Take one psychopathic, Roman Colosseum-fixated, former costumer designer and one deluded former Satanic catspaw stuntman-for-hire and throw the two together, and you have the unfolding tableau on the main Delazny Studios soundstage.
The surefire Blaze "spook act" does its job unnerving the Gladiator, who makes a most uncustomary retreat from an intimidating Ghost Rider.
Danger passed, and Johnny Blaze can dissolve the flaming skull once more. The apparent randomness of the Gladiator's attack doesn't lie well with Johnny and he senses a link with the recent hiring of ex-convict Leopold Stryke (aka the Eel), as Marine Life advisor for the Stunt-Master's TV show.
Upon visiting Stryke at his dowdy dwellings, Blaze is met with the insouciance of a ne'er-do-well knave still unrepentant. Some guys just never learn.
Back on the street across from Stryke's dilapidated digs, Blaze becomes Ghost Rider; signalling impending danger. Right on cue, comes Stryke in full costume, out the window a-slithering down the drain pipe.
As stealthily as the spirit cyclist follows, the wily Eel demonstrates just how slippery an opponent he is. When Blaze recovers from the battery, the Eel lies slain. The slash marks across Eel's corpse indict the author of his demise.
Emboldened by the kill, a braver Gladiator now stands his ground against a foe he now believes to be very mortal, rather than the supernatural spectre he feared prior. But brute strength and mechanized weaponry are still not enough.
Last appearance of Leopold Stryke as the Eel.