The Hobgoblin storyline comes to an end here, but as is usual when it comes to Dan Slott’s Spider-Man, it’s not really over, and really, this is all just a prelude to the upcoming clash between Spidey and the Green Goblin.
The way this story actually wraps up was surprisingly simple, last issue ended with Spider-Man ‘outing’ Phil Urich as the Hobgoblin, and whilst there is initially some denial from Phil, he does eventually admit it, and Spider-Man brings him in with fairly little fuss. I suppose this efficiency shouldn’t really come as a surprise, we are seeing the ‘superior’ Spider-Man after all, and this issue once again really showed how different this Spidey is to the original version. He’s thinking outside the box, and it’s effective. Of course, there are ethical complications to what Spidey did, and Joe Robertson may have a point when he says that outing Phil only made things worse.
What’s more interesting is what comes after Phil is captured. It looks like SpOck is planning to execute him, but it’s only a timely phone-call from Captain America, reminding him he’s on Avengers-probation that stops Spider-Man from once again killing his enemy. I like this running plotline of the Avengers being suspicious of Spider-Man, and it’s worth noting that Spider-Man wasn’t in Infinity #1, I’m guessing he’s going to be kicked out fairly sharpish.
In the end, Phil Urich is rescued from prison by none other than Menace, who, to be honest, I had actually forgotten about, but it makes sense that she would be involved in whatever it is ‘The Goblin King’ has going on. Phil is accepted into Gobby’s fold, and takes a new name, Goblin Knight, which is pretty cool I suppose. Once again, the identity of the Green Goblin is left ambiguous, if it’s not Norman Osborn, then who the hell is it?
I’m really digging this book right now, especially because there’s so much going on, so many subplots and little ideas crammed into each issue. Added into the mix here was The Wraith and Carlie Cooper trying to find out the truth about Spidey, and that took a very interesting turn here, they interrogate one of the Spider-Henchmen and find out that he’s clean, he’s not ex-Hydra or anything like that, which surprised me. I love the fact that Carlie is going to ‘follow the money’, could SpOck be undone not by the Green Goblin or the Avengers, but by his banking? I would find that hilarious.
What else? Hmmm… Humberto Ramos’ artwork was excellent as usual, I’m very interested in seeing what’s next for Norah Winters, and I loved seeing mention of The Loners again, that was a fun mini-series. That’s the good kind of continuity nod, stuff like that, and when Slott points out the ridiculous number of Daily Bugle staffers who are villains, that was fun. Basically, this was another great issue of a great series, and next issue, Spider-Man 2099 is getting involved, I am hyped.