So I’ve been thinking about how great a Moon Knight show would be and going back to hone the ideas I already had. I even wrote an entire pitch for the show. There is around a zero percent probability I would be able to pitch this to Marvel/Disney, however, so I’m posting it here to show you. It’s just an itch I needed to scratch.
An hour-long action/drama series.
For ABC, Netflix, Hulu, whatever.
Moon Knight would be an action, supernatural, crime drama series which also looks at issues of mental illness, PTSD, dissociative identity disorder, religious faith, and the abuse of faith. On the face of it, Moon Knight would be a superhero show in the same vein as Daredevil, Jessica Jones, and Iron Fist, but it would also examine and deconstruct the very nature of “superhero,” as well as showing how a person might be affected if they actually were to encounter something alien or god-like in nature. The very aspect of why Marc Spector/Moon Knight fights crime is under a microscope and the show would take a look at his history from childhood to adulthood, from being the rebellious son of a rabbi to an army recruit dishonorably discharged to a mercenary faced with harsh moral choices, finally resulting in a lonely death in Egypt. And then a resurrection and possible redemption.
Moon Knight would also look at mental illness and how it is treated in America – specifically since Marc Spector is diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder (DID) at the end of the first episode. The first episode is specifically designed to make the audience believe that Marc is pretending to be other people (Steven Grant, Jake Lockley, Moon Knight), but the ending reveals that he has deep psychological problems and trauma that resulted in DID. Whether or not the trauma was his death and resurrection by Khonshu or whether Khonshu merely took advantage of the already traumatized Spector is continual question and theme of the entire season. Moon Knight would deal with others who have also been affected by trauma, from those he works with to those whom he fights. Some will even take advantage of his mental illness or question if Khonshu is real at all.
That, too, will be a continual theme of the show: what Matt Draper calls being “burdened by an unknown god.” Marc Spector was chosen by Khonshu to be driven by his agency, but Marc barely knows what that means a lot of the time. In fact, the people Marc works with, Marlene and Frenchie, don’t actually believe that Khonshu exists, but both are in love with Marc to the extent that they go along with what he does. He does good, despite what they see as a delusion.
Whether or not Khonshu is a delusion is up for debate. Marc did die in Egypt and he did come back to life, but whether it was because of Khonshu or because the bullet simply missed all vital organs is unknown. Marc does “see” Khonshu sometimes as a figure in a white suit with a giant bird skull, but these moments are rare and tend to be vague and unsettling. Even then, however, Marc does what he believes Khonshu wants him to do: protect those who travel by night. This results in protecting those that the police tend to write off – prostitutes, junkies, the homeless, et cetera. He has faith in his mission, but Marlene and Frenchie are more wary and try to pull him back if they think he has gone too far. One day, he will alienate them all and end up alone.
Where Daredevil explored the Catholic faith, Moon Knight will explore Marc’s Jewish upbringing and his relationship with his rabbi father, paralleled with his current day relationship with Khonshu. Where Jessica Jones explored the main character’s PTSD, Moon Knight will explore Marc’s DID and mental illness. Where Iron Fist explored issues of abuse, Moon Knight will explore issues of stigmatization and the plight of the underclass in America.
Moon Knight is about a man and his relationship with himself, others, and his god.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA. We’ve seen the city before in many, many television shows and movies. But it’s also never quite shown for what it is: a huge, huge sprawling city that encompasses many, many smaller cities within it. It’s also rife with power and corruption, with Hollywood and the mega-rich elite in one area and the poor underclass in another area. Los Angeles has one of the largest homeless populations in America, over forty thousand people, many of them mentally ill.
From the tar pits of La Brea to Venice Beach, from East L.A. to the Santa Monica Pier, from Burbank to the Griffith Observatory, the city thrives with people. At night, the lights of the city pollute the air and make the stars hard to see – most nights, only the moon is visible in the sky.
- GRANT MANOR: The mansion in Beverly Hills that Marc Spector set up as Steven Grant. It has a helipad and in-door pool. Beneath the pool is a large armory and staging area. It doesn’t have an official name, but Frenchie calls it “Moonbase Alpha.”
- GENA’S DINER: Where Jake Lockley meets Crawley most of the time. Both Lockley and Crawley know and trust Gena and she provides them with a safe, out of the way table to talk. Moon Knight also keeps a spare armory in the basement just in case.
- THE HEART OF ANGELS CENTER: The homeless shelter that Crawley lives in.
- LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT – ROBBERY/HOMICIDE: Where Detective Flint works.
- THE ZEITGEIST BUILDING: Where Carson Knowles lives and works. It’s a large glass building in downtown Los Angeles.
MARC SPECTOR (main) - Male, late 20s-early 30s. He is our main character, most episodes are from his POV. He grew up in a Jewish Orthodox household, his father was a rabbi, but he rebelled early in life. After his father died, he ended up joining the army, but his rebelliousness led to him hitting a superior officer and getting dishonorably discharged. Not wanting to go back to a mundane life, he became a mercenary with the help of an old friend, Jean-Paul “Frenchie” DuChamp. While working with fellow mercenary Raoul Bushman, however, he rebelled against Bushman murdering innocent people and was shot by Bushman in retaliation. He died in the shadow of a statue of Khonshu and was resurrected...but with multiple personalities.
- STEVEN GRANT - One of Marc’s personalities post-resurrection. Steven is a billionaire playboy a la Bruce Wayne, except all his money is the blood money Marc made as a mercenary. Steven, however, acts more refined, stands taller than Marc (he wears lifts), and generally wears a suit or tuxedo. He poses as a Hollywood elite and uses the connections among the rest of the elite to further Moon Knight’s goals.
- JAKE LOCKLEY - One of Marc’s personalities post-resurrection. Jake is a cabbie or “hack” who mainly works the streets of Los Angeles at night. As a cabbie, he is able to go places that Steven Grant wouldn’t be seen dead at and maintain a network of friends in low places. He tends to slouch, wears drab brown clothes, and has a mustache. He frequents Gena’s Diner where he is friends with Gena Landers, her two sons, and frequent patron, the homeless Crawley.
- MOON KNIGHT / MR. KNIGHT - The last of Marc’s post-resurrection personalities, Moon Knight is compelled (either by his god or by his mental illness) to go out and protect people. He wears a completely white suit and a white balaclava with a crescent moon on his forehead. Sometimes he wears a white hood and cape. He also uses a variety of weapons, such as eskrima sticks, brass knuckles, and crescent moon shuriken.
JEAN-PAUL “FRENCHIE” DuCHAMP (main) - Male, late 40s. One of Marc’s oldest friends, Frenchie was there when Marc first became a mercenary and they tended to work exclusively with each other on various jobs. When Marc became Moon Knight, Frenchie decided to help him on his mission. He operates the various drones that Moon Knight uses for surveillance and pilots a helicopter to use for a quick escape. He doesn’t like to say it, but he’s also in love with Marc, even though he knows that Marc will never love him back in the same way.
MARLENE ALRAUNE (main) - Female, Middle-Eastern, late 20s-early 30s. Marlene is one of Moon Knight’s agents. She runs stakeouts, goes undercover, and helps with his cases, partly because she believes in him and partly because she considers herself responsible for what happened to Marc in Egypt. Her father, Peter Alraune, was an archaeologist whom Marc died trying to protect from Bushman, but was killed anyway. She was born in the Sudan and is a practicing Muslim.
BERTRAND CRAWLEY (main) - Male, late 50s-early 60s. Crawley is a homeless man who seems to know a lot about criminal activity in Los Angeles. He used to work as a CI for Detective Flint, but then Jake Lockley offered him a lot more money to act as one of Moon Knight’s agents. He regularly brings cases to Lockley in exchange for more money and he has a flair for the dramatic, acting with an English accent. In the past, however, he had a wife and child, but ended up drinking himself nearly to death and losing them.
GENA LANDERS (recurring) - Female, African-American, late 40s. Gena runs Gena’s Diner and regularly encounters Jake Lockley. She tries to keep her head down and keep her family safe, but she’s also a struggling single mother. Lockley offers her a hefty amount of money to act as one of Moon Knight’s agents and she accepts, although she draws the line at putting her sons in danger.
DETECTIVE FLINT (recurring) - Female, late 40s-early 50s. Flint is a LAPD detective assigned to the night shift or “freak beat.” She previously employed Crawley as her CI and it’s through him that she is connected to Moon Knight. Moon Knight offers to go places where Detective Flint cannot in exchange for information. Flint sees Moon Knight as a lunatic and knows that one day, she will find his dead body washed up on the beach. ‘Till then, however, she is willing to do whatever it takes to solve her cases and protect her squad.
RAOUL BUSHMAN (recurring) - Male, late 30s-early 40s. A mercenary that Marc worked with, the man who killed Marc. Bushman has only one code: he does whatever benefits himself.
CARSON KNOWLES (recurring) - Male, late 40s-early 50s. The CEO of Zeitgeist Enterprises and also running for Mayor of Los Angeles. Knowles has a lot of secrets, one of which is the fact that he also is in charge of a Private Military Company named Black Spectre. He recruits Bushman to covertly assassinate his rivals and anyone in his way.
Episodes are divided into two categories: crime stories (c), where Moon Knight will deal with an ordinary criminal activity, and supernatural stories (s), where Moon Knight will deal with a type of extranormal or supernatural entity or problem.
1x01 “THE MACABRE MOON KNIGHT” (c)
- In the Cairo desert, Marc Spector dies under the shadow of the statue of the moon god Khonshu. One year later, in Los Angeles, Steven Grant throws a lavish party, Jack Lockely makes a friend at Gena’s Diner, and Moon Knight fights against the white supremacist gang the Sons of the Serpent.
- Music: “God’s Gonna Cut You Down” by Johnny Cash, “The Man Who Sold the World” by Nirvana.
1x02 “THE ORPHAN’S KADDISH” (c)
- When the Sons of the Serpent kidnap a local rabbi’s daughter, Moon Knight takes them on floor by floor. In flashbacks, Marc Spector prepares for his Bar Mitzvah with his father, Rabbi Elias Spector and learns about the Orphan’s Kaddish.
- Music: “White Riot” by the Clash, “Wave of Mutilation” by the Pixies.
1x03 “HUNTERS” (c)
- There is a sniper hunting former members of a special forces group. Detective Flint begins to trust in Mr. Knight and Crawley gets some information about Bushman.
- Music: “The Passenger” by Iggy Pop.
1x04 “NIGHTMARE DISORDERS” (s)
- After a number of people die in their sleep, Marlene’s brother, who runs a sleep clinic, tells Marc about one of his patients, Robert Markham, who developed the ability to enter people’s dreams.
- Music: “Dream On” by Depeche Mode, “Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment” by the Ramones.
1x05 “FALSE AWAKENINGS” (s)
- Marlene tries to cope after her brother’s death. Frenchie is infected by the dreams of Robert Markham. Marc’s personalities begin to splinter.
- Music: “Spider Suite” by the Duke of Uke and His Novelty Orchestra, “Leave My Body” by Florence and the Machine.
1x06 “AFTER HOURS” (c)
- A man holds up Gena’s Diner when Jake and Crawley are inside. Marlene sees a therapist to cope with the depression following her brother’s death. Detective Flint learns about Raoul Bushman...and Marc Spector.
- Music: “Ghost of Stephen Foster” by Squirrel Nut Zippers, “My Body is a Cage” by Arcade Fire.
1x07 “THE DEATH AND LIFE OF MARC SPECTOR” (c)
- Bushman arrives in Los Angeles with a cadre of mercenaries and criminals looking to finally end Marc Spector for good. Carson Knowles, a candidate for mayor, makes himself known.
- Music: “The Killing Moon” by Echo and the Bunnymen, “All the Madmen” by David Bowie.
1x08 “WEREWOLVES OF LOS ANGELES” (s)
- When mauled bodies start showing up, Mr. Knight looks into the existence of werewolves. Marlene works on her depression by trying to figure out where Bushman went.
- Music: “Werewolves of London” by Warren Zevon.
1x09 “THE COMPANY OF WOLVES” (s)
- Moon Knight and Jacob Russell team up to deal with their werewolf problem. Marlene goes undercover at Zeitgeist Enterprises, the company headed by Carson Knowles.
- Music: “Dog Eat Dog” by Adam and the Ants.
1x10 “HARSH MISTRESS” (c)
- Who is Scarlet Fasinera and why is she killing off criminals? Will Moon Knight stop her...or help her? Which personality is in charge?
- Music: “She’s Not There” by the Zombies.
1x11 “BLACK SPECTRE” (s)
- Marlene finally learns who Carson Knowles’ business partner is, the leader of the private military company known as Black Spectre.
- Music: “Red Right Hand” by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, “Your Life is a Lie” by MGMT.
1x12 “TWO SOULS” (s)
- Is Marc his brother’s keeper? How far will Randall Spector go to prove he is better suited at being Khonshu’s vessel? How many people does Marc love that can be taken from him?
- Music: “Bedroom Hymns” by Florence and the Machine, “The House of the Rising Sun” by the Animals.
1x13 “SHIVA” (s)
- Randall Spector is dead. Now Marc sits shiva for him and deals with the ghosts of his past, present, and future.
- Music: “California Dreaming” by the Mamas and the Papas.
And that’s all I’ve got so far. What do you think?