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- “They say when the Rider burns you, he burns your soul.”
- ―M. Scott
Ghost Rider (real names Johnny Blaze and Robbie Reyes) is a supernatural entity originating from Marvel Comics as an anti-hero, by possession of a human host.
It is depicted as a demonic rider or the devil with a flaming skull for a head and a flaming chain as a weapon. Despite its frightening form, it will only punish those who have done wrong in life and shield the innocent from harm. Thus, it only appears when innocent blood has been shed.
Powers and Abilities
- Superhuman Strength: Ghost Rider possesses superhuman strength.
- Superhuman Durability: Ghost Rider has an immunity to must forms of injury.
- Superhuman Healing: Ghost Rider is able to heal from cuts and bruises to the face at a superhuman rate.
- Hellfire Manipulation: Ghost Rider can create "hellfire", a magical flame that could harm or traumatize a human soul, and with which it can summon a fiery motorcycle to ride on.
- Penance Stare: Ghost Rider's trademark power is the Penance Stare; whenever an enemy stares into its eye sockets, they feels all the pain, physical and mental and emotional, that they have inflicted on others. This traumatizes them and burns their soul, making them inert. There are cases of characters who are immune to the Penance Stare. Those who are pure of heart and innocent are immune to the Penance Stare because the pain they have inflicted on others is mininal or non-existent.
- Expert Driver: Ghost Rider is a highly skilled driver, although the type of vehicle it drives depends on the host. For Blaze, it is a motorcycle; for Reyes, it is a muscle car.
Marvel Animated Universe
Ghost Rider appears within Death Valley when the Hulk and his allies enter carrying the imprisoned Abomination. After chasing them down and subduing both Abomination and Red Hulk, he intends to punish both of them for their past crimes. Ghost Rider uses his penance stare on Abomination which burns the gamma out of him and regresses him back to Emil Blonsky. As he proceeds to do the same for Red Hulk, Red Hulk proves to by too resistant to the stare so Ghost Rider drags him to a bad place on a military train that he took control of with the the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. in pursuit. However, Ghost Rider teleports the group into a twisted dimension to have Red Hulk devoured by a creature as punishment. When Red Hulk finally repents his mistake for creating the Hulk, Ghost Rider spares Red Hulk and helps the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. evade the creature and return to Death Valley. When A-Bomb invites Ghost Rider with them, Ghost Rider summons his motorcycle and rides off, stating that there is still evil in the world to avenge.
In Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., both the Blaze and Reyes incarnations of the character appear, although Reyes' role as the Ghost Rider is followed in the story. Robbie Reyes has a brother, Gabe, whom he cares for as Gabe is on a wheelchair. Robbie works as a mechanic in a scrapyard who helps fix cars. His plot follows that he obtains the powers of the Ghost Rider after he is killed in the middle of a street race, and seeks vengeance on those who murdered him. The original Ghost Rider, Johnny Blaze, was revealed responsible for Robbie's resurrection and transformation into the second Ghost Rider when Blaze imparted some of his powers to revive Robbie.
- Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. is the second television show Ghost Rider has made an appearance in and with a speaking role. Incidentally, the first one the character was in was the Incredible Hulk, which also centered around Hulk.
- In the comics, the Ghost Rider was the result of the demon Zarathos possessing stunt motorcyclist Johnny Blaze after Blaze made a deal with Mephisto, one of the Lords of Hell of the Marvel Universe. Other Ghost Riders have also appeared after Blaze, such as Daniel Ketch. While the version that appeared in Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. is unknown, he does use the Penance Stare which was the signature ability of the Ketch version and later Blaze. He is also shown to have a race car as a secondary vehicle, a nod to current Ghost Rider Robbie Reyes.
- The movie rights to Ghost Rider were previously owned by Sony Pictures, alongside Spider-Man. They were both eventually given back to Marvel Studios after both films failed to reach their company's expectations, with Marvel and Sony sharing the Spider-Man movie rights.
- Johnny Blaze/Ghost Rider was played by Nicolas Cage in the films Ghost Rider (2007) and Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance (2012).