Cosmic Ghost Rider Kills the Guardians of the Galaxy (Again and Again and...)

WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Cosmic Ghost Rider #3, by Donny Cates, Dylan Burnett and Antonio Fabela, on sale now!

Is there a limit to the killing prowess of Frank Castle? Even after dying, returning as the Spirit of Vengeance, being imbued with cosmic powers (and then dying again, of course), the Punisher kept his hardened, murderous edge, and it was an edge he used to tear through droves of enemies. When those enemies were no longer around, he had plenty of time (millennia) to reflect... and in doing so he does the most reasonable thing imaginable and kind of loses his mind, or at the very least becomes somehow even more unhinged than usual.

Donny Cates and Dylan Burnett's madcap miniseries Cosmic Ghost Rider has embraced Frank's lunacy by letting it run wild. The creators have a special section roped off for them in the comic book playground, and as long as whatever the hell sort of nightmare monstrosity they have turned the jungle gym into doesn't invade the swing sets right away, Marvel seems content to leave the weird kids to their own devices. Seriously, this whole exercise in cosmic craziness is still baffling (in the best kind of way). The fact they get away with half the crap they pull in the Earth-616 continuity is nothing short of mind-boggling.

RELATED: Cosmic Ghost Rider Has Created The Most Dangerous Version of Thanos, Ever

One of the more interesting facets of the miniseries is how it feels as if it is lovingly poking fun at the Marvel Universe in a very broad, yet meta manner. Everything from how Cates has diligently handled Thanos with a strange sense of humanity (and madness) across multiple titles to the myriad fellow superhero personalities the Punisher has adopted over the years, feeds into Cosmic Ghost Rider's structured and how the series is constantly paying homage or poking fun.

Cosmic Ghost Rider #3 really drives that notion home by killing off a team of beloved superheroes, the Guardians of the Galaxy. Now, we are well aware that comic book scripts are written eons before they are turned into the finished product, but how quickly a team of Guardians led by Cable is dispatched and gets replaced by a whole new team (who meet the same fate) echoes a few things happening in the larger world. The most obvious would be the parallel to how X-Force is shredded to pieces (sometimes literally) in Deadpool 2.

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