With Ghost #0, Dark Horse is reviving a beloved character from the 90s. But is there any life left in an old wraith? The Major Spoilers review tells all.

Story by: Kelly Sue DeConnick
Art by: Phil Noto
Letters by: Richard Starkings and Comicraft
Cover by: Jenny Frison
Editor: Patrick Thorpe
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Price: $2.99

Previously, in Ghost: This is a reboot of a Dark Horse character from the ‘90s, who I know nothing about. But do note that this issue zero is a collection of the “Resurrection Mary” three-part story published in Dark Horse Presents #s 13-15. So if you’ve read it there, you can skip this.


Ghost #0 centers on disgraced journalist Vaughn Barnes, reduced to working for a moronic investigator of the Ghost Hunters variety. During one of their investigations, the less-than-dynamic duo accidentally stumble onto a real ghost, who then hangs out in Barnes’ apartment before doing a very awkward thing and pulling out a robber’s still-beating heart. As a protagonist, Barnes is likeably downtrodden and his interactions with the ghost are pretty amusing. The story gets spooky quickly, and it wraps up in a surprisingly touching, original manner.

But Barnes’ boss Tommy Byers is such a bro-tastic, annoying dirtbag that I soon cringed whenever a speech bubble emanated from his gaping mouth, as he delivered lines like “Mary, sweetheart! Wherever you are I want to put my tongue in your mouth!” I think DeConnick was shooting for a character lovably, if sometimes annoyingly, irreverent, but she badly miscalculated how godawful Byers comes across. As the character might say, he seriously harshed the mellow of my read, bro.


Phil Noto’s ghost is rendered beautifully and lovingly. But man, did he skimp on the background details to an unforgivable extent. His characters are expressive and the ghost is wonderfully ethereal, but when all the action is taking place in front of flat rectangles in varying shades of tan, it gets quite boring. Hopefully in the regular series, Noto will be able to spend more time fleshing out the world of Ghost. He is capable of much better work.


The central mystery of who and what the ghost is definitely drew me in, as did the closing pages. The sensitivity with which the aftereffects of the death are handled was refreshing and intriguing, proving to be the best showcase for DeConnick’s writing ability in this issue. That one scene did more than anything else to excite me for the regular series. But the gaps in Noto’s art unfortunately reduce this issue’s mark, as does the over-the-top asinine nature of Tommy Byers. There is a lot of potential in these creators, but this issue did not fully develop it. Ghost #0 rates a middling two-and-a-half out of five stars.

Rating: ★★½☆☆

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About Author

George Chimples comes from the far future, where comics are outlawed and only outlaws read comics. In an effort to prevent that horrible dystopia from ever coming into being, he has bravely traveled to the past in an attempt to change the future by ensuring that comics are good. Please do not talk to him about grandfather paradoxes. He likes his comics to be witty, trashy fun with slightly less pulp than a freshly squeezed glass of OJ. George’s favorite comic writers are Warren Ellis and Grant Morrison, while his preferred artists are Guy Davis and Chris Bachalo, He loves superheroes, but also enjoys horror, science fiction, and war comics. You can follow him @TheChimples on Twitter for his ramblings regarding comics, Cleveland sports, and nonsense.


  1. I never read Ghost in the ’90s, but I was keen to pick this one up as the premise looked pretty interesting. The story was fairy good, and certainly has me wanting more, but the art in this issue really was atrocious. I’m hoping that there was just some kind of deadline issue that forced the artist to rush, rather than this really being a style choice.

    The backgrounds and even some of the characters looked just terrible and prevented me from really enjoying the book. As much as I liked the writing, I won’t pick pick this title up beyond the next issue if the art doesn’t improve.

  2. I just wanna know why they keep bringing back Ghost when there are other great characters from the CGW era that they could bring back.

  3. I recently read the Ghost omnibus editions from Dark Horse and while I enjoyed the character I was struck by what a mess the story was, it’s just all over the place from supernatural noir to bad girl superhero and back again. Hopefully this new version will be a bit more consistent, we’ll just have to wait and see.I guess.

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