In honor of National Moon Day, today, Four Color Holidays looks at Moon Knight.
Moon Knight first appeared in Werewolf by Night 32, August 1975. He returned in issue 33, then was granted a two-issue solo series in Marvel Spotlight issues 28 and 29. Ironically enough, Marvel Spotlight is where Werewolf by Night got his start.
Werewolf by Night (1972) 32
After a two-year layoff, Moon Knight returned as a guest in Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man (1976) issues 22 and 23. From there, Moon Knight bounced around appearing in Marvel Two-in-One issue 52. Later he would join the Defenders in issues 47-51.
His final outing before earning his own title came as back up stories in Hulk! (1978) issues 11-15, 17-18 and 20 and Marvel Preview (1975) 21.
Moon Knight received his own series in 1980 under the guidance of Doug Moench and Bill Sienkiewicz. It would last 38 issues and be followed by the Moon Knight – Fist of Khonshu six-issue mini-series in 1985.
The journeyman character would roam the Marvel U until 1989 when he received his second ongoing series, Marc Spector: Moon Knight. This lasted through 60 issues ending in 1994.
Moon Knight would appear in one-shots and minis over the next 10 years. Not until 2006 would he receive another ongoing title. He would appear off-and-on throughout the remainder of the former decade and this in his own titles finally settling back with the Marvel Legacy numbering system reaching issue 200.
The Moon Knight character is as complicated as his publishing history. First introduced as a mercenary, he would embrace the label. Marc Spector became that personality. After his baptism by violence and moon light, Spector became a hero branching off into Steven Grant, the millionaire playboy who financed Moon Knight’s adventures and Jake Lockley, the cab driving everyman who earned the respect of the common people.
Those split personalities would manifest themselves over the years and become a point of contention with Moon Knight and those involved in his world.
To date, he is one of the few Marvel characters that has not been earmarked for a multi-media offshoot. His personality disorders and moon worship have often been cited as the cause.
National Moon Day is observed annually on June 20 to commemorate the first moon landing in 1969. Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first two men to set foot on the moon.
In 1971, President Richard M. Nixon proclaimed National Moon Landing Day on July 20. Richard Christmas rallied to continue the day when no official proclamation followed. Through a letter-writing campaign Christmas persevered and June 20 is recognized by most states in the union.