REVIEW :: Ghost Riders: Heaven’s On Fire #1

October 21, 2009 at 7:32 pm By:

ghost-riders_heavens-fire_01-fc_420pxOK, I’m officially digging the new Ghost Rider limited series “Heaven’s on Fire.”

I never thought I would ever find myself recommending a comic starring Ghost Rider; for me, the character has always been a great visual and nothing more. I actually picked up the book several times in its various incarnations over the years, but I’ve never been sold.

Well, writer Jason Aaron has sold me.

You know that old saying: “There’s no such thing as bad characters, just bad writers?” Aaron proves that in “HOF” What’s the secret of his success? One word: fun.

Aaron approaches the series with the knowledge that GR is a goofy character. That self-depricating style reminds me a little of how Joss Whedon made Buffy must-see TV — by “winking” at an audience that’s probably consumed tons of pop culture and is not interested in suspending disbelief unless absolutely necessary.

Now, that’s not to say “HOF” is one big joke. This isn’t Metal Men or anything like that. Beyond all the crazy villains (like the infamous Big Wheel and —my favorite — The Orb) and hilarious dialogue are well-developed characters and real stakes (like the fate of the world and some folks’ eternal souls) on the line.

Need a break from Norman Osborn? I’d suggest searching the stands for Marvel’s friendly neighborhood flaming skull.

Carlton Hargro is Editor-In-Chief of Charlotte’s Creative Loafing free weekly newspaper. You can read more of his comics reviews at the magazines Comic Proportions blog.

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