- Written by: Benjamin Percy
- Art by: Cory Smith, Oren Junior
- Colors by: Bryan Valenza
- Letters by: VC’s Travis Lanham
- Cover art by: Kael Ngu
- Cover price: $3.99
- Release date: August 3, 2022
Ghost Rider #5 takes Johnny Blaze on a road race against a cavalcade of Marvel characters who all have sins to wash away. The winner receives an audience with the Devil and any wish granted.
Is It Good?
Huh? I don’t know what’s going on. Does Ben Percy know what’s going on? Does anyone know what’s going on? Ghost Rider #5 comes out of nowhere, doesn’t make a lick of sense, and you just have to shake your head and laugh.
In the last issue, Ghost Rider returned to form (sort of) by going back to the monster-of-the-month model with a fight against a demon-possessed Ringmaster and his circus of horrors. That model turned out to be a strength in the earlier issues, so despite the risk of repetitiveness, it works to get readers behind Ghost Rider as an anti-hero.
Johnny Blaze attends a motorcycle road rally against a veritable who’s who of Marvel characters with checkered pasts, including Man-Thing, Dracula, Wolverine, Black Widow, and more. Percy tries to explain the race and the value of the prize to its participants, but it comes out of nowhere and makes little sense. Why does Dracula want to participate in a motorcycle race to win a sitdown with the Devil? Where did Man-Thing get a motorcycle? There’s random, and then there’s rAnDoM!?!
The setup comes by way of narrated exposition, but there’s no record of this race ever occurring, despite being described as a regular event, and the participants are so far out of the left field that the how and why of it makes no sense. It’s as if Percy suddenly decided Ghost Rider needs a race, so he made one up without any preamble to make it make sense.
Of course, the race not only DOESN’T finish, but it’s also sabotaged when Johnny Blaze learns the race is a rigged trap. If this was a legitimate race, would the Devil stand for having it sabotaged? I think not.
The art is fine, and we get a closer look at the entity hiding out in Johnny’s injury scar, so the horror elements are on full display as a positive.
About The Reviewer: Gabriel Hernandez is the Publisher & EIC of ComicalOpinions.com, a comics review site dedicated to indie, small, and mid-sized publishers.
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Bits and Pieces
Ghost Rider #5 goes out of its way to be as random as possible with a road rally race that comes out of nowhere, populated by a lineup of Marvel characters that come out of nowhere, culminating in a conclusion that goes nowhere.