Image via Disney Plus/Marvel Studios
The casting of Oscar Isaac as the titular character in the upcoming Disney Plus series moon knight received a rather mixed reaction from fans. While many MCU fans are genuinely excited about Isaac bringing the Marvel character to life, some were bothered that a non-Jewish actor was cast to play a Jewish superhero.
But for comic book writer Alan Zelenetz, who is credited with making the Jewish background of Moon Knight aka Marc Spector an important aspect of his character, that’s not a concern. In a conversation with the front, Zelenetz spoke at length about how he worked to connect Spector to his religion in the comics. When the topic veered into the controversy surrounding Oscar Isaac’s casting, he pointed out that no matter how he portrayed Moon Knight and other characters, “they’re definitely not tied to any origin.”
“All of a sudden, the Jews need to be represented. Moon Knight Must Be Jewish – “Oh We’re Watching Marvel!” The boycott is around the corner. I can already smell the blood in the water! “How could they not make him Jewish?” Oscar Isaac is not Jewish, even though he goes by the name “Isaac”. And they have an Egyptian director – what’s going on here?’ »
Zelenetz further clarified that it doesn’t matter if Isaac isn’t Jewish or if Marc Spector’s live-action adaptation will touch on his connection to Judaism.
“So he’s not Jewish and he won’t be Jewish. And Arthur Harrow will not be the character I created. So what? If he’s not Jewish because there’s a good artistic reason why he’s not Jewish, that’s okay. I do not care.
In fact, he thinks the upcoming series has the potential to explore many other important aspects of moon knight scenario. According to Zelenetz, it would be a “perfect place” to tell the story “of an ancient Egyptian god and a Jew”.
“Maybe the ancient Egyptian God wants to compensate all those ancient Egyptians who couldn’t follow Moses! It would be a good scenario.
While the show’s official trailer barely offers a glimpse of its highly guarded storyline, only its debut next month will provide the answers needed. Thus, it remains to be seen whether Marvel Studios retained Moon Knight’s Jewish heritage in its storyline or abandoned it in favor of mapping out the complicated history of its tortured superhero.
moon knight, consisting of six episodes, is currently slated to premiere on Disney Plus on March 30, 2022.