Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Moon Knight [2016] #2 - Marvel Comics

MOON KNIGHT No. 2, July 2016
Despite containing a particularly ponderous beginning which somewhat laboriously focuses upon Khonshu’s explanation as to the circumstances surrounding Marc Spector’s mysterious incarceration within a “nightmarish insane asylum”, Jeff Lemire’s script for Issue Two of “Moon Knight” eventually makes for a genuinely thought-provoking read and certainly towards the end of the twenty-page periodical must have partially conjured up within its audience the sort of pulse-pounding euphoria that actor Christopher Reeve once generated in the 1978 “Superman” motion picture when he first tore open his well-pressed shirt and revealed his alter-ego’s world famous ‘S’ symbol. For whilst the Ontario-born writer’s story is far from action-packed and instead in places horrifically wordy, it does ultimately lead to the titular character once again finally donning the crisp white three-piece suit and hood of Mister Knight; “I found that in storage. I thought you would like it back.”

Disappointingly however, some of this comic’s 35,282 followers probably struggled to reach such feelings of elation upon their first attempt, on account of the Egyptian deity didactically debating Seth’s invasion of the modern-day world with the titular character for almost the entirety of the book's opening half... A lengthy, soul-destroying sequence whose tedium unquestionably isn’t helped by it predominantly being told via a series of small-sized panels featuring large white elaborately-styled text and printed upon black-backed speech bubbles. Indeed in many ways the Canadian author's purpose may well have been better served if he’d simply stuck solely to the far more succinct rationalization of events that “we are dealing with an invasion of immortals from another dimension, and we are on the clock, people…” as subsequently given by the Fist of Khonshu to his fellow escapees.

Fortunately though once Lemire has (re)introduced ‘long-time supporting cast members’ Jean-Paul “Frenchie” Duchamp, Marlene “Blondie” Alraune and Gena Landers into the mix, as well as the sudden realisation by Spector that Doctor Emmet is in fact the “God of Judgement” Ammut, this second instalment of “Welcome To New Egypt” really starts to take off, and the group’s fearful tension as they explore the heavily-hieroglyphic sublevels to where the hospital “connects to an old subway tunnel” is pulse-pounding palpable prose. Certainly one could easily argue that as they incorporate Greg Smallwood’s fantastically-drawn living mummies, along with the American artist’s “raw and creepy” dilapidated underground train station, this comic book’s final five pages are worth the cover price alone.
The variant cover art of "MOON KNIGHT" No. 2 by Julian Tedesco

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