When the Moon Knight show was announced; like many, I was pleasantly surprised. Since then, we have heard very little, yet this is our first major piece of news regarding the series in quite some time. So, what makes Oscar Isaac a great choice?
Well for starters, he’s exceptionally likeable. A standout in the deeply flawed Star Wars sequel trilogy, a great misdirect character in Ex Machina. Hell, I would argue he was the best thing about his version of Apocalypse in the X-Men series; giving the character a sense of likeable malice far above what the screenplay deserved.
So why does this matter for Moon Knight?
Well, Moon Knight; otherwise known as Marc Spector, is a character laden with mental health issues. Principle among these is his struggle with multiple-personality disorder, a condition that up until now, has largely seen negative representation in the sub-genre. For this to be handled in a complex, respectful and engaging manner, the character will need to be played by someone who is easily likeable and this is what many feel Oscar Isaac could bring to the table.
The secret to his easy charm lies largely in the fact he embodies classic leading man confidence. Annihilation aside; though that is an excellent film, some of his most well-known work highlights this: He’s the guy with the swagger, the easy smile; always taking-charge. Hero or villain, you feel you could easily follow him in multiple situations and this gives him the confidence needed for a superhero character. More than that however, he also feels dangerous.
As Apocalypse (X-Men: Apocalypse) he tricked a holocaust survivor into his crusade by exploiting his emotions and Oscar Isaac nailed it. The seemingly humble apology, the radicalization, the booming proclamations: Oscar nailed them all. Each one felt distinct, yet part of a whole.
As Nathan Bateman (Ex Machina) you felt uncertain, horrified and deeply disturbed by the creation of his AI woman ‘AVA’ and grew to loath him as the bait-and-switch villain setup; all of which would not have been possible without Oscar’s dark charm distracting you from the film’s subtler build-ups.
As Poe Dameron, his character was kicked through the mud on a hundred different occasions; yet he always felt likeable due to the swagger, the humility; the spark of rage and freedom in his eyes.
This kind of intensity; yet likeability, is exactly what a character like Moon Knight needs.
An actor who can embody the conflicted, split nature of Marc Spector; while ensuring he never becomes an exploitative mental-health genre pity story. Oscar Isaac could imbue the character with a baseline likeability; through all of his actions, making him the perfect choice for Marvel’s small-screen hero.
Who knows, with an actor of Oscar Isaac’s caliber leading the charge, perhaps we’ll be seeing more of the Disney+ heroes in the movies, faster than we think.
Now that is something I would very much like to see.
Marley Eleven Bury is a twenty-one year old Film & TV writer who loves takeaway and the superhero genre far too much. His claims to fame are having listened to the entire 26-hour+ Fire and Blood audiobook multiple times and being able to sing the Periodic Table song from memory.