Werewolf By Night #32-33 (1975): 1st Moon Knight

Moon Knight started as a monster hunter in the pages of Werewolf by Night by Doug Moench and Don Perlin.

Werewolf by Night has hit its groove at this point. We the readers understand Jack Russel’s conflict with his own lycanthropy, but overall he rarely goes crazy and never kills anyone, so we can have empathy for him when he is stalked by an evil corporation.

And they hire Moon Knight.

It makes sense that Moon Knight, a hero who throws moon-crescent darts, would debut in Werewolf by Night.  But here he looks nothing like the character he eventually would become. 

He’s got a weird cape that tucks into his wrists, he flies in a regular helicopter (but it is in fact piloted by Frenchie), and he’s essentially a monster-hunter-for-hire.

And he has spiked gloves.

The initial battle is well choreographed–some of Don Perlin’s best work.

Moon Knight wins and captures Jack.

The sinister organization (called “The Committee”) wanted to take down Werewolf as being “bad for business,” because tourists are afraid of werewolves.

But when he tries to collect his bounty, they won’t pay up.

So, Moon Knight realizes The Committee are jerks and he helps Werewolf get away.

Moon Knight returns a few issues later, briefly, as part of another merc group hunting the Werewolf.  The character was hardly formed. He needed to evolve.

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