WRITER: JED McKAY
ARTIST: ALESSANDRO CAPPUCCIO
RELEASE DATE: NOVEMBER 17TH, 2021
As Marc Spector spends some time in therapy he also as Moon Knight discovers the mysterious villain behind his recent misfortunes.
Moon Knight #5 continues what is shaping up to be a critically acclaimed run for the long-time character. The issue starts with Marc, dressed in his Mr. Knight outfit, participating in Avengers imposed therapy. Writer Jed Mckay uses this as a great way of bringing the reader up to speed on recent Moon Knight events before the current series starts. Some writers might be tempted to soft reboot or ignore a character’s past in order to establish their own take. McKay thankfully does not take that route. He briefly Moon Knight’s recent battle with the Avengers and even what has happened to many of the past Moon Knight supporting characters. None of this is done in such a way to make any previous story required reading. McKay uses this information to shape where Marc’s head is nowadays. The Moon Knight of this series in style and tone is very reminiscent of the brief Warren Ellis Moon Knight run of a few years ago. Like that volume, the current one does a nice job of balancing between “done in one” stories and continuing plot threads.
Some recent Moon Knight series have dived deep into his multiple personalities. Sometimes a tad too far. This series so far is doing a fine job of balancing this. Marc Spectre is an interesting character here. While past versions like to depict him as an out-of-control lunatic, here while still obviously struggling with his issues, he seems a lot more in control. Something he makes sure to mention to his therapist.
The other half of the issue deals with Moon Knight tracking down the villain that has been behind his recent troubles. The reveal at the end was a pleasant surprise that propels the story. Two moments that stand out. Moon Knight taking the time to have a conversation (in costume no less) with the mother of who he’s tracking down. Done largely in silent panels. Yet that brief moment felt effective in engaging the reader. Also, the scene where he risks his life to save someone he thought was his adversary but was wrong.
The art by Cappuccio continues to amaze. Moon Knight’s costume can be difficult to look impressive and not silly. That especially depends on how much the art team decides to focus on the white of his costume. The main Moon Knight costume here uses a nice dark shading that makes him almost look like a ghost. The way he is depicted moving in an almost moody fashion reminds me of the late great Gene Colan when he drew Tomb of Dracula. And of course, the Mr. Knight outfit is a fan favorite that looks impressive here.
Moon Knight #5 continues to impress with its moody atmosphere and strong character rebuilding of Marc Spectre. There is a great examination of why Marc does the things he does while also reflecting on the cost of his actions. This does not mean there isn’t any action of course. The cliffhanger ending of the villain revealed sets up what I’m sure will be an interesting next issue.