Genre

Graphic Novels Science Fiction Historical Fiction Middlegrade

Audience

Ages 9 and Up

Author’s Worldview

Catholic

Year Published

2023

Themes

Mary, Ethics, Responsibility, Industrial Age, St. Maximilian Kolbe, Robots, AI, The Miraculous Medal

 

Reviewed by

A.R.K. Watson

It’s the 1920’s in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and Max, a young technical genius, has just finished building the world’s first housekeeping robot. When he learns that his patrons actually intend to use his creations for criminal activities, Max has to think fast to thwart them. In doing so he becomes a superhero in his own right.

 In any tech-powered super-hero story these days it is impossible to avoid comparing it to Iron Man, but aside from the tech, Medal Knight has some unique differences. The first one is that the hero is a regular young man and not a billionaire. The fun 1920’s setting also sets it apart. The other difference is the overt Catholic theme of Mary and the Miraculous medal. Devotion to Our Lady is a real and present inspiration to the hero and his mother. At the back of the comic there are pages explaining more about the inspiration that St. Maximilian Kolbe and his Militia Immaculata had on the comic. Besides those two pages, though, the story is providing some good old-fashioned entertainment, motorcycle chases, and the promise of more to come.

As a longtime devotee of St. Kolbe AND a science fiction fan this hit all my nerd buttons in the best way. Even the way the artists drew Max looks like pictures of St. Kolbe from his younger years, making this feel like an alternate history where St. Kolbe became the inventor he’d considered becoming before joining the priesthood. I wonder if this Max will end up traveling the world, visiting the Japanese Christians only recently release from hiding, and saving Jews from Hitler the way his real-life inspiration did.

Catholics and Marvel fans alike will quickly fall in love with this series. Because of its more overt Marian and saint themes, it might not be as well received by non-Catholics. The Finnian series might be a better gateway for introducing them to Catholic inspired comics. But I see no reason why every Catholic home, school, and parish should not keep a copy of this on hand. Voyage comic has quickly come to be synonymous with effortless education and entertaining story.

Finnian and the Seven Mountains (Vol.2) By, Philip Kosloski and Michael Lavoy

Can one map be the key to stopping the Viking Invasion?

The River of Life by Diana González Tabbaa

The death of little Anthony’s father shakes his faith until a heaven-sent friend helps him find his way back to God.

I am Margaret by Corinna Turner

A dystopian nightmare that asks what you really believe and how far will you go to defend it.

Shadow in the Dark by Antony Barone Kolenc

An immersive mystery and an amateur sleuth set in the walls of a 12th century English monastery

A Printer’s Choice by W.L. Patenaude

The first nation in space has sworn off religion, but now they need the help of Fr. McCellan to solve a murder and save them from religious terrorists.

The Pre Persons by Phillip K. Dick

The pro-life Phillip K. Dick story so prophetic it was buried.

McCracken and the Lost Lady by Mark Adderley

McCracken gives us the grounded swashbuckling Catholic hero that our inner child has always wanted.

Lance and the Veil by Kevin Rush

She was Christ’s comforter, he, his executioner. Can the two find love in each other’s arms?

A Fisher of Women: The Tale of the Forgotten Healer of Galilee by Catherine Magia

Before she and husband were Saints, Peter and his wife struggled just to heal themselves

Sunrise on the Icewolf by Colleen Drippe

Helen grew up on a world ruled by women where showing interest in your father is taboo, but she will journey across planets to save him.

The Tale of Patrick Peyton

How a humble, Irish immigrant brought Mary to Hollywood and then the World.

Saint Magnus: The Last Viking by Susan Peek

A young Viking Prince evades a warlord while finding his own harrowing path to sainthood.

A Truly Raptor-ous Welcome by Corinna Turner

There’s no such thing as a normal day on a dino-farm. But can Darryl and Harry’s new city-slicker stepmom make it through the first day without fainting?

Ad Limina by Cy Kellet

The Bishop of Mars faces intergalactic espionage on his journey from the frontier of space to the ancient halls of the Vatican.

Dex’s Way by Karina Fabian

Surviving the Black Hole was only the first part, now Dex will have to survive the far future and reunite with Santiago.

The Black Tulip by Alexandre Dumas

Would you die for a flower? Would you kill for one? Providence, romance, and danger rule in this tense, heart-warming prison romance.

Please Don’t Feed the Dinosaurs by Corinna Turner

A series of dino adventures that has been doing better what the mainstream Jurassic Park series only recently attempted.

The Journal by C.E. Rivetto

An ancient journal. A family secret. A soul to save.

The Wind That Shakes The Corn: Memoirs of a Scots Irish Woman by Kaye Park Hinckley

Sold into slavery on her wedding night, an 18th-century Irishwoman struggles to free herself from her thirst for vengeance.