Moon Knight #9
Writer: Brian Wood
Artist: Greg Smallwood
Reviewer: Oz Longworth Jr. or Mr. Smith Goes To Krypton
Take a mentally unstable mercenary, a vengeful moon god, and some of the best talent Marvel Comics has to offer and the result is an A-list comic book that has few peers. Long story short, Moon Knight is incredible.
Issue #9 sees Ol’ Moony paying a visit to his mysterious shrink who, as we’ve seen in a few issues before, has an agenda all her own. As the two have a little chat via dream/memory sharing during a bout of hypnosis, we learn that the good doctor’s motives are far more than they appear. The truly great thing about this book is that even when you think have a good idea of where the narrative is headed, once you open the book, you find that Brian Wood is going to get you there different than anything you had in mind. Wood definitely takes the formula issued to him by Warren Ellis and makes a comfortable adjustment to a more linear story that brings an all new depth to Marc Spector’s relationship to his other sides. Visually, Greg Smallwood has been the perfect successor to Declan “Above Reproach” Shalvey. As he becomes more comfortable with the book, the art only seems to improve with every issue. The action beats come across so fun to watch play out as well as watching Moon Knight transition between outfits. As far as an off beat superhero story that doesn’t lend itself much to large crossovers or force fed team ups, this book is first rate. In terms of being anything else….it’s STILL first rate.
Bottom Line: Well paced, gorgeous looking, out of the box tale with an ending that will almost certainly kick you square in the nuts upon reading. Moon Knight is venturing into “perfect” territory.
4.75 out of 5
The Strain Night Eternal #4
Writer: David Lapham
Artist: Mike Huddleston
Colors: Dan Jackson
Reviewer: Ray Willis or The Man that Read too Much
The Strain Night Eternal #4 returns this month with the back story of one of the most mysterious characters in the series Mr. Quinlan, the vampire that has assisted Gus and the other against the Master. In this issue we will learn of the connection between him and the Master.
This was a really good telling of who Quinlan is and how he has a connection to the Master. Gus and Vasily appear at the beginning but only as getting ready to rescue Nora along with Quinlan, and Ephram. The story takes us back all the way back to the age of Rome with reign of Caligula going and introduces us to a centuries old Master who is his servant called Thrax. When Thrax has seven virgins brought to him, before he finishes of the last one he finds that this one is pregnant. She manages to escape and The writing from David Lapham introduces some really similar elements of other vampire stories like Blade in a way because Blades mother was infected and gave birth to Blade who in turn became a half breed. Pretty similar approach which makes Quinlan a half breed as well. He really brings a bit more depth to the Master and let us know more about Quinlan from growing up, becoming a warrior, and fight the master with the help of the ancients. Even when he introduces Caligula, he shows us that this man is very cruel and sadistic. Having delivered a man barbecued and stuffed like a pig for his people to eat was sick stuff. Closer to the end of the issue we are also given how the vampire strain actually starts as well. It really goes into some biblical stuff and that threw me off a bit but this is an adaption of the book by Guillermo Del Toro so I will not fault the writing for that. I’m actually amazed that David Lapham has been able to give us a good adaption of the novel.
The art from Mike Huddleston really immerses you into the story even more. I mention the barbecued man scene and Mike Huddleston really sets that scene up perfectly. The art from this issue was really good and has been very consistent with previous issues. The colors from Dan Jackson are great as always showing us the dark world of ancient Rome and the world as it is in the Strain main story. The coloring for the angels that do appear varied a lot from the time of them arriving to the time of when things go very bad.
The Strain Night Eternal #4 was good with great writing from David Lapham which gives us more back story of one of the mysterious members of the cast and how he relates to the Master. The artwork and colors are superb and really immerse you into this world of darkness. When the story brought about the angles though kind of threw me off with how they happen to arrive to do this such and such thing. There could have been a better way to give us how the strain originally started out instead of this happening. That doesn’t really change me from loving this issue but was something that was a little bit out there for me. Overall this was a good issue and the story is almost over now. If you’re watching the show read the comics or novel to help you know what’s going on a little bit better because some of the events of the show do happen a bit different compared to the comic or novel.
4.5 out of 5 Mr. Quinlans