Friday, 24 July 2015

Moon Knight #13 - Marvel Comics

MOON KNIGHT No. 13, May 2015
The 22,871 purchasers of this comic must have been somewhat alarmed at the changes brought in by Editor Nick Lowe. For having replaced the title’s reasonably successful creative team of Brian Wood and Greg Smallwood with Cullen Bunn and penciller Ron Ackins, the senior editor of the “X-Men” books at “Marvel Worldwide” also employed three separate inkers to work on “Footprints” and unfortunately the consistency of this periodical’s artwork undoubtedly suffers as a result. 

Admittedly however, there are arguably a number of other reasons as to why this magazine saw “Moon Knight” fall out of Diamond Comic Distributor’s top one hundred best-selling titles in March 2015. Bunn’s somewhat nonsensical narrative being just one as the American author describes a disturbingly unsympathetic Marc  Spector rescuing a number of hapless ghosts who have been ‘waylaid’ by a group of ‘spook kidnappers’; “You put a price tag on something… brand it the right way… and people will buy it.”

The basic premise for such a single-issue long plot isn’t itself dislikeable. But the former “Deadpool Kills Deadpool” writer’s adventure concludes before resolving several questionable aspects to his storyline. For example what is causing “the trail” of bloody footprints which helps lead the cloaked superhero to the Apex Wholesale Meats Building where the phantoms’ abductions are taking place? How is a laptop, a syringe-enhanced glove and something reminiscent of a ‘Poke Ball’ capable of making “the dead dance like puppets”, and why does “residential mortal energy” draw “ghosts like flies” to the slaughterhouse? None of this ‘ectoplasm-based gobbledygook’ is ever even slightly rationalised or explained by Bunn, and seems to have been indolently ‘invented’ just so The Fist of Khonshu could battle amidst the meat factory’s hanging carcasses.

Ron Ackins’ artwork is also a rather inconsistent mess for much of this comic’s twenty-pages. Initially competent enough, as the three-piece suited vigilante confronts his home’s spiritual trespassers, the self-taught illustrator’s drawings become increasingly two-dimensional and irreconcilable to the eye the more action-packed the plot becomes. Encouragingly the Philadelphia-born graphic designer can sketch an extremely impressive-looking Moon Knight. Yet oddly seems unable to replicate the crimefighter’s dynamic energy and poise with the rest of his figures. Indeed towards the end of the comic, the Afro-American artist struggles to depict even the simplest of fight scenes, with his characters having either misshapen or elongated limbs, large bulging eyes, and disproportional awkward-looking hands.
Writer: Cullen Bunn, Artist: Ron Ackins, and Color Art: Dan Brown

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