Psych Ward

Psych Ward: Moon Knight

Who exactly is Marvel’s resident therapist talking to when the Fist of Khonshu comes in for an appointment?

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By Tim Stevens

Jake Lockley is an adult male of above average physical fitness. The client is perhaps best known as the street vigilante Moon Knight, but also has lived under the aliases Steven Grant and Marc Spector. After having been identified as dead by HAMMER Director Norman Osborn, the client took advantage of the situation by escaping south to Mexico and dodging the United States government. Recently, he decided to abandon this tactic and has returned to U.S. soil.

In session, Lockley presents as abrupt, stone-faced, and disinterested in the process of therapy. He admits that he has little use for the idea of psychological help and claims that he "broke" the last psychologist who attempted to interview him. The writer did question why, given these disclosures, the client would bother with therapy at all. Lockley was either unwilling or unable to address the question and refused to comment on it

 
or subsequent attempts to find the answer in less direct ways. This line of questioning, however, should not be taken as a sign that the writer does not believe the client could benefit from therapy; quite the opposite, in fact. However, for therapy to be effective, one needs to be fully invested and it is difficult to see that the client is, in fact, currently doing so or would be willing to do so in the future.

Developing a diagnostic profile of the client is difficult because of the above attitude. Further complicating the process is his multiple aliases. It has been suggested by several scholars of the super hero psyche that he suffers from Dissociative Identity Disorder and that his "aliases" are, in fact, his alters. However, the client insists he developed the aliases on his own to "aid his mission" and there is ample evidence to suggest that he is correct. Those suffering from DID do not consciously develop their identities and this information would therefore seem to disqualify him from the diagnosis. Additionally, alters tend to vary in age, gender, etc. from the individual's dominant personality and/or appearance. Lockley's aliases are all adult males of his age who might enjoy different jobs (rich former mercenary, cab driver, etc) but seem otherwise largely the same man in attitude and bearing.

On the other hand, the client clearly views his aliases as more than just simply other names and jobs. He referred to, on numerous occasions, the "death" of Marc Spector and seemed to mean it quite literally, not simply as the abandoning of an alter ego that was too tainted to be useful. While the writer does not feel comfortable, based on this, with giving the client a

 
DID diagnosis, he does feel that this indicates the situation is not as straightforward as a man and his aliases.

Additionally, the client admits to having had, in the past, conversations with Khonshu, the Egyptian god of the moon. These auditory and visual hallucinations would often include command hallucinations instructing him to perpetrate further acts of violence, although the client argued that these acts were always in search of justice. Despite this, the writer would label such command hallucinations as quite worrying, especially given that the client's perception of the world can be, from time to time, askew and therefore what is "justice" to him might differ greatly from the "norm."

Preliminarily, this writer would suggest a rule out of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder with the idea that it has so affected the client for so long and to such a degree that it has altered his perspective on reality. This is why his aliases, while not being true alters, can often seem that way when he talks about them and perhaps why he has hallucinated interactions with Khonshu. Additionally, the client has admitted to hyper-vigilance, flashbacks, self-medicating, and several other symptoms that would fit the PTSD profile. With a few more sessions, the writer expects that he will be able to remove the "rule out" from the description and simply say that Lockley does, in fact, have PTSD.

 
However, the writer remains skeptical that the therapeutic relationship will reach that point, given the client's attitude and presentation. Still, Jake Lockley has agreed to come in on September 2 for his next appointment. Please check with Doctors Gregg Hurwitz and Jerome Opena or review file VENGEANCE OF THE MOON KNIGHT #1 for further details.

Tim Stevens is a Mental Health Supervisor currently pursuing his Psy D. who has experience working with individuals with PTSD.

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Comments

2 comments
BlackSamurai
BlackSamurai

Granted, MK isn't in situations where he goes undercover in a gang or something like cops do, but if he doesn't have DID I would have expected some type of mention of that. When he created/creates a new persona he acts it out so intently, convincingly and lengthily that he actually became it. I'm not saying he's not unhinged, but if he's not dissociative I'd think that'd be a great explanation how he got to this point. There's only so much an undercover operative can experience before they find themselves living the life and thinking the thoughts of the role they're acting out, and apparently the only differences with how MK reached this point is that he acts like he believes he is actually the new 'cover'... that, and the hallucinating of Konshu.... and with this being the MU, it's not even able to be ruled out completely that it isn't actually Konshu out there.

Savage_Hulk
Savage_Hulk

Thanx for the psych eval doc, lol. Hopefully this new Moon Knight series kicks like Huston's run and Benson's combined!