YMMV / Ghostrider

The Comic:

  • Audience-Alienating Premise: Many fans of previous Ghost Riders seemed to be turned-off by Robbie Reyes's design, him being a teenager, driving a car instead of a bike, and listening to electronic music (Ghost Rider is usually associated with rock and metal). People who were excited about his book fear it might have had a negative impact on the sales, and even Marvel editor Tom Brevoort, the series's biggest cheerleader, expressed worry that Robbie might become a Replacement Scrappy.
  • Complete Monster:
    • Ebenezer Laughton, known as the Scarecrow, is a longstanding enemy of Ghost Rider. Originally trained as a contortionist, Laughton found a life of crime more exciting. Sinking further into madness and depravity, the Scarecrow began targeting children, once gruesomely murdering a mother and her baby with a pitchfork. Afterwards, the Scarecrow attempted a "masterpiece" by creating a building out of human beings, stitching his victims together. Some were lucky enough to be already dead; others weren't. When Ghost Rider confronted him, the Scarecrow attempted to blackmail him into avoiding a fight by stabbing the walls of the building, murdering the still living victim and threatening to kill more if Ghost Rider didn't surrender and let Scarecrow torture him to death.
    • Zadkiel, Ghost Rider's Arch-Enemy in the Jason Aaron series, is a truly monstrous excuse for an angel. The lord of the Black Host, Zadkiel was also the angel in charge of the Spirits of Vengeance and began to desire to use them to overthrow both God and humanity. Zadkiel subtly influenced the lives of Johnny Blaze and Dan Ketch, destroying those close to them to make them vulnerable to the Ghost Rider spirits. Zadkiel as The Man Behind the Man negotiated multiple deals with demons and other monsters on earth, allowing them to prey upon those they wished, while directing his other minions to murder multiple innocents in addition to those who could prove problematic- and everyone close to them as well. Even death brought no respite as Zadkiel showed a penchant for annihilating the souls of his defeated enemies. While manipulating Danny Ketch, Zadkiel showed no remorse slaughtering and torturing his angelic brethren until he finally had the powers of the Riders and banished Ketch and Blaze to earth to die in the apocalypse he would create. Zadkiel succeeded in conquering heaven and began to achieve omnipotence with his final goal to become the new God and then commence genocide on all of humanity and all other beings who didn't worship him.
    • Mephisto, Ghost Rider's boss, can be seen at his own page.
    • All-New Ghost Rider has Eli Morrow. See that page for more details.
  • Creepy Awesome: A flaming skeleton biker with a chain that can burn the souls of evil doers? Hell YES!!!
  • Crossing the Line Twice: Black humor is quite common for Spirits of Vengeance. Jason Aaron's series was basically oozing with it. For example, Johnny meets a witch called Skinbender, who submits everything around her to incredible amounts of Body Horror. Horrifying, right? She also looks like Sailor Venus? Hilarious.
  • Friendly Fandoms: Ghost Rider fans were always on good terms with fans of more horror-oriented Marvel characters, like Blade or Man-Thing and, to a lesser extent, Doctor Strange. Robbie meanwhile was embraced by teen Marvel fandom, with fans of Ms. Marvel, Young Avengers and Runaways seeming to be especially fond of him.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Caleb may be a jerk and a killer, but given what happened to him, it's a bit understandable.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships: Robbie - people started pairing him with Kamala Khan, Nico Minoru and the New Warriors new Dark Action Girl, Water Snake, before the first issue of his series was even published. And once it was, it only strengthened these ideas. Later ships with Agent Venom's sidekick Mania, X23 and The Incredible Hulk's daughter Lyra, showed up.
  • Never Live It Down: Mephisto is Ghost Rider's Arch-Nemesis... but if you ask your average comic reader, all they'll know him for is taking Peter Parker's marriage in One More Day, to the point that you'd think that's all he does.
  • Obvious Judas: Anton Satan. Come on, he's the Anti-Christ, of course he's going to betray you!
  • Older Than They Think: The idea of a Ghost Rider driving a car isn't as new as you might think. When establishing Spirits of Vengeance as a part of an ancient legacy, Jason Aaron included a duo of Ghost Riders riding a car and truck, as an Affectionate Parody of Smokey and the Bandit.
  • Squick: More recent series are filled with it. As was the miniseries Trail of Tears. It featured a pair of outlaws that the Ghost Rider killed by smashing them together so hard they fused together. They came back as minions of Hell, still fused together.

The movies:

  • Acceptable Targets: The overweight goth woman Johnny saved from an attacker; her interview was played for laughs the next night, and not so much because she was describing a man whose head was on fire.
  • Complete Monster: In the extended cut, the Big Bad, Blackheart, is a prince of Hell and the son of Mephisto(pheles). Jealous of his father's power and angered by the fact that he gave the power of Hellfire to a lowly human instead of him, Blackheart plans to obtain the contract of San Venganza, which would grant him the power of a thousand evil souls who made a Deal with the Devil. Blackheart plans to use the power of the contract to create Hell on Earth and devour as many souls as he can, then using his new power to overthrow his father. Throughout the movie, Blackheart murders almost every human he comes into contact with, only sparing those who can serve his plans later. On his search for the contract, he heads to the Caretaker and starts beating him for information on where the contract is. He then decides to kidnap Johnny Blaze’s girlfriend, Roxanne, and hold her hostage, promising her release for the contract. Not even his partners are safe from him, as he only sees/uses them as muscle against Ghost Rider, and quickly abandons one of them when he starts losing to him. Despite his childish personality, Blackheart proved to be more evil than Mephistopheles himself.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Carter Slade... couldn't the film have been about him?
  • Fridge Brilliance: Mepistopheles made the deal with Blaze that if he took out Blackheart, Blaze would get his soul back. However, Mepistopheles forgot to make it a part of the deal that Blaze would also have to give the Ghost Rider power back, thus he was able to keep it at the end.
  • Fridge Logic:
    • If Blackheart and Mephistopheles aren't able to enter Holy Ground, hence the reason Carter Slade was able to keep the Contract safe for over 150 years... how come both were shown to be perfectly able to enter churches?!
      • I think it's the condition of said churches. The one Blackheart's in at first might not have been properly blessed to truly ward off evil. You know moral decay/ignorance over the centuries. The second time was in the ruins of a town whose entire populace sold their souls to create the Contract. You think God would leave any part of such a place holy?
    • Another issue that is never addressed is that Johnny never willingly sold his soul in the first place, nor did he sign the contract? The point of making a deal with the devil is not for him to trick you into giving your soul to him, but to make you want to give your soul to him! That is the trick! If accidentally cutting himself to have his blood fall on the contract was all that was needed, Mephistopheles could have stabbed him in the chest and still gotten his soul, by that logic?! And since when did a sarcastic, "Yeah, right?", ever count as an affirmation when making a deal with the devil? There's an long history of etiquette in how these deals are done and isn't the whole point of the Ghost Riders that Mephistopheles is the sort of person who at least has some standards?!
    • No, he really doesn't. That's why he plays the Literal Genie and Jackass Genie. He really does get off on being that evil.
    • Probably the reason this was retconned in the sequel, with a flashback showing Johnny willingly giving up his soul.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • Mephistophiles crosses it by using a loophole in his deal with Johnny. After curing his father of cancer, he has him killed off during a failed stunt just so he wouldn't know about Johnny's deal.
    • Blackheart crosses in with his first kill. He murders an entire bar just to have a spot where he and his minions can meet. The last kill was a waitress who was hiding behind the counter, knowing she was there the whole time but just waiting for her to peek out.
  • Narm:
    • Blackheart's first line as Legion.
    Legion: Our name is Leeeegion, for we are maaaaaaaanyyyyyyyy.
    • Mephistophiles' goofy Muppet shadow showing his true self.
    • Johnny eating jelly beans while watching monkeys doing karate.
    • Roxanne consults an 8 ball on her woes. A grown up woman consults a children's toy.
  • Narm Charm: 'He may have my Soul... but he doesn't have my Spirit.'
  • No Problem with Licensed Games: The tie-in game for the PS2 is basically a God of War clone with a bit of Devil May Cry and Road Rash thrown in, and it managed to be a lot of fun, mixing all of the elements that made those games good.
  • Retroactive Recognition: Rebel Wilson as the goth girl.
  • Separated-at-Birth Casting: It's no coincidence that Raquel Alessi got cast as a young Eva Mendes. She more than looks the part.
  • Signature Scene: Carter Slade's last ride.
  • So Bad, It's Good: Both films, though it's debatable which is better than the other.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: The only thing that's cooler than Ghost Rider? Two Ghost Riders. The previous on a flaming horse, the new on a flaming motorcycle. They ride together and you think they've formed an unstoppable Tag Team of awesome. But the old Ghost Rider leaves... for no reason! Except the character explains why. He's basically used up all the energy keeping him alive in the ride. He was a dead man walking who turned into a dead man.
  • Uncanny Valley: Blackheart as Legion does manage to look very unnerving to look at with his wide red eyes and darker skin.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: The scenes with the actual Ghost Rider in them, as in full flaming skull mode, are usually considered the best and most well remembered parts of the movie, with badassery and cool visual effects.
  • What an Idiot: Blackheart absorbing the 1000 souls from the contract in the middle of his fight with Johnny may not have been the smartest move, considering that his lack of a soul was keeping Johnny from being able to beat him before. If you think about it, there was no reason it couldn't have waited until the fight was over.
  • Why Would Anyone Take Him Back?: Roxanne appears to be a successful, confident adult woman who runs into the ex-boyfriend who, when they were teenagers, left her with no explanation. He proceeds to badger her into a date by forcibly kissing her only to turn around and stand her up again, yet she's the one who comes after him to apologize??