Our powerhouse creative team continues to steam this wow-train along its weird tracks with the latest installation in the Lunar Crusader's one-shot adventures, this time called "Sleep." The one thing I've loved about this series so far is Ellis' attentiveness to Moon Knight's rich history, and in this issue he touches upon another classic story: the strange tale of Robert Markham, a.k.a. Morpheus, a mutated victim of eternal waking.
The issue explores a mysterious string of sleep-related attacks, for which Mr. Knight (Marc Spector's suit, tie, and masked persona) is contracted to investigate because of his experiences with Morpheus. It's also nice to see the late Dr. Peter Alraune's name mentioned—the older brother of Marc's once-long-time love interest, Marlene, and the man who accidentally created and tragically perished at the hands of Morpheus. Alraune is the second familiar name from Marc's supporting cast to show up in this new series, too, after Detective Flint.
The story takes a bizarre and colorful turn for the psychedelic as Mr. Knight explores the cause of the sleep-related attacks, and both Shalvey and Bellaire really get a chance to flex their artistic muscles. Up until this issue, their art has been very gritty and street-level, which works very well for a Moon Knight book. This time, though, Moon Knight is cast into a very strange fungal wonderland, and the pair comfortably stretch the limits of his supernatural pedigree, especially on a full-page spread that is bound to make you go "WTF? It's pretty, but…WTF?"
Perhaps the only criticism I have for this issue is another of Ellis' trademark abrupt endings. He did the same thing back in issues #1 and #2, and once again I felt like there was more to the story that just didn't make the cut. Admittedly, every issue always feels too truncated—even with issue #3, whose ending wrapped up quite serenely—but that's what you get with these one-off stories that have to fit within a 21-page limit.
|Just another day at the office.|
It will definitely be a sad departure; Ellis and Shalvey have done an outstanding job at shining the much-needed spotlight onto Moon Knight, and the book has seen some new readership because of the all-star creative team and the truly epic books. Wood and Smallwood ensure readers, though, that their Moon Knight will bear many resemblances to Ellis and Shalvey's Moon Knight in style and format with Bellaire being the unifying element.
Check out Newsarama's interview with the new names for the full details, then head over to CBR to read Ellis and Shalvey's reasons for leaving the book. You can darn well expect to see more Moon Knight reviews from yours truly as the issues come out, regardless of creative change-ups. Don't forget to leave a comment below telling Fanboys Anonymous about your favorite moments in the book and your hopes and fears for the future of Moon Knight!