Goblin Nation

By the time Otto Octavius had assumed the role of Spider-Man (via his death-evading mindswap; thus heretofore referred to as SpOck), Norman Osborn’s whereabouts were unknown.  His comatose body somehow managed to escape the Columbia University Medical Center where he was being treated after his literal meltdown with Super-Adaptoid technology.  The former Green Goblin was officially off-radar and that plot development led to an interesting aspect of the Goblin Nation story arc.  There was no definitive evidence confirming that the Green Goblin who was amassing an army during SpOck’s tenure was actually Norman.  However, since Osborn had escaped custody there was always a lingering notion that it could indeed be the original Goblin behind the mask and thus back in operation.  The stage was now set for a superior showdown between SpOck and 'a' Green Goblin…


This new Green Goblin’s debut in the Superior Spider-Man era was featured in Superior Spider-Man #4 and, ironically, his return was in response to the harsh justice the new Spider-Man had been doling out.  In fact, the Goblin’s first move was to start spreading the word that “there’s someone who can keep you all safe from the Spider”.  That someone, of course, was the Green Goblin. 

As a very brief aside, it was around this time that Norman Osborn's infamous Iron Patriot armor was repurposed by the U.S. government in Secret Avengers (V2) #3.  The D.O.D. was able to seize control of the technology after H.A.M.M.E.R. disbanded, which explains why Osborn had such a tough time getting his armor during his second Dark Reign.  The D.O.D. planned to utilize the armor as a drone-style weapon; that was until the villainous A.I.M. scientists got their hands on it...

Meanwhile, the Goblin's recruiting stepped into full gear in Superior Spider-Man #10 as Goblin Cult members began intervening in SpOck’s crime-fighting.  They brought scared criminals down to the Goblin Underground, since being topside was no longer viable for a NYC criminal.  The Goblin Underground was the name of the Green Goblin's secret lair which was located in an abandoned subway tunnel system deep below the streets of New York.  Soon after, the Green Goblin discovered a design-flaw in SpOck’s city-wide surveillance system after he hacked into one of SpOck's street-patroling Spider-bots.   The Green Goblin then rewrote SpOck’s software such that it turned a blind-eye to anything with a Goblin mask (or wearing the Goblin sigil), dubbed the Goblin Protocol (shown in Superior Spider-Man #14).  To capitalize on this new status quo, the Green Goblin sent two of his minions to bomb MJ’s nightclub and SpOck was none-the-wiser.  After his first successful mission against SpOck was executed, the Green Goblin gathered his growing group of constituents and proclaimed himself The Goblin King!

The Goblin King’s army continued to steadily grow in Superior Spider-Man #14 as SpOck inadvertently aided in the Green Goblin's ascension to power.  SpOck marched into Shadowland with his own army of Spider-Soldiers, he then laid siege to the Kingpin’s stronghold Shadowland.  The swift destruction of Shadowland caused numerous Hand ninja’s, who were under Fisk’s employ, into the sewers and thus the Goblin Underground.  They joined the Green Goblin’s campaign against Spider-Man. 

The Green Goblin’s duplicitous nature reared it’s ugly head in Superior Spider-Man #15 as Phil Urich (aka the new Hobgoblin) was robbing Peter to pay Paul…in this case Peter was NYC and Paul was none other than the original Hobgoblin:  Mr. Roderick Kingsley.  Urich’s crime-spree was facilitated by the Goblin Protocol and the Green Goblin would have none of that.  He temporarily shut-down the protocol which enabled SpOck to track down Urich, although Otto was unable to snare him.  SpOck did not give up though and he continued to track the Hobgoblin and was able to uncover his civilian identity as Phil Urich.  SpOck then broadcasted that information city-wide and the manhunt for Phil Urich began. 

In Superior Spider-Man #16, the Green Goblin began to suspect that something was not quite right with Spider-Man due to SpOck’s handling of the Urich situation.  The Goblin commented, “You had [Urich’s] secret all to yourself…and you turned that card over…it’s almost like you don’t know how this game is played anymore.”  He then requested that Menace, that’s right Lily Hollister was back in the employ of the Green Goblin, bring Urich to him.  Menace was able to successfully spring Urich from custody and she brought him to the Goblin Underground.  Urich then joined the Goblin King’s court as he was dubbed the Goblin Knight.  In exchange for this new identity, the Goblin Knight promised his king that he would “give him the Spider”. 

The Green Goblin’s lie in wait strategy began to frustrate the Goblin Knight in Superior Spider-Man #17, however the Goblin quickly put Urich back in his place.  After thumping his Goblin Knight, the Green Goblin reminded him how integral the Goblin Protocol was to his plan.  Their argument then gave the Green Goblin an idea, he decided to get SpOck on the trail of the Hobgoblin by turning off the Goblin Protocol and wreaking havoc city-wide disguised as the Kingsley-Hobgoblin (seen in Superior Spider-Man #18). 

Superior Spider-Man #17 also featured a key development for the Osborn family.  Liz Allan, owner of Allan Chemical and ex-wife of Harry Osborn, arrived at Horizon Labs to brief the Horizon scientists regarding the Allan Chemical acquisition of their facilities.  Horizon was to become part of the Al Chem family.  Liz installed Tiberius Stone as the new site supervisor and introduced her new Chief of Staff, a Mr. Mason Banks.  Later, when SpOck attempted to intimidate Tiberius Stone in the presence of Ms. Allan, an awkward moment occurred with little Normie Osborn.  In a creepy Children-of-the-Corn-esque tone, Normie suggested that “something should be done about [Spider-Man]”.  Soon after, Miguel O’Hara (aka Spider-Man 2099) saved Normie from a falling car (SpOck had lost control of it during an altercation with Miguel) in Superior Spider-Man #18.  The trauma of that event expedited Liz’s takeover of Horizon Labs (and thus SpOck’s technology). 

A landmark event in the fate of Norman Osborn’s company, Oscorp, occurred in Superior Spider-Man #19.  Liz Allan, alongside Normie, Mason Banks and Tiberius Stone, celebrated the merger of Oscorp into Alchemax.  The all-new mega corporation was comprised of “[Her] father’s company, Allan Chemical, merged with her son’s holdings in Oscorp…and the intellectual property of…Horizon Labs”.  It should be noted that Mason Banks hair color went from brown (Superior Spider-Man #17) to gray (Superior Spider-Man #19).  As a brief aside, in Superior Spider-Man #20,  Norman Osborn’s body disappearing from the Columbia University Medical Center was listed amongst a trio of odd occurrences at that medical center all within one week.


In Superior Spider-Man #21, Carlie Cooper’s top-notch detective work landed her in a heap of trouble as she uncovered the Superior Spider-Man’s secret, that he was in fact Dr. Otto Octavius operating inside Peter Parker’s body.  Carlie traveled to the prison grave where Doc Ock/Peter Parker was buried and soon discovered that the grave is empty.  Before she could get her bearings straight, she was abducted by Menace and soon in the presence of the Green Goblin.  Menace handed Carlie and her journal, which contained her notes on the SpOck/Spider-Man case, over to her Goblin King.  The Green Goblin already had his suspicions about Spider-Man and during a conversation with Menace in Superior Spider-Man Annual #1, Lily informed the Green Goblin that this new Spider-Man was “not playing by the same rules.  Total wild card.”  The Goblin was expecting a surprise.


Things went from bad to worse for Carlie in Superior Spider-Man #23 as the Green Goblin’s interrogation went into full swing.  The Goblin was convinced that there was information missing from Carlie’s journal, it was clear that the she knew that Otto Octavius’ mind was inside Spider-Man’s body…but she never wrote down who’s face was under the mask.  It may not be that simple though, one could argue that Carlie never wrote down the conclusion that she had just made (that Otto was in Peter's body), but recall the principles of the Brand New Day mindwipe.  People could only realize that Peter Parker was Spider-Man if (and only if) he unmasked in front of them.  Their brains would scramble any evidence (historical or otherwise) that would allow them to make that connection, so it very well could have been written down in Carlie's journal but the mindwipe would have prevented the Green Goblin from connecting the dots.  The details of what was going on at this point were never explicitly stated, so both options are open.   


Regardless, lacking this prized information drove the Goblin King crazy and Menace offered to use a little enhanced interrogation in order to garner that information.  Meanwhile, the Green Goblin took off to continue his war against the Kingsley-Hobgoblin.  Over at Alchemax headquarters, Liz Allan, Mason Banks and NYC mayor J. Jonah Jameson discussed a new research project of personal interest to the mayor.  Jameson handed over the collective research from the Spider-Slayer creating family, the Smythes, to Liz in order for Alchemax to make enhancements on Jameson’s Anti-Spider-Patrol armor.  Liz was reluctant at first to accept the contract, because the Spider-Slayers had killed Jonah’s wife, but she eventually accepted and placed Tiberius Stone and Miguel O’Hara on the task.

The Green Goblin continued his attack on Kingsley in Superior Spider-Man #24 as he intercepted money that was intended for the original Hobgoblin.  The Goblin’s message to those in Kingsley’s employ was simple, join the Goblin King or get out of the way.  After he disposed Kingsley’s cash (it was cumbersome and unimportant), he returned to his Goblin Underground to refocus his efforts on extracting information from Carlie.  Menace’s interrogation was fruitless, which caused the Green Goblin to ratchet up the intensity.  He then proceeded to spray Carlie Cooper with the Green Goblin Formula, creating another entry on the long list of Goblins.  The Green Goblin hoped this would cause Carlie to spill her secrets.

The product of Carlie’s exposure to the Goblin Formula was featured in Superior Spider-Man #25 as the newly minted Monster made her first appearance in the Spiderverse (she inadvertently gave herself that moniker).  The Green Goblin did not waste a moment to press the newest addition to his Goblin Family as to the identity of Spider-Man.  But Monster did not budge, instead she asked who was behind the Green Goblin’s mask.  The Goblin’s response…Norman Osborn!  But Monster did not simply accept his answer, rather, she wanted him to unmask.  The Goblin refused and stated “I’d be a fool to unmask for someone who hasn’t proved she’s traded in her NYPD badge for a spot on Team Goblin.”  Thus, a coming out party for Monster was arranged to test her loyalties…a test which she passed with flying colors as Lily and Carlie dismantled a trio of Kingley operatives.  Meanwhile, the Goblin Knight sent word over to Kingsley to surrender to the Green Goblin, obviously Kingsley does not submit but he did contact the Goblin.  Kingsley’s first comment, “Osborn?  Is that you?”

Thus began the next installment of the War of the Goblins!

Their war was in full-swing in Superior Spider-Man #26 and the venue was an abandoned Oscorp factory in Rosebank, Staten Island.  Suddenly the Green Goblin called for a truce to stop the bloodshed.  The Goblin’s logic was simple, fighting amongst themselves would only dwindle their forces and cause them to lose leverage against SpOck’s army.  However, just as the tempers settled, the Green Goblin re-stoked the fire causing he and the Hobgoblin to be back at each other’s throats.  They traded insults back and forth,  Kingsley even took a shot at Harry Osborn, which caught the Goblin off-guard and allowed the Hobgoblin to land a pumpkin bomb on his lap.  The Green Goblin was unphased though and he informed the Hobgoblin that “nothing can keep him down.”  He then exposed his infamous chest scar as a testimony that he was indeed the one true Green Goblin, Norman Osborn.

The Hobgoblin was now shook and the Green Goblin went on the attack.  Promptly snapping the neck of the Hobgoblin to the ringing cheers of “Osborn!” and “Long Live the King!”  The Goblin then flew off after he assimilated Kingsley’s men, but, of course, there was a catch…the Green Goblin did not kill Kingsley, there was an imposter behind the mask.  The Goblin Knight was aware of this fact, however he did not report that information over to the Goblin King.  Kingsley was actually safe in Paris, and he had been using the Winkler Process to brainwash unsuspecting victims to parade around as his Hobgoblin surrogate.

The Green Goblin was fighting a war on multiple fronts and he appeared to be winning everywhere.  In Superior Spider-Man Team Up #9, the Goblin used a mole to infiltrate Spider-Island and pit SpOck against his allies Daredevil and The Punisher.  Once the mole was exposed and prepared to suicide bomb Spider-Island,  the Goblin decided to not give the order to pull the trigger.  

The Green Goblin’s rationale was simple, he knew Daredevil was there and that he would be able to recognize the Green Goblin’s voice…and the Goblin was not ready to reveal himself just yet.  It didn’t matter to the Green Goblin though because he had more than one mole, in fact, he had an army of moles ready to take down SpOck. 

In Superior Spider-Man Team Up #10, SpOck, Daredevil and Punisher take down the Goblin’s infiltrators, at the expense of SpOck destroying his Spider-Island facility by flooding it.  As an interesting side note, the Punisher used an upgraded version of a Goblin Glider fitted with a skull on the front.  Recall that the Punisher began stealing Goblin tech back during Osborn’s Dark Reign, presumably he continued raiding Goblin Hideouts for more useful weaponry.  After the dust settled from the Goblin’s attack on Spider-Island, SpOck had a frightening realization as he uncovered who he was up against.  His immediate suspicion was that there was only one person who could “get into a man’s mind like this” and that suspicion caused him to search the dead infiltrator’s body.  The Goblin mole disguised as a Spider-Patrol member sported a tattoo of the Green Goblin insignia on his neck and suddenly SpOck realized that the Osborn had returned! 

The Goblin Nation story arc began in Superior Spider-Man #27 and it contradicted (slightly) the information presented at the conclusion of Superior Spider-Man Team Up #10.  SpOck appeared to still be unaware of the connection between the Green Goblin and the crime in NYC.  In fact, he commented that there was no crime registering on his surveillence; police reports were coming in garbled, the Daily Bugle newsfeed was crashing and that he had no idea why the city was burning below him.  Eventually an entire grid of his city-wide sweep shut down near the Brooklyn Bridge and suddenly its there that it hits him…Osborn!  Of course it would have been impossible for him not to make that realization given that there were giant Green Goblin faces spray-painted onto the bridge itself.

Soon after, SpOck realized the technical glitch that the Green Goblin was exploiting and he called in Uatu Jackson to help remedy the situation.  Meanwhile, J. Jonah Jameson, who was convinced that the Green Goblin and Spider-Man were working together, decided to hasten the process of getting his Spider-Slayers out on the streets of NYC to combat crime.  Liz Allan warned that the slayers were not quite ready, JJJ pressed on.  SpOck was able to locate the source of the transmission that was running the Goblin Protocol and it led him to underground tunnels that were meant for a scrapped subway line…but he was now officially in the Goblin Underground.

Upon arrival, SpOck was greeted by none-other than the Green Goblin himself…and his new army of D-List villains.  This army was acquired after Osborn's hostile takeover of Kingsley's resources.  Recall that Kingsley had been selling villain-tech to the highest bidder, these villains are a direct result of that effort.  For completeness sake, according to Marvel Wikia, the roster of villains featured in the picture to the right are: 8-Ball, Mauler, Gibbon, Answer, Tumbler, Ringer, Hitman, Unicorn, Melter and Killer Shrike.

The two sat down and the Goblin handed SpOck Carlie’s journal and as he let the cat of the bag by calling him out…“Otto?”  

After tossing SpOck a few compliments, the Green Goblin offered over a deal…a partnership, in which Otto would occupy the #2 postion.  This infuriated SpOck and he vowed to rid the city of the Green Goblin.  This refusal caused the Goblin to lash out and fire at SpOck, to no effect.  SpOck had infiltrated the Goblin Underground as a hologram, he was safely operating out of Spider-Island.  The Goblin did not waste anytime to unleash his attack on Spider-Island, he commanded Monster, Menace and the Goblin Knight to destroy SpOck’s stronghold.

The destruction of Spider-Island continued in Superior Spider-Man #28 as a befuddled SpOck thought he was safe from the Goblin since he cracked the Goblin Protocol.  The Green Goblin then appeared on SpOck’s computers, taunting and intimidating him.  SpOck retreated from Spider-Island and soon the Green Goblin and his minions met on the rubble that once was SpOck’s stronghold.  After being informed that Spider-Man had escaped, the Goblin ordered his Goblin roundtable to go find their “targets” (these “targets” are all people close to Peter Parker/Spider-Man).  Meanwhile, at Alchemax Tower in Midtown Manhattan, Jameson addressed the public and unveiled his new army of Goblin Slayers.  Back over at Parker Industries, Monster (aka Carlie Cooper) attacked her target, Peter Parker.   After they trade a few blows (one which resulted in the destruction of the listening device the Green Goblin had on Monster), Carlie claimed to need Peter’s (or Otto’s) help to cure her from her grotesque state.  The Green Goblin’s target acquisition continued and at the conclusion of Superior Spider-Man #28 when Lily Hollister nabbed Anna Maria Marconi, SpOck’s girlfriend.

Complete mayhem had broke loose at the onset of Superior Spider-Man #29, news reports were urging people to stay indoors as an ‘seemingly endless Goblin Army’ rampaged the streets.  The Green Goblin enjoyed the newsfeed from the Goblin Underground, although he was disappointed by the reported ‘death’ of Peter Parker as he stated “The real tragedy is such a boring death for Spider-Man’s best friend.”  This Green Goblin did not know Spidey’s civilian identity and for the record that would not eliminate Norman Osborn as a suspect since he was  unaware that Peter Parker was Spider-Man (due to Brand New Day mindwipe).   Meanwhile, Liz Allan and Tiberius Stone were alongside Mayor Jameson encouraging him to use his Goblin Slayers to help in the rescue efforts, although they informed him that the slayers are not combat ready.  Back over at Parker Industries, SpOck and Sajani Jaffrey worked to cure Carlie Cooper of her Goblinized Monster persona.  SpOck had faked the death of Peter Parker to buy himself some time.  His effort to cure Carlie were quickly halted as the Green Goblin soon hacked into his headset and began taunting him.  The Goblin told SpOck to put on his Spidey costume (especially the googles) because he had “something very special to show [him].” 

Spock quickly complied to the Goblin’s request and left Sajani to perform the difficult task of undoing the Goblin Formula’s effects on Carlie (for clarity sake, it was later stated that the ‘cure’ was developed by both Otto and Sajani).  Once clear of Parker Industries, SpOck as the Green Goblin explained his newly found disdain for Otto.  Since SpOck had ‘successully’ killed Spider-Man and refused an alliance with the Green Goblin, the Goblin was left with no choice but to erase Otto’s existence.  The Goblin then proceeded to feed a series of images into SpOck’s goggles showing the destruction of the house Otto’s grew up in, the Atomic Research Center where he became Doc Ock, the Boneyard (where many of Otto’s inventions are held), and the Mocha Cola plant where he saved a group of peole as the Superior Spider-Man (one of his few heroic deeds). 




Ock’s history literally went up in flames.  The Goblin was so happy with the execution on his plan that he teared up,  after taunting SpOck a bit more he instructed Otto to go to Empire State University.  Upon his arrival at ESU, SpOck was greeted by the Green Goblin and his latest hostage…Don Lamaze.

The Green Goblin was disappointed by the SpOck’s lack of an emotional response, so he bailed and sought out a more viable target for their grand finale.  As SpOck lunged at the Green Goblin with his Spider-tentacles, the Goblin quickly neutralized the attack by causing SpOck to lose control his robotic-tentacles.  As the tentacles were about to decapitate SpOck, Don Lamaze made a self-sacrificing move and protected SpOck…impaling himself in the process.  SpOck was touched by Lamaze’s altruism and left ESU in a rage to find the Goblin.  However, SpOck did not get very far because he was greeted by Jameson’s Goblin-Slayers, equipped with a video monitor featuring the grinning maw of Jameson himself.  Jameson’s Goblin-Slayers had the drop on SpOck, but luckily Spider-Man 2099 was there and he was able to shut down the slayers (because he had helped to build them).  That fortune did not last very long though as the slayers quickly rebooted, however this time it was not Jonah behind the wheel…none other than the infamous Norman Osborn appeared on the monitor in front of Miguel and SpOck…

The momentum from the Goblin’s plan was reaching a crescendo, but a brief respite from that intense action was featured in Superior Spider-Man Annual #2.  Ben Urich,  uncle to the Goblin Knight Phil Urich and consistent thorn in Norman Osborn’s side, decided to take some action now that Goblin Nation was sweeping the city.  In an attempt to save his seemingly lost nephew, Ben Urich went to Parker Industries to seek out the allegedly ‘dead’ Peter Parker.  Working on the hunch that Ms. Jaffrey was lying to the public, Urich brought her all of his notes on the Goblin Formula (including a nearly complete chemical analysis of the formula itself).  He encouraged her to pass those notes on to Parker with the hope that Peter’s genius could fill in the gaps and develop a cure.  Sajani then took Urich to see Monster (aka Carlie Cooper) and she explained that she was reluctant to give the ‘cure’ she had developed to Carlie because she wanted to run more tests and was worried it could kill her.  Urich then took the ‘cure’ with the goal of testing it out on his nephew. 

After setting a trap to bait his nephew, Urich failed to dose him with the cure.  Instead, things got out of hand quickly as a group of Goblin Goons show up with Joe Robertson as a hostage (he had been tracking Ben).  Luckily for Ben,  he was able to contact SpOck who quickly thwarted the Goblin Knight’s attack.  Robertson had sustained a bad injury in the ruckus, so SpOck rushed him to the hospital, which enabled the Phil’s escape.  Urich witnessed a change in his nephew and realized that the Goblin Knight was beyond redemption.  Meanwhile at Parker Industries, Carlie’s Monster persona has a flare up and Sajani was forced to dose her with the cure.  It appeared to work as Carlie reverted to her normal self…of course, only time will tell if the cure would hold.

As addendum to this story, Norah Winters was featured on a TV show advertising her new book, “Goblin in my Bed” that shared insight into her relationship with Phil and her general knowledge of the Goblins she’s known.  She made the comment that “the Goblin Formula drives people insane, but they can still act sane.  Convincingly.”

Superior Spider-Man #30 returned to the high-paced momentum of the Goblin’s war on SpOck and NYC.  With the Goblin in control of Jameson’s Goblin-Slayers, SpOck and Spider-Man 2099 struggled to fend of their attack.  The Green Goblin drove his metaphorical knife a bit deeper into SpOck’s heart as he showed his latest hostage, Anna Maria!  SpOck bailed on Miguel in order to save Anna, Spider-Man 2099 was left by his lonesome to defeat the Goblin-Slayers.  Meanwhile over at City Hall, J. Jonah Jameson was taking heat from the press for his Goblin-Slayer debacle, Liz Allan did not defend Jonah as she claimed that she had warned him the slayers were not combat ready.  Interestingly, Liz is shown hiding a Green Goblin mask that was lying on the floor of her office…a clear indication that she was in cahoots with the Goblin.

As SpOck struggled to locate the Goblin and thus Anna Maria, he was intercepted by Menace who intentionally led Otto to the Goblin’s hostage.  SpOck arrived just in time to see the Green Goblin driving a subway car toward a bound hostage fixed to the rails.  However, it was not Anna Maria, rather Amy Chen.  SpOck hesitated to intervene because he was worried that if he died, no one would be around to save Anna.  Fortunately for Amy Chen, the true Peter Parker’s psyche emerged from obscurity and forced SpOck’s hand to intervene.  SpOck’s failure to act convinced the former villain that he was not fit to be Spider-Man, let alone a superior Spider-Man.  He then purged his memories from Peter Parker’s mind/body and allowed the one true Spider-Man to emerge back into his body.  The Amazing Spider-Man had returned!

The Goblin Nation story arc concluded in Superior Spider-Man #31, as the Green Goblin awoke his latest hostage, Anna Maria, atop the Brooklyn Bridge.  The bridge was lined with pumpkin bombs and the Green Goblin stood like a proud king over his Goblin Nation as NYC burned below him.  Meanwhile, Peter Parker was still reeling from his return to his body, but he quickly got his bearings and went out to fix everything that Otto had destroyed.  His first stop was Sajani and Carlie, they briefed him on the highlights of what he had missed, then handed him a couple of doses of the Goblin Formula cure.  He then rejoined Miguel O’Hara, apologized for Otto’s actions and the duo went off to stop the Green Goblin.  They triangulate the signal commanding the Goblin-Slayers back to the Oscorp building (now called the Alchemax building). 

Spidey and Spidey 2099 are first greeted by Menace, who they quickly defeat and dose with a Goblin Formula cure.  Menace reverted back to Lily as the pair of Spider-Men entered Alchemax.  The duo are drawn into an office where they hear some creepy laughter, it turned out to be laughter coming from Normie Osborn, who was uttering...

Liz Allan soon entered the room and informed Peter and Miguel that they must quickly leave the Alchemax building because the Green Goblin had wired it to explode.  Miguel ushered Liz, Lily, Tiberius and Normie safely out of the Alchemax building, and Peter went out after the Green Goblin.  When Peter reached the Green Goblin, the villain began spouting taunts meant for Otto…but a witty quip from Peter caught the Goblin off-guard as he quickly realized Otto was no longer driving the bus…

This change in status quo forced the Goblin to bail, but Peter would not let him.  He swiftly intercepted one of the Goblin razor bats and tossed toward Anna Maria so she could use it to free herself from the ropes which bound her.  Peter then set his sights on taking down the Green Goblin.  As the two traded blows and insults atop the Goblin Glider, Spidey attempted to dose the Goblin with the Goblin Formula cure.  However, the Goblin managed to knock the vial from Spidey’s hands, which left the Goblin’s mask vulnerable.  Spidey took the opportunity to use his ‘sticky fingers’ to remove the Goblin’s mask and reveal the villains true face…Alchemax Executive Mason Banks!!

Of course, things are never what they seem and Mason shared a little secret with Spider-Man…there was no Mason Banks, it was Norman Osborn all along!  He had his face changed and in his words, “I am Norman Osborn.  But my face was too well known…too compromised.  So I changed it.  Today I’m Alchemax Executive Mason Banks.  Tomorrow I’ll be someone else.  Whoever it takes to get the job done!”  The Goblin’s motivations and thought process are featured in the panels below…

With the Green Goblin’s mask off, the Goblin Protocol was compromised, this enabled the mini-Spiderbots to attack Osborn and dose him with the Goblin Formula cure.  Spidey rushed back to save the Anna Maria as the bombs exploded atop the Alchemax building.  But the web-slinger was not through saving falling victims, with the Goblin Formula purged from Norman’s body he was unable to stay on his Goblin Glider.  

To add a quick nitpick, various Goblins (for instance Bart Hamilton aka Green Goblin III) were able to ride the Goblin Glider without use/help from the Goblin Formula.  So Norman should have been able to remain on the glider despite his de-Goblinization.  

Getting back to the story, Peter quickly intervened and caught the falling Goblin and ushered him over the authorities.  As per usual, Norman did not stay in custody long, but this time he was freed but his former daughter-in-law as she triggered Tiberius Stone’s “Spider-Man neutralizing device”, which caused Peter to let go of Norman momentarily.  Disappointed by Liz’s actions, Spidey noted that he’s going to have to keep a close eye on her and her son.

Norman escaped back into the Goblin Underground where he felt a sense of being reborn.  Since the Goblin Formula no longer coursed through his veins, he had renewed sense of clarity…of sanity.  He questioned his whole Goblin Kingdom, “what was I thinking?” he lamented.  He planned to use that sanity to attack Spider-Man, the panels below show his new way of thinking.

Peter Parker appeared to save the day and restore a sense of normalcy to the status quo, a brand-new-day of sorts is in store for Norman Osborn since he was now free of the Goblin Formula.  Only time will tell when he’ll strike again…


Chapter 16            Next Section




The Green Goblin arrives on the scene and declares his war agains the Superior Spider-Man, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #4

The Iron Patriot armor returns; this time to be used as a drone like weapon, as seen in Secret Avengers (V2) #3

Green Goblin Cult members begin recruiting criminals to join them in the Goblin Underground, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #10

The Goblin Protocol, once in affect, made SpOck's Spider-bots blind to anything with a Goblin mask or sigil, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #14

The Green Goblin decides to temporarily shut down the Goblin Protocol in order to allow SpOck to catch Phil Urich as the Hobgoblin, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #15

Liz Allan, along with her staff, inform the Horizon scientists of the pending merger, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #17

An awkward exchange between Normie and SpOck, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #17

Liz Allan,  Normie, Mason Banks, and Tiberius Stone celebrate the completion of the merger that saw Oscorp converted into Alchemax, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #19

Menace hands Carlie and her journal over to the Green Goblin, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #21

The Green Goblin impersonates the Hobgoblin in order to get SpOck after Kingsley, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #24

The Green Goblin exposes Carlie Cooper to the Green Goblin Formula creating Monster, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #24

Carlie, as Monster, inquires about the Goblin's identity...the Goblin claims to be Norman Osborn, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #25

The Hobgoblin insults Harry Osborn, making the Green Goblin vulnerable for pumpkin bomb attack, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #26

The Green Goblin snaps the Hobgoblin's neck with cheers of "Osborn!" in the background, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #26

Kingsley, from safe in Paris, creates Hobgoblin's with infamous Winkler Process, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #26

SpOck uncovers a Green Goblin tatoo on the neck of a mole who infiltrated Spider-Island, as seen in Superior Spider-Man Team Up #10

SpOck finds the Goblin Underground where the Green Goblin and his army await, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #27

The Green Goblin confronts (and compliments) Otto Octavius, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #27

The Green Goblin's laser blast is ineffective agains the holographic SpOck, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #27

JJJ debut's his Goblin Slayers to the public, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #28

Monster, aka Carlie Cooper, asks for Otto/Peter's help to cure her condition, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #28

Don Lamaze saves SpOck by diving in front of his malfunctioning tentacles, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #29

Norah Winters goes on TV and discusses her book about Phil Urich, as seen in Superior Spider-Man Annual #2

Norman Osborn's face is displayed on the monitor of the Goblin Slayers, as does the Green Goblin and Menace, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #30

The Green Goblin steers a subway car toward the bound Amy Chen, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #30

Spidey (now Peter Parker) doses Menace with the Goblin Formula cure, reverting her back to Lily, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #31

The Green Goblin taunts Otto, unaware that it is Peter Parker under the mask, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #31

Spidey removes the Green Goblin's mask to reveal...Mason Banks!  Norman Osborn's face-lifted alter ego, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #31

Spidey saves the depowered and falling Norman Osborn (the loss of Goblin-strength made it difficult for him to stay on his Goblin Glider, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #31

Liz triggers the Spider-Sense Jammer to distract Spidey and allow Norman Osborn to escape, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #31

Spidey realizes something is not quite right with Liz and Normie and vows to keep an eye on them, as seen in Superior Spider-Man #31