Characters Appearing: Black Panther, Frenchie, Marlene Alraune, Midnight (Jeffrey Wilde), Moon Knight, Raoul Bushman
Moon Knight #11-14
Issue(s): Moon Knight #11, Moon Knight #12, Moon Knight #13, Moon Knight #14
Frenchie is taken to the hospital after crashing in the Moonchopper thanks to Killer Shrike last issue. His legs are badly injured, but by the end of the arc we'll see that he's going to be able to walk again.
The injury to Frenchie also brings Marlene back into Marc Spector's life, since Marlene is friends with Frenchie regardless of her current rocky relationship with Moon Knight. By the end of the arc she decides that she's going to stick around and support him instead of causing fights all the time.
Moon Knight and his kid sidekick Midnight go to the New York pound where the chopper is being kept, hoping to get it back before the authorities can link Moon Knight to Marc Spector. But when they get there they are ambushed by a new Arsenal (i don't know the old Arsenal, but his civilian name was Nimrod Strange so he's already better than this guy).
Arsenal and his mercenary allies defeat Moon Knight and Midnight. No capes!
It turns out that they actually want to hire Moon Knight and were just testing him. They send Midnight away. In the lettercols, reaction to Midnight, a comedy relief character...
...is extremely negative, and it's promised that when he returns it will be with a major change.
Arsenal claims to be working for the DEA, and he says that if Moon Knight will help them they can make his problems with the IRS go away. But it turns out that Arsenal is really working for an international drug cartel. The cartel had approached Moon Knight's nemesis Raoul Bushman with a proposal to grow drugs in his country Burunda. Bushman declined their offer (with bullets) but decided to incorporate their plans into his own "agrarian reform" scheme, and now the cartel wants to depose Bushman and install a puppet ruler in Burunda. When Moon Knight finds out he attacks Arsenal and the mercenaries while they're on layover in France.
Moon Knight leaves them for the French authorities. Arsenal escapes, but to my knowledge we don't see this Arsenal or any of the other mercenaries again. Moon Knight had recognized some of the other mercenaries...
...but i think the idea was that he knows them from his own mercenary days; they don't seem to be characters that have appeared in Moon Knight before.
Moon Knight continues on to Burunda on his own, intent on stopping Bushman from flooding the world with drugs. He joins up with the rebellion and teams up with another mercenary, a helicopter pilot named Montana.
The general of the army winds up getting killed by Bushman, but Moon Knight is able to defeat Bushman in single combat. Moon Knight declines to kill Bushman, but the defeat causes Bushman to lose the respect of his soldiers, who depose him.
Moon Knight gets home by walking to Wakanda (all fictional African countries are next to each other) and flashing his Avengers ID.
I already said my piece about Bushman in his last appearance. He's been put in a role where there's potential for him to play a morally ambiguous anti-Imperialist, but he's far too evil for the part and Dixon just plays him as a sociopath.
There's probably some sociopolitical criticism to be done about the white mercenary/hero coming in and overthrowing the cartoonishly evil African ruler, but i think Chuck Dixon just wanted to tell a fun adventure story, and it succeeds on that level with the right amount of humor and action.
Quality Rating: B
Chronological Placement Considerations: This begins with Frenchie being brought to the hospital after getting injured in issue #10, which was part of Acts of Vengeance. I've placed this directly after Acts of Vengeance, but note that there are also other stories taking place concurrently with issue #10 or also directly after Acts of Vengeance, so you'll see a decent amount of issues between this entry and issue #10. I tagged Black Panther as appearing based on the fact that the Wakandan guard says that T'Challa himself approved Moon Knight's entrance, but it may just mean that some other official confirmed that T'Challa himself once decreed that anyone with an Avengers ID can enter.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Tom Palmer inks a great Moon Knight - reminds me of early Sienkiewicz.
Midnight was a waste of word balloons. We haven't yet gotten to those issues of ASM where he's a bloody cyborg bent on revenge against Moon Knight.
Posted by: Vin the Comics Guy | May 6, 2015 12:13 AM
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