Wednesday, September 2, 2009

At the Witching Hour...

Shit was evil back in the 80's. Sleep lightly because Werewolf by Night is lurking behind the curtains. You can hear his claws on the wooden floorboards. Bill Sienkiewicz and Doug Moench had an unbelievable run on the much maligned series "Moon Knight" in the early 80's that yielded some of the most amazing covers in comics history. Sienkiewicz's pencils and Moench's writing are amazing as well. The whole series was way ahead of its time. Probably the reason it didn't last all that long. The more recent incarnations of "Moon Knight" have failed to grasp the intensity that these early issues possessed. I think the main reason for this is that Doug and Bill were (and continue to be) total fucking bad-asses. If you look at the other books that Marvel was publishing in 1980 (when this series launched), with perhaps the exception of "The Savage Sword of Conan" and maybe "Daredevil" (Miller had yet to truly kick things into overdrive in '80), it is hard to find anything that pushes the boundaries of accepted mainstream comic fare. It is hard to create something that feels truly edgy without turning it into either a parody of itself, giving into cliches, or relying heavily on hard-boiled tropes. This book does not do any of these things, and it is a silly superhero book. Too many times I have read hardcore comics that supposedly fall outside the mainstream and yet fall victim to all the pratfalls and gimmicks that hinder superhero books. Just enjoy good shit I suppose. If anyone is interested in seeing what happens when you fuck something like this up check out Charlie Huston and Brian Finch's run on the relaunch of "Moon Knight" from several years ago...edgy? No, just really embarrassing. Moench and Sienkiewicz got it right, let us enjoy it.

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