Marvel’s ‘AGENTS’ Go Supernatural into Season 4 Winter Finale

Brad Crager

Staff reporter

*MILD SPOILERS*

Since the premier of its highly anticipated and fan awaited fourth season, Marvel’s cinematic television spinoff series on ABC, ‘Agents of Shield’, has driven the movie universe into a blazing new direction. Though we have seen other incarnations of certain plots in older Marvel flicks, this is a fresh addition to the vast Avengers movie universe.

Fans of the critically exalted series were delighted when the cast announced at comic-con late July that they will spotlight a well recognizable character to add in from the spiritual world of the Marvel Universe: Ghost Rider. The Spirit of Vengeance was once before helmed by Sony Pictures and starred actor Nicholas Cage (National Treasure). Cage plays the motorcycle stuntman Jonny Blaze, who is the most widely known character to ever wield the Spirit in the comics. Following the franchise’s critical and financial bomb of a sequel, the rights of Ghost Rider were reverted back to Disney owned ‘Marvel Studios’ in which the Avengers films are produced.

Since the rights reverted back to Marvel, the studio was holding the character for proper introduction. As Marvel Studio’s tactics are planned films on a set and release schedule, the company had trouble finding a place for the character to appear in films. As the movie universe is expanding power concepts with its recently released film Doctor Strange, giving gateway to different dimensions and universes, introducing a brand new take on the Ghost Rider seemed like a perfect fit.

This is proven as the fourth season premiers, centering around a Charger driving Ghost Rider: mechanic Roberto “Robbie” Reyes, played by Gabriel Luna. In the comics, Reyes becomes a new incarnation of Ghost Rider when he takes on a street race challenge for fifty thousand dollars to support his paralyzed brother Gabe. Unaware that his Charger is possessed by the ghost of his deceased, devil worshipping, criminal, caretaking uncle Eli Morrow, Robbie feels sketchy about who he’s racing and decides to break for it. He races down the road and crashes at a dead end. His opponents get out of the car and open fire on Robbie, killing him and setting him on fire. He transforms into the rider through the spirit of Morrow. He doesn’t let Robbie in on his true intentions to corrupt him by fueling him with vengeance for the people that murdered him.

However, as Marvel Studios is known for twisting storylines from the comics into the live-action adaptations, the Robbie Reyes storyline is swerved around to fit the plot of the show he’s introduced in. This is a smart move considering the fact that if you have a show behind S.H.I.E.L.D, you shouldn’t base the show around a pop up character; especially into its fourth season. The show builds up suspense as to Reyes’s origin in the show in the beginning of the season. *(SPOILERS/TRIGGER WARNING) * It is revealed in episode 6 that Robbie steals his still-living Uncle Eli’s car in order to race his opponent. Robbie’s brother Gabe catches him down the driveway and Robbie asks if Gabe would like to join him as a passenger. Gabe declines. The two hold a conversation about Gabe’s desire to get into Berkley and Robbie’s attitude and character shows that racing and cars is his lifestyle. He adds that it is also good money and he had raced in the car once before.

Gabe gives in and goes with Robbie, but on the way to the race, they come to an intersection with a green light. The van in front of them are not moving. Reyes goes to honk the horn and the passengers in the front vehicle open fire. Robbie tries to drive away but while the shots are fired, Gabe takes a shot and the vehicle flips, ejecting Robbie through the windshield. Before he hits the ground he prays to anyone listening to spare his brother’s life. Reyes becomes the Ghost Rider when Johnny Blaze rides up and gives him the spirit as he deems Robbie fit to control it.

The plot of the show is using spiritual elements from the comics such as the DarkHold, a book using black magic to revoke the laws of nature, helping to open the possibilities of other realms and universes and magic. They use the DarkHold in the show to represent characters going power-mad, which is very essential to the plot of the season.

As tonight’s season 4 winter finale airs, we will get to see Ghost Riders possible demise, at least for the sake of the show. This season happens to be the most I’ve seen of Agents of Shield and the way the story structure is built is of like no comic book show I’ve seen. The show is jam-packed with a lot of jaw dropping moments that balance with intriguing visual effects. If I had to give this season a rating up to its winter finale, my score would be 10/10. The show balances the cinematic universe’s themes while continuing into bringing grounded material from the show as a whole. The acting is phenomenal for a TV production. The show even manages to stay fresh bringing in new elements and characters to fuel the flaming fan base, while awaiting the bigger cinematic films during the year.

Starring:

Clark Gregg , Chloe Bennet , Ming-Na Wen , Elizabeth Henstridge ,

featuring Gabriel Luna as Robbie Reyes/Ghost Rider.

Season 4, Ep. 1 PROMO ‘Vengeance’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yY9ar4QJOsY

Season 4, Ep. 6 PROMO Ghost Rider Origin ‘The Good Samaritan’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rFWmfY_M1hk

Season 4 Winter Finale PROMO ‘Law of Inferno Dynamics’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9MJUYjSI6wA

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