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Consequently, “Asylum” felt like a long, cool glass of water after four weeks of stumbling through the desert. Getting to know Marc was like balancing my own scales of judgment on Moon Knight itself.
I can imagine that swinging between Marc’s therapy session, his buried memories, and his ongoing battle to save his soul might have been a wild ride for some viewers, but every moment we spent filling in Marc’s backstory earned a little more of my investment in seeing he and Steven make it through their visually stunning journey with Taweret. Right now, I feel hydrated. Moisturized. Happy. In My Lane. Focused. Flourishing. Admittedly, that’s a weird way of talking about witnessing a man’s past trauma, but it is what it is. Let’s just say there’s no time to unpack it, and move on.
Marc’s trauma in this series has been altered from the Marvel Comics version. In the books, it was his father who died, and his father’s funeral he ran away from. His father’s friend, a serial killer and Nazi deserter who had adopted the identity of a long-lost rabbi, was much more of the catalyst for Marc’s trauma, but that’s a bit too heavy to get into here.
Likely due to timeline issues, the cause of Marc’s trauma now stems from a tragic accident involving his younger brother, and his mother’s subsequent breakdown. Blaming Marc for his death, she punished him with emotional and physical abuse, and he created Steven as a way to cope with his distressing childhood. I found these memories to be deeply affecting, and also felt they bonded Steven and Marc in a way that screwball interactions in the midst of CG-laden adventure never could. Marc and Steven’s trip to the afterlife also felt genuinely perilous, which is a real achievement when true peril has so often been an issue in the MCU.
Last week, I was worried that any time we spent in the mental hospital and beyond might be distracting from the action in Egypt, but it wasn’t. As the episode built a case for Marc to survive the journey, I longed for he and Steven to connect, and the episode delivered that catharsis with a light enough touch to avoid feeling forced. Seeing Steven embrace his potential to save Marc was wonderful, and I was almost as upset as Marc to see him fall into the desert and be lost.
Source: Den of Geek