Death Rider (ICONS Writeup)

Death Rider
Daniel “Danny” Ketch, aka the Spirit of Corruption

Prowess 4
Coordination 4
Strength 6
Intellect 3
Awareness 5
Willpower 5

Stamina 11

*The Bright Blade 7 (Extra: Anybody stabbed by the sword will be consumed by every corrupt thing they’ve committed in their life from the inside out, being reduced into a pile of sludge if they fall to 0 Stamina)
*Burning Touch 5
*Damage Resistance 6
*Regeneration 5
*Mystic Steed – Death Rider can magically summon a large horse that has the following stats: Pro 3, Coo 3, Str 6, Int 3, Awa 4, Wil 4, Stamina 10, Running Expert +2 bonus, Regeneration 1.

In his Dan Ketch form, reduce Strength to 3 and lower Stamina to 8.

Athletics – Horseriding (+1 bonus), Drive – Motorcycles (Expert +2 bonus), Occult (+1 bonus), Weapons – The Bright Blade (Expert +2 bonus)

*Recovering Alcoholic
*Spirit of Corruption
*Complicated Family Tree


Dan Ketch was once the human host for a Spirit of Vengeance named Noble Kale. During this time, Dan battled a wide variety of foes like Blackheart, the Scarecrow, Deathwatch, and Blackout. Dan’s brother, John Blaze, was the host for a different Spirit of Vengeance for a time. During a period when Blaze was seemingly free of the family curse, he assisted Dan in his adventures using a Hellfire-projecting shotgun.

Eventually, Dan grew tired of sharing his existence with Noble Kale — he had lost many friends and family. Exorcising Noble from his body, Dan quickly realized his mistake. He craved the power he once wielded and sought solace in alcohol. He became bitter and angry, blaming others for his own mistakes. For a time, he even aided the forces of Heaven in attempting to destroy his brother and the other Spirits of Vengeance. When this was over, he reconciled with John and once again manifested the powers of the Ghost Rider, though he no longer shared the power with the spirit of Noble Kale.

Recently, the John Blaze Ghost Rider assumed the throne of Hell. As Johnny Blaze began capturing demons roaming the Earth, he tried to recruit the help of his brother, but Ketch refused and tried to convince Johnny that his position as the King of Hell was corrupting his soul. However, Blaze stripped Ketch of his Spirit of Vengeance and threw him off the Manhattan Bridge. Luckily, he got saved from drowning by Caretaker Sara. He at first refused to help Blaze to come to his senses, but after being convinced by the spirit of his mother to go help his brother, he accepted to go to Limbo, and take Belasco’s Necrosis. After the battle between Ketch and the Necrosis, Belasco turned Ketch into his Spirit of Corruption. After returning to his dimension, he instantly regretted this decision and tried to walk away. However, Lilith sent Jack O’Lantern to attack Danny, the supervillain-turned-demon informing him of an upcoming war and causing Ketch to realize that he needed to save Johnny. He then visited his mother’s grave and had another argument with Sara over the situation, correctly accusing her of having planned for him to become the Spirit of Corruption. Before preparing to go after Johnny, he was attacked by Punisher and Wolverine, who still believed him to be a Ghost Rider, but he easily stopped them. During the so-called “King in Black” event, Danny adopted the name Death Rider and helped convince John to give up rulership of Hell. The two brothers, along with Caretaker Sara, now protect the world from supernatural threats, both great and small.

Danny currently possesses the supernatural ability to transform into the Spirit of Corruption – an armored warrior powerful enough to go against a Spirit of Vengeance. Danny describes the transformation as being taken over by a rotten carapace; a green supernatural substance oozing and surging out from his body. He also carries a giant sword known as the Blight Blade that he pulls from his innards. While consumed by the Spirit of Corruption, Danny still retains his humanity.

The Spirit of Vengeance!

One of my oldest Internet friends is Chris Munn. Chris is, arguably, the biggest Ghost Rider fan and expert on the freakin’ planet. Last year he released a book titled Wheels on Fire: An Unofficial Guide to Marvel Comics’ Ghost Rider from 1972-1983. I immediately bought it, devoured it, and recommended it to others.

Shortly thereafter, Chris approached me with some fantastic news – he was working on a follow-up, one that would deal with my personal favorite of the Ghost Riders: Daniel Ketch. He then asked me if I would be interested in writing the forward to the book. Of course, I jumped at the chance.

You can now purchase Road to Vengeance: An Unofficial Guide to Marvel Comics’ Ghost Rider, From 1990-1993 (Unofficial Guides to Marvel Comics’ Ghost Rider from for a paltry $14.95. Definitely go and support Chris — he’s a fantastic writer and he captures the nuances of the stories and their characters quite well.

Our art today is courtesy of Felipe Smith and you can view more of his works at DeviantArt.