The most surprising member of ABC’s Agents of SHIELD this coming season isn’t even an agent of SHIELD but of vengeance: Ghost Rider.
Agents of SHIELD will be welcoming a new character next season. One of the Spirits of Vengeance will be on the popular TV show based on Marvel Comics characters. Ghost Rider will make an appearance during the season. This won’t be the original Ghost Rider (Johnny Blaze) or even the popular Danny Ketch. The show will be using the newest Ghost Rider, Roberto Reyes. Roberto Reyes is not possessed by the spirit of vengeance. He is bonded to the spirit of serial killer Eli Morrow.
Eli Morrow was a criminal and devil worshiper operating out of Los Angeles until his brutal demise. His spirit supernaturally inhabited a Dodge Charger that fell into the possession of his nephew, Robbie Reyes. Bonding with one another, Eli and Robbie became the new Ghost Rider. Eli hid his true nature from Robbie and attempted to corrupt him by feeding his lust for vengeance. Robbie eventually learned the truth about Eli and fought to suppress his uncle’s influence while operating as the Ghost Rider.The spirit gives him nearly the same powers and abilities as the Ghost Rider.
“SHIELD has always been about exploring the unusual and inexplicable and Ghost Rider and his universe is part of that,” Bell said, adding that Gabriel Luna “killed it” during his audition for the part.
“We wanted it to feel totally new and different. More people aren’t familiar with that version of the character so it gives us more latitude,” Whedon added, saying that he and Tanchareon immediately jumped on Reyes as their Ghost Rider of choice. “We liked the character, who is a guy from East Los Angeles. We didn’t really hem and haw about it. They asked us which one we’d want and we said that one. Because the car is cool and that’s the kind of story we’d want to tell.”
Whedon said that he hoped the show could “skew a little darker,” and added that time change helped bring Ghost Rider to the show.
“Going later always lets us explore different stories a bit,” Bell added. “It’s still a network TV show, not a Netflix show. That doesn’t mean we don’t find different ways to tell stories.”
While Ghost Rider has drawn much of the spotlight for Agents of SHIELD news, the producers were also quick to say that other Marvel characters were still on the table. When asked about the potential return of Bobbi Morse and Lance Hunter, Loeb said, “nothing’s impossible,” while Bell teased there could be future tie-ins to the upcoming Doctor Strange film.
Yet the producers said that the main superpower characters in the series, the Inhumans, were not done just yet. Tanchareon added, “we have a nice group to draw upon.”
“The Inhumans have not gone away,” Loeb said. “They’re still a part of this world. They’re not going anywhere.”
“The things that happened in Civil War the film have a direct affect in terms of what S.H.I.E.L.D. does for a living, and how people perceive the Inhumans. But I think the more interesting answer is where Marvel lives best is what’s a metaphor that’s going on around us. We live in a challenging time how people see different cultures, diversity, differences between people,” Bell added. “If we don’t figure out we’re all sharing the same planet and figure out how to work together and not put up walls,so we can all be together and figure it out. That’s a world that SHIELD is fighting for.”
Agents of SHIELD returns for a fourth season September 20 on ABC.