Despite Moon Knight's lack of reliance on the rest of the MCU continuity, it still has plenty of Easter eggs for eagle-eyed fans. Some of these hidden clues are callbacks to storylines or characters from the comics, while others are fun references related to Marvel. These ten are some of the easiest to find in the series' first episode.
Moon Knight has a cold open unlike any other MCU entry, featuring Ethan Hawke's villainous Arthur Harrow. In the brief, dialogue-free scene, Harrow breaks a glass and empties the shards into his slippers. He then puts the shoes on and walks off, causing viewers all around the world to cringe in their seats.
While Ethan Hawke has claimed in an interview that this scene was initially his idea, it may have some roots in the comics. Arthur Harrow originally appeared as a mad scientist who studies pain theory by performing experiments on human subjects. This self-harm could possibly be a reference to Harrow's scientific fascination with pain.
When Oscar Isaac first appears on-screen in Moon Knight, it's not as the titular hero. It's as Steven Grant, a mild-mannered museum gift shop employee. Fans were very charmed by Grant's chaotic politeness, which includes him leaving sweet voicemails for his mother, signing off every time with "Laters, gators."
This may seem like just a cute idiosyncrasy of Steven Grant, but it may be a clue to something larger. The reference to alligators, or crocodiles, could tie to the Egyptian goddess Ammit, who Arthur Harrow's cult serve. Crocodiles are referenced again by Harrow's cane, his shoes, and the home screen of Marc Spector's burner phone.
After Steven Grant's day at work, he sits in a park eating and conversing with a friend. However, this "friend" is actually a golden statue performer, playing still as Steven vents about his day to him. It's a cute moment that displays Grant's disillusion with reality, as well as his comfort in loneliness as he anticipates a date.
However, the credits of the episode may catch the eyes of diehard Marvel Comics fans. The golden statue performer, played by Shaun Scott, is credited as "Crawley," a character with origins in the Moon Knight comics. Originally a homeless man, Crawley became an important informant for Moon Knight in New York City.
Steven Grant's sleep disorder is depicted in a montage sequence early in the episode. He uses a service called "Staying Awake", which plays an automated voice that encourages healthy sleep habits. This leads to Grant reading books about Egyptian mythology and playing with a Rubik's Cube as he tries to fall asleep.
"Staying Awake" doesn't have any comic origins, but there are similar services like it by Marvel characters. In the 2021 solo series Black Knight: Curse of the Ebony Blade, Dane Whitman uses a therapeutic service called "Listenr." The existence of "Staying Awake" could lead to similar apps like this being introduced into the MCU.
Steven Grant first encounters Arthur Harrow when he wakes up somewhere in Europe. Harrow is leading a religious cult, using the power of the goddess Ammit to judge his followers based on their past, present, and future. Grant particularly notices the movement of Harrow's arm tattoo of weighing scales during this ritual.
The specific symbolism of the scales is pretty important when it comes to Egyptian mythology. The scales are often related to the god Anubis, the god of death. Anubis used the scales to judge souls on whether they should be allowed into the after-life. Perhaps Harrow's allegiance to Ammit is really just a front for his loyalty to Anubis.
Several of the modern-day songs that play during the course of the pilot episode of Moon Knight are far from random. Oftentimes, they allude to storylines or general themes that the show is focusing on. For instance, Bob Dylan's "Every Grain of Sand," a song about spirituality, plays during Harrow's glass-shoe ritual.
Another significant needle drop in the Marvel show comes during the chase scene between Arthur's henchman and Steven. Driving a cupcake truck, the radio blasts "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" by Wham! The song is very fitting for this sequence where Steven is constantly fading in and out of consciousness.
Early scenes in the episode depict Steven's relationship with Gus, his pet goldfish with one fin. Later in the episode, Steven notices that Gus has been replaced with a much larger fish with two fins. Questioning the lady at the pet store, she makes an off-hand reference to the movie Finding Nemo.
While name-dropping Finding Nemo may be a case of a Disney property referencing another Disney property, it may have more significance. Finding Nemo revolves around a fish who goes missing, just like original Gus. Also, it features a character with memory loss, which also seems to relate to Steven's blacking out.
When Steven Grant discovers Marc Spector's burner phone in his apartment, he sees dozens of missed calls from a girl named "Layla." Additionally, some fans were quick to notice another frequent caller of Marc under the name "Duchamp." This incited hype in many comic book fans eager to meet another Moon Knight character.
The "Duchamp" in Spector's phone likely refers to Jean-Paul Duchamp, who goes by the alias "Frenchie." In the comics, Frenchie is Spector's close friend who also serves as his pilot during his mercenary days. Hopefully, Frenchie will make an appearance in the Disney+ show to help Spector yet again.
Arthur Harrow finally confronts Steven Grant at the museum late in the episode. There, Harrow monologues about Ammit, explaining that the goddess could've prevented tragedies like the Holocaust. However, she was betrayed by her fellow gods, as well as her own avatar, which seems to be foreshadowing.
Grant innocently mistakes the "avatar" for the 2009 film directed by James Cameron. When Harrow denies that, Grant asks if he's referring to the Nickelodeon animated series Avatar: The Last Airbender. Given Marvel's attention to detail, it's possible both of these franchises are clues to something in a future episode of Moon Knight.
The ending of Moon Knight's first episode finds Steven Grant being chased by a lycanthropic beast summoned by Harrow. With his back against the wall, Grant relinquishes control of his body to Marc Spector, transforming into Moon Knight. As the superhero, Moon Knight makes quick work of the ravenous beast.
The beast's origins and connection to Harrow are unknown, but it may have connections to the comic books. It's possible the beast is somehow related to Werewolf By Night, one of Moon Knight's first adversaries. It also may resemble a jackal, again alluding to Harrow's connection to the god Anubis.
Moon Knight is currently streaming on Disney+.