Pick of the Week

Pick of the Week – 09.16.2009 – Venegance of The Moon Knight #1

What did the
iFanboy
community think?

211
Pulls
Avg Rating: 4.2
iFanboy Community Pick of the Week Percentage: 2.8%
 
Users who pulled this comic:


Size: pages
Price: 3.99

Although I don’t know a whole hell of a lot about the character, I’ve always had a strange affinity for Moon Knight. If I think about it, there are probably two reasons. The first is that I always considered him to be Marvel’s answer to Batman: a mentally unstable super rich guy who uses physical prowess and gadgets to fight crime. The second is that I love his crazily illogical costume design. His suit is all white and he fights crime in New York City! His dry cleaning bills must be outrageous!

When Marvel brought Moon Knight back in 2006 I jumped on-board and almost immediately jumped right back off. The art from David Finch just really isn’t my thing and I found the story to be almost completely impenetrable.  Ron claimed that he jumped off with me, but I still have fond memories of him slipping up on a podcast and admitting that he was still buying Moon Knight. That was fun.

But I digress.

When I saw that Marvel was starting a new Moon Knight book I let the news pass on by. I wasn’t really interested in going back down that road, strange fascination or not. But then I saw that the art was going to be handled by Jerome Opeña and I reconsidered my previous decision to ignore the book.

And I’m glad I did because Vengeance of The Moon Knight #1 was awesome!

Jerome Opeña was my main draw on this book so let’s start with him. In a week with books from Ivan Reis and Bryan Hitch and Jesus Saiz, Vengeance of The Moon Knight was the most gorgeous looking book that I read this week. I haven’t seen anything from Opeña since Fear Agent Volume Four: Hatchet Job, and it’s been a while since that came out, so I wasn’t prepared to be blown away like I was here. The art style on Fear Agent is a bit flatter and more traditional looking (and don’t get me wrong it looks great), but here Opeña’s style is just slightly sketchier. You can see a lot more of the pencil lines. All of the cross hatching hasn’t been covered up by the inks. We often bemoan Marvel’s house coloring style because it is usually overly obtrusive, but Dan Brown’s colors give Opeña’s art an astonishing amount of depth and life. The combination of the sketchier style and the deeper colors resulted in the one comic book that I spent the most time pouring over this week. If this is how Jerome Opeña’s art looked when he was drawing The Punisher I might have to hunt those issues down.

Anytime you’re dealing with a first issue starring a character that might not be second nature to everyone, the writer walks a fine line. You don’t want to bog the reader down in too much information, and you don’t want to leave them completely in the dark. This is important, especially when dealing with a character that has had his book rebooted after three years. You’ve got to cater to both the people who have been reading the old series and those that are coming in without knowing anything about what happened in those issues.

Writer Gregg Hurwitz did a nice job here of giving me just enough information to follow along and yet leave me with enough unanswered questions to keep me coming back for more. From what I can tell, Moon Knight has been away from New York City for a while, but now he’s back… with a vengeance! (I’d like to apologize for that) Is it important that I know why he was away? Maybe, maybe not. If it is, I’m sure it will come up later. Right now, it isn’t. Everything you need to know is laid out in the story: Moon Knight was gone, and now he’s back and if you’re a gang of criminals looking to rob a bank or rape a woman then you’re in big trouble.

The story in this issue is pretty standard fare — hero returns; hero kicks ass — but it’s done with a lot of flair. Moon Knight foiling the bank robbery is especially worth noting. From his exploding on the scene of the robbery to Moon Knight’s surfing the side of the getaway van as it skids down the middle of Broadway to cap it all off, it’s a sequence infused with an extraordinary high level of excitement a lot of which is due to Jerome Opeña’s pencils which burst with kinetic energy.

I originally picked up Vengeance of The Moon Knight #1 on a lark, not knowing anything about it, or even if I would want to continue to read it. The best thing that I can say about it, the highest compliment that I can give, is that not only did I think it was the most exciting issue that I read this week, it was the one book whose next issue I was dying to get my hands on the most.

You do not need to know anything about the previous series to enjoy this issue. You don’t need to know anything about Moon Knight to enjoy this issue (I thought his name was Marc Spector?). You just need to like exciting, action packed comics with fantastic art and starring the one guy crazy enough to fight crime in the big, bad city dressed all in white from head to toe.

And as an extra added bonus you get an entire reprint of Moon Knight #1 from 1980 from the powerhouse creative team of Doug Moench and Bill Sienkiewicz!

Conor Kilpatrick
Seriously, the cleaning bills!
conor@ifanboy.com

Comments

  1. Huge left turn here.

    Seeing the previews did this look very beautiful. What the coloring department did for his Punisher work doesn’t seem to happen here. Finally a comic for Marvel that didn’t get hampered by the coloring. Hurwitz is a good up and coming writer for the industry, and his crime novels are pretty good as well. I’d recommend getting his Punisher MAX arc in trade conor, it really was good.

    Wished I picked it up though, but my week is slow I believe next week or two weeks from now. My LCS will most likely have this so I’ll hold it for next time. My pick was The Brave and the Bold #27; which had amazing art and probably the best Dial H for Hero use ever. Seriously, even if your not a fan of JMS I would give this issue a big chance.

  2. WOW no Batman and Robin or Blackest Night…

    I didnt pick this up so this is a major shocker for me. 

  3. I may have to swing by the store and pick this up.

  4. Wow!  I knew Josh was looking forward to this book, but didn’t know Conor would pick it up too!  Great review though, glad you enjoyed the book.

    At this point, I’m leaning towards Blackest Night #3.  Johns made me care about Firestorm, that is nothing short of a miracle. 

  5. I was staring at this at the LCS, debating whether or not to buy this. I was thinking that I wouldn’t enjoy it too much, since I never really got into his previous series. Then I thought that if i DIDNT buy it, with my luck the guys on iFanboy would rave on about it saying how amazing it was. So I didnt buy it, and of course it was POTW! Return trip to comic store ahoy!

  6. I was going to pick this up for opena but got in the store and I had past my $30 dollar limit so this book got the axe. Now I gotta pick it up next week. Personally I went with Walking Dead for the pure Kirkman goodness.

  7. This was an awesome comic, and I would have loved to had made it my pick of the week, but Blackest Night just HAD to come out too…

    I picked this up on a whim, and financially I REALLY don’t need a new book, but this was completely worth it.  Even better, the $3.99 price tag is just for this issue.

  8. What on Eartha Kitt is going on around here?

  9. I’m gonna start calling Conor by his new nickname: curveball.

  10. @Conor, man you got the pick of the week up quick. 

  11. @ShaunR: This is actually the latest I’ve had it up in ages.

  12. I’d like to point out a particular article from just under a year ago.

    Just sayin’ is all.

  13. @josh: Oh wow, I didn’t realize this team did a comic beforehand. Now I’m gonna go out and give it a shot.

  14. Is his name not Marc Spector? I feel like I did a lot better on the "reading comprehension" of my standardized testing than I would do today.

  15. Funny enough, the only thing I knew/remembered about Moon Knight before reading this review was that Ron once lied about dropping the book.  I don’t really need a new title right now, but it sounds like this is good.

    I haven’t gotten all my books yet but X-Factor is probably going to stay my pick.  I’ve been enjoying the current arc, but this is the issue where I can see everything starting to come together.  When Peter David is on, his ensemble writing is as good as anybody’s in the business.

  16. I had no idea Opena was on this book. I had it in my subscription pile today at the store, but was spending over 100$ and quickly went through it to weed out the stuff I didn’t want and the large MOON KNIGHT title was enough to get this back to the racks. The book should be titled OPENA draws moon knight. Then I wouldn’t have to go back and get it.

  17. @Jimski

    The recap page said something about his name being Marc Spector, but he’s using an alias… Jake something… 

  18. oh, wow… that’s surprising

  19. In the reprint it states that he has THREE aliases… aliai? Anywho, it’s odd, yet appealing. Fantastic issue. Might be my pick.

  20. Does Pick of The Week sometimes mean best surprise of the week?  I just notice sometimes old stand-bys (Walking Dead, Scalped..) seem to get lost in the mix.

  21. @UncleBob: It means the book we enjoyed the most. SCALPED gets picked a lot, much to a lot of people’s chagrin.

  22. I pick up my books tomorrow and I’ve been wrestling with picking this up. I had a few old issues of Marc Spector: Moon Knight lying around and it was very interesting. I tried the… Civil War X-over issue of Moon Knight with Finch and it had a great look, but it just felt, as Conor agrees, dense. I’ve been innundated with Moon Knight Sagas over the past month (I got two from two different LCSes and then two were stuffed inside my recent internet purchases.) so maybe I’ll have to read it. Great review, Conor. You sold me on this book. Marvel owes you $3.99. 😉

  23. Come on, stop it, I really can’t afford another series, my stack is as big as I can afford, but what the hell I am gonna give it a chance… I remeber picking this up in the 90’s just because I liked his costume, all white looked so elegant and cool, who knew there was such a thing before apple.

  24. I would give this a try if it wasn’t $3.99

  25. OK, sir. No room in my budget for this, but- OK, sir.

  26. This is a surprising pick, but it sounds like it was really good.  I may just pick it up to scope out Opena’s art and the backup material.  Can you guys please stop giving me more suggestions that sound awesome?  🙂  My wallet (and my wife) are giving me dirty looks!

  27. I too loved Moon Knight back in the days of my youth.  I was intrigued by the art as well and was ready to give this "new beginning" another try… until I saw $3.99 and a whole reprint included.  I instead took that money and tried Dark Horse’s Beasts of Burden.

    That $3.99 for a B-level (at best) character is a really hard sell for me.  🙁

     

    the Tiki 

  28. @Sam: Me too.

  29. Really liked Opena’s stuff in Punisher, so I’ll maybe I’ll try out this series too.

  30. My shop didn’t have a copy of this.  I wasn’t planning on picking it up anyway, but would have considered going back to get it after reading this.  I’m actually a bit of a Moon Knight fan.  When playing the first Marvel Ultimate Alliance I used Moon Knight almost exclusively, because he was the closest thing to Batman I could get.  Good for Moon Knight.  I hope the book sales enough to make him a relevant character in the Marvel U.

  31. I was more than a little sad to hear that Jerome Opena was leaving Punisher.  I’ve never read Moon Knight.  From what I understand he is a Quixotic character?  Anyways, I am going to go back and read this for sure.

  32. @ato220 – Are you suggesting Mr. Spector should have used Don Quixote as his pseudonym rather than Jake?  It is my understanding that he is actually effective when thinking coherently, but I think Quixotic may be a rather fitting term when he isn’t.

  33. I always liked moon knight. I haven’t read much of the books hes in, but if this ones good I may go pick it up.

  34. Nice! I’ll have to pick this up. 

  35. Definitely have to add this to the list – I liked the last series for the most part, but had to drop it in the great 09 purge because it just didn’t live up to previous issues. With this review and Opeña on art, I’m gonna at least pick up this issue. Moon Knight help you, though, if I have to add another title to the pull list.

  36. I’m really glad Moon Knight is finally getting some of the respect that he deserves. I’ve been a long time fan of the Moon Knight books, and this was another great one. And by the way, he does have three alias’s. Marc Spector, Jake Lockley, and Steven Grant. He dropped Spector in issue 25 of the last series and became Lockley.

  37. This pick made me smile.  Moon Knight is one of my favorite characters but I found the last incarnation to be unreadable.  The reprint of the Seinkiewicz issue was a nice bonus.

     

  38. Blackest Night or Walking Dead hell Yes!  

     

     

    MOON KNIGHT is the pick WTF!!!

     The ifanboy trio is going off the reservation with recent picks first Josh, then Ron & now Connor. 

    UGH!!!

    Matthew

     

  39. Finally, Moon Knight gets some love! Here’s hoping he keeps some of his crazy.

  40. This is definitely a contender for me. I, like Conor, mostly picked this up for Opena, and I was not disappointed on the art front. But I also really enjoyed what Hurwitz did with this issue. He seems to have used continuity, while not being burdened by it. In fact, this issue seems to address that he’s a character who is haunted by the past but who is trying to change. And for me, those are always the most fun characters.

    And like ultimatehoratio, I really enjoyed the old Moench/Sienkiewicz Moon Knight stories, so that was a nice bonus.

    Haven’t finished all my books yet, but this is definitely a contender. Glad to see it getting some attention.

     

  41. I have fond memories of Moon Knight in the Fist of Khonshu series back in the 80’s. Something about that first issue and revealing all the weird toys he got to play with that really grabbed me as a kid. The following incarnations didn’t live up to the admittedly skewed nostalgia I have over those issues, but this was pretty good.

  42. @mguy77

    While Blackest Night is a nice comic, there’s not much of a disparity between the quality of it and Moon Knight #1. 

  43. @mguy77 – Just noticing Moon Knight isn’t on your pull list. So you don’t really have the full story to sell your argument. 

  44. Openas art was just as good on The Punisher. I can’t wait to pick this up.

  45. Great Pick.  Moon Knight has always been one of my favorites – second only to DD.  However, they have always managed to waste him on crappy comics.  The last series was pretty horrible – so much so that I dropped it for awhile. Bad art, very bad writting and just plain terrible.  Here is hoping they will give Moon Knight the shot he deserves. 

  46. Moony’s "Marc Spector" identiy crisis is explained in the appropriately titled arc, "The Death of Marc Spector."

    I am so excited for this new series and glad that it’s garnering some attention!

  47. I did flip through the Moon Knight book at the LCS.  The reprint looked awesome but BLAH on the new series.

    Matthew

     

  48. Good pick and review.  Marvel should retcon Mark Spector’s background to make him a dry cleaning magnate (or perhaps a stain removing infomercial pitchman).  This would explain both how he made his fortune and how he keeps that costume so clean.

  49. No one picked this until iFanboy did, and now some peeps picked it.  See what happens?

  50. @KickAss: It currently stands at 0.71% and I just unpicked it and it dropped to 0.18%. So one other person picked it.

  51. @KickAss — OR, some of us don’t select our picks until we’ve read all of our books. I personally have read about 2/3s of my stash. Moon Knight is in the running. As is Iron Man. I have not made a pick yet.

  52. @KickAss – Don’t forget that some people are just finishing there books (or haven’t finished them yet).  I just read my last one about 10 minutes ago.  I don’t make my pick (G.I. Joe Origins, in this case) until I’ve read my books.  It is entirely possible that the other person who made this their pick would have done so regardless of Conor’s choice and was simply waiting until he/she finished his/her books.  The same goes for those who make it their pick going forward.  Hell, you may even get people going back to their shops and grabbing a copy to give it a chance (based on this pick) and finding it POTW worthy.

  53. Staggeringly brilliant minds think alike. 

  54. Oh, and for @Jimski and others — Moon Knight has had several different aliases, including Marc Spector, Steven Grant, and cab driver Jake Lockley. I should probably wiki this, but I believe there was a recent story where the Marc Spector persona was killed off.

    What may or may not be part of this is that they weren’t just aliases, but also aspects of MK’s personality. I don’t know if they’ve ever called it Multiple Personality Disorder, but I do recall that’s how Bendis was playing the Ultimate version of him.

  55. @stuclach – heh.

  56. @KickAss-Why does it bother you so much that, perhaps, some people give books a second look after reading a review?  People value iFanboy opinions, man

  57. When I found out that Conor picked this I changed mine to Archie #2.

  58. Just wanted to make sure that everybody knew only the first issue is $3.99….

     all other issues have been solicited at  $2.99

     and F%^% w as this comic good.

  59. Thats good about all the others at $2.99. I would have probably bought the series anyway, but its still nice to save some money where I can.

  60. @ultimatehoratio how can you find the last series unreadable? I’ll admit the Charlie Huston arcs werent the best (except issue 13), but all the issues after that were incredible. If you’ve only read this first few issues or so and didnt like it, you should check some of the Mike Benson stuff. I thought it was really good.

  61. @PunisherMax – I read a few here and there but they didn’t engage me.  The series was running on fumes by the end.  Huston rendered the character unlikeable and Benson was given the hard task of digging him out.  The reboot was a good idea.

  62. @ultimatehoratio yeah, you’re right about the end. I wasnt a big fan of the Down South arc. What I really loved the series for were the other characters though. Benson did a good job of fleshing out the personalities of Marlene (Miligan did too in his great one shot), Frenchie, and Rob. I guess I also had an inclination to it as well because I’m a fan of the hardcore vigilante type characters like the Punisher. (which is what Huston sort of turned him into)

  63. I think my favorite MK stories of all time were the B&W backups in the Hulk Magazine in the 70s.  Very dark for the time.

    There was a fantastic MK Christmas special that came out last year.  Better than any single issue of the regular series.  Awesome cover.

  64. I picked my book as the best and it has no percentage at all. 🙁

    But that’s okay, cause there was a shit load of options this week and if I am the sole representive for my book then more power for me. I’m starting to see why I was crazy to be so serious about the pick all the time..

    Maybe it’s just me but does anyone else get confused with this Moon Knight and the Ultimate version? Cause the last I’ve ever seen MK in a book is in Ultimate Spider-Man. That was years ago..

  65. @TNC: That means the POW percentage for that book is less than .001

  66. @conor: Very discouraging to see that my influence on here is only worth .001% 😉

    But out of almost 200 pulls and me being the sole representive of it; the .001% makes perfect sense.

  67. Oh, Moon Knight…

    Wait, what?

  68. Fantastic read. If you’re curious as to my thoughts, check out my comments on the book’s actual page. Really glad I got onboard.

  69. I went and grabbed this from the store because of the POW review, and boy am I glad I did.  I wasn’t sure about it because I wasn’t a huge fan of the last series, but this was great! My pick of the week for sure now!

    @stuclach I’m one of those people that decided to pick this up after reading the review, so your theory is further proven correct.

  70. @DMaggot – As are all my theories.

  71. Connor you should definitely pick up the issues of Punisher by Rick Remender and Jerome Opena.  Their first 2 arcs were really good.  I haven’t been as stoked for the book since Huat took over but it’s still entertaining enough

  72. I dont know why this just suddenly clicked for me but:

    Both writer and artist worked on a Punisher comic at some point.

  73. this is SO awesome. i loved this issue so much!!

  74. Nice–I am still getting through my books..moon knight’s art was off the hook–the coloring was nice and muted; really enjoyed it. I remember liking the character as a kid…should be interesting if they can get this “right” because honestly I dunno if it is possible or not!

    Nice pick!

  75. Looks good.  May have to pick this up.  By the by, when you guys have preview images, how come when I click on it, I only get to see half the image?  Is there any way to see a full version?  Just curious.

  76. @brattyben: Do you have a small screen?

  77. @conor: Since it was just brought up, I do have the same problem. Screen is pretty big for a laptop so I don’t know what it is. What I can see is pretty amazing though.

  78. You can always right click and save the image.

  79. I picked this up today, and I really enjoyed it.

     think I’ll keep buying this one for now.

  80. I only picked up because it was POTW – but I’m glad I did.  It was a nice restart with some gorgeous art.  Really enjoyable.

  81. I really had no interest in this book until it became the pick of the week.  Thanks for the recommend.  It was an excellent comic and fell shy, only in the slightest, to Blackest Night for my pick this week.  Thanks!!!

  82. I know I’m completely alone, but Deadpool was my POW. I laughted out loud TWICE.

  83. I picked up Moon Knight and I thought it was ok for standard fare intro book in Moon Knight. I read the whole Moon Knight run but they lost me when he went down South.

    I really loved Daredevil: The List! I’m excited for Diggle’s run and this coming on the heels of Brubakers excellent finale in 500.

    Blackest night was great too but it was more about setting up big stuff as opposed to the actual big stuff.

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