Craig’s Pick of the Week: Moon Knight #1 Review
Story by Brian Michael Bendis
Art by Alex Maleev
Ever since their critically acclaimed run on Daredevil, Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev have been a bit hit or miss. They did a four-issue Halo mini-series that took two years to come out; they did a few tie-ins to some of the major Marvel events such as Civil War and Secret Invasion; they created a new Spider-Woman series that was meant to be similar to their run on Daredevil and continue for years: it ended up lasting seven issues because they both got burned out after wasting their time on a motion comic version. Recently the two launched their first created-owned series together, Scarlet, which was actually pretty good until it’s abrupt ending. And now they are doing Moon Knight.
Bendis and Maleev’s Moon Knight sounds like what Spider-Woman was meant to be: a follow-up to Daredevil that takes a character that has largely been neglected or ignored for most of its publication history and reinventing it over a gigantic five-year storyline. Will this series actually make it past a first year? We’ll have to wait and see but regardless, this first issue was a great start.
My previous exposures to Moon Knight were the 2006 Moon Knight series by Charlie Huston and the recent Vengeance of the Moon Knight series by Gregg Hurwitz and Jerome Opena. Despite my lack of knowledge of the character, I really enjoyed both of these series (particularly the second) but I welcomed the additions of Bendis and Maleev to the title because they promised to show why Moon Knight was an interesting character.
This first issue is all about the new: Marc Spector (Moon Knight’s secret identity) has moved to Los Angeles and is producing a TV series based on his life. He also has three new personalities based on (technically this is a spoiler because it is revealed at the end of the issue but since Bendis used it as a selling point for the comic I think it’s fair to reveal it here too) Captain America, Spider-Man and Wolverine. These three (who he thinks are the actual Avengers) tell him he has to take out the Kingpin of Los Angeles. Moon Knight fights Mr. Hyde, who is working for the mysterious Kingpin, and discovers that whoever the Kingpin is, he has an Ultron robot.
Bendis makes a great job of establishing Moon Knight’s status quo and setting up the series’ premise in this issue. It is also refreshingly free of his usual dialogue tics (aside from the TV series at the beginning but I think that dialogue is intentional). As he has worked with Maleev on many projects before, he knows how to write for the artist extremely well and you can tell. There is a large action sequence near the end of the issue with very little dialogue: Bendis lets Maleev tell the story because he knows he can and if there’s anything Maleev can draw, it’s a great action sequence.
Moon Knight #1 was a great start to what is hopefully a great series. I hope that in five or six years time, this series will be up there with their run on Daredevil. Most of all, I hope they succeed in making Moon Knight an interesting character.
Story : 4/5
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