Moon Knight #10
By Jeff Lemire, Greg Smallwood, Jordie Bellaire, and Cory Petit.
Moon Knight #10 furthers readers down the rabbit hole writer Jeff Lemire has dug. Is Marc Spector crazy? Which reality is the real one? Or are we crazy for still caring about Moon Knight? That is honestly the big question as we enter the tenth issue, do we care enough about Moon Knight, Lemire’s version specifically, to keep reading? Well, yes, we do care and it is all because the connection Lemire and team has built between the readers and Spector; his confusions and turmoil are ours and we all want to deeply understand what is happening just as much as he does.
When a series hits a tenth issue, we assume we know the main plotline and the good and bad guys, but within the realm of Moon Knight, it is hard to tell. This issue also marks the start of a new arc titled “Death and Birth”. The usual good and bad guys look a little different compared with your average Marvel book; the usually black and white good and bad become more tones of grey. Lemire has done a damn good job dropping clues along the way to cast doubt whether Marc Spector is crazy or a misunderstood hero, which reality we are on, and even if we the readers should root for Marc Spector to succeed. However, we are waiting for Lemire to make the jump away from Marc Spector’s mental instability as the main plot and toward him super hero-ing as normal while having his mental health as a sub-plot. We have read the story of Moon Knight being crazy before, but show us something new with a hero dealing with a mental illness while battling bad guys unrelated to his internal struggles. That is what will help normalize mental health stigmas and put this character into a more relatable realm.
This issue takes a deep dive into the back-story of young Marc Spector, showing the evolution of his apparent multiple personality disorder and how it manifested when he was a young child. As we see a young Marc struggle to understand his newly shaped world, we see the current day Marc seem more sure of what he needs to do than ever. We see the beginning of Marc’s relationship with Khonshu, and it seems to be the only consistent presence he has ever had in his life. This partnership, or dependent relationship between Marc and Khonshu seems to be heading to a climax with Marc starting to feel the need to own his life and take control.
Moon Knight #10 is filled with a mind-bending story that will leave readers confused, but don’t be hesitant to re-read the story because this is a beautifully crafted book from top to bottom. The panels and layouts of each page are artfully laid out for maximum impact, with details around colors, shading, and perspective that really set this book apart from other books on the shelves. Lines from Smallwood get better and better every issue, with Khonshu appearing more ominous and intimidating than ever, and new and brilliant landscapes behind every page. The colors from Bellaire should not be overlooked either, as she provides life to every background and makes a serious looking Moon Knight panel appear intimidating just from the colors used. It all brilliantly comes together in the last few pages where we get to see Moon Knight take a trip to the overvoid, where things literally turn upside down.
Being a Moon Knight fan puts you into a small club of devoted Moon Knight fanatics who consume everything and anything Moon Knight and buy any series with the title. This book will surely win over any Moon Knight fan, but it also has the potential to win over new converts from the dedicated creative team and great story. As this series progresses Lemire and team are finding their footing and appear to really have a grasp on the character and are providing a new perspective we have not seen before. Sure, we have seen the mentally unstable hero before, but now that story is evolving into something more. That promise of more is what will keep us coming back as the devoted fans of Moon Knight look for a creative team to treat our favorite hero with as much care and admiration as he deserves.