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'Black Knight: Curse of the Ebony Blade' #1 perfectly blends fantasy and emotion
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‘Black Knight: Curse of the Ebony Blade’ #1 perfectly blends fantasy and emotion

Black Knight does a lot to convince you this character and world has a lot of story worth telling.

When it was announced Si Spurrier would be joining Marvel for a King in Black Black Knight one-shot, anyone who read his excellent The Dreaming with Bilquis Evely got giddy. Spurrier has an exceptional handle on fantasy themes and storytelling in general. Then we found out he’s doing an X-Men series, and eventually a Black Knight miniseries too. The miniseries kicks off this week and it’s a hell of a good ride as it sets up its plot and characters.

Ever felt like an outsider in a group? That’s Black Knight, especially in how he’s depicted at the start of this issue, which you can read for yourself in our preview. Dane Whitman uses the magical Ebony Blade which curses its wielder with the desire to commit violence and mayhem. In these opening pages, Spurrier and artist Sergio Dávila show us how the Avengers think of him. Meanwhile, cutting into some monster-battling action is Whitman’s personal diary. He’s basically unfurling his deepest and darkest emotions, which juxtaposes well with the Avengers treating him like weirdo. The misunderstood hero is crafted well from the get-go.

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The Black Knight also looks pretty awesome, especially thanks to Dávila’s art, Sean Parsons’ inks, and Arif Prianto’s colors. There’s an exceptional full-page splash of Whitman wielding the sword and striking down with a great vengeance. He’s also fearless, which you can see by his antics. Given the Avengers’ sour point of view on the man, his courage is also evident in how he puts up with their snide remarks and looking down upon attitude.

Another key element the art captures are the Avengers’ expressions. A lot can be said about how they feel through these characters holding back what they really want to say. Character acting down to the body language is expertly done.

EXCLUSIVE Marvel Preview: Black Knight: Curse Of The Ebony Blade #1

Who invited these pizza monsters?
Credit: Marvel Comics

Half of the book is devoted to Black Knight’s courage, his personal doubts, and how the Avengers feel about it. The second half does some excellent world-building. I won’t get into spoilers, but we get a look at his home and a few characters that will help define him. They’re colorful, very different from Black Knight, and instantly likable in their own ways. There’s also a new character who has a unique perspective that should play off Black Knights backstory and the history of the Ebony Blade in new and interesting ways.

It’s in this second half that the book begins to have a similar feel to The Dreaming. It’s not as visceral, but the imaginative nature and limitless potential we get a taste of is ever-present. If given the chance, it’s obvious this series could last for quite some time. This section also reminds us of the story’s past with the Ebony Blade and the baggage Whitman is likely carrying. It is slightly jarring how this book splits down the middle. It doesn’t quite gel between the Avengers and the exploration of Black Knights domain.

Emotionally engaging and definitively entrenched in fantasy, don’t skip Black Knight: Curse Of The Ebony Blade #1. It’s early yet, but it’s obvious the fantasy elements are strong enough to make this the go-to fantasy title at Marvel. It’s an excellent start that will be a surefire hit with fantasy fans and those who connect with outsider characters who aren’t given a chance. So maybe all of us? Spurrier and Dávila make a case for further exploration of Black Knight and the opportunities that character has to bring.

'Black Knight: Curse of the Ebony Blade' #1 perfectly blends fantasy and emotion
‘Black Knight: Curse of the Ebony Blade’ #1 perfectly blends fantasy and emotion
Black Knight: Curse Of The Ebony Blade #1
Emotionally engaging and definitively entrenched in fantasy, don't skip Black Knight: Curse Of The Ebony Blade #1. It's early yet, but it's obvious the fantasy elements are strong enough to make this the go-to fantasy title at Marvel. It's an excellent start that will be a surefire hit with fantasy fans and those who connect with outsider characters who aren't given a chance. So maybe all of us? Spurrier and Dávila make a case for further exploration of Black Knight and the opportunities that character has to bring.
Reader Rating3 Votes
9.4
The first half helps to remind us the Black Knight isn't a hero the Avengers care to spend time with while showcasing the insecurities and humanity of the character at the same time
The second half shows a lot of promise for what you can do with this character with proper world building
Great art and color throughout
Split down the middle, the book is almost like two halves of two different comics
9
Great

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