Because publishers want you to buy their product every month, comics are typically serial in nature. However, occasionally (and more often nowadays than ever before) publishers launch a comic title that is only meant to last for one issue. While ongoing series often have multiple chances to hook in new readers, the comics highlighted in this ongoing investigations only had One-Shot At Greatness!
Publisher: Marvel Comics
*Warning! Plot Spoilers Below*
Cover Date: January 2010
Cover Price: $3.99
Writer: Todd DeFalco
Artist: Ron Frenz
Merlin discovers that Modred intends to locate the ebony blade, Chaos the Doombringer (the evil twin sword to mighty Excalibur), in an attempt to overthrow King Arthur and take the throne of Camelot. And so, the legendary wizard recruits Richard of Scandia to find the ebony blade first – and destroy it. Richard’s twin brother Percy, the minstrel, decides to come along on the quest and the two are met with witches, vampire bats, zombies and other dangers on their journey.
After securing the ebony blade, the twins bring it back to Scandia, where Merlin commands them to destroy it. However, now wielding the blade, Percy finds himself strongly influenced by its evil and he decides to hold on to it for a while. Later, while walking through a darkened alley, he’s attacked by Modred’s men, attempting to steal the sword for their master. Richard and Merlin arrive at the battle … but, not soon enough to stop Percy from being slain. The surviving twin takes up the ebony blade and manages to defeat the evil forces. Afterwards, Richard decides to implement a ruse where he will pretend to be his slain brother, Percy. And, brandishing the ebony blade (against Merlin’s wishes), he vows to use it to protect King Arthur and his throne.
Holy retcon, Batman! Sooooooooooo, the original Black Knight (who had his own series in 1955; of which, this issue is a prequel to) was not really Sir Percy of Scandia … but his warrior brother?! Wow! That’s quite a change made to a story that was published well over 50 years ago. Retcon aside, it’s a fun adventure story with great, classic-style art by Frenz that fits the tale (and its prequel status) perfectly. There’s a lot of story told here and it adds an interesting twist to a very early part of Marvel’s history.
On Ebay: Black Knight | Tom DeFalco | Ron Frenz
On AtomicAvenue: Black Knight