Catching Up On Moon Knight With Mike Benson

Benson On Moon Knight

Moon Knight #24

Following the “Death of Marc Spector” storyline currently running in Marvel’s Moon Knight monthly series—look for a scenic change for the “White Knight” as well as the potential for a new face behind the costume and cowl. In January, Moon Knight #26 finds the somewhat unstable vigilante lurking in the bowels of Mexico City. Written by Mike Benson with artwork by Jefte Palo, Moon Knight’s low profile vacation takes a turn even further south when he crosses paths with another one of Marvel’s most dangerous vigilantes—the Punisher.

Newsarama contacted Moon Knight writer, Mike Benson, to talk about the upcoming “Down South” storyline.

Newsarama: The ‘Death of Marc Spector’ storyline is drawing to a conclusion in Moon Knight #25—it's Moon Knight versus Bullseye and much like Thunderdome: two men enter Moon Knight #25 and one man leaves...

Mike Benson: This entire arc has been one big cat-and-mouse story and in issue #25 everything comes to a head. The entire time I was working on this arc, everything was building to the inevitable: Moon Knight versus Bullseye. Two highly-disturbed warriors battling it out. Fighting to the death. Who could ask for a better climax?

NRAMA: Has this departure from the status quo of Marc Spector/Moon Knight been your grand scheme all along? Or is someone else wearing the costume of the "White Knight" come issue #26?

Moon Knight #24, page 2

MB: I plotted this arc out months ago. I can’t say while I was writing “God and Country,” I knew exactly where I wanted the arc to end. All I did know was I wanted to see Moon Knight and Bullseye go toe-to-toe.

NRAMA: "Down South" features the Punisher as well -- do you think Moon Knight and the Punisher can operate on the same page? Or do vigilantes seem more likely to get in each others' way?

MB: Even though Moon Knight and The Punisher are both technically vigilantes, both operate from a different starting place. Frank Castle is on a crusade, to take down as many criminals as he can. He is like a storm. Moon Knight, as we know by now, is honoring his god: Khonshu. Only now, things have changed slightly. At the end of issue #25, everything takes a bit of a turn for the character in the white suit. Marc Spector is dead, but is Moon Knight…?

NRAMA: Is Moon Knight going to be operating off the U.S. grid for a while? Or is Mexico just a temporary stop?

MB: Yes. Moon Knight is in Mexico. I’ll leave it at that.

NRAMA: With Marc Spector's departure from the title, will there be any drastic shake-ups in terms of supporting cast in the months to come?

MB: Things are going to recalibrate. The last thing anyone would want would be for things to be static, right? Moon Knight will adjust to a new climate. But I can assure you the title will continue to be a team book. It’s going to be good.

Moon Knight #24, page 3

NRAMA: Did the recent of appearance of Moon Knight in Hulk #7 spoil any pertinent revelations from the current storyline in Moon Knight? It does seem that Steven Grant has returned in those pages with Joe Fixit in Vegas...

MB: Nope. That had nothing to do with the story I’m working on.

NRAMA: Has Specter been pushed to his psychological limits yet? He's arguing with Khonshu quite a bit these days; is there more trouble buried beneath the madness that readers haven't seen yet?

MB: Moon Knight and Khonshu have one screwed-up relationship. It’s like a bad marriage. They need each other…or do they? I don’t foresee things getting much better in the near future.

NRAMA: What's in store for Moon Knight beyond the "Down South" storyline in 2009?

MB: That’s in the planning stages right now.

NRAMA: Moon Knight #20 seemed fairly open ended for the old-school Jack Russell/ Moon Knight feud. Has Moon Knight, whoever he is under that mask after #25, seen the last of Jack Russell?

MB: I’d think not. I have a strong suspicion these two will cross paths again.

Moon Knight #24, page 4

NRAMA: In your mind, how does Moon Knight stand out as a costumed vigilante within the Marvel U. and against other contemporaries like Batman?

Moon Knight #26

MB: Well, for starters, Moon Knight does not kill – or at least go into a fight intending to kill you. He’ll maim you, for sure. He will deliver you a serious beat down, cripple you, put you into coma, but his intentions are not to leave you dead. Plain and simple, Moon Knight is honoring his god. This is what allows him to sleep at night, for all the atrocities he committed in his former life.

NRAMA: What else are you working on currently?

MB: I bunch of things and I really would love to discuss them but unfortunately can’t right now. Soon. I promise. I will say, there is a new character Axel Alonso and I have created that will be showing up in Moon Knight sooner than later. It’s a really cool character. I can’t wait for people to see him!

NRAMA: One last question: who's more interesting--Marc Specter, Steven Grant, or Josh Lockey?

MB: I don’t know if I find one more interesting than another. I think they all serve their purpose and allow Spector to do what he needs to do.

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