This post contains spoilers for MOON KNIGHT.
Gods have always been part of the MCU. Wakandans thank Bast and Sekhmet, Captain America assured Black Widow that “There’s only one God,” and the Celestials shown in Guardians of the Galaxy and Eternals create and destroy worlds. But without question, the series most concerned with deities has been Thor. Since the first film, Thor has dealt with not only the titular god of thunder, but also the All-Father Odin, the trickster god Loki, and the goddess of death Hela. The only series to rival Thor in god content has been Moon Knight and its Ennead, the collection of Egyptian gods, including Khonshu, Ammit, and Taweret.
Fans of both Moon Knight and Thor may have been surprised that the two pantheons never mentioned one another. But that wasn’t originally the plan. Moon Knight writer Jeremy Slater told The Direct that he actually did plan connections to Thor: Love and Thunder for the Disney+ series. “[W]hen we started working on the show, we didn’t know when we were debuting,” Slater explained, “and we thought we would probably be following Thor[: Love and Thunder].” Under that assumption, Slater developed the series in a way that addressed the major changes to MCU’s deities promised by the Thor film.
Adapting a 2012 comic book storyline by Jason Aaron and Esad Ribic, Thor: Love and Thunder pits the titular hero against Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale). As his name suggests, Gorr has a grudge against the gods of numerous pantheons and devotes his life to wiping them all out.
Were Moon Knight to follow Thor: Love and Thunder, the meeting of the Ennead in the series’ third episode would have to consider the threat posed by Gorr. Slater reports that in some versions of the Moon Knight scripts, the gods do not intercede against Arthur Harrow’s plans to resurrect Ammit because they are “hearing rumors [that] Gods are dying.” Based on that info, they decide that “this is not the right time to get involved.”
When release schedules finalized and it became clear that the latest Thor movie would release after Moon Knight, Slater developed versions of the story “that sort of teased Gorr’s arrival.” Ultimately, however, Kevin Feige and other Marvel higher-ups decided that references to the later movie distracted from Moon Knight’s story and had them removed. According to Slater, this was the right decision. “I think Marvel is getting very smart about how they sort of work in those references and cameos, and they’ll do it if it makes sense,” he told The Direct.
Even without direct connections, the ending of Moon Knight raises interesting questions about the state of the MCU’s pantheons heading into Thor: Love and Thunder. Oscar Isaac’s unique Marvel contract makes a Thor appearance by Marc Spector or any of his personalities unlikely, but with May Calamawy’s fan-favorite Layla El-Faouly taking on the role of Taweret’s avatar, some fans hope that she will join Thor in battling the God-Butcher.
All will be explained when Thor: Love and Thunder releases on July 8.