A short Moon Knight teaser was released as part of a Marvel compilation for Disney+ Day last November. The teaser trailer showed Oscar Isaac in the lead role of Marc Spector/Moon Knight for the first time, as he takes down crime in the iconic white suit.
But unexpectedly, the voiceover pointed to the comic version of the character’s mental health struggles.
In a refreshing leap, Marvel Studios will be framing the show, and Spector himself, around his Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) instead of erasing or glossing over it. This makes—him and his series—one of the MCU’s darkest anti-heroes.
What is Moon Knight, and what is it about?
In the Moon Knight comics, Marc Spector suffers from DID, a disorder that, after extreme trauma, manifests as multiple identities. Typically, each identity coexists with one another—each with their own lives and memories.
As a storytelling prosthesis to help Spector gather information to fight crime, the comics honed in on the aspect of DID that creates the multiple identities. This is known in the DID community as alters.
These alters include billionaire Steven Grant, cab driver Mr. Lockley, and Mr. Knight. The show’s teaser trailer gave us an insight into some of these alters through the voiceover, with Isaac’s Spector saying, “I can’t tell the difference between my waking life and dreams,” and later shown blinking out of an alter episode, stunned, covered in blood, and surrounded by bodies.
How Marvel handles mental health is important
If the Moon Knight series manages to handle Spector’s DID respectfully and accurately, it will show him using it to fight crime, and learning how to navigate his personal life, and the world, with the disorder.
While many Marvel characters have their fair share of mental health struggles, the severity and degree at which Spector experiences his DID creates something entirely new for the MCU. It manifests, arguably the scariest, most violent character in the Marvel rolodex.
Oscar Isaac has openly said that this role is one of the most challenging things he’s had to do in his entire career. “Speaking with Kevin [Feige], I told him I’m going to come in with these big ideas, and if you don’t like them, that’s fair,” Isaac told Variety’s Awards Circuit Podcast.
“And immediately, we saw it all. I found so much room to do things that I’ve never done before and had been curious about and wanting to do. I could not wait to get to set, and it was the biggest workload I’ve ever had in my career and most challenging; by the sheer amount of stuff we had to do in eight months, and even yet, I couldn’t wait to get to set and work.”
Moon Knight will consist of six episodes and is expected to debut sometime in the first half of 2022.
In other Marvel news, the Daily Bugle has a TikTok account now and Eternals might have just set up one of the biggest Marvel villains we’ve ever seen.
Photos via Marvel