Warren Ellis and Declan Shalvey’s new Moon Knight ongoing is scheduled to hit the spinner racks today. I’ve very high hopes for the series. I’ve always loved Moon Knight… not just because he is one of the few fellow Jews among the super hero community, but also because he’s often been just a terrifically fun exploration into the sublimation of severe mental illness.
Brian Michael Bendis’ all-too-short run on Moon Knight did a a great job of capturing the more florid symptomology of type I schizophrenia. Many individuals suffering from paranoid schizophrenia contend with delusions, auditory hallucinations, and (less frequently) visual hallucinations. Voices are the most common manifestation of auditory hallucinations… voices that offer a running commentary on the self, provide harsh, sometimes overbearing criticism, and (less commonly) supportive encouragement. Bendis utilized all three of these most common types in the form of Moon Knight’s hallucinatory rapport with the imagined personages of Captain America, Wolverine, and Spider-Man. In a neat twist, Bendis also peppered in a little old-school Freud, having these three embody the psychodynamic typologies of the ego, the super ego, and the id (with Spidey as the more realistic ego; Cap as the overbearing super ego, and Wolverine as the savage and lusting id). It was such a fun series and it’s too bad that Bendis didn’t stay on the book longer than he did.
But Warrne Ellis is no slouch and I can’t think of any writer more qualified for continuing the vein of ultra-outré super-heroics with bizarre psychological twists.