Here we are at the end. I am really sad to see this series ending, because in five issues, I have really come to appreciate and enjoy Dane Whittman and the character of the Black Knight. One thing that stuck out to me was the inclusion of Hydra and their weapon called The Satan Claw- is that a real thing? Does that exist in Marvel continuity prior to this? If it does, I want more of Baron Von Strucker and the Satan Claw for sure! I am not a big fan of snakes and serpents (read as: I am terrified of snakes) but the way they are incorporated into the pages of this book as background art and setpieces was a beautiful and subtle nod to the serpent-y-ness of Hydra.
It seemed like an inevitability, PLUS it is the whole cover of this issue, but seeing Steve Rodgers possessed by the evil bloodlust of the Ebony Blade was a welcome bit of “I told you so” that Dane gets to rub in his face, because he still is much more effective at keeping his murder-y stabby nature in check. I loved the flashback/forward page with the really age-specific artwork showing the different ages in which Voodoo is experiencing the Black Knight and it’s connection to the Ebony Blade. I also really loved the panel showing crazy-face Steve Rodgers gripping the Ebony Blade so tight and standing over the prone and unconscious bodies of the Uncanny Avengers.
Another great page was the Black Knight on horseback, looking regal and composed, really putting Rodgers’ crazypants throwdown into perspective for him AND really starting off the final showdown between Black Knight and Caden Tar (who is currently wielding the Satan Claw… seriously- I love the look and name of that Hellboy jumbo fist weapon SO MUCH!!!).
There are still some good lighthearted moments, like when we find out Deadpool watches Downton Abbey, and is kind of defensive about it. As someone who watches (oops- I mean watched Downton Abbey… it is over. Forever. Like this book. **SOBS**) Downton Abbey, I loved getting a nice shout out.
It is sad to see this book end (almost as sad as I was when Downton Abbey ended… but thankfully there are plenty of BBC period dramas out there for me, but no more Black Knight) because I thought that this series could really have done quite a lot with it’s own little corner of the Marvel Universe, especially with Black Knight ruling over a section of Weirdworld- it could have made for some really interesting and unique storytelling.
We could have gotten more people to show up on Weirdworld, or an infinite number of warring factions of Weirdworld inhabitants waging war on Black Knight and his people, or having the bloodlust of the Ebony Blade driving Dane on to greater feats of bloodshed until he set his sights on conquering Earth- a plan that could be met and thwarted by any number of great, and high powered, guest stars… but alas, it is not to be. But this is a really solid short arc for the character, and could (and hopefully WILL) be used as a primer for how the character is to be treated when he joins up on another team book or event book in the (hopefully near) future.