ADVANCE REVIEW: Ghost Rider # 20
Writer: Jason Aaron
Artist: Roland Boschi
Scalped author and critical darling Jason Aaron has taken over Ghost Rider and given him a new, heaven sent origin. This is a set-up issue as we join Ghost Rider, angry at heaven, having defeated hell, trying to figure out how to get revenge.
This is an issue fueled upon huge coincidences. Ghost Rider wants revenge on an angel, so he tries to get to heaven. A series of perfect coincidences lead him on the right track. Normally this level of string pulling is a huge issue in any genre, but here, due to the fact that divine will could be involved, it makes more sense.
The Ghost Rider, or Johnny Blaze as he appears for much of the issue, persona is straight 1990s badass. He’s all attitude towards everyone, dropping one liners and tough guy talk left and right. It’s like a bad action movie come to life, but with Ghost Rider, if you’re expecting high art, you’re likely in the wrong place. The action movie trappings continue throughout the issue, but at least do not take themselves seriously. There are a few moments so wildly over the top that they can’t help but bring a chuckle, though if you lived through the 90s as a comic fan, you might instead groan.
The art here really needs work. There is a lack of detail and generic feeling to many of the scenes that detract from the experience, but the real flaw is the unnecessary cheesecake of a small town nurse. There is nothing added to the issue by this, though, again, these are the trappings of a B level action movie.
If you wanted Preacher meets Planet Terror, you’ve come to the right place. It’s got some big over the top moments, with a tone that’s as gritty as it is sarcastic. Welcome to the worst of the 1990s with a wink and a nudge.