice from earlier. He searches for the source of the voice and find that his reflection in his bathroom mirror is moving on it’s own. The voice tells him to “stop looking” and the lights begin to flicker and his apartment shakes.

Steven runs out in a panic and gets into the elevator, which comes to a stop on the wrong floor and opens up to a long dark hallway. A ghostly figure with a large bird skull appears in the hall and begins to approach the elevator as Steven panics. Just as the figure get to the elevator though, an old woman step in instead. She is scared of Steven, who is now crumpled on the floor, and rushes out once they reach her floor. Steven then turns around to find the ghostly figure standing behind him. This figure is none other than Khonshu, the Egyptian moon god who gives Moon Knight his power.

Steven screams and wakes up to find himself on the bus. He looks out the window and sees Khonshu again, but he quickly disappears. After he gets off the bus, Steven sees that Harrow was on the bus with him the whole time. Steven tries to convince the security guard to not allow anyone in because he was being followed, but the apathetic guard makes it clear he isn’t going to be much help.

Steven follows another familiar man into the museum before being ambushed by Harrow and some more of his followers. Harrow tries to explain the lore of Ammit to Steven, saying she knows what everyone has done and what they will do. She wants to punish sinners even before they’ve committed their sins. Interestingly, this is reminiscent of the storyline from Captain America: The Winter Soldier, in which Project Insight was created to identify potential threats even before they became threats.

Harrow puts Steven through his judgment ritual and they watch the scales move before panning away as Harrow tells Steven there is chaos in him. A sound distracts them and Steven runs as Harrow instructs his followers to let him go.

Later that night, Steven is about to leave the museum before he hears a dog howling inside. He goes to investigate and it becomes clear to us very quickly that something is wrong. We see Steven’s reflections move differently and see the shadow of a giant beast stalking him. Eventually, he realizes it’s not a dog he’s searching for and the beast chases him. Believe it or not, Werewolves are actually a big part of Moon Knight lore, so this beast makes a lot of sense here.

Harrow’s voice comes over the intercom and tells him to give him the scarab and he won’t be torn apart. Steven runs as the beast chases him and he locks himself in a bathroom. Hi reflection begins talking to him again and tells him he needs to give him control so he can save them. Steven snaps out of his panic and appears to give up control as some sort of robes begin to form around his body right at the creature bursts through the door.

We hear the sounds of a fight in the bathroom as the camera takes us into the door to see Moon Knight pounding away on the beast. After he finally kills it, Moon Knight turns and walks into the camera as the episode comes to a close.

If this episode lets fans know anything, it’s that they are in for something very different with this series. Oscar Isaac does an unbelievable job playing both Steven Grant and Marc Spector and the stage is set for a whole lot of craziness to come.

You can watch the first episode of Marvel’s Moon Knight on Disney+ now.

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Mike Mack
Mack is the Editorial Director for Marvel and ESPN content and he has covered comic cons, theme park events, video game showcases and other fun events. He is a fan of theme parks, sports, movies, Marvel Comics and is a self-proclaimed "nerd."