This Hawkeye Character Was Almost The Love Interest For Moon Knight

"Moon Knight" only has one episode left, and with the show winding up in a very different place than where it began, it's quite difficult to predict what will become of Marc Spector by the end of the final instalment. The Disney+ series stars Oscar Isaac as Marc Spector/Steven Grant, a character coming to terms with his mental health issues all while trying to save the world from the threat of Arthur Harrow (Ethan Hawke), all while discerning fact from fiction becomes increasingly difficult. Marvel Comics has some ambiguous storylines regarding what is and is not reality for Marc, particularly the incredible run by Jeff Lemire and Greg Smallwood, from which the show has drawn heavily.

As with any Marvel Cinematic Universe project, "Moon Knight" had a lot of ideas thrown around before fully taking form. One aspect of the show that could've been radically different is Marc's romantic relationship. In the series, Marc is married to Layla El-Faouly (May Calamawy), who is basically the MCU's version of Marc's on-again-off-again love interest in the comics, Marlene Alraune. Though their relationship is crucial to the show, Layla came somewhat close to not existing at all. There was initially talk of putting another Marvel hero in her place, though she went on to debut in "Hawkeye" instead. What character almost wound up romantically entangled with Marc and Steven?

Echoes of another character

Layla may feel integral to "Moon Knight" now, but an earlier idea for the series was to have Maya Lopez, aka Echo, show up instead. Head writer and executive producer Jeremy Slater appeared on the Ringerverse's House of R podcast (via TV Line) and told co-host Joanna Robinson:

"At the time, Echo was going to be our love interest, solely based on the fact that they knew Marvel liked the character of Echo and was trying to find a show to put her in ... [but] she didn't work at all for the story we were telling. They [Marvel] were like, 'You know what, we've got this Hawkeye show and we feel like she would fit in a lot better there...,' and we were like, 'Oh, thank God.'"

Maya did indeed debut in "Hawkeye," played by Alaqua Cox. Not only did she feature prominently in that series, but the character is headed for her own spin-off. Created by David Mack and Joe Quesada in 1999 for their "Daredevil" run, Maya is a truly unique heroine in Marvel Comics, so it's exciting that she will soon have a chance in the spotlight. It's probably for the best that her cinematic journey began in "Hawkeye" rather than "Moon Knight," since her story made a much more organic fit for the former.

Though Moon Knight and Echo have had a brief romance in the comics, considering a lot of narrative choices the show has made, the character likely would've felt shoehorned in. Although "Moon Knight" draws so much from the Lemire and Smallwood run, as well as from a couple other series, the hero created for the MCU is vastly different from the one created by Marvel Comics. For me, a lot of enjoying this show — which I have — has been about not comparing it to the source material I love so much. Plus, thus far, "Moon Knight" has been mostly free from any MCU connections, and it's refreshing to have the show be its own entity, rather than concerning itself too much with setting up future plot points.

Almost a very different show

Another notable aspect of the initial "Moon Knight" pitch that did not make it into the show was the inclusion of Raoul Bushman. Created by Doug Moench and Bill Sienkiewicz in 1980, the character is central to Moon Knight's origin and was referenced in episode 5, "Asylum." According to Slater, the character almost received far more than a mention. He explained to Robinson:

"There were a lot of specifics in the pitch that didn't wind up working in the show. Bushman was initially going to be the main villain. I thought he was going to be possessed by an Egyptian god by the end of it, and you'd have a big sort of avatar battle."

Bushman is certainly Moon Knight's most recognizable comics villain, but when viewed through a modern lens, the character is pretty problematic, so it's definitely in the show's best interest to leave him on the page unless he gets a major update. Alongside Isaac's unforgettable turn as Marc/Steven, Hawke's performance as Harrow has been one of the best parts of the series, so "Moon Knight" definitely chose the better villain, at least for this iteration of the character. I don't know about anyone else, but I cannot wait to see how this story wraps up in what I'm hoping will be an epic finale!