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Grey Gargoyle

Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 10,987
In Reply To
Reverend Meteor

Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 11,423
Subj: Re: Satan confusion. When was he Mephisto, Marduk or Lucifer?
Posted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 at 04:37:19 am EST (Viewed 143 times)
Reply Subj: Re: Satan confusion. When was he Mephisto, Marduk or Lucifer?
Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2018 at 03:30:57 pm EST (Viewed 139 times)

    For the most part I'm fine with not every version of Satan being the same guy.

    But I feel like when Gary Friedrich used them in Marvel Spotlight, Ghost Rider and Son of Satan they were clearly intended to be the same guy and a retcon should not exist that splits them into different characters as that does not seem to be the author's intent (like I said the Hellstorm Marvel Spotlight issue crossed over with the Ghost Rider issues where Satan was involved in the story).

    The demon that claimed to be Hellstorm's father should absolutely be the same demon that turned Johnny Blaze into Ghost Rider. That was clearly what Gary Friedrich was going for.

The way I see it, Mephisto was specifically created by Stan Lee to be the antagonist of Silver Surfer.

From the start, he was a supernatural creature with occult powers but I don't think that Stan Lee intended Mephisto to be Satan.

He is the Marvel version of the Mephistopheles of Faust legend.
He is called Mephisto, not Mephistopheles, because Stan Lee likes the names ending in o and because, this way, Marvel can own the character's name. Even in the Faust legend, Méphistophélès isn't supposed to be "the" Satan.

Also, I've noticed that Mephisto has powers even on Zenn-La, suggesting that he is not specifically linked to Earth's religions.

On the contrary, the Satan character of the Bronze Age was supposed to be "the" Satan of Abrahamic religions. He was inspired by the wave of 1970s horror movies involving satanic characters.

Son of Satan is a superheroic version of Damien (the Omen).

Ghost Rider is a cross between different kinds of B movies (biker films & demonic possession films).

So, I'd say that "this" Satan was a new character and not Mephisto.

I don't think that Satan was supposed to be Satannich, either.

Satannish the Supreme was a Dr. Strange character created by Roy Thomas and he had his own background & history (I won't even comment the retcon by Steve Englehart that Satannish would be an undercover agent of Dormammu).

In Defenders issues, when Dr. Strange later fought against Satan (= the father of Daimon), he didn't recognize it as Satannish.

Satan's real name being Marduk Kurios is an idea from the Hellstorm series. Still, in these series, Satan is at the same time the devil from Abrahamic religions. At least, it makes the Satan of the 1970s stories a different character from Mephisto & Satannish.

I agree with you that, during the 1970s, "the Satan" of Ghost Rider was supposed to be the same character than "the Satan" of Son of Satan.

Unfortunately, in the 1980s, Mephisto was retconned as being the deus ex machina behind the fate of Ghost Riders. In these stories (mostly written by JM Dematteis), Ghost Rider is revealed to be Zarathos and it was Mephisto who was responsible of putting the spirit of Zarathos in the body of Johnny Blaze. Before that, Ghost Rider was Johnny Blaze and not a separate entity.

It is important to precise that in the same story, Nightmare was the one who explained to Johnny Blaze the origin of Zarathos and he isn't what you might call a reliable witness.

The 1990s added other layers of contradictory facts to the background of the Ghost Rider (and, thus, Satan & Mephisto being responsible of the fate of Ghost Rider ...). Howard Mackie (who else ?) invented the concept of the "Spirits of Vengeance" being different entities than classic demons and implied that Johnny Blaze was a member of a family linked to the Spirits of Vengeance for centuries.

It also means that Satan was not totally responsible for Johnny Blaze turning into a Ghost Rider and that the potential was there all along.

Since all these stories don't make any sense and are contradictory between themselves, even in 2018, we don't know the truth about the past of Daimon Hellstrom & Ghost Rider.

I think that Marduk Kurios was supposed to be the real name of the Satan of the 1970s stories.

Unfortunately, in recent times, Mephisto has appeared much more often than Marduk Kurios and, so, he has become the most obvious suspect of being "the Satan" in Marvel's occult stories.

Mephisto & Marduk Kurios might be different demons ... or not.

The "avatar" theory has the advantage of combining the different possibilities into one.

In Indian religions, avatars are autonomous entities and, yet, at the same time, belong to another abstract entity (for example, Krishna/Vishnu).

It isn't impossible that "Satan" is the conscious manifestation of the collective power of the Hell-Lords. In Thanos stories, it was said that the power of the different Hell-Lords comes from one source which could be the "true original Satan".

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