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Tuesday, 29 May 2018

Marvel 101: Who Is The Ghost?

This summer, the Marvel Cinematic Universe will expand yet again with the theatrical release of Ant-Man And The Wasp. The film looks to add some new faces to the MCU in the wake of Thanos' tirade in Avengers: Infinity War, but none more intriguing than the masked marvel known simply as the Ghost.

Who is this mysterious individual? Where does he come from? What does he want? Well, with that in mind, let's take a trip across the Marvel Universe to answer: Who Is The Ghost?

First appearing in the pages of Iron Man #219 back in 1987, the character of The Ghost was created by David Michelinie and Bob Layton. With an identity shrouded in mystery, the Ghost is motivated by a love of anarchy and has dedicated his life to bringing down the largest corporations inhabiting the Marvel Universe.

A skilled inventor and hacker, the Ghost would create an advanced bodysuit that grants him several superhuman abilities - including the option to become either become either invisible or intangible at will. Over the years, he would also upgrade his suit with a number of offensive capabilities that allow him to shoot powerful bursts of electricity. He would also arm himself with a small arsenal of bombs and grenades.

A former engineer at Omnisapient, the Ghost would end up spiraling into depression and isolation after the love of his life was killed. During this time, he would create a new computer network that would allow him to merge his own consciousness within, and discover that the woman he loved had actually been an actress hired to fall in love with him in an effort to keep the genius engineer both happy and productive- and Omnisapient in the black. Shortly after this realization, the board would attempt to kill him, thus completing his transformation into an anti-capitalist supervillain looking to bring down big business from the inside.

The Ghost would end up becoming a recurring thorn in the side of Tony Stark, as the character has oftentimes set Stark Industries as the outlet for his wrath. While he often works alone, the Ghost has been hired out to perform acts of corporate espionage against some of the biggest businesses in the Marvel Universe. At one point, the Ghost was even contracted by the Kingpin to steal Roxxon's plans for creating synthetic vibranium.

The character has taken on a higher profile in recent years, having been inducted into the ranks of the Thunderbolts - Norman Osborn's personal black ops squad, which came into existence while he was serving as the head of SHIELD. During this time, the Ghost would become more of a sympathetic anti-hero than a true villain. He would later reveal that his true reason for joining the Thunderbolts was that it would offer him the perfect opportunity to bring down Norman Osborn's new empire from within. He became an essential component in helping the Avengers bring down Osborn and, as a reward for his help, the Ghost would be permitted to join a new Thunderbolts brigade dedicated to helping rehabilitate villains rather than exploit them.

Despite this change, the Ghost hasn't completely abandoned his villainous ways - recently excepting a job from the Alchemax corporation to aid in bringing down Parker Industries.

An interesting, and somewhat frightening, character to be sure! Ghost should fit right in amongst the bustling ranks of the ever-growing Marvel Cinematic Universe. And, what better place to have the genius hacker make an appearance than in Ant-Man And The Wasp?

 We're very interested to see how the Ghost fits into the film's plot, and can't wait to see what Killjoys leading lady Hannah John-Kamen will bring to the first female incarnation of the character when the film hits the big screen on July 6th.

Until next time, Infinite Earths fans!

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