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Review: 'Moon Knight' is a violent and intriguing new Disney+ series

The series, Moon Knight according to Disney+, tells the story of Isaac's Steven Grant, a man who "becomes plagued with blackouts and memories of another life."

The series, Moon Knight according to Disney+, tells the story of Isaac's Steven Grant, a man who "becomes plagued with blackouts and memories of another life." (Marvel Entertainment)


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Estimated read time: 6-7 minutes

THE PYRAMIDS — If you feel like there isn't enough Marvel in your life, then I have some things to share with you.

First is the fact that you are a greedy person. I mean, there is so much Marvel all the time! The second is that your insatiable appetite can now be whetted as the new Marvel series "Moon Knight" has hit Disney+.

The series stars Oscar Isaac and Ethan Hawke and focuses on one of Marvel's lesser-known heroes, Moon Knight.

The first episode is now available on Disney+, with the remaining five episodes scheduled to drop weekly.

Odds are you've already seen episode one, but I'm here to give you some insight into season one and help you decide if "Moon Knight" is worth watching week in and week out for the next couple of months.

What I liked

The cast

I don't want to give anything away for those unfamiliar with Moon Knight, but let's just say Isaac gets to play multiple characters and it's fun to watch. Isaac embodies the characters well, and you can tell who he is based solely on his posture and the way he carries himself.

In addition to Isaac, Hawke gives a strong performance as our baddie. He's terrifying, and what makes it worse is he seems to make a lot of sense at times. You can tell Hawke is having a good time with the role.

Another stand-out performance comes from May Calamawy. Plan on seeing a lot more of her now that her name and face are gaining some ground thanks to her fun portrayal of the capable and witty Layla.

These three leads make the show interesting to watch.

The story is both frustrating and engrossing

Marvel movies are often a tale of good versus evil. The clear bad guy is trying to ruin the world while the clear good guy is trying to stop him. "Moon Knight" has some of that, but there are layers to this one.

The mystery is set up early in the first episode — but I'm warning you now, you're still not going to get all the answers you want as the series gears to wrap up the season. This is frustrating, but it also keeps the story interesting as bits and pieces of this tangled web slowly unfurl. At the end of each episode, the jigsaw puzzle is still missing plenty of pieces and you'll find yourself waiting for the next episode so you can make the picture just a tiny bit clearer.

It's clever

One thing I appreciated about "Moon Knight" is that it does not take itself too seriously. I think this was an issue with some of the early Marvel films, but they have found their sweet spot, and "Moon Knight" hangs out in this lane.

There are plenty of moments that will give you a good chuckle, and the absurdity of Egyptian gods and giant jackals isn't lost on the cast and crew. There is plenty of drama to go around, but there is also a lot of fun to be had, which is exactly what a Marvel movie or TV show needs.

Things to be aware of

This isn't nonstop action

"Moon Knight" is a superhero show, but you'll start to notice there isn't a lot of the title character in the show. As the series moves forward, the focus is on Isaac's character(s) more than the superhero. This makes for some interesting storylines but may be a bit frustrating for some fans hoping to see the hero in action.

I'd say every episode has at least one great action scene with the hero in the suit, but that may be it. There is action in the show, but it's not at every turn; many times it's when Isaac is out of the suit.

Things get … strange

If you've seen the first episode of "Moon Knight" you know it's a little offbeat. But I'm here to tell you that this is only the start. Things get progressively stranger and culminate in one heck of a "What just happened?" moment later in the series.

The oddness did not turn me off to the series, but just be aware that if you're expecting to see more of the same that you got in episode one, you're in for a bit of a roller coaster.

What parents should know

Language

"Moon Knight" received a TV-14 rating and it's the first Disney+ series to receive a 16+ in the U.K.

"Moon Knight" has some language, but I don't think it's any more than most of the Marvel films. I'd say it's on par with a "Guardians of the Galaxy," but it's missing the sexual innuendo.

Sex

As for sex, there isn't really anything there. In fact, we don't even get the gratuitous shirtless shot of the muscly hero as we do in all the other movies and shows. Other than a kiss or two, there isn't much sex, sexual dialogue or jokes in "Moon Knight."

Violence

The violence is what I think will surprise some people. I'm not sure the body count is any higher than in other Marvel outings, but there is a fair amount of blood and the violence can feel brutal at times.

There are moments where characters are covered in blood, and there are several remorseless killings happening face to face. Something about the intimacy and apathy surrounding those killings makes it hard to watch at times.

Frightening

There are a few things in the series that may scare some younger audiences. Between mythical creatures, Egyptian gods and the violence, I think some of the imagery and tone may be too much for some kids.

This is ultimately your call, but my 9-year-old son who loves all things Marvel may have to wait a little bit before he gets to see "Moon Knight."

Is the series worth watching?

Overall, I think "Moon Knight" had ups and downs, but there were enough ups and intrigue to keep me watching. It's not the best thing Marvel has done, but it's far from the worst.

As for the Marvel series made for Disney+, I'd rank it ahead of "Falcon and the Winter Soldier," on par with "WandaVision" and just behind "Loki."

Episode one of "Moon Knight" is now available on Disney+ with new episodes releasing weekly.

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John has grown up around movies and annoys friends and family with his movie facts and knowledge. He also has a passion for sports and pretty much anything awesome, and it just so happens, that these are the three things he writes about.

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