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How a cell phone helped us figure out Marvel’s Moon Knight timeline

Published Mar 31st, 2022 4:03PM EDT
Moon Knight poster
Image: Marvel Studios

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One of the great things about Moon Knight is that it doesn’t yet have any obvious ties to Marvel’s MCU. That’s something we heard before episode 1 premiered on Disney Plus, and something that’s immediately clear after watching the first episode. There’s no hint of the MCU timeline in Moon Knight, and that’s refreshing.

However, only episode 1 manages to make us forget that Moon Knight (Oscar Isaac) lives in the same universe as the Avengers. The Easter eggs aren’t there so far to connect the new superhero to the others, but we still know this is an MCU show. Therefore, it will inevitably feature some sort of link to the rest of the Avengers sooner or later, no matter how minuscule it might be.

Could a smartphone be the thing that just revealed the Moon Knight timeline of events within the MCU? Before we can explain, we’ll remind you that big spoilers might follow below.

The MCU timeline

We ask the same question with every MCU Phase 4 show that premieres on Disney Plus. When do the events in this story happen in the grander scheme of things? We have two particular events that are important to the story. The blip in Infinity War that occurred in 2018, and the events in Endgame that allowed the Avengers to bring everyone back five years later.

The new present-day is 2023 or later for the MCU. That’s why it’s essential to understand where shows like Moon Knight fit on the MCU timeline. They could happen before the blip, during the five-year gap, or after the Avengers defeated Thanos (Josh Brolin) for good.

Since Moon Knight is an origin story, we’re even more interested in its placement on the MCU timeline. The TV show might not feel like an MCU adventure, but Moon Knight will one day interact with other Avengers.

This brings us to the first unexpected timeline clue in Moon Knight.

Moon Knight Super Bowl Trailer
Is that the MCU’s Batman? No, it’s Moon Knight. Image source: Marvel Studios

Moon Knight’s phones

We’ve met three characters that Oscar Isaac plays in Moon Knight so far. He’s Steven Grant, Marc Spector, and Moon Knight. They share the same troubled mind, as Isaac’s character suffers from dissociative identity disorder.

Two of these characters have phones that might be important for the Moon Knight timeline. Marc has an iconic Motorola Razr flip phone which is hidden and discharged. Steven finds out there’s only one caller for that number. The Razr isn’t an important clue for the Moon Knight timeline, as the flip phone precedes the smartphone era.

But early in episode 1, Steven talks to his mom on the phone, which appears to be a 2018 Galaxy S9 or Galaxy S9+. That’s according to the Android experts at 9to5Google. The same phone appears elsewhere in the episode when a couple asks Steven to take a photo.

While the Android blog focuses on Marvel’s product placement for the show, remarking that the MCU uses whatever props are available to the crew, I’ll remind you that nothing is random in Marvel shows.

We saw Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) using advanced concept phones with transparent displays. Ant-Man rocked a Pixel 3 phone in Endgame. Therefore, the 2018 Galaxy S9 matters.

If Steven (or Marc) is a tech buff, they might have purchased the latest and greatest available Android handset. What matters here is that they couldn’t have bought the phone earlier than 2018. That means the events in the first Moon Knight episode happened as early as March 2018 when Samsung Galaxy S9 launched. But it could all happen way later than that.

That said, the Galaxy S9 phone isn’t enough to tell us exactly where Moon Knight fits on the MCU timeline. But it’s certainly a starting point. We now at least know that the show takes place around the time of the blip in Infinity War, or sometime after that.

More Marvel coverage: For more MCU news, visit our Marvel guide.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.

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