Alright, I just wanted to settle this once and for all….
The older we get the greater role nostalgia plays in our lives. When I get in discussions with friends or coworkers nowadays we usually just talk about how cool everything was when we were kids.
I was (still am really) a big action figure kid. When there was a character I liked, I needed their action figure. And man oh man did we go on crazy adventures.
One action figure line I liked in particular were the Ghost Rider figures that were around in the mid nineties (1996 I believe).
I remember my local KB Toys getting a few racks of these bad boys in and begging my grandma for one. Funny thing is I didn’t even know who he was. He was a biker with a flaming skull for a head, he glowed in the dark, he beat people with a fucking chain, and it came with a free comic book. What 2-38 year old WOULDN’T want that action figure?
Was he even a “good guy”? Shit. Who cares. I’m getting him.
And that’s how it went. I ended up with a few figures in the series: Vengeance (Ghost Rider’s main baddie), Blaze (the 1st Ghost Rider), and an “exploding” Ghost Rider (it was the 90’s so I’m guessing Danny Ketch was Ghost Rider). Again, didn’t know much about them. I’m sure it had a little blurb about each character on the back of the packaging, but fuck reading, I’m 9 and just got a action figure of a skeleton on fire.
A bunch of buddies and myself would actually bring the Ghost Rider figures to recess and we’d battle with them on the pavement. And then there was always was the “poor” kid who wanted to play but just had his Biker Mice From Mars action figure.
After harassing him to the point where he’d feel as worthless as…well….a Biker Mice From Mars action figure, we’d continue our adrenaline filled Ghost Rider activities.
Then weeks turned to months. Months turned to years and new fads and interests led to our Ghost Rider figures collecting dust and their eventual demise.
But the thing is whenever I’m having nostalgic filled discussions and I bring up these Ghost Rider figures, everyone (guys obviously) remembers them fondly. Usually the word “badass” is used several times throughout the memory. BUT when I mention the figures I usually ALWAYS get a response like this:
Me: “Yeah I used to play with the Ghost Rider action figures all time. Remember those?”
Dude: “Oh yeah! I used to have those! Based off the Ghost Rider cartoon, right?”
Everyone thinks these action figures came from a cartoon series. They didn’t. I KNOW they didn’t.
Why? As I kid I watched ever superhero cartoon show imaginable: TMNT, Batman, Spider-man, X-Men, Hulk, Superman, even the little known ones like Fantastic Four, Iron Man, and Silver Surfer.
And there was no Ghost Rider animated series to be seen. When I got older and got deeper into comics I read a lot of Ghost Rider (unfortunately) and it was then when I understood what the fuck I was actually playing with when I was a youngin’.
(Off topic but I remember making my Ghost Rider figure fight my Real Ghostbusters figures. HOW FUCKING AWESOME AND INGENIOUS IS THAT?! I was the James Cameron of playtime.)
But everyone I talked to who had these figures claimed they were from a Ghost Rider animated series. I can see their point. 90% of action figures we played with as kids were based off cartoon shows or movies. The only reason a had an action figure of The Shadow when I was a kid was because of the Alec Baldwin movie, not because the character merely existed.
So I did find it strange that a Ghost Rider action figure line was launched for no other reason other than he looks cool. Meaning therefore kids would play with him.
And after some research, yeah, that was the reason.
During the action figure line’s run there was a Ghost Rider monthly comic title. And that’s it.
And I figured that. The original Ghost Rider is about a stunt cyclist, Johnny Blaze, who sells his soul to the devil to save his father. The devil saves his pappy, but in return Johnny Blaze’s soul is welded with Zarathos, a demon that rounds up other demons that escaped from hell and are chilling on earth. Same goes for Danny Ketch, who was “cursed” with the power of the Ghost Rider after taking a mysterious motorcycle (again, 90s comics). Now when ever innocent blood is spilled Ketch will turn into the Ghost Rider and fight evil.
The whole anti-hero was a fad in the 1990’s. And frankly it would be hard to do a Ghost Rider animated series FOR KIDS. Hell itself plays a large role in the mythology. So does religion. And murder. I mean, it’s like putting The Punisher into an animated series and making him shoot lasers and not hit a single thing….
Long story short: GHOST RIDER DID NOT HAVE AN ANIMATED SERIES.
So stop fighting with me and telling me he did.
And I’m pretty sure the adventures I had with those toys when I was a kid were better than that craptastic movie that came out a few years back:
But if you swear you’ve seen Ghost Rider animated you’re not crazy. He did have a special guest appearance in the Hulk cartoon:
He was also featured in a Fantastic Four episode titled “When Calls Galactus”.
I also found this great website accounting all of Ghost Rider’s appearances in Marvel Animation:
So unless everyone I’ve talked to about this has seen those moments in various shows and somehow imagined that they actually are from a Ghost Rider animated series, man, you’re delusional as shit.
And before I end today’s post…
-How can someone be so angry over the treatment of a comic character in a movie yet refer to the comics as “comic scripts”?
Example: “Man, did they fuck up Deadpool in the Wolverine movie. I mean did you read the comic scripts? That’s not how Deadpool was at all with his mouth sewn shut and shit. They shoulda stuck to his comic scripts!”
-Do you know when you Google “Action Figure” the 1st suggestion that comes up is “Action Figure Therapy”. Pretty crazy. Didn’t know it was that big of a dilemma.