MARVEL SPOTLIGHT - #9 "THE SNAKES CRAWL AT NIGHT" (1974 - FN)
Johnny Blaze as the Ghost Rider falls to what appears to be his death down Copperhead Canyon after being driven off by Snake Dance's giant serpent. Snake Dance and the Apache with him hear the loud thud of the impact and assume the deed is done. Meanwhile back at the location of the Rodeo, Casey is irritated at the disappearance of Johnny Blaze when showtime is nearing. Roxanne suggests that Johnny rode out to the canyon and so Casey asks Sam Silvercloud to drive her out there to look for him.
Sam and Roxanne drive out to the canyon but instead of looking for him Sam informs Roxanne that Johnny is dead and binds her. Sam then informs Roxanne that he'll be taking her to Snake Dance. Back in town Casey still frustrated by the disappearance of Blaze is happy to learn that Bart Slade the road manager will ride in Johnny's place.
Looking back at Johnny at the bottom of the canyon, he starts to stir and is awakened to the voice of Satan who informs him that if Johnny dies through any means other than by his own machinations, he will lose any right to Johnny's soul. This means that Satan will stop Johnny from dying by any mortal means until he himself his ready to take his soul. While pondering what he was just told Johnny is rescued by a passing by helicopter who drops him off at the rodeo grounds.
Roxanne and Sam make it to Snake Dance who prepares her for a ritual to be his Serpent God's bride and Sam returns to the rodeo grounds where Bart is about to perform the act with his bum leg. Johnny comes out as the Ghost Rider and puts a stop to Bart's performance stating that it'd be suicide in his condition. Johnny then performs all the stunts with his last one being jumping over half a dozen or so bulls. He doesn't make the jump by mere inches and proceeds to crash into a wall where firefighters attempt to save him only to realize he's perfectly fine. Johnny then spots Sam who is attempting to flee given it was him who stranded Johnny to begin with. He confronts Silvercloud who informs him what is happening to Roxanne and so Johnny rides off to stop the ritual.
When Johnny arrives at the ritual it is too late. Snake Dance had already begun and his snakes had already bitten Roxanne and injected her with their venom. If she were to survive she would be his Serpent God's chosen bride. Late or not Johnny rode in and smashed up the ritual, Snake Dance informed Johnny that he could help Roxanne but Johnny ignored the serpent tongued man and stated that if he returned it wouldn't be for help thus threatening the lives of these Apache that if Roxanne were to die that he'd be back with vengeance. With Roxanne in his care she and Johnny drove off to the hospital leaving Roxanne's fate uncertain...
💥 CONDITION: FN
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