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Spider-Man: Listen, you new Goblin-themed villain... I don't know if you know your Goblin-themed history... but your outfit is in really bad taste.
Hobgoblin V: Someone get him off me!
Spider-Man: And oh, sweet God, I hope there's not an Osborn under that mask, I really can't handle any more Osborns.
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The Goblin family, formerly united as the Goblin Nation (minus the Hobgoblin, who remains a stubborn outlier), is one of the most famous groups of supervillains in comic book history and a constant thorn in Spider-Man's side. Established by Norman Osborn as the Green Goblin, it developed as a string of Legacy Characters and Costume Copycats into two rival criminal empires.

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Green Goblins

    Green Goblin I/Iron Patriot I/Goblin King I/ Red Goblin (Norman Osborn) 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ggspidey_231.jpg

AKA: Norman Virgil Osborn
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #14

"When the lightning struck, the house would become brightly illuminated. In the echoes of the rumbling thunder, I fancied I could hear the unearthly chittering of a green, goblin-like creature. Perhaps it was the blood rushing in my ears, but I became convinced I could hear the dreadful thing cackling, waiting for its chance to feast on my bones. Every time the lightning struck, I expected the goblin would be standing there over me, ready to pounce. I began to pray for the darkness to last just a little longer each time... and I began to hate the light. By the time morning came, I had fully accepted my fate—the goblin was a part of me."

Norman Virgil Osborn was born to a respected and rich family of Osborns. When Normie was a child, his abusive father Amberson ruined the business and became bankrupt. As an adult, Norman worked to regain the family's power and money, vowing never to become the failure his father was. He married, but a year after his son Harry was born his wife Emily died, leaving Norman a widower and single father. He soon proved to be a neglectful parent, ignoring Harry in favor of his main goal: getting more power and money. Eventually he gained full control of Oscorp Industries by framing his business partner Mendel Stromm. In Stromm's papers were notes on a serum he had discovered, which Norman tried to replicate for his own use. He failed. (Ironically, not entirely of his own fault, but Harry, angry that his father was neglecting him, switched some chemicals before the experiment... or maybe he didn't?)

The formula altered Norman's body. He became a super human: stronger, faster, more intelligent. Yet the serum also turned Osborn, who had never been entirely stable, into a totally insane psychopath. Norman took on a double life: by day, a respected businessman; by night, a grotesque super-villain mastermind. In his new persona as The Green Goblin, Osborn terrorized New York City with a bat-shaped jet glider, pumpkin bombs, razor bats, and insane laughter, thwarted from taking over the New York underworld only by repeated interference from Spider-Man. Soon, Osborn's interest in becoming the crime-lord of New York diminished; he had become obsessed with Spider-Man and his desire to get revenge upon him.

For more information on him, please refer to his page. For more on his Red Goblin identity, see the Carnage characters page.

    Green Goblin II/American Son I (Harry Osborn) 

AKA: Harold "Harry" Theopolis Osborn
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #31; The Amazing Spider-Man #136 (as Green Goblin II); The Amazing Spider-Man #597 (as American Son I)

"I know you like a book, inside and out. In a way, you're weaker than I used to be! Always so busy worrying... so full of guilt and concern—that you can't act! You're frozen with fear—terrified that whatever move you make will be the wrong one—and some poor innocent soul will suffer! You don't want to hurt me—oh, no! But you don't want the big bad Goblin to hurt the people you love, either! So, instead of doing something, you just stand there and take it and take it and take it! A pathetic death—for a pathetic man!"

Harry Osborn is the only son of Norman Osborn. He is also Peter's best friend, but some events lead him to take the father's legacy and become the second iteration of the Green Goblin. See Spider-Man: Schoolmates for more info.

    Green Goblin III (Bart Hamilton) 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/bartgob_4086.jpg

AKA: Doctor Barton "Bart" Hamilton
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #167

"Blast you, insect-stop calling me Harry! Harry Osborn is a nobody—a non-entity! He isn't worth the space he takes up upon this Earth! I am the Green Goblin—and soon I'll be master of the world!"

A psychologist of Harry Osborn who decides to take on the identity of the Green Goblin for himself.


  • Big Bad Wannabe: Bart assumed that just having the Green Goblin's costume and gear would be enough to make him into some kind of Crime God.
  • Killed Off for Real: Along with Jason Macendale, Bart is one of the few Goblins who's actually stayed dead without the Retcon fairy bringing him back.
  • Legacy Character: He learned about Norman's Goblin gear stash from a hypnotized Harry and stole the equipment and costume. Having never taken the Goblin formula, he remained a mortal human and was eventually killed.
  • No-Sell: Bart was one of the few Goblins who never imbued any version of the Goblin Formula. When he punched Spider-Man with all the strength a middle-aged man with no combat experience and minimal exercise could muster, the web-slinger didn't even flinch.
  • Paper Tiger: He had no superpowers, relying entirely on gadgets, his predecessors' reputations, and his knowledge of Spider-Man's secret identity to get by. When he and Spider-Man finally went mano a mano, Bart went down easily, with the few hits he did manage to get in barely fazing Spidey.
  • Psycho Psychologist: It's eventually revealed that he was on Norman's payroll the whole time. Even before that, he decided to become the Goblin as a way of psychologically studying the criminal mind from the criminal's own point of view.
  • Retcon: An unidentified Green Goblin appeared causing a ruckus in the afterlife in The Avengers Annual #16, and later Sensational She-Hulk #53. While it was presumably intended to be Norman at the time, since he was eventually retconned into never having actually died, we can retroactively assume it was Bart, the only other viable option.
  • The Shrink: He was a therapist assigned to help Harry recover from his psychosis via hypnosis-induced amnesia.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: He referred to himself as the true Green Goblin, and the only person in the entire world worthy of the identity.

    Green Goblin IV/Hobgoblin VII/Goblin Knight/Goblin King II (Phil Urich) 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/phill_urich_3.JPG

AKA: Philip "Phil" Benjamin Urich
Debut: Web of Spider-Man #125 (as Green Goblin IV); The Amazing Spider-Man #649 (as Hobgoblin VII); The Superior Spider-Man #16 (as Goblin Knight); The Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 3, #5 (as Goblin King II)

"Not bad. Norah's finally giving me the time of day. Uncle Ben's proud. I'm somebody now. Just gotta keep Kingpin happy. Keep the Tinkerer tinkering. And keep the Bugle money coming in. All these responsibilities. But with 'em comes everything I've ever wanted. And power. So much power! Ha ha ha!"

Nephew of Ben Urich, Phil fell into a vat of Goblin formula. After saving his uncle from some attackers using the Goblin powers and uniform, he became a heroic Green Goblin. Phil didn't have much of a career as a superhero and eventually retired.

He later went insane during his time with Excelsior, and then disappeared for a while before popping up at the new Daily Bugle. In an attempt to impress a cute co-worker, he went back to an old hideout to get some upgraded Goblin equipment only to run into Roderick Kingsley's twin brother, Daniel. Phil proceeded to snap, kill Kingsley, and take his mantle and place with the Kingpin while taking videos of himself to get a better place at the Bugle and the girl. This all fell apart thanks to the Superior Spider-Man sacking Shadowland and outing Phil as the Hobgoblin. Hunted down and eventually arrested, Phil was freed by the Goblin King, who took him in as the Goblin Knight. After the Goblin Nation's downfall, Phil picked up the pieces as the second Goblin King and swore revenge on both Spider-Man and the original Hobgoblin.


  • Adaptational Heroism: Phil remains sane and heroic in Spider-Girl, acting as an Honorary Uncle to Mayday.
  • Arch-Enemy: Angel Face, back when he was a heroic Green Goblin. As the Goblin Knight, he's one to the original Hobgoblin.
  • Ax-Crazy: Due to the Goblin formula he was exposed to, Phil is insane.
  • Clothes Make the Superman: For whatever reason, Phil's superpowers only activated when he wore his costume. When it was destroyed by a Sentinel in the final issue of his solo series, Phil was Brought Down to Normal and had to retire.
  • The Dragon: To the Kingpin as the Hobgoblin, and later to the Goblin King as the Goblin Knight.
  • Evil Counterpart: Set up as one to Peter, complete with an Uncle Ben and at some points a job in at the Bugle. Whereas Peter uses his powers responsibly, Phil uses his to get everything he always wanted. And unlike Peter, when offered to be Osborn's protégé, he gladly accepts.
  • Flaming Sword: One of the goodies he pilfered from one of Norman Osborn's lairs.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: Phil has gone from being a bad guy to a good guy, but has currently embraced a life of villainy.
  • Humiliation Conga: The Superior Spider-Man is not kind to him. Otto utterly defeats him, exposes his identity, and causes him to loose everything he gained.
  • I Have Many Names: Though they all have Goblin in them.
    Reporter: ...What was first described as being a gas leak is now being credited to the Goblin Knight.
    Phil: I'm the king now, you morons!
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice:
    • Phil is defeated by Kingsley in the same way Norman Osborn once killed himself.
    • Norman Osborn uses the Carnage symbiote to punch a hole through Urich and rip his heart out, killing him.
  • Jagged Mouth: His Goblin Knight mask has serrated teeth-like protrusions rimming its mouth.
  • Laughing Mad: His Lunatic Laugh weaponizes this, though he tends to do this normally too.
  • Make Me Wanna Shout: His Lunatic Laugh is a weaponized Evil Laugh.
  • Put the "Laughter" in "Slaughter": Post Face–Heel Turn he is by far one of Spidey's most ultraviolent and murderous foes. His frst villainous act is to decapitate Daniel Kingsley, and he follows it up with machine-gunning dozens of foes to death when he isn't killing them with knives or bombs. He freely, gleefully and sadistically enjoys every minute of it.
  • Redeeming Replacement: Started out as this to previous Green Goblins. Not terribly effective but he did try. Then his equipment got destroyed in a fight. And later...
  • Sanity Slippage: Started post-Runaways and just kept mounting, though it only really shows when he's in his Goblin mask.
  • Shadow Archetype: As the Hobgoblin his time at the Daily Bugle heavily mirrors a younger Peter Parker, except that his secret identity is a violent supervillain, and he is less intelligent, more insecure, and less lucky with the ladies. It was quite common for Peter and Phil to be in the same room together and the reader showing both of them thinking as their alter-egos, so they were not exactly subtle with their use of this trope.
  • Stalker with a Crush: To Norah. It ends about as well as you'd expect.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Norman Osborn delivers a scathing one to Phil after catching him raiding a Goblin cache just before killing him; pointing out his ungratefulness despite stealing Norman's equipment and even serving as his protege for a time, and that Phil had made his criminal career coasting on the legacies of villains better than him.
    Norman: Phil, Phil, Phil. Goblin King. Hobgoblin. Green Goblin. You never made a name for yourself, did you, boy? Want to know why?
    Phil: That's impossible! How are you -
    (Carnage claws pierce through Phil's chest)
    Norman: It's your heart, Phil. It just wasn't in it.
  • Villain Team-Up: He arranges an alliance with Mr. Negative and his Inner Demons, Eel and the Hand, and Black Cat to conquer New York's underworld and kill Spider-Man once and for all.
  • Winged Humanoid: The upgraded Goblin gear he used as the Hobgoblin and Goblin Knight/King came with a set of wings.
  • The Wrongful Heir to the Throne: After Osborn is defeated, he names himself the new Goblin King.
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    Green Goblin V 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/gg5_1755.jpg

Debut: Peter Parker: Spider Man Vol. 1, #88

"It's you! The costume is different, but I was trained to recognize you! Trained to fight you! I could never forget! Not after all the hours I spent drilling to go up against you... to make you believe I was the one. To make the world believe that Norman Osborn had nothing to do with the Green Goblin."

An artificial human created by Norman Osborn and the supervillain Doctor Angst as part of yet another attempt to destroy Spider-Man. Desperate to prove himself to Norman, the construct served as Norman's right-hand man for a time and was used as both a bodyguard and a body double.


  • Artificial Human: He was made in a lab by Norman and Doctor Angst.
  • Back from the Dead: Subverted. Spider-Man thought he was Harry brought back from the dead, but he turned out to merely be a genetic construct.
  • The Dragon: Served as this to Norman.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: He saw Norman as his father, and tried to act as a surrogate for Harry. Norman didn't seem to notice or care.
  • Killed Off for Real: After Norman was incapacitated by the events of "The Gathering Of The Five", the construct was cut off from the formulas and serums it needed to stabilize itself. He failed to find a cure in time and fell apart into a pile of goo right in front of the horrified Spider-Man.
  • Sickly Green Glow: They never revealed if it was emitted by the costume, or the Goblin himself.
  • Stranger Behind the Mask: While it was repeatedly hinted at that he could be either a resurrected Harry or a brainwashed Phil, in the end he turned out to be a genetic construct Norman made with Doctor Angst.
  • Tragic Villain: Unlike most other Goblins, this one just wanted to be loved by what he considered to be his father.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy:
    Green Goblin V: I want to know who I am... I want Norman back... I want my father!
    Spider-Man: Harry?!
    Green Goblin V: I wish! Maybe if I was, then Norman would have loved me. Maybe if I was someone... anyone...

Hobgoblins

    Hobgoblin I (Roderick Kingsley) 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/hobgoblinspidey_6051.jpg

AKA: Roderick Kingsley
Debut: Amazing Spider-Man # 238 (as Hobgoblin); Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #43 (as Kingsley),

"Well, Norman Osborn may have died, but his legacy—his power—will live on! And this time, it shall be shaped by a man who knows how to use power! The Green Goblin is no more! But in his place now stands—the Hobgoblin!!"

In the 1980's, a man stumbled upon one of Norman Osborn's old Green Goblin labs. He decided to modify the arsenal, and take up a career as a new kind of Goblin: the Hobgoblin. The identity of this man was kept a secret for several years in the comics before it was revealed to be fashion designer Roderick Kingsley, after a string of other Hobgoblins took his place or took the fall for him. Roderick eventually returned from retirement, killing the fourth Hobgoblin, Jason Macendale, and sparked a growing rivalry with the also-returned Norman Osborn. Kingsley retired again, but returned after he learned that his twin brother Daniel had been murdered by Phil Urich while looking for upgraded Goblin gear that Norman had been working on. Blackmailing Urich into giving him a cut in exchange for retaining the Hobgoblin identity and his life, Roderick revealed that he had been "licensing out" supervillain identities to criminals. When Urich defected to the Goblin Nation, Kingsley challenged the original Green Goblin to one final duel, sending his butler in his place as the Hobgoblin. He was recruited by Magneto to fight Red Onslaught, and following his Inversion took to licensing superhero identities to the highest bidder.


  • Actually a Doombot: At least four men (Arnold Donovan, Ned Leeds, Daniel Kingsley, and Claude) have died in his stead, and he was shown to be hypnotizing a fifth. After his Inversion, Kinglsey enfranchises the identity so that there are multiple Hobgoblins flying around for his enemies to chase while he sits safely at home.
  • Always Someone Better: Osborn is this to Kingsley. What really hit it home for him was one scene where he learns that Norman both knows already who Spider-Man is and gained control of Kingsley Ltd. right out from under him.
  • Arch-Enemy:
    • He occupied this place for 51 issues (ASM #238-289) before writers and readers got tired of the endless spinning of wheels of the Hobgoblin mystery, and shortly after that Venom and Carnage appeared and took over and became Breakout Villain then Green Goblin returned from the dead, and quickly established himself as "top Goblin" again. In Slott's run, he was this for Phil Urich the Goblin Knight.
    • Betty Brant considers Roderick Kingsley hers. He kidnapped her husband Ned Leeds, mind-controlled and brainwashed him to the point of straining their marriage, framed him as the Hobgoblin, and then arranged his murder while leaving Betty wallowing in guilt.
  • Ascended Extra: He first appeared in a brief story arc in Spectacular as a shady fashion designer targeted for revenge by Belladonna. Three years later in Amazing, his orange alter-ego made his grand debut and his civilian identity shortly began making more appearances. According to his creator Roger Stern, when he devised Hobgoblin he had no idea who he was, until he realized that his speech patterns was similar to Kingsley's.
  • Back for the Dead: Was seemingly killed by Phil Urich while raiding one of Norman Osborn's hideouts for upgraded Goblin gear. Guess who replaced him? Later, it turned it was actually Roderick's twin brother Daniel who was killed by Phil.
  • Badass Cape: His main innovation to the Goblin outfit was adding a Renfaire style cape-and-hood combo that made him resemble a medieval goblin far more than the Green Goblin outfit did.
  • Berserk Button: Being called crazy, since his version of the Goblin formula wasn't a Psycho Serum, at least according to him, a man with no knowledge and background in chemistry.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: He tried to establish himself as this after Norman's "death", and certainly became the most successful and intimidating of the Green Goblin's pretenders. However, Spider-Man defeated him multiple times in battle, so Kingsley decided to distract the web-head by brainwashing copycats with his costume and gear in the field instead, including, unbeknownst to him, Ned Leeds, Peter's friend and co-worker, at which point he retired and stepped back when Jason Macendale, who took on the Hobgoblin identity for a much longer time stuck around. When Norman came Back from the Dead, Kingsley got exposed, captured, and had his company and holdings hijacked by the Green Goblin and then ran away from America being under the radar.
  • Cain and Abel: Roderick Kingsley, the heartless, mass-murderer Hobgoblin, and his twin brother Daniel, the mostly spineless, but well-meaning wimp that Roderick could manipulate and terrify with ease.
  • Camp Straight: Before he became Hobgoblin, Roderick Kingsley was depicted as a somewhat effeminate fashion designer (Roger Stern based him off Rex Reed and Jim Backus). After his first appearance, some readers wrote in to complain that Stern was stereotyping gay people. Stern, who had never intended Kingsley to be gay, gave him a supermodel escort in his next appearance to make sure everyone knew he was straight.
  • Cool Plane: He modified Norman's Goblin Glider to have a horned head, giving it a demonic look.
  • Colliding Criminal Conspiracies:
    • He framed Flash Thompson as the Hobgoblin, but this scheme was unintentionally spoiled by Jack O'Lantern, who broke into the NYPD at around the same time as the Scourge of the Underworld (who wanted to execute Flash) and the Wraith (who blamed the police for the death of his sister at the hands of the Sin-Eater).
    • In a broader scale, Norman having survived his "death" and going to plot behind the scenes instead in Europe, collided with Kingsley's plan to fill his Evil Power Vacuum by correcting his idol's failure. Instead, Kingsley found himself on the Goblin's shit list. In "Goblins at the Gate", when Kingsley finally meets Norman, Green Goblin admits that his first instinct was to murder the Hobgoblin the minute he heard of his rise as a pretender.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: He was the CEO of a fashion company before being bought out by Norman Osborn, and even before becoming the Hobgoblin he was an example of this trope, ruining the lives of the Ravanna siblings because they refused to sell their business to him (the casual manner in which he killed the man who sold him the Green Goblin's stash also implies that he was seasoned murderer, probably of corporate rivals). Kingsley subsequently makes a business of creating and purchasing super villain identities and then loaning them out to criminals for a sizeable fee, and later expands the market to superhero identities as well.
  • Costume Copycat: Besides the obvious, his "Devil-Spider" costume is clearly based on Tarantula's.
  • Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Lampshaded; Kingsley is well aware that he could make millions by just patenting and selling his gear and inventions, but he doesn't care. He loves being a supervillain and he's going to keep being one.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Perhaps one of the few villains who can match Spider-Man in the snark department.
  • Dirty Coward: Kingsley values self-preservation above all else, even money, which is why he rarely wears the Hobgoblin costume himself and instead uses hypnotized body-doubles (or his own twin brother) to fight his battles for him while he relaxes elsewhere.
  • Divergent Character Evolution: Originally created by Stern as a permanent replacement for the seemingly dead and gone forever Norman, the resurrection of Norman deprived the Hobgoblin of his original purpose. So he's ben re-envisioned as a behind-the-scenes plotter and supplier of costumes for B-List villains instead.
  • Effeminate Misogynistic Guy: He sees women as disposable, seducing them with his Millionaire Playboy charms before callously dumping them. Mary Jane who worked with Kingsley as an entry-level runaway model describes him as a "louse".
  • Empowered Badass Normal: Kingsley dosed himself with a perfected version of the Goblin formula that no longer causes psychosis, at least according to him.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Subverted. He may have a brother, but the two hate each other and Roderick only valued him as an asset, not as a person. Daniel never refused to do his sibling's bidding because he was an Extreme Doormat and Roderick at one point made it clear that he wasn't above subjecting him to the same mind-decimating procedure that he performed on Ned Leeds.
    Urich: If there's a knockoff here, it's you, pal. 'Cause I killed the old Hobgoblin... but I don't mind doing it again!
    Kingsley: My name's Roderick Kingsley. That was my brother you killed. Which, honestly, I'm fine with. He was an idiot. But then you went too far... you stole my brand... so you're a dead man!
  • Evil Genius: One of Spidey's most intelligent foes.
  • Evil vs. Evil: He and Norman Osborn hate each other almost as much as they hate Spider-Man. Which is saying something.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Kingsley loves cracking jokes and snark during battles and often gives off a veneer of friendliness, but he's ruthless towards those who cross him.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: The guy went from a calculating fashion designer with shady and outright criminal business practices to a major league supervillain.
  • Graceful Loser: Raised a toast to Norman, and to Goblins everywhere, after Claude lost the duel.
  • Greed: Kingsley is a slave to the almighty dollar, and only his sense of self-preservation trumps his desire to make money any way he can.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Played with: even after being Inverted, Kingsley is still a greedy, heartless bastard. He's just exploiting a highly profitable revenue stream in a way that doesn't involve killing or stealing.
  • Humiliation Conga:
    • In Hobgoblin Lives, Betty Brant, Ned Leeds' widow, has him confessing his crimes on tape. Then Spider-Man fights and defeats him in battle, exposing his identity, and then sending him to prison while his brother Daniel goes into witness protection offering to testify against him.
    • His defeat at the hands of Captain Marvel in Spider-Woman evidently ruined his life, because in subsequent appearances he's been reduced to a pathetic hired gun constantly grumbling about how he desperately "needs a win."
  • In the Hood: One of the additions he made to the Goblin costume was an orange, hooded cape.
  • I Work Alone: He adamantly refused to join his rival's Goblin Nation.
  • Jack the Ripoff: Came across one of the Green Goblin's hideouts and ripped off the equipment. However he rather quickly made a point of developing his own identity and style; he views Osborn as semi-incompetent and too caught up in petty revenge, and thus doesn't seek to emulate him beyond general appearance.
  • Jerkass: One thing can't be denied about Hobgoblin; he can be a complete dick when he wants to be.
  • Narcissist: The only person he loves is himself. Even Norman at some point loved his son Harry.
  • Karma Houdini: He's stolen and bankrupted entire companies, brainwashed several pawns (including his own brother), killed or caused the deaths of at least fifty people, and inflicted immeasurable emotional trauma and psychological mind games. For all of that, the only punishment he's ever had to endure was a few months in prison, before he successfully engineered his own escape to a tropical island, albeit with the permanent loss of his companies and businesses.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: Roderick is more than willing to retreat from battle if the odds are not in his favor.
  • Legacy Character: It got so bad that he had to personally kill the fourth Hobgoblin, who he considered inferior. Meanwhile, the second and third ones were his puppets - ones that he happily sacrificed when they were no longer useful. It later turns out he has been traveling the globe setting up different supervillain identities and then leasing them to others in return for a sizable fee.
  • The Man Behind the Man: This is his preferred method of staying out of danger; he's framed no less than four separate patsies to take the fall for him as the Hobgoblin. Currently, he's filling the void left over by the death of Justin Hammer, as the world's new largest supplier of B-list villains. He later quips that Ned Leeds was the first successful applicant of his self-help program.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: The fact that Spider-Man and Hobgoblin didn't know each other's identity for the longest time, becomes ironic when you factor that Kingsley once employed Mary Jane Watson who as Peter's friend and confidant once helped Peter pay his rent (coming this close to being chased out of the city) by using her salary from Kingsley's company. In other words, Hobgoblin helped pay Spidey's bills.
  • Only in It for the Money: Invoking Cut Lex Luthor a Check is Kingsley's main motivation for being a hero.
  • Palette Swap: He's the Green Goblin with a blue and orange costume instead of a green and purple costume, and a hooded cape. Spider-Man lampshaded this in their first encounter. Norman finds it ridiculously easy to impersonate him during the Goblin Nation, especially since some of his minions have never seen him in-costume before.
  • The Sociopath: This is presumably why he came off as so minimally altered when compared to the other morally-inverted villains in AXIS. Kingsley is so wholly incapable of thinking of anyone other than himself that even after being filled with an irresistible desire to do good he still chose to act on his new impulse in ways specifically geared towards garnering him adoration and material gain. He also never displays any guilt over his past actions, which even the inverted Carnage did in his own warped way.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: His mask has red eyes, sometimes shown as glowing red.
  • Resignations Not Accepted: While he implied here and there that the people who he licensed supervillain "franchises" out to could eventually win or buy their way out of their contracts, when Porcupine tried to do the latter, Kingsley, after feigning that this was fine, had him beaten and blown up.
  • Sanity Has Advantages: Or so he claims. Norman being unhinged and a more successful businessman and super-villain baffles him.
  • Stealing the Credit: Part of the reason why he was such a successful fashion mogul is because he was in the habit of ruining his rivals by stealing their ideas out from under them.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Due to the events of Axis, Kingsley is technically a reserve member of the Avengers.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Kingsley's first outing as the Hobgoblin was a fiasco, as he had no combat practice or physical prowess. He barely escaped from Spider-Man through sheer luck, and when he got home he was so exhausted he felt like he'd just run a marathon. Getting the Goblin formula and the Super Strength related to it immediately became his top priority, and he became much more dangerous once he used it.
  • Twin Switch: If Roderick thought something was beneath his notice or just too boring to bother with, he'd have his twin brother Daniel deal with it. Ironically, Daniel gets killed the one time he pulls the switch on his own initiative.
  • Worthy Opponent: After Norman's Goblin Nation wins the Goblin War by killing his stand-in Claude, Kingsley raises a toast to his old rival. He voices similar sentiments in "Goblins at the Gate" where Norman undercuts, undermines, and ruins his company and establishes himself as the better Goblin when Kingsley groks that Norman knows Spider-Man's identity.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: He goes through minions (most of them mind-controlled patsies whose personal lives he ruined) like flies, and it was implied in Spider-Woman that, despite whatever promises he may have made, he never truly lets any of the people who signed up for his supervillain "program" go, killing them even if they offer to buy their way out of their contracts and presumably invoking Released to Elsewhere should an agent somehow "win" their freedom through successful completion of an important task of some kind (liking taking down members of the Goblin Nation).

    Hobgoblin II (Left Donovan) 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/leftyhob_6735.jpg

AKA: Arnold Samuel "Lefty" Donovan
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #244

"Everything... is laid out for me. It's all coming back now. Everything is specially tailored to fit. Sensors must go into place... important, I remember. Why? Doesn't matter... all that matters is I'm ready! Yes! I can feel the power surging inside me! Now the Hobgoblin can really begin to mystify the world!"

A man who was brainwashed into serving as Roderick Kingsley's body double/guinea pig for a time.


    Hobgoblin III (Ned Leeds) 

AKA: Edward "Ned" Leeds
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #18

Ned Leeds was a Daily Bugle reporter whom Roderick Kingsley brainwashed into becoming the Hobgoblin until his eventual demise. See Daily Bugle characters page.

    Jack O'Lantern I/Hobgoblin IV (Jason Macendale) 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/macendale_4832.jpg

AKA: Jason Philip Macendale, Jr.
Debut: Machine Man #19 (as Jack O'Lantern I); The Amazing Spider-Man #289 (as Hobgoblin IV)

"... Killing. It's the only thing that has ever come naturally to me. The C.I.A. must have sensed it in me when they recruited me out of college. But then my tactics proved too brutal even for them. Fine. The mercenary life gave me the freedom to kill for whomever I chose. The Jack O'Lantern guise was profitable for a while. But I wanted bigger and better jobs. The Foreigner helped me with that; killed Ned Leeds for me—for a hefty price. Leeds was history, and I was the new Hobgoblin."

A former Marine, fighter pilot, and CIA agent, Jason Macendale Jr. created the supervillain identity of Jack O'Lantern, a Halloween-themed rip-off of the Green Goblin with a flaming mask in the shape of a pumpkin. After chancing across the Hobgoblin's trashed Battle Wagon, he took on the identity himself, but lacking the superhuman strength and durability granted by the Goblin formula proved mediocre at best, losing to both Spider-Man and the second Green Goblin. Desiring power, Macendale sold his soul to the demon N'Astirh, who infused him with a demon that augmented his strength and endurance. However, the demon later split away into a separate entity, the Demogoblin, and Macendale was murdered by the original Hobgoblin.


  • Adaptational Badass: Spider-Man: The Animated Series had him to be far more formidable and fearsome, since he basically took over the role of Roderick Kingsley (who didn't exist in that show). He even was the first Goblin in that continuity, long before Norman became the Green Goblin.
  • Badass Normal: Unlike Kingsley, Macendale never took the Goblin formula and relied solely on his CIA training and Goblin gear. As a result he more often than not wound up getting his butt kicked.
  • Back from the Dead: A Jack O'Lantern identified as Macendale is captured by S.H.I.E.L.D. in Secret War. He has no cybernetic implants, his death is not brought up, and two of his listed aliases are Maguire Beck (Mysterio's cousin) and Mad Jack (the name used by Maguire and Daniel Berkhart when they shared the Jack O'Lantern identity).
  • Big Bad Wannabe: He direly wanted to be an awesome, Moriarty-esque archenemy towards Spider-Man, but in the end Macendale just didn't have what it took to wear the Hobgoblin title. Kingsley called him out on how pathetic he was before killing him.
  • Blood Knight: As mentioned in the quote above, he saw killing as the only thing he was ever really good at.
  • Body Horror: He grew progressively more monstrous while sharing his body with Demogoblin.
  • Butt-Monkey: He was a non-comedic Super Loser, and arguably the least successful Goblin after the Bart Hamilton Green Goblin. This leads to him getting something of an Alas, Poor Villain moment in one of his final appearances.
    Macendale: What am I doing this all for? I have no home. Just one warehouse after another which I use the money from my mercenary activities to decorate with the fanciest trappings. I have no friends. My ex-wife would just as soon see me dead... my son hates and fears me. I have no loyalties to any cause. I've got power, money... and now these fancy cybernetics, but... when it comes right down to it... I've... got... NOTHING! And to top it all off... now I'm talking to myself.
  • Cyborg: In his final appearance, he acquired cybernetic enhancements.
  • Deal with the Devil: Horrifically subverted when Macendale tries to sell his soul to a demon in the traditional Faustian manner. The demon openly scoffs at Macendale's offer, pointing out that his soul is too filthy and disgusting to be worth having. However, the demon is nice enough to imbue Macendale with a demon's power anyway, just for making him laugh.
  • Demonic Possession: Made a deal with N'Astirh for the power to surpass Spider-Man and the Green Goblin, and wound up with a demonic alter-ego called the Demogoblin, which later separated from him.
  • Dirty Coward: During his first fight with Spider-Man as Jack O'Lantern, Macendale suffered a minor Freak Out and realized he had to escape. While working with Roderick Kingsley at a later point, Macendale refused to go after Spider-Man again.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Much of his Hobgoblin tenure involved Macendale demanding respect and being denied it. Be it the Kingpin, paid assassins, his demonic counterpart, or even lowly barflies, everyone seemed to call him on his faults.
  • Gone Horribly Wrong: At the start of the Hobgoblin Lives mini-series, he's about to go to trial for his crimes, so he publicly proclaims that he wasn't the first to wear the Hobgoblin costume. He's doing this to create reasonable doubt for his defense in court, but Kingsley hears about it. Being both fearful that an investigation into this claim could lead back to him and generally dissatisfied with his successor anyway, Kingsley murders Macendale to shut him up.
  • He Knows Too Much: The reason Kingsley assassinated him.
  • Jack the Ripoff: Of the Green Goblin both as Jack O'Lantern and the Hobgoblin.
  • Legacy Character: His original alter-ego of the Jack O'Lantern was passed off to others, and he inherited the Hobgoblin persona from Ned Leeds during the mid-1990's.
  • The Millstone: For basically anyone he worked for. This caused Roderick to eventually kill him, as he felt that Macendale was ruining the Hobgoblin name with his incompetence.
  • Pick on Someone Your Own Size: Barring a couple of lucky breaks against Spider-Man, the only people Macendale could ever beat were inexperienced teenagers. Whether it was Phil Urich as the Green Goblin, Rick Sheridan in Sleepwalker's body, or Chris Powell as Darkhawk, none of them had much combat skill when they went up against Macendale.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Courtesy of Wilson Fisk.
    Hobgoblin IV: Macendale is dead!
    Kingpin: That would be an insignificant loss. A pathetic little man who, when beaten by a superior foe, runs like a whipped puppy to someone else to get his dirty work done. Who then obtains the equipment of his deceased enemy, makes some useless modifications, and uses this power to dispatch hapless underlings. Whom are you trying to impress? Not me.
    • The Arranger (once a Kingpin employee) also called Macnedale to his face, "A boor. An idiot. An incompetent. A prattling fool who steals another man's identity."
  • Rogues-Gallery Transplant: He started out fighting the C-list hero Machine Man, before he switched over to taking on Spider-Man full time both as Jack O'Lantern and the Hobgoblin. During his Demonic Possession period, he also began facing Ghost Rider now and then.
  • Secret Agent: A former CIA operative.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: As Jack O' Lantern, Macendale bragged about how he was a master of the "art" of terrorism and deserved job offers from the New York crimelords. In practice, he was an incompetent boob whose antics only ended up wrecking the plans of more competent criminals and who could bully defenseless civilians and Mooks but ran like a coward when he faced serious opposition like Spider-Man.
  • Smug Snake: He liked to think he was a major villain, but in truth was just a sadistic, bullying thug who wound up working under real movers like the Kingpin, who at one point literally tossed him away like a piece of trash. Add that to the fact that despite all his various bids for power, he could never beat Spidey in an even fight, it's easy to see why Kingsley considered him an embarrassment.
  • Spanner in the Works: As Jack O'Lantern, Macendale noted that he wasn't getting any job offers, and decided to attract attention by breaking Flash Thompson (then framed by Kingsley as the Hobgoblin) out of prison. All he ended up doing was wrecking Kingsley's plans, much to the latter's frustration. Maybe there was a reason none of the New York crimelords wanted to hire him...

    Hobgoblin V 

Debut: Secret War #3

Nick Fury: A new Goblin, just what the world needs. I don't know who's behind the mask this time, but he'd better watch out. I won't have to raise a finger after Parker's been through with the "real" Goblin. Parker won't let another Goblin hurt anyone ever again. I pity this guy, he just picked up the wrong duds.

An unnamed man in a new Hobgoblin costume that attacked during the Secret War but failed to be victorious and was captured.

    Hobgoblin VI (Daniel Kingsley) 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/danhob_8464.jpg

AKA: Daniel Kingsley
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #249

"Ohhh Norman. For someone who was running the world for a while, you still managed to keep busy, didn't you? Look at all of these wonderful new Goblin toys."

Roderick Kingsley's perpetually-abused twin brother. Used as a body double and human shield, depending on the situation.


  • Always Identical Twins: Personality and baldness aside, he and Roderick were physically identical.
  • Butt-Monkey: Nothing good ever happened to Daniel Kingsley.
  • Dare to Be Badass: Presumably tired of constantly being pushed around, Daniel decided to become the Hobgoblin for realz, but is killed by Phil before he can do much more than put on the costume.
  • Off with His Head!: He was decapitated by Phil Ulrich with a Flaming Sword.
  • Polar Opposite Twins: As opposed to his charismatic twin, Daniel was meek and a coward.
  • Twin Switch: Kingsley would bully him into standing in as the Hobgoblin.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: He was killed by Phil mere seconds after trying to betray Roderick and steal the Hobgoblin title for himself.

Other Goblins

    Proto-Goblin (Nels van Adder) 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/protogob_2815.jpg

AKA: Doctor Nels van Adder
Debut: Peter Parker: Spider-Man #-1

"What did you do to me, Norman?"

Not too long after he had Mendel Stromm arrested for embezzlement, Norman uncovered his ex-business partner's notes on a formula that could purportedly increase a person's strength and intellect. Becoming obsessed with this miracle concoction, Norman used Stromm's incomplete writings on it to make a prototypical version of it, which he convinced an employee named Nels van Adder to volunteer to have administered to him, despite the lack of "stabilizing reagent". This crude version of the Goblin Formula transformed Nels into a psychotic red monster, which went on a rampage. After slaughtering several people, Nels made his way back to Osborn Industries, intent on murdering Norman, but before he could so, he was knocked out a window and into a nearby river by George (who was left with a lifelong limp due to the incident) and Arthur Stacy. During the fray, a desk in which the rest of Stromm's notes were hidden was damaged; with these previously missing pages, Norman set back to work on the Goblin Formula, though unbeknownst him and the Stacy brothers, the "Proto-Goblin" had survived, and fled into the wilderness...


  • Flawed Prototype: The early version of the Goblin Formula that Nels was given permanently transformed him into a monster. A red one, oddly enough.
  • Psycho Prototype: While all Goblins are psychos, Nels literally became more beast than man.

    Demogoblin 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/demogoblin_5549.jpg

Debut: The Spectacular Spider-Man #147 (as a Demonic Hobgoblin); Web of Spider-Man #86 (as Demogoblin)

"Come, sinners! Hiding is useless! The road to salvation can be yours... through death! I will help you find this road!"

When Jason Macendale Jr. tried to sell his soul to the demon lord N'Astirh, he was turned down but got a demon stuffed into his soul for his trouble. However, the demon proved incompatible and eventually separated into a demonic version of the Hobgoblin called the Demogoblin.


  • Arch-Enemy: Macendale and Demogoblin hated each other, although Demogoblin eventually forgave Macendale, which only made the latter hate him even more.
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: Frequently quarrelled with Macendale over control of his body.
  • Enemy Mine: He only teamed up with Carnage in order to more efficiently purge New York of sinners.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: He sacrificed himself to save a child in a collapsing church.
    Demogoblin: Run, child! Save yourself and remain untainted by the evil that infests so many in this world!
    Hobgoblin: This is almost touching! Who would have thought you that you had a soft spot for kids?
    Spider-Man: What is wrong with you, Macendale! This is low, even for you!
    Demogoblin: Get the child to safety, Spider-Man! Thank you. My time... here... is done.
  • Killed Off for Real: His death actually stuck too.
  • Knight Templar: Ironically he was a religious fanatic intent on purging New York of sinners.
  • Large Ham: See that quote up there? He talks like that All. The. Time.
  • Literal Split Personality: He eventually separated from Macendale and became his own entity.
  • Lone Wolf Boss: The most disconnected member of the Goblin "Family".
  • More Teeth than the Osmond Family: He had a huge mouth full of long fangs.
  • Noble Demon: He was a demon, but he had a base sense of justice and honour. The fact that he was an actual demon who died to protect a child, proving himself more honorable than his human counterpart, made Spidey even more thoroughly disgusted with Macendale.
  • Playing with Fire: He could generate hellfire and augment his weapons with it.
  • Spontaneous Weapon Creation: He could create supernatural replicas of the Hobgoblin's glider and weapons at will.
  • Wouldn't Hurt a Child: The only people exempt from his definition of "sinner" were children.

    Grey Goblin I/American Son II (Gabriel Stacy) 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/greygob_3036.jpg

AKA: Gabriel Stacy
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #509; The Amazing Spider-Man #514 (as Grey Goblin I); Age of Heroes #2 (as American Son II)

"He's our father, and he abandoned us. Deserted our mother and caused her death. And he's going to pay for that, Sarah."


  • Bastard Bastard: He's the son of Norman Osborn and Gwen Stacy, and bitter about being disregarded by his father in favour of Harry.
  • Cain and Abel:
    • When they learned the truth about her mother's death, Gabriel - having been driven insane by a second dose of the Goblin Formula - kept on blaming Peter and became a super villain. His twin sister Sarah denounced Norman and became an Interpol agent to bring her brother to justice.
    • Harry wants nothing to do with the Osborn legacy, but is his father's sometime-favorite son. Gabriel wants everything to do with it, but is The Unfavorite.
  • Half Identical Twin: He and his sister Sarah are almost identical except he's male and she's female.
  • Legacy Character: He was the first Grey Goblin and the second American Son.
  • Palette Swap: His Grey Goblin costume was more or less literally the Green Goblin's costume dipped in grey paint.
  • Powered Armor: Norman gifted him with the American Son armor after Harry threw it away.
  • Professional Killer: He and his sister were trained as assassins by Norman.
  • Rapid Aging: The Goblin Formula he inherited from his father caused him to grow from a baby to a young adult in a few years' time.
  • Retcon: It was initially planned for Peter to actually be his father, but that was kiboshed since having a kid would make Peter seem old and the father was changed to middle-aged evil businessman Norman Osborn, who was revealed to have had an affair with Gwen while both were in Europe after Harry's death. Clearly a better choice.
  • Superpowerful Genetics: The Goblin Formula he inherited from his father made him superhumanly strong.
  • Super Soldier: After being defeated by Spider-Man and his sister, Gabe injected himself with a second dose of Goblin Formula and a version of the Super-Soldier Serum.
  • You Killed My Father: Norman had raised him and his sister to believe that Peter was his father and that he'd killed Gwen Stacy as Spider-Man. Only the last part was true, and only accidentally.
  • Younger Than They Look: Both he and Sarah are only a few years old, but look to be in their twenties due to the Goblin Formula.

    Grey Goblin II/Menace/Queen Cat (Lily Hollister) 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/menace_5168.jpeg
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/queencatlily_1330.png

AKA: Lily Hollister
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #545; The Amazing Spider-Man #550 (as Menace); AXIS: Hobgoblin #2 (as Queen Cat)

"I'm sorry, Phil. We might have shared a bond once, but if an accident erased that part of my life, then maybe it wasn't an accident after all. Maybe it was a gift. And I'm not going to waste it."


  • Amazing Technicolor Population: As Menace, her skin color's ranged from grey to red to green.
  • Ambiguous Gender: It was impossible to tell that her initial grey-skinned Goblin form was female, and everyone assumed she was a man. Her second Goblin form was much more attractive.
  • Bishōnen Line: Her second Goblin form was far more attractive than her first or third ones, but no explanation was given as to why it changed.
  • Cat Girl: Roderick has groomed the amnesiac Lily into becoming a heroic rip-off of Black Cat called "Queen Cat".
  • Chainmail Bikini: Her final outfit was a breastplate that would have left her midriff completely exposed were it not for the fact she was also wearing a chainmail tunic.
  • Cleavage Window: He second costume was essentially an armored corset.
  • Cool Helmet: During the Goblin War she took to wearing a horned helmet.
  • Costume Copycat: As Queen Cat she wears a mostly color-inverted version of Black Cat's old costume.
  • Dark-Skinned Blond: She has heavily tanned skin but blonde hair.
  • Evil Makes You Monstrous: The Goblin Formula she was exposed to triggered a physical transformation (similar to Proto-Goblin) when she became Menace, although she's sometimes drawn as being attractive.
  • Evil Redhead: As the Grey Goblin she had red hair.
  • A Family Affair: Had a fling with Norman Osborn while she was Harry's finacee.
  • Good Feels Good: It looked like Lily had betrayed the Hob-heroes in favor of rejoining Phil, but in reality she was just spying on him for Roderick, having decided to remain a hero as Queen Cat.
  • Horned Humanoid: As the Grey Goblin she had stumpy horns.
  • Long-Lost Relative: She and Carlie Cooper are sisters.
  • Monster Is a Mommy: She gave birth to a son, Stanley Hollister, who is considered a new species due to both his parents having been exposed to the Goblin Formula.
  • Mythology Gag: Her Mark 7 Goblin Glider looked like the one from Sam Raimi's Spider-Man film.
  • Trauma-Induced Amnesia: Phil blew up the cop car she was in after being arrested, not realizing she'd lost her Healing Factor, and she fell into the river. She survived, but had no recollection of who she was.
  • Your Cheating Heart: It turns out that Stanley's father isn't Harry Osborn, but Norman Osborn.
    • However, later on it's revealed that Harry is in fact the father, though there was definitely something between Lily and Norman.

    Monster (Carlie Cooper) 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/carliemonster_7503.jpg

AKA: Carlie Ellen Cooper
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #545; The Superior Spider-Man #25 (as Monster)

Menace: So. Much! Fun! This is just like when we were little girls playing dress-up!
Monster: No. That was someone else. A repressed drone who worked herself half to death in a forensics lab, making sure the monsters got locked up. Ignoring the fact that we're all monsters.


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