Moon Knight's Director Shares Personal Experience Of Bringing 'Historic' First Egyptian Superhero To The MCU
This was a big milestone for the MCU.
Warning: SPOILERS for the Moon Knight episode “Gods and Monsters” are ahead!
While Oscar Isaac’s Marc Spector/Steven Grant were the main attraction in the Moon Knight series, its finale, a.k.a. “Gods and Monsters,” brought a new superhero into the mix. As a result of a temporary pact made with Taweret, the hippo-headed Egyptian goddess of childbirth and fertility, May Calamawy’s Layla El-Faouly got her own superhero look and abilities, and it’s since been clarified that May became the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s version of Scarlet Scarab. Mohamed Diab, who directed “Gods and Monsters” (as well as the Moon Knight premiere and two other episodes) spoke with CinemaBlend about why it was such a big deal for him being able to bring in the MCU’s “historic” first Egyptian superhero.
In order to stop Ethan Hawke’s Arthur Harrow and Ammit, Layla El-Faouly agreed to serve as Taweret’s avatar for a brief period so that she and Marc Spector/Steven Grant, who’d come back to life and re-bonded with Khonshu, could bind Ammit to Harrow’s body. You can see how they specifically emerged victorious by watching the Moon Knight finale with a Disney+ subscription, and among the things I asked Mohamed Diab during our interview was how it felt bringing Egyptian representation to the MCU’s superhero lineup. He shared his feelings with the following:
In the original Marvel Comics source material, there are two individuals who held the Scarlet Scarab mantle: Dr. Abdul Faoul, an archaeologist who was empowered by the Ruby Scarab during World War II and used his powers to protect Egypt and fight alongside the Invaders, and Faoul’s son Mehemet, who continued his late father’s search for the Scarab following its disappearance in the 1950s and eventually found it. Now the MCU has put its own spin on Scarlet Scarab through Layla El-Faouly in Moon Knight, and Mohamed Diab was excited to level up the character not just as a way to give his daughter someone who looked like her in fictional media, but also, as he put it, to give Egyptian fans of this superhero franchise a protagonist to root for akin to how Black Panther is viewed by Black fans across the world.
Furthermore, Mohamed Diab noted how Moon Knight as a whole has been well received by Egyptian viewers thanks to how their culture has shined in the Disney+ series and all the people who’ve worked on the show. As far as Scarlet Scarab goes, even though Layla El-Faouly only agreed to work with Taweret for a limited time, assuming Moon Knight Season 2 happens (right now, it’s unclear if that’s even on the table), it’s a good bet that the creative minds in charge will find a way to turn her back into a superhero. After all, with Jake Lockley having entered the picture in the Moon Knight finale’s game-changing end-credits scene, not to mention the possibility that more monsters like those invisible jackal freaks could emerge, it would surely become necessary for Scarlet Scarab to be thrown back into action, right?
Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for more Moon Knight coverage and news concerning upcoming Marvel TV shows. For those interested in something new to check out now that Moon Knight is finished, head to our 2022 TV schedule to see what other programming looks appealing.
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