Originally published on iDigitalTimes Nov. 2, 2016.
One of the best scenes in Agents of SHIELD Season 4 episode 6, “The Good Samaritan,” was the fight between Director Jeffrey Mace and Ghost Rider. Robbie Reyes was able to break out of the SHIELD containment module and the new inhuman director wasn’t shy to take him on. Ghost Rider, the first enhanced being to break out of Fitz’s custom-made holding cell, easily defeated Mace. It wasn’t until his younger brother Gabe stepped in that Ghost Rider put down his fist and walked away.
“That’s what saves Robbie from completely being swallowed up by the darkness,” Gabriel Luna told us at New York Comic Con, speaking of his brother, Gabe. “Early on Johnny Blaze would completely black out and commit these atrocities. But in Robbie’s case, his love for his brother, especially in the books, it’s his love for his brother that makes the connection and pull him away from the demon.”
Robbie may be able to learn how to hold back his brutal urges, but Ghost Rider has an agenda of his own and promises to fulfill it. We learned in episode 6 it was a second Ghost Rider, Johnny Blaze, who gave Robbie his powers in exchange for making a deal to avenge the lives of innocent people. Robbie describes it as the sensation of the devil taking over, and Luna says it will never go away.
“It’s his shadow, it’s gonna always be there you can’t shake your shadow you just have to accept it as part of you.So these things Robbie does… he as a man feels guilt, I think, but you do a deal with the devil, you take what comes.”
Many see Ghost Rider as a brutal killer, but Coulson and Daisy in particular believe in his good side. Like many anti-heroes in the Marvel Universe, Ghost Rider usually only kills those who deserve it. In Ghost Rider’s case on Agents of SHIELD, it’s gang members. The problem is that ultimately, it’s not Robbie who’s deciding. Ghost Rider plays God, and the decision is ultimately up to the spirit of vengeance.
“Everything in me wants to take her out,” Luna said about Quake earlier in Season 4. “But you have to have a good reason to do it. There must be a requirement for vengeance and there isn’t. I kneel down and look in her yes and don’t see it even though she’s begging to die.”
Now that Mace wants to take Ghost Rider and Quake into custody, it’ll be up to Agent Coulson to protect them. For the time being, he’s made a deal with Mace to keep Ghost Rider around to help find the season’s new villain, Eli Morrow, and solve the Darkhold-Momentum Labs mystery.
It would have been interesting to see that fight with Director Mace play out. Would Ghost Rider have looked into Mace’s eyes and seen a man that deserved to die? Let us know in the comments below!
Agents of SHIELD Season 4 returns at the end of November.