Moon Knight Finale Makes MCU History with First Arab Superhero

By Sam Hargrave Updated:
Moon Knight Avengers

Moon Knight has been a wild ride throughout its six-week run on Disney+, one which will certainly delight fans of mystery and character exploration while letting down those looking for a traditional MCU experience. Not only has the growing relationship between Marc Spector and Steven Grant proven to be an interesting one, but both personas have developed a heartfelt bond with May Calamawy's Layla El-Faouly, aka Marc's wife.

Warning - the rest of this article contains spoilers for Moon Knight.

Having assisted Marc and Steven on their Egyptian adventures throughout the series, Layla finally got to suit up in her own heroic outfit in the finale. In a way, this should have been expected; after all, it wouldn't be an MCU Disney+ finale if there wasn't a grand reveal of a new heroic costume.

Much like Marc gets his armored suit from Khonshu, Layla's come from the hippo-like goddess Taweret, to whom she will now serve as the avatar. Unfortunately, Layla was never given a superhero alias of her own in the finale, but many have speculated her to be an adaptation of the Scarlet Scarab, the character who inspired her father's name in the series.

In becoming a hero, May Calamawy's Egyptian character just made MCU history in taking a new step forward for representation. 

Moon Knight's Layla Becomes a Superhero

The season finale of Moon Knight saw May Calamawy's Layla El-Faouly become the avatar of Taweret before donning an armored costume to join the fight against Arthur Harrow and Ammit.

Layla Scarlet Scarab Moon Knight
Marvel Studios

Upon joining the fight, a young local girl in Cairo asked Layla if she is an Egyptian superhero.

Layla Superhero Moon Knight
Marvel Studios

Following this, she accepted the term, making her the MCU's latest hero.

Layla Superhero Moon Knight
Marvel Studios

Layla appears to be assuming the mantle of the Scarlet Scarab - the alias of Abdul Faoul in Marvel Comics - who serves as the heroic protector of Egypt.

Scarlet Scarab Marvel

With Layla being Egyptian - and Calamawy herself being Egyptian-Palestinian - Scarlet Scarab just became the first Arab superhero in the MCU.

During a recent interview with India Today, Calamawy shared her excitement to "invite Arabs into the MCU" to help them "feel like they are a part of it:"

"What’s most important to me are the relationships. I just want to feel like we have honored them and that it’s believable and that you can feel what everyone’s going through. I have lived so much in the acting of it that I am excited to see that combined with everything else. And as an Arab I am so excited to invite Arabs into the MCU and let them feel like they are a part of it. I hope they all love it.”

Layla's MCU Future as Scarlet Scarab

Between Shang-ChiEternals, and Ms. Marvel, Phase 4 has truly proven to be the age of representation in the MCU, and Moon Knight marks yet another step forward in that regard. DC will soon bring another Arab hero to life in Black Adam, however, the studio will not be using an Arab actor for the role as Dwayne Johnson leads the flick.

After only a few minutes of action, Layla's Scarlet Scarab certainly made her mark on the Moon Knight finale. There's no doubt this was aided by the strength of his character arc across the series on top of the excellent performance delivered by May Calamawy.

With reactions to Layla's heroic transformation appearing to be nothing but positive, Scarlet Scarab will no doubt be back in potential future seasons of Moon Knight and maybe more. After all, Marvel Studios has been handing out Disney+ spin-offs like they're going out of business, perhaps Layla could be next.

Scarlet Scarab has led his own team of Egyptian heroes in Marvel Comics called the Sons of Scarab. As Moon Knight has just jumped headfirst into the Egypt of the Marvel universe, this could be an intriguing team to bring to life in the future, perhaps instead as a team of the gods' avatars.

Who knows where Layla will show up next in the MCU, but the Scarlet Scarab marks yet another exciting addition to the supernatural side of the universe, one who will undoubtedly prove important in the future.

Moon Knight is streaming now, exclusively on Disney+.

- About The Author: Sam Hargrave
Sam Hargrave is the Associate Editor at The Direct. He joined the team as a gaming writer in 2020 before later expanding into writing for all areas of The Direct and taking on further responsibilities such as editorial tasks and image creation.