Moon Knight was deliberately vague in terms of its MCU connections – and it hit its precise place in the MCU timeline in the most appropriate way.
Moon Knight hid its position in the MCU timeline in the smartest way. Starring Oscar Isaac as the MCU’s newest vigilante, Moon Knight was unlike any other Marvel Studios release to date. It was very much a standalone, carefully avoiding explicit referenced to other events in the MCU. This meant Moon Knight’s place in the MCU timeline was surprisingly unclear.
At first viewing, the only concrete evidence presented was in the background, with an ad for the Global Repatriation Council – an international council established in the aftermath of Avengers: Endgame to deal with the crisis caused by half the world’s population suddenly blipping back into existence. This led most to conclude Moon Knight took place after The Falcon & the Winter Soldier, where the GRC played a major role, but surprisingly Disney+ placed the show far further down the timeline – meaning it would have been set in 2025.
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A fascinating analysis by Geekritique appears to set Moon Knight in its proper context, however. He notes an Ancient Egypt exhibit seen in Moon Knight episode 1 runs from April 22 to July 29, meaning the show has to occur somewhere in that time period. In an ironic twist, he’s then able to identify a more precise date by examining the phases of the moon, shown prominently throughout the Disney+ TV show. Each episode featured a different lunar phase, signifying the passage of time and culminating in the full moon final battle – a confrontation that takes place when Moon Knight’s powers are at their height. This was a deliberate choice on the part of the production team, with filming even scheduled according to the lunar phases, and the credits support this by featuring the correct phase each time. It means Moon Knight and his alters wage war in a lunar cycle. Some episodes note specific days of the week – for example, in Moon Knight episode 1 Steven Grant is shaken to realize he’s woken up on a Thursday. But, unfortunately, there’s no lunar cycle corresponding with those specified days of the week in 2025. They are, however, a perfect match for June 6-June 16, 2024.
This may seem like overthinking, but Geekritique cite interviews in which Moon Knight’s writers noted they did originally have a specific placement for the show, and that it’s actually possible to figure it out through close examination. Explicit references were removed, however, because the production team didn’t know for sure how the MCU timeline would play out – or even when Moon Knight would release. The lack of overt continuity references means Marvel Studios can place Moon Knight anywhere in the timeline, without needing to worry because few viewers will care too much if a lunar cycle is contradicted going forward.
This does, of course, mean discounting the Disney+ MCU timeline – but, in truth, that particular timeline has always had some complications, and every now and again it’s changed a little in response to viewer complaints. The Disney+ MCU timeline is best viewed as a marketing tool, which explains why the latest MCU release always appears at the end of the chronology (with the exception of Black Widow, for understandable reasons). Indeed, Geekritique has already produced an MCU timeline that makes more sense than the Disney+ one, so this should probably be seen as the best placement for Moon Knight – at least until it gets potentially retconned.
More: How Powerful Moon Knight Is Compared To The Avengers
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Tom Bacon is one of Screen Rant’s staff writers, as well as a Peer Mentor for new writers and a member of the Care Team, offering support and a listening ear to members of the Comics group. A lifelong fan of major franchises including Star Wars, Doctor Who, and Marvel, Tom is delighted his childhood is back – and this time it’s cool. You can find him on Twitter @TomABacon.
A graduate of Edge Hill University, Tom remains strongly connected with his alma mater as a volunteer chaplain. He’s heavily involved with his local church, and anyone who checks him out on Twitter will swiftly learn he’s into British politics too.
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