Monday, November 23, 2009
Moon Knight: Down South TPB
I'm just not that big a fan of Mike Benson's writing. This trade has multiple storylines that are perfect for the Moon Knight character, yet I'm just not that into them. Hell, this trade introduces one of the best high-concepts ever, luchadore brothers who are also hit men, but most of the execution leaves me cold.
With Moon Knight's alter ego "killed" by the Thunderbolts, Jake Lockley (another secret ID) has fled south to Mexico. While making ends meet in a fighting ring, Jake is approached by a local landowner who wants to hire Jake to get his daughter out of police custody. Jake takes the job, and busts the girl loose, but of course things aren't what they seem. The father is a drug-runner and his daughter was turning over evidence on him. Complicating matters is the Punisher, enjoying his time down South killing folks as he always does. There's also some sort of Aztec vigilante targeting this same mob. I love that the criminals botched the take-out of Moon Knight too, now there are three angry vigilantes after them. In an attempt to reclaim the daughter, the mob hires the Zapata Brothers, the aforementioned luchadores. Their debut is great; when fighting Moon Knight, they only fight him one-on-one, tagging each other in as if it were a match. That's classic! I actually dug most of the banter between the brothers, talking about Facebook and old high school friends. The repeated use of "bro" though, uch, so annoying by the end of the trade. I'm really glad Benson seemed to realize what he had with the Zapatas; they end up as allies by the end of the book.
Of course the good guys win (although the Aztec vigilante does most of the work). The legacy of this trade will be the Zapata Brothers, so in that regard, Benson did well. But as a Moon Knight story, this was fairly generic. I would have liked a little more interaction between MK and the Punisher, they always interact in neat ways, almost as acquaintances in the same profession, but there isn't much of that in this collection.
Jefte Palo's artwork is ok, but man, he draws hair very strangely. Jake Lockley has some sort of spikey thing on the front of his head that distracted me quite a bit. The crime lord's daughter is supposed to be stunning, but I'm not sure that came through in the art. Finally, the Zapata brothers looked ok, but compared to how dynamic they seemed on the covers, they could have been cooler.