Ghost Rider #27
Issue(s): Ghost Rider #27
Despite Cyclops saying that the group shouldn't split up...
...once they find the children...
...splitting up is exactly what they do.
I guess Cyclops only said not to split up until they found the children, so it's not a contradiction, but considering this all happens on the first four pages it's an odd turnaround.
Ghost Rider is struggling with the fact that the spirit of Danny Ketch is fading inside his head, but he, Gambit, and Wolverine manage to make their way to the Brood and the assassin we saw earlier.
The other X-Men have to fight Brood too, and they're briefly distracted by the site of Ghost Rider's riderless bike.
The smaller group of heroes encounter the Brood Queen, but she flies past them to go after the group with the children.
So it's lucky that Ghost Rider did call his bike.
Ghost Rider stabs the Queen with her own tail.
And even that is not enough to kill her.
Luckily, Johnny Blaze had been alerted to Ghost Rider's presence by someone named Clara, a psychic.
And he shows up to do with his magic shotgun what a flaming skeleton and a team full of mutants apparently couldn't.
Ghost Rider takes his leave with Blaze.
The very end of this issue shows us the surviving assassin, still scheming.
As Michael notes in the comments, in Gambit's solo series this will turn out to be Julien Boudreaux, the brother of Bella Donna that Gambit (seemingly?) killed.
As i've been saying, this is a totally fine adventure story, but that's it. In the X-Men issue (not counting the prelude), the only thing that counts as a subplot is Cyclops' lusting for Psylocke, and in these issues we have Danny's spirit running around in Ghost Rider's head and the brief introduction of Clara Menninger. Other than that it's just end to end Brood fights, and some very thin development of the Assassin and Thieves' Guilds. Which, again, is fine; we're in summer blockbuster mode. But you really want bombastic art to go along with that. I'll say that Jim Lee's art qualifies. Ron Wagner is an artist that i would normally say is better than Lee; not in terms of pin-up quality, but a more consistent storyteller. I mean, ideally i'd have someone who can make pretty pictures as well as Jim Lee but can handle the sequential stuff at least as good as Wagner, but if i had to choose i'd go with the latter. But in this case there's so little story to tell that i'd rather have the pin-up art. Just give me big splashes of the X-Men and Ghost Rider fighting the Brood since that's all these issues are promising anyway. Still, a fun little crossover, and in my opinion a good way to disguise the fact that both books are a little bankrupt of ideas for a little longer.
Quality Rating: C-
Chronological Placement Considerations: Continues directly from X-Men #9.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (2): showBeast, Bella Donna Boudreaux, Clara Menninger, Cyclops, Gambit, Ghost Rider (Danny Ketch), Ghost Rider (Johnny Blaze), Jubilee, Julien Boudreaux, Noble Kale, Psylocke, Rogue, Wolverine
Ugh. I didn't really like the storyline. Gambit's wife (who appears out of nothing and, then, is conveniently killed off for no reason), the Guilds (who *are* like something transplanted from a D&D session), the usual GR badness (and how the heck did the Brood infect him?)...
The *only* thing I liked about this story was that mysterious Assasin, because he had a genuinely creepy design. And he doesn't appear ever again... :(
Posted by: Piotr W | February 18, 2016 3:43 PM
The assassin is clearly intended to be Julien Boudreaux, Bella Donna's brother, who later appears in the Gambit limited series. Look at the cover of Gambit 3:
Posted by: Michael | February 18, 2016 10:04 PM
It should be noted that they didn't exactly leave the idea that the magic shotgun would kill the Brood queen to chance. What Fnord didn't show was that the X-Men all took turns attacking her decapitated skull with their powers afterwards. Can't really blame them after they saw her skin being removed as being useless.
Posted by: Max_Spider | February 19, 2016 3:29 AM
@Michael, thanks, i've added Julien as a character appearing. Interesting that in terms of this story (i.e. not the flashback where Gambit 'killed' him), he only appears in the Ghost Rider portions.
Posted by: fnord12 | February 19, 2016 9:21 AM
I'm certainly not the first one to point this out, but it's worth mentioning that much of this story, rather comically, takes place in the tunnels/catacombs of New Orleans - a city rather well known for being below sea level and not really having much in the way of an underground for the burial of bodies, let alone for superhero/alien battles.
Posted by: Austin Gorton | February 22, 2016 9:07 AM
Errors like that can be common among comics writers. As Paul O'Brien (House to Astonish, X-Axis) has noted, anything outside of New York and Los Angeles tended to be written in caricature.
Posted by: Red Comet | February 22, 2016 10:04 AM
Luckily it's the Marvel U, the tunnels were probably built by Galileo or the Badoon.
Posted by: cullen | February 22, 2016 2:55 PM
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