The Rider Rides in Damnation Johnny Blaze Ghost Rider #1
The Spirit of Vengeance roars to life in Damnation Johnny Blaze Ghost Rider #1 (one-shot). If you did not catch on by the title, this issue of Ghost Rider ties into the Doctor Strange: Damnation event currently going on (check out our reviews here and here). So, in issue #3 of Damnation Mephisto killed Johnny Blaze and effectively sent him to hell. A place that Blaze and the Ghost Rider are no strangers to. This “death” effectively separates Blaze and the Ghost Rider. Though the two are separated they continue to seek vengeance against the wicked and in Hell. There are more than plenty of souls to go around!
Christopher Sebela writes a pretty interesting story in Damnation Johnny Blaze Ghost Rider #1. I am not going to lie and say I completely understand why Johnny Blaze is still so powerful separated from the Ghost Rider, or what exactly was going on, but it was a lot of fun. Sebela does a great job of toeing that line of taking his story seriously, but also letting it have fun. Having Blaze and The Rider split apart lead to some engaging interactions and interesting story points. The different characters they meet in hell were also fun to see.
Sebela also does a nice job of tying this into Damnation but at the same time not making the reader feel lost if they are not up to speed on the event. Everything is pretty much laid out so that you can enjoy the story without really knowing what is happening in that event. It does help the clarity of the story more if you are up to date on Damnation but it also does not hold it back if you are not.
Phil Noto brings his wonderful “painterly” style to Damnation Johnny Blaze Ghost Rider #1. Noto gives great detail and style to this one-shot story. His depiction of Johnny Blaze is great. He puts fantastic little details that bring out Johnny Blaze’s face tremendously. I am a big time Bronze age Ghost Rider fan (those stories are nuts!), but if you asked me what Johnny Blazes face looked like I couldn’t tell you. Really just another blonde headed white guy. Noto does a fantastic job of bringing out his facial features and really giving a “face” to the character.
Additionally, he does a fantastic job on the Ghost Riders flaming skull. The colors are beautifully done and Noto brings the dead eyes to life. Noto also gets to go “all out” with some crazy visuals in this issue. There are some amazing looking creatures throughout Damnation Johnny Blaze Ghost Rider #1. You can tell Noto was having a lot of fun depicting all of the crazy happenings in this issue!
Damnation Johnny Blaze Ghost Rider #1 is a fun and visually beautiful one-shot story. Look I am not a 100% exactly sure what happened or where it goes from here (we might get an ongoing series). But if you are a Ghost Rider fan or a fan of delightful stories with wonderful art then you will like this issue. Johnny Blaze and The Ghost Rider are in Hell, do they plan to escape or will they make it their home?
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