It is a rare event, but Superior Spider-Man #26 showcases the first in-costume encounter of the original Green Goblin (the jury is out, but it's looking obvious to everyone the man behind the mask isn't Norman Osborn, the original Green Goblin) and Hobgoblin. Dan Slott tweeted the image:
Here's a larger version of the picture:
So the question is, what's with the censored caption page? Is Green Goblin dealing a death blow to the Hobgoblin? Is the Hobgoblin going to unmask Greenie? Or will a new Goblin make her presence felt during the fight?
Whatever the case, there's been a long standing grudge match between the two Goblin foes of Spider-Man. The war began in Amazing Spider-Man #238 when Roderick Kingsley warped the gear, costume, and toys of the Green Goblins and became the Hobgobin. The Green Goblins and the Hobgoblins have been at war before, starting in Amazing Spider-Man #261 when Harry Osborn took some goblin gear and got annihilated by the original Hobgoblin. Though the first true in-costume Green Goblin/Hobgoblin battle took place with the non-powered, but fully suited Harry Osborn taking on the Hobgoblin III (Jason Macendale) with an assist from Spider-Man in landing a victory. Then, in Green Goblin #6, Macendale took on the title character Green Goblin IV (who was Phil Urich, now also a former Hobgoblin and begruding lackey for the current Green Goblin) with the later foiling the former's attempt to rob his ex-wife (with a timely assist from the Thing).
Then in Spectacular Spider-Man #259-261, the original Green Goblin (Norman Osborn) and Hobgoblin (Roderick Kingsley) finally met. Not surprisingly, it took only two issues before the two came to blows with Spider-Man stuck in the middle. Even in multi-media, the feud between Goblins took center stage in an episode of the early 90s Spider-Man cartoon:
So, who will stand victorious in Superior Spider-Man #26? Well, the winner seems pretty obvious given the next issue kicks off the four-part arc "Goblin Nation", featuring the Green Goblin as the primary antagonist. This reporter can hope just a tiny bit that the Hobgoblin steals the victory, but leaves town to let the remaining competition destroy each other. Still, place your bets people! WE GOT A GOBLIN WAR on January 29, 2014!!!
[Editor's Note: Zechs, ladies and gentlemen. The man loves goblins.]