Four Colour Thoughts – Ghost Rider #11 (2023)

The Creators – Benjamin Percy – Writer, Dave Wachter – Artist, Bryan Valenza – Colours, Travis Lanham – Letters

The Players – Johnny Blaze (Ghost Rider), Talia Warroad

The Story – The Ghost Rider along with his new companion Talia Warroad has just defeated Blackheart but he has left a lot of evil behind which they intend to clean up.

The Take – Benjamin Percy has been telling a truly incredible and horrific tale in the pages of this book over the course of the last ten issues and this particular story acts as a bridge between the last arc and the next. It finds Blaze on a motorcycle that used to be a demonic tumour in his head come villain named Exhaust. A strange occurrence to be sure and Talia also thinks it a stupid thing to carry with him, yet Blaze finds that he is unable to rid himself of it, at least as of yet. Even though it was a demon of sorts, it was a part of him and it is a bike after all, so getting rid of it is easier said than done, especially as the two companions are in the middle of ridding various states throughout the country of Blackheart’s demonic presence. Such as it is, the bike eventually makes an exit but not before a little canoodling between Blaze and Talia which was very interesting to see and surprisingly quite fun. It is good to see Ghost Rider get a supporting cast and hopefully, Talia sticks it out for the long run as she seems to offer quite a bit in a variety of ways both to Blaze and to the enjoyment of the reader. Percy understands Blaze quite well which is why this series seems to be doing so well, not to mention he adds a whole lot of horror to the mix, quite possibly more than any of the previous series had to offer. This book is more visceral whereas every previous version, no matter how dark the authors tried to make it, always seemed slightly toned down from what they could have been whereas this one is not afraid of taking risks. Joining Percy is Dave Wachter who gives it some grit to go along with the grim and it looks fantastic, a book that is dark in tone and looks just as it should be. After everything is said and done, there is a tease for the return of Danny Ketch which should make things both more interesting and more complicated for Blaze as he is still finding himself and relearning how to live with the Ghost Rider inside of him, nevermind having to deal with Talia and all of the darkness that is currently infesting the world around them. As it is, this is a great book and a bold new chapter in the history of this character.

Worth It? – Yes.

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