Hafa Adai! Welcome to Chamorro Cinema, I'm Island Boy Manuel and it is upon us...FALL TELEVISION! And you know what that means...I'm going to be breaking down all the good? Bad? And more than a little of both (and getting very little sleep).
Marvel's Agents of Shield Review Episode 1 (The Ghost)
Here it is ladies and gentleman the moment we've all been waiting for since the rights were given back to Marvel, the introduction of Ghost Rider to the MCU. Marvel quickly (masterfully) incorporated Punisher in a big way into Daredevil on Netflix. So I was cautiously excited to see how they handled Ghostrider. Unlike most of my geeky brethren I am very nervous about incorporating the supernatural into the relatively sci-fi based MCU. I'm worried about it becoming a device to let the writers lazily explain thing away as magic or demonic.
That said I am digging the time jump. I know that this show does its best work when the ensemble is well...assembled. However, the splitting up of the team makes sense, and it's fun to see them in their new roles. Without giving too much away, Daisy is still a vigilante, Fitz and Simmons are still together and super adorable, May is kicking ass and teaching others to do so, and Mack and Coulson are partners. There is also a new director that is more anal than the ending of Kingsman.
Ghost Rider is played by Gabriel Luna and he does a tremendous job as Robbie Reyes the 4th incarnation of the spirit of vengeance...don't worry if you've never heard of Robbie that's why God invented Wikipedia. His version of Ghost Rider drives a muscle car and didn't last very long. The key to his character is that he is the fast and the furious version, he illegally street races cars for money, he has a sick brother that he cares for...and he kills a lot of baddies.
The action starts out big and bombastic then the center of the episode is all setup and catching up on the characters. The slow parts are interwoven with the Rider violently interrogating a member of the Aryan Brotherhood to break up the monotony. Mostly the characters have a one on one scene with one of other main characters. Mack and Coulson, Mack and Yo-Yo, Fitz and Holden, Fitz and Simmons, Simmons and May, Yo-Yo and Daisy, Daisy and Robbie...all these scenes stands out and it's a true testament of how well this cast works together in any configuration.
The story has plenty of nuggets that help setup future episodes. Holden and Fitz further work on the Aida (life model decoy) that was teased in the last season finale, Mack and Coulson stumble on a supernatural weapon that makes people bonkers and seems to be tied to the upcoming Dr. Strange. Ghost Rider is not explained at all which was nice but I know it'll have to handled eventually... so how they explain demons with Sam and Dean Winchester showing up is any ones guess.