So hot it'll burn your eyes out of your head.
Credits & Solicit Info:
GHOST RIDER #0.1
Written by ROB WILLIAMS
Artist by MATTHEW CLARK
Cover by ARTURO LOZZI
Parental Advisory ...$2.99
FOC – 5/16/11. On Sale – 6/8/11
I worry sometimes when I pick up comics based on characters from the B-list because I've been burned so many times with sub-par ideas and art, but Nic Cage is making a second Ghost Rider movie and Marvel would be silly not to have something on the shelves to peddle to moviegoers. Hence, Ghost Rider 0.1.
Ghost Rider was one of the first comics I ever picked up. It was drawn with hellfire in the seventies and eighties, Johnny Blaze cutting a line of horror across America in a leather suit, facing off against monsters and demons. In the nineties we got Danny Ketch, a new version of Ghost Rider, a street cycle instead of a road hog, and a chain that morphed into ninja star-styled things. Recently, Ghost Rider had a run with lots of demons and angels and craziness starring both Blaze and Ketch, but am unsure where that left the Ghost Rider.
In this 0.1 issue we are introduced to Johnny Blaze as Ghost Rider with a wonderfully pulpy page involving "retribution," "sinners," "evildoers" and "Hell's Worst Angel." This page, accompanied by Mark Texeira's fantastic black and white art of a classic Johhny Blaze Ghost Rider, gets you prepped for what is to come.
I've never met a Johnny Blaze quite like this one, gruff and a little bit of a "redneck", but one thing remains the same: his desire to get rid of the demon Zarathos that resides in his body, constantly burning his flesh and causing him nothing but sorrow in his quest for vengeance. Rob Williams is a vet of 2000 A.D., and is being loudly championed by Marvel as someone to watch out for. I no have to agree with them. This issue of Ghost Rider read fast and ferocious, and was filled with equal parts character and action. It introduced new characters and moved Johnny Blaze from one position into another. By the end of the issue Blaze has changed in a significant way, and how it happens if one hell of a good ride.
Matthew Clark's pencils are capture the absurdity in Williams' script, the heaps of action and adventure and the subtle pain in Johnny's quest. You can feel the hellfire on bone, admire the oodles of leather and chain, and almost smell the rubber burning on the blacktop.
If this is a sign for issues to come, prepare yourself, I have a feeling that Williams and Clark and just getting warmed up, and judging from the page of things to come, this is going to be a ride that Ghost Rider has never seen before.
Review by: Martin John