I’ve been enjoying All-New Ghost Rider quite a bit now with its weird but enjoyable combination of superhero insanity and real world issues. It’s a combination that doesn’t seem like it’d work on paper — but it does and it really makes for an engaging experience. We have the ending for the first arc right here, so let’s give it a look and see what it has to offer. Is it good?
All-New Ghost Rider #5 (Marvel Comics)
The war has reached a fever point as Dr. Zabo and his paramilitary cartel start wiping out local gangs and leaders that won’t fall into line; the ramifications have become severe — putting civilians into danger as well. Robbie Reyes (the All-New Ghost Rider) doesn’t plan to let this stand, especially when someone he cares about is caught in the middle. However, who will be left standing when all is said and done?
I would stop listening to the voices in your head. They don’t sound particularly nice.
I read a lot of books this week and a lot of them were pretty disappointing… but not this book. No, this arc closes out with an epic and really fun climax. All that buildup and tension we have been seeing over these past few issues all came to a boiling point here and the results are just fantastic. Just about everything here gets payoff and it’s really fun to watch, bolstered by an intense and wild action scene. It really works well, leaves off on a great note, and even offers up an interesting little twist (that goes by quickly and you may miss if you are not careful). I’m a tad disappointed that Robbie and Grumpy didn’t face each other again, but that’s a minor complaint if anything.
The writing in this issue is excellent. The characterization for Robbie is still very strong and you can really sympathize with him, especially regarding the decision that he ends up making. The dialogue has a lot of flavor to it, gifting each character with a unique voice and personality. The pacing and story flow are solid and although there are some minor nitpicks with the events that unfold (like for instance, how the hell did you not see or hear all of that gunfire until you were right there?), they don’t really detract from the comic.
Well here comes trouble.
Tradd Moore’s artwork really shines. The book easily slips between the realistic/grounded world and the more over the top/comic book examples and these shifts are exemplified well with changes of color and bursts of energy in the art itself. The characters are all very distinct looking, with a wide range of expressions (though some readers might find the exaggerated nature of the facial expressions a little too over the top at times). The action is very kinetic and exciting to look at; some scenes are so insane and intense that the characters’ very body musculature and postures become warped — but instances of this always fit in and never once look out of place. The layouts are also terrific, especially during the fight scenes. The artwork on the book is great overall and I really hope to see this art team on the book again in the future if the next arc really is really changing teams.
Is It Good?
All-New Ghost Rider #5 was a fantastic conclusion for the first arc of the series. It wrapped up the story very well, had tons of excitement and energy, wonderful writing, and top-notch artwork with a unique style. I’m really hoping the next arc is just as good, because the book really has won me over.