Johnny Blaze was a motorcycle stuntman in a circus act with father-figure Crash Simpson. When Crash was diagnosed with a terminal cancer, Johnny turned to the occult, making a deal with Satan by offering his soul in exchange for curing Crash's cancer. Like most deals with the devil, Blaze was duped as Crash shortly died after a failed motorcycle stunt. After being unable to claim Blaze's soul due to a woman's pure love for him, Satan bonded Johnny Blaze with the spirit of vengeance, a demon named Zarathos, who would take control of Blaze's body, granting him hell-spawned powers and the visage of a leather-cladded, flaming-skulled monster known as Ghost Rider. Equipped with a mystical bike, Ghost Rider was summoned when evil reared its head, exacting the will of Satan by returning the wicked to a punishment in Hell.
Ghost Rider first appeared in Marvel Spotlight #5, Aug. 1972. He joined the Legion of Monsters in Marvel Premiere #28, Feb. 1976.