Danny and Barbara did not remember their father. They only knew Mrs. Ketch as their mother. On Barbara's 10th birthday, Dan noticed a strange woman watching them. It was Naomi Kale, who left after being confronted by a police officer who was a friend of the family. The officer's daughter Stacy and Dan had a romantic relationship.
While looking for the grave of Harry Houdini, Barbara and Danny Ketch mistakenly ran into rival gangs, one led by Deathwatch. Barbara was shot during the ensuing firefight. Danny carried his sister and felt a strange medallion on his motorcycle was calling to him. He touched it and became Ghost Rider, taking vengeance on the gangs. Barbara was taken to a hospital, but was later killed by Blackout, who sought revenge on the Ghost Rider for burning up his face (an injury Blackout acutally had himself to blame for) and had learned Daniel's secret identity.
Dan's good friend Jack D'Auria is also caught up in the conflict, battling Deathwatch's men.
After the Fantastic Four mysteriously disappeared, Ketch, Wolverine, Hulk and Spider-Man joined forces to replace them until the four were rescued and a Skrull plot was exposed. Ketch also briefly teamed with Wolverine and Punisher while investigating one of Blackheart's schemes.
John Blaze confronted this new being thinking Zarathos had returned. It was later revealed that this incarnation was not Zarathos, and that Blaze and Ketch were brothers.
The family had been separated by the Blood to limit the chances of the Spirits of Vengeance forming, but Mephisto's manipulations forced them to use the powers.
The two worked together to fight Zarathos and Lilith as part of the Midnight Sons. Ketch seemed to have been absorbed into Zarathos, but soon returned. The happy reunion was disrupted by the villainous Hellgate.
Dan also had problems with Stacy, who joined a task force that was designed to confront superhuman criminals and vigilantes. As the Ghost Rider, he was briefly captured, but escaped before SHIELD could examine the nature of his powers.
After an attack by a mad Vengeance revealed some dark memories, Ketch consulted with Doctor Strange. It was revealed that the Ghost Rider form was actually an ancestor, Noble Kale, who had become a Spirit of Vengeance with the help of the angel Uriel. Their use of motorcycles was due to Naomi placing her medallion on her own motorcycle. This also meant Ketch and Blaze were distantly related to sorceress Jennifer Kale. This knowledge seemed to increase the power of the Ghost Rider, although he also became more distant and angry.
The revelations also awakened the Furies, who had been dispatched to destroy Kale and his descendants. Jennifer sent out a mystic distress signal, which was answered by Valkyrie. Together they managed to hold off the Furies until Jennifer was able to call the spirit of Naomi to force the Furies to abandon their attack.
Having recently deposed his father Mephisto, Blackheart began to attack the Ghost Rider with his own created Spirits of Vengeance. He also mocked Blaze by placing Roxanne's spirit into the Blackrose. Kale was killed by Pao Fu and taken to Blackheart's 'hell.' While there, Daniel Ketch apparently sacrificed himself to unlock Noble Kale's full power. Kale defeated Blackheart and briefly controlled the realm until Mephisto's return While he ruled hell, he resurrected Dan Ketch and returned him to Earth. Sometime later when Mephisto reclaimed his realm, Noble Kale returned to Earth and was forced to rebond to Dan Ketch. Sometime later, however, Dan had a change of heart and had Noble Kale exercised from him.
No longer having the Ghost Rider's power causes Danny to fall into a deep depression, becoming a drunk who fights bar thugs for kicks. He is approached by Mister Eleven, a talking crow that continues to encounter Ketch over and over, giving him 'doses' of the Ghost Rider power, luring him in with longer amounts each time. Eleven explains to Ketch the true history of the Spirits of Vengeance and how some past Ghost Rider incarnations were unable to cope with such a magnitude of power, going insane and burning out their soul.
He also explains that Verminus Rex, from Blackheart's old Spirit of Vengeance, is hunting other Spirits of Vengeance in order to feed his own growing addiction. After absorbing the spirit from another Ghost Rider that knew of Rex's location, Danny finds out where he is hiding and finishes him off, absorbing the other spirits Rex had taken in the past. Taking on such an amount of power pushes Danny over the edge, causing him to go insane. Zadkiel intervenes, offering to take away Danny's pain from the overdose and in return, gather other Spirits of Vengeance and absorb their essence in order to "save the host's soul". Desperate and with no other option, Ketch agrees, becoming a knight in Zadkiel's service.
Danny is next seen in the shadows speaking on the phone with the head nurse hunting Johnny Blaze, the sign of Zadkiel on his hand. Ketch then encounters Lucas, the young boy Blaze is trying to save, and seemingly convinces the boy to kill himself.
The Last Stand of the Spirits of Vengeance
Seven riders show their flaming heads for the first time in this story arc by writer Jason Aaron and artist Tan Eng Huat. Daniel Ketch returns with a new mission: To collect the powers of all the Ghost Riders for the angel Zadkiel to prevent the corruption of the powers with their human hosts. Zadkiel has other motives he keeps to himself, of which he needs the powers of the riders for: To tear down the walls of New Jerusalem and wage war on the heavens.
The story begins in Tibet with Chinese soldiers harassing a village, questioning them about weapons that killed two of his garrison patrols. During the harassment a peasant enters on a donkey. After a few exchange of words and an order to kill given by the General, the peasant changes and kills the General's men while his back is turned. When the General turns back he sees the Ghost Rider and gets a penance stare for his trouble. After the attack the rider goes back to his sanctuary where he is visited by Danny Ketch. A short while later Sister Sara and Johnny Blaze arrive at the sanctuary to find out how to get back at Zadkiel. After entering, they find the peasant and donkey burnt to husks.
That night the two are visited by Ketch and begins a battle with a show of power. When Blaze does the penance stare to his brother, he sees exactly what has transpired. Ketch has murdered the hosts of numerous riders for their powers. During a show of pity for the fallen, Ketch is able to return the stare on Blaze, and sends Blaze into temporary insanity. Before Ketch is able to take the power of Zarathos, he is stopped by the new caretaker Sister Sara. She rescues Blaze and they go to a safehouse. At the safehouse, during Blaze's self pity and Sara's trying to pick him back up, they are visited by two more Ghost Riders, the Arabic Molek and the Chinese Bai Gu Jing, with whom they follow to Japan.
When Blaze's team arrives in Japan, they learn Ketch has already taken the power of the rider Yoshio Kannabe. After the conquest, Ketch has another talk with Zadkiel via communications link. During the conversation Zadkiel massacres the squad of the Asura who guard the gates of heaven. Zadkiel tells Ketch to wait to attack the riders til the last ones are together. Meanwhile, elsewhere in the world, former cop Kowalski follows a contact to get a hellfire shotgun for his revenge on Blaze. After acquiring the item he is then driven to the middle of a desert to sit and wait for his chance.
After leaving Japan, Blaze's team journeys to the City of the Skulls in the Congo where the last stand would be made. There they meet the Lords of the Congo, the Ghost Riders Baron Skullfire and Marinette Bwachech, and their Phantom Riders. During the day Sara tells Molek about her new experience becoming a Caretaker, and her wonders about religion, with which she is given secret information that Molek knows about both.
As the Ghost Riders and their forces get ready for battle, Blaze has his eyes opened back up by kids going to fight. He quickly snaps out of his depression and joins the others for the final battle. During the course of the battle Baron Skullfire dies and the spirit is transferred to one of the Phantom Riders, after which Ketch creates hellfire duplicates of himself to take the powers. A wager is then made by Blaze and Ketch on a race between the brothers around the world for the fates of the powers. During the race, Blaze is critically injured by Kowalski's shotgun and Ketch takes the rider from him as his duplicates overpower the others.
Moments later Ketch rises up to the sky and Zadkiel is then able to take heaven. The sound of the gates falling is enough to be felt by Spider-man's senses, and loud enough to be heard by people and everywhere including Hell and Asgard. When an injured Blaze returns to the City of the Skulls, Ketch falls from the sky and reveals that the battle for Heaven has already been decided. As more energies fall from the heavens, one strikes Kowalski and changes him into a new rider that looks a lot like Vengeance.
After the battle with Zadkiel and his Black Host, Ketch parts ways with Blaze and Sara, taking to the open road on his motorcycle and reminiscing about being Zadkiel's puppet. Now, he simply waits for the end of the world to soon come. He comes across a blown-up gas station, destroyed by the demonically-possessed Highwayman. He attempts to pass by it but his bike refuses to budge however, and Ketch is forcibly turned into the Ghost Rider.
Danny finds the Highwayman further up the road, having finished slaughtering a bus full of UFO watchers and hippies to feed the demons in his semi. Ghost Rider faces off with the Highwayman, eventually tearing his head off in a high-speed chase. His decapitated head attempts to crawl away, sprouting arachnid legs and cursing the Ghost Rider. Ketch picks it up and sets it ablaze with a spew of hellfire. He transforms back into Danny Ketch and rides off, reflecting on how close he was to being rid of this life as the Ghost Rider.
Powers and AbilitiesEdit
This Ghost Rider was cursed from the bloodline of Noble Kale. As the Ghost Rider, Ketch possessed a variety of supernatural powers.
Demonic Transformation: Dan Ketch possessed the supernatural ability to transform into the Ghost Rider at will. Originally, he would have to touch the gas cap of his motorcycle to transform. Later, he would automatically transform at night or in the presence of evil. Eventually, however, he gained control over his transformations and could transform through an act of will or when innocent blood is spilled.
Superhuman Strength: As Ghost Rider, Ketch possessed superhuman strength sufficient to lift about 25 tons.
Superhuman Stamina: The mystical energy that empowers Ghost Rider prevents his muscles from producing fatigue toxins during physical activities. As a result, while transformed into Ghost Rider, Ketch possessed limitless superhuman stamina in all physical activities.
Superhuman Durability: While transformed into Ghost Rider, Ketch's body was highly resistant to physical injury. He was capable of withstanding great impact forces, temperature and pressure extremes, powerful energy blasts, high caliber bullets, and falls from great heights without sustaining injury.
Regenerative Healing Factor: Despite his high resistance to injury while he was transformed into Ghost Rider, Ketch could still sustain physical injury. However, the mystical energies of the Ghost Rider enabled him to rapidly heal physical damage much faster and more extensively than an ordinary human being is capable of.
Hellfire Manipulation: As Ghost Rider, Ketch possessed the ability to generate, control, and project mystical fire, or "hellfire" at will. Hellfire is an emphyreal and supernatural flame that burns the soul of a person and can be used to burn their physical body. He could utilize this fire in various ways, including projecting it from his eyes, hands, mouth, or even channel it from his body into other weapons like his shotgun, form walls of hellfire, and even create a motorcycle completely out of hellfire.
Mystical Chain Projection: As Ghost Rider, Ketch wielded a mystical chain that was capable of growing in length, cutting through almost anything, and transforming into other weapons. He could also spew and project chains from his mouth or chest at will.
Penance Stare: As Ghost Rider, Ketch possessed the supernatural ability to cause any individual who stares into his eyes to see and feel every bit of pain they have ever inflicted on anyone in their entire lifetime.
|Power Grid |
|* Heightened speed on motorcycle|
AbilitiesKetch himself was a skilled motorcyclist and, as Ghost Rider, was a formidable combatant as a result of his powers, though he had no formal training.
Strength levelClass 25; Ghost rider can lift up to 25 tons.
Penance stare can't effect victims if they are blind, on drugs, or have no soul. Using the penance stare on anyone who is blind, on drugs, or have no soul will render him unconsious or in a death-like state. The same thing happens if he uses the penance stare on someone or something with more than two eyes. The penance stare also seems to have little effect on those who are mentally unstable, such as Madcap and Carnage.
TransportationMotorcycle. While Danny was Ghost Rider, his motorcycle transformed with hellfire wheels and could travel across water or up walls, and can be commanded remotely.
Ghost Rider's Chain, which had a variety of mystical abilities, and which responded to Ghost Rider's mental commands.
- Other similar characters:Ghost Rider of World War 1[],Ghost Rider(Johnny Blaze)[],Blazing Skull[] and Death-Flame[].
- The American band Suicide wrote a song in tribute to the Ghost Rider character. It has since been covered by several bands. Vocalist Alan Vega has also gone on to say that the name Suicide was inspired by the Ghost Rider comic book titled Satan Suicide, a favorite of his.
- 310 Appearances of Daniel Ketch (Earth-616)
- 130 Images featuring Daniel Ketch (Earth-616)
- 21 Quotations by or about Daniel Ketch (Earth-616)
- Character Gallery: Daniel Ketch (Earth-616)
- Fan-Art Gallery: Daniel Ketch (Earth-616)
- Characters killed by Ghost Rider
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