Everybody except Layla (May Calamawy) irritated me in Moon Knight episode 3, so, in the wise words of Scar: be prepared.
Funnily enough, the episode starts with Layla in what I assume is a document-forging shed with a woman who may or may not be her mother. Layla is complaining about the Marc/Steven situation because who wouldn’t? More importantly, we learn that Layla’s dad was also a document forger, and that Layla was taught to do it, too. She forges up some new fake documents for herself, which I personally thought was cool. I love girlbossery.
Next we go to Cairo, Egypt, where Arthur (Ethan Hawke) and his cult girlies are digging for Ammit’s grave, and Marc (Oscar Isaac) is doing his Moon Knight run on top of some buildings until he comes across Arthur’s men. They fight, of course; this is a Marvel show. Marc ends up dissociating during the fight and Steven takes over – but we don’t see that. When Marc comes to, he’s in a taxi on the way to the airport, and he immediately gets out and runs after the men he was just beating up. Visually, this scene is pleasing to me and my homegirls. Marc dissociates again; when he comes to this time, he’s just killed one of the men he was fighting. The last of Arthur’s men who hadn’t already been dispatched lets himself fall off the edge of a cliff rather than divulge his secrets. It’s wild! Steven claims he didn’t kill anyone when Marc was out of commission, so what’s going on?
Khonshu (Karim El Hakim) engages in some shenanigans and the gods call a sort of conference of the avatars inside the Great Pyramid of Giza. Again, the visuals? A+. When Steven gets there, he has a short exchange with Yaztil (Díana Bermudez), the avatar of Hathor, but then the meeting commences. The gods Horus (that’s my boy), Isis, Tefnut, Osiris, Hathor, and Khonshu all inhabit their avatars to communicate during this farce of a meeting. Khonshu orders judgment of Arthur Harrow for trying to release Ammit –which he is – but Arthur is in his girlboss & gaslight era and convinces the gods that Khonshu and his avatar are mentally ill and can’t be trusted, which…was stressful to watch. But the gods are useless and believe Arthur because it’s easy and they don’t like Khonshu anyway. (Sidenote: Khonshu is such a deranged character.) When the meeting is over, Yaztil tells Marc that one man (Senfu) received the location of Ammit’s tomb; if he finds Senfu’s sarcophagus, he’ll find where Ammit was buried. This feels a bit like a set up, but we’re rolling with it.
A wild Layla appears when Marc is looking for Senfu’s sarcophagus and she knows exactly where to go because of course she does. There’s some tension between her and Marc because Marc is a massive jerk trying to keep Layla away from him and Khonshu. His unwillingness to communicate is astounding. After a short boat ride, they end up at the place of an extremely rich collector of culturally relevant black market items. The collector has Senfu’s sarcophagus, and even lets them see it, but Marc needs to let Steven out to use the markings on the sarcophagus. Steven is so unwilling to understand the situation. It’s like he has no ability to conceptualize how life-and-death serious this all is; while understandable to an extent, it’s mostly annoying. Steven eventually gets help from the inside, but before he can figure everything out, the collector and his security get antsy and start threatening them.
Arthur then shows up (because he’s a stalker) and starts telling everybody’s business? It’s weird and distracting and rude, which I think is maybe the point, but the blatant manipulation is appalling. Khonshu tells Marc to summon the suit, and then Arthur uses his little magic staff to destroy Senfu’s sarcphagus. Arthur leaves and a fight ensues. Moon Knight and Layla are sufficiently badass, but Steven continues to try to get Marc to stop, which couldn’t be more irritating. Y’all are literally in the middle of a knife fight for your lives and you think distracting Marc is helpful? Steven in the Mr. Knight suit takes over and tries to deescalate things by talking, but he gets impaled twice and immediately has Marc resume. I don’t think he needed that experience in order to understand how dire everything is, but, alas. Now Marc is losing, but Layla is not; she comes to his rescue again because she’s the best; and then Marc rescues her because mutual rescuing is sexy.
When the fight is over, Marc and Layla go on a car ride into the desert and Marc continues to be rude to keep Layla away because he’s an idiot boy. Once they’re out in the desert, they try to use the items they took from Senfu’s sarcophagus to decipher where Ammit was buried, but neither of them can do it. Layla insists that Marc let Steven out because Steven has the knowledge they need, so Marc obliges. The acting on show during this part was phenomenal; Oscar Isaac, you will always be famous. Steven works out the star map to the burial site, except it was mapped about 2000 years ago and the night sky looks different now. So that’s an obstacle.
But dramatic Mr. Bird Face remembers the night of the burial because he is in fact the god of the moon, so he (quite theatrically) turns back the night sky for Steven and Layla. However, because of his flagrant display of godliness, the other gods imprison Birdy McSkyface in a little stone totem. Before he goes, he tells Steven have Marc free him, which is funny because Steven doesn’t even like Khonshu. Why would he do anything to set him free again?
With Khonshu imprisoned in the Pyramid of Giza, his avatar cannot access his powers. Arthur visits him solely to gloat like an arrogant child. To be fair, though, Arthur has been winning this entire time, so I’ll let it slide. I also think Osiris’s avatar is annoying for letting him in at all – but that’s the end of the episode three, “The Friendly Type.”
Moon Knight episode 3 was stressful and irritating from beginning to end, but I’m interested to see how Marc and Steven get on without Khonshu’s influence.