Moriarty the Patriot Vol.1
Updated: Jul 16, 2021
Rating - ⭐⭐⭐⭐
"Before he was Sherlock’s rival, Moriarty fought against the unfair class caste system in London by making sure corrupt nobility got their comeuppance. But even the most well-intentioned plans can spin out of control—will Moriarty’s dream of a more just and equal world turn him into a hero…or a monster?
In the late 19th century, Great Britain rules over a quarter of the world. Nobles sit in their fancy homes in comfort and luxury, while the working class slaves away at their jobs. When young Albert James Moriarty’s upper-class family adopts two lower-class orphans, the cruelty the boys experience at his family’s hands cements Albert’s hatred of the nobility he was born into. He asks the older of the two boys—who has a genius mind and a killer instinct—to help him rid the world of evil, starting with Albert’s own family!"
Moriarty the Patriot is a mystery manga series by Ryōsuke Takeuchi.
First and foremost, I would like to that Edelweiss and Viz Media for sending me a copy to review. Please note that this in no way affects my opinions.
What a fresh and delightful take on a classic that is filled with gorgeous artwork. Sherlock has be depicted and reimagined countless times in media, but in this manga, the spotlight rests on his arch-nemesis, Moriarty. While in many cases, Moriarty has been a fan favourite, never before have I read something that focused exclusively on him and his origin story.
A concept like this just works for several reasons. For one, as someone who is more on the chaotic good side, Moriarty is someone who does bad things for the right reasons. He is an interesting character to read about because you feel for his cause even though his actions are considered wrong.
The other reason why I think this concept works is because the way the story is formatted. The overarching plot follows Moriarty in his goal to rid the world of evil, but each chapter follows a different scenario. This kind of episodic story allows for a lot of creative room and as such, I think there is a lot of potential for future installments.
I will also add that another reason this manga is good is because of its messages. Moriarty is a beacon of light for those who are lower down in the class hierarchy and are treated horribly by those above them. So, not only is this a commentary on social class and hierarchy, it is also a commentary on valuing people's lives equally regardless of their status.
I would recommend this to anyone who likes mystery and the satisfaction of justice being paid, so long as you can stomach the injustice.