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The Hobgoblin, Part I is the eleventh episode of season one and introduces the villain, Hobgoblin.

Plot

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From inside a warehouse a mysterious man places a hobgoblin mask over his face and takes flight over New York City on a glider. From inside a limousine Kingpin talks to Alistair Smythe on a two way television set. Smythe says that he doesn't understand why Kingpin attends public events. To answer this Kingpin says that it is important for him to appear as a respectable business man so that no one will suspect that he is really a criminal kingpin. Just then then the mysterious man flies over Fisk's limo.

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At that moment at Empire State UniversityHarry Osborn asks Peter Parker to be his roomate at his new apartment. Peter replies that they barley know each other and wonders why he doesn't ask his friend Flash Thompson. Harry replies by saying that Flash is a good friend but his father won't pay his rent unless he finds a roommate that is responsible which Flash is not. However, Peter is worried that he won't be able to afford the rent but Harry tells Peter that his father will take care of it.

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As Peter and Harry arrive at the dig site for the Fisk School of Criminology on the ESU campus Peter sees J. Jonah JamesonJoseph Robertson, Wilson Fisk and Norman Osborn on a stage. As Norman introduces Wilson Fisk to the crowd Fisk comes forward and breaks the ground of the construction site. However, Peter's spider sense goes off. As Peter rushes up to Fisk he pushes him out of the way and the man on the glider fires a laser from his gun which misses them. peter then runs into an alley and changes into his costume. As the masked man fires into the crowd Spider-Man web swings out and attempts to kick the man off his glider and misses. The masked man then introduces himself as the Hobgoblin and fires his laser gun and it hits Spider-Man's web line and breaks it. However, Spider-Man is able to fire another web line before he can hit the ground. Kingpin then enters his limo and before driving off demands to know who the man on the glider is. As Spider-man lunges at Hobgoblin he moves out of the way and Spider-Man misses him. Spider-man then fires a web line but Hobgoblin is able to cut it with the wing of his glider. However, Spider-Man is able to swing up and grab the glider. To get rid of Spider-Man, Hobgoblin flies higher into the sky toward a jetliner. Before Hobgoblin can make Spider-Man crash into the jetliner Spider-Man lets go and falls dow. As Spider-Man falls into the city he tries to use his web shooters to stop himself from falling. However, Spider-Man discovers that he has run out of web fluid. As Spider-Man continues to fall he grabs a cloth banner which rips and gently stops him from hitting the ground.

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Minutes later Norman Osborn gets in his limo to leave. As Harry walks up he asks his father if he is alright. Norman answers that he is fine but does not appear to be concerned for the wellbeing of his son. A short while later Norman arrives at OsCorp where he mets up with the Hobgoblin. Osborn then tells Hobgoblin that he failed him revealing that he hired Hobgoblin to assassinate Fisk. Hobgoblin then replies that he only failed to kill Fisk becasue Norman neglected to tell him that Spider-Man would be there. Norman then fires Hobgoblin and orders him to leave the glider at OsCorp. As Hobgoblin aims his gun at Norman, Norman threatens to Hobgoblin by saying that he is the only one that knows his secret identity and that it will be revealed to the public if anything happens to him. Hobgoblin replies that Norman ows him and that he's keeping the glider as his payment. As Hobgoblin uses the glider to fly out of OsCorp, Norman angrily shakes his fist in the air.

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Sometime later at the Parker house, Peter and Aunt May watch a news report about Peter saving Fisk's life. May then tells Peter that if he is going to move out he must stop risking his life so that she will feel alright. Peter then remarks that he won't move out if she doesn't want him to. However, May tells Peter that living on his own is something that young people have to do and that Mary Jane is also planning on moving out and that Anna Watson has asked her to move into her house. Peter then thanks his Aunt May and tells her that even though he's moving out he will always be there for her. May then goes into the kitchen and sheds a tear for Peter because of how much he risks his life and almost got killed by the Hobgoblin.

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The next day Peter arrives at the apartment with his things. As Peter knocks on the door Flash opens it and tells him that the only reason he is rooming with Harry instead of him is because he has dumb luck. Howerver, Harry walks up and politely tells Flash to leave Peter alone. As Peter walks in he sees that Harry is throwing a house warming party. Peter then asks Harry when he can thank Norman. However, Harry replies that he's too busy with his work at OsCorp. As Harry walks off to talk to the party guests Mary Jane walks up to him. Mary Jane then tells Peter that they could be busted by the fashion police unless she helps them decorate. As Peter walks into his bedroom he sees that the apartment has huge windows. Peter then says to himself that the huge windows will be perfect for web swinging out of and that moving out of Aunt May's place could be the best thing he has ever done.

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That night Hobgoblin breaks into Crime Central looking for any secrets Fisk is hiding. Hobgoblin then discovers an elevator hidden behind a portrait of Fisk as he enters it a giant claw grabs Hobgoblin by the wains and the elevator begins to move. When the elevator stops Hobgoblin exits it but is surrounded by several thugs with guns. Kingpin then threatens to have his men kill Hobgoblin. However, Hobgoblin begins to laugh and says that he thought Crime Central was just a myth. Hobgoblin then tells Kingpin to have his men lower their guns and even says that he will tell him who it was that hired him to assassinate him. Kingpin then has his guards lower their weapons. As Kingpin asks Hobgoblin what he wants Hobgoblin answers that he wants money, a chance to show how valuabe he can be to Kingpin, and that he wants control of Crime Central. Hobgoblin then tells Kingpin that it was Norman Osborn that hired him to assassinate Kingpin. As Kingpin slams his fist onto his his desk Kingpin hits his phone crushing it. Kingpin then has Alistair Smythe outfit Hobgoblin with new weapons. As Smythe asks why he wears his costume Hobgoblin replies that he wears it to strike fear into his enemies.

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The next morning Peter wakes up and sees that the apartment is a mess from the party last night. As the phone rings Peter answers it and frantically starts cleaning up the apartment. When Harry sees Peter he asks what he's doing and Peter replies that his Aunt May is on her way and that she will freak out at the sight of their dirty apartment. Just then Peter's spider sense goes off and the doorbell rings. Peter thinks that it is strange that Aunt May triggered his spider sense but shrugs it off and lets Aunt May in. May is shocked by the sight of the dirty apartment. Just then the Hobgoblin flies into the apartment and throws a pumpkin bomb into the room and releases a smoke screen and grabs Harry and flies off. As the smoke clears Peter sees May lying unconscious on the floor and calls 911. May is then taken to the hospital where the doctor examines her and tells Peter that she had a seizure and that is why she in unconscious and that all they can do is give her time. As the doctor leaves the room Peter thinks to himself that this is his fault and feels responsible for what just happened to Aunt May and what happened to his Uncle Ben.

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Sometime later Hobgoblin arrives at Crime Central with Harry. Smythe then tells Kingpin that Hobgoblin can not be trusted. However, Kingpin replies by saying that Hobgoblin reminds him of himself as a young man and that he might make the Hobgoblin his protege. Hobgoblin then places Harry in a tiny glass cell. As Harry asks why he was kidnapped Hobgoblin answers that it's because his father is rich. As Hobgoblin tells Kingpin to pay him for the job Kingpin replies that he will get paid whenever he wants to pay him. Moments later Kingpin calls Norman at Oscorp and tells him that he has his son. Kingpin also reveals that Hobgoblin now works for him and that he wants his inventions in exchange for his son. Norman is hesistant because he knowns that his inventions are his lifes work and that it will ruin him if he gives them away. Kingpin then tells Norman that he can either have his inventions or his son and that he has twenty four hours to sign the inventions over to him or else his son will die.

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Meanwhile at the hospital Mary Jane goes to visit May is her hospital room and sees Peter who ask if the police have any leads on where Harry is. However, Mary Jane replies that the police have no leads. Peter then reveals to Mary Jane that he believed the Hobgoblin was after him. However, Peter realizes that Hobgoblin could of had no idea that he lived in the apartment. Peter also remembers that Hobgoblin said that he is killing two birds with one stone. This gives Peter an idea and he tells Mary Jane to stay with Aunt May as he walks out of her hospital room.

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Later on Hobgoblin returns to OsCorp and tells Norman that he can not trust Kingpin. However, Norman grabs a near by laser gun and aims it at Hobgoblin. Hobgoblin then tells Norman that he also wants Kingpin dead and that they should work together. Norman agrees to this. However, unknown to either of them Smythe is spying on the both of them by having a Spider Seeker transmit a live video feed to Crime Central. At that moment Peter arrives at OsCorp to see Norman. However, the security guards do not let him through the front gate. Back inside Hobgoblin tells Norman that if he is going to go after Fisk he will need better weaponry. Norman replies that he's already given him everything he has. However, Hobgoblin replies that "Geniuses always make one thing but have a better on on the drawing board." Norman then gives Hobgoblin a bigger and better glider that can go higher and faster then his current one. Peter is then able to sneak into OsCorp and confronts the Hobgoblin as Spider-Man.
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As Hobgoblin flies off on his new glider Spider-Man shoots a web line at it and is carried into the sky along with the glider. Hobgoblin then flies into the city and is able to cut Spider-Man's web on a flag pole and release missiles from his glider that are able to lock onto Spider-Man and follow him. Hobgoblin then detaches his original glider from the new glider and is able to control the new glider from a remote to attack Spider-Man. As the glider hits Spider-Man it carries him above the city and Hobgoblin reattaches the other glider to it. Hobgoblin then flies back into the city and Spider-Man is able to get free from the front of the glider and dive into an open window on a building. Just then Hobgoblin fires missles from his glider which go into the same window as Spider-Man and explode. Believing that Spider-Man is dead the Hobgoblin laughs at his fallen enemy.

Cast

Actor Role
Christopher Daniel Barnes Spider-Man / Peter Parker
Ed Asner J. Jonah Jameson
Linda Gary May Parker
Sara Ballantine Mary Jane Watson
Patrick Labyorteaux Flash Thompson
Rodney Saulsberry Joseph Robertson
Gary Imhoff Harry Osborn
Mark Hamill Hobgoblin
Roscoe Lee Browne Kingpin / Wilson Fisk
Maxwell Caulfield Alistair Smythe
Neil Ross Norman Osborn
John F. Beard Newscaster

Cameos

Locations

  • Fisk School of Criminology
  • Harry and Peter's apartment

Items

Continuity

None.

Trivia

  • This is John Semper's least favorite episode because Semper wanted to use the Green Goblin first like in the comics. However, the story editor before Semper changed the order. John Semper Jr. wanted to change the order the Hobgoblin and the Green Goblin appeared. However, Semper was overruled by Avi Arad because his company, Toy Biz, had already created a Hobgoblin action figure.
  • John Semper Jr. was going to have Norman Osborn become the Hobgoblin. This idea was scrapped by the intervention of Stan Lee.
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  • Frank Gorshin, who is best known for playing Riddler in the 1960's Batman series, auditioned for the role of Hobgoblin before Mark Hamill was cast.
  • When Spider-Man first fights Hobgoblin, Spider-Man tells Hobgoblin "Sorry Charlie." Sorry Charlie is the catchphrase of the StarKist tuna. Sorry Charlie would be told to StarKist mascot Charlie the Tuna at the end of the commercials.
  • For five years Sara Ballantine voiced Charlie's girlfriend in the StarKist Tuna commercials.
  • When Spider-Man first encounters the Hobgoblin, Spider-Man says "This clowns out maneuvering me every steep of the way." Spider-Man calling Hobgoblin a clown could be a reference to Mark Hamill's role as the Joker in Batman: The Animated Series.
  • Spider-Man briefly mentions the actor Sylvester Stallone.
  • Peter Parker mentions the painter Andy Warhol when he is talking to Mary Jane about decorating his apartment.
  • During the same conversation Mary Jane also mentions the artists Robert Motherwell and David Hockney.
  • When Hobgoblin first enters Crime Central he tells Kingpin that he thought Crime Central was just a myth like El Dorado or Shangri-La. In mythology El Dorado is a city made totally out of gold and Shangri-La is a mystical, harmonious valley, gently gided from a monastery, enclosed in the western end of the Kunlun Mountains. The legend of Shangri-La began in the 1933 novel Lost Horizon by James Hilton.
  • When Alistair Smythe asks why Hobgoblin wears a mask Hobgoblin answers that for centuries hobgoblins have been a symbol of fear. This statement actually is not true because in folklore hobgoblins played pranks on humans but never meant to harm them. Also in folklore hobgoblins would live with humans and do chores around the house while the humans slept.
  • When this episode was adapted into the eleventh issue of the Spider-Man Adventures it was given the subtitle Bad Luck & Trouble.
  • The issues full title was The Hobgoblin, Part I: Bad Luck & Trouble.

Episode review

A review by Amazing Spidey from Marvel Animation Age

Once again production troubles come into play with this series. Anyone who's read any Spider-Man comics in his or her lifetime will know the Green Goblin debuted over 20 years before the Hobgoblin did. However, it went the other way in this cartoon; it would be another 2 seasons before The Green Goblin appeared. The reason behind this is one that left from an apparently clueless previous producer, which couldn't be changed as once again, toys were being produced, and money was being made. No one is quite sure why the previous producer made Hobgoblin come first, but I personally thought it was very, very cool.

This didn't leave a huge plot hole in the series, far from it, the introduction of a new Goblin later came across flawlessly, The Hobgoblin angle benefited it all. It worked as a prelude to Norman becoming the Green Goblin, and set up Peter learning that Wilson Fisk was actually The Kingpin. It probably helped that The Hobgoblin is arguably the coolest villain in the entire show. He had a great design and an outstanding voice in Mark Hamill. Easily one of the best, as far as Spidey's rouges gallery goes.

The Aunt May in a coma is nothing new, as it's been done in the comics hundreds of times, but the reason behind it was especially lame, as she went into a full coma because his room was a mess. Even though she just saw her nephew attacked by a Goblin on a glider, she gets shocked over his room. After a party no less. This show did a horrible job with Aunt May, on the odd occasion. She truly was the one supporting cast member with the weakest development.

The animation in the fight in the air between Spider-Man and The Hobgoblin shined, especially some of the explosions. Whilst this episode was simply a set up off what was to come in part 2, it did it very well. I especially liked how Norman was portrayed in this episode. It gave us a great build up to him eventually becoming The Green Goblin.

Quotes

"I don't understand why you do these things."

"It's important that I convince the press that I'm public spirited. They must never suspect my real occupation."

-Alistair Smythe & Kingpin

"I'd be great to have my own place in the city. Closer to campus. I wonder how Aunt May would take it."

-Peter Parker

"It's an honor for me to turn over this first load of earth on the site of what will soon be the Fisk School of Criminology."

-Wilson Fisk

"Dig a hole Fisk. Wide enough for your final resting place."

-Hobgoblin

"Just what the world needs another nut in a costume."

-Peter Parker

"Sorry Charlie. . ."

"Spider-Man!"

". . .but your a little late for Halloween."

"Names Hobgoblin and your right on time. . . for your funeral."

-Spider-Man & Hobgoblin

"He won't be a match for Spidey."

"I hope they finish each other off."

-Two bystanders

"I wanna know who that mad man is."

-Kingpin

"Your pathetic. How did you ever get your reputation?"

"Must have been the tabloids."

-Hobgoblin & Spider-Man

"Nose bleed territory! Why do I get myself into these things?"

-Spider-Man after Hobgoblin uses his glider to fly himself and Spider-Man above the city

"Enjoying the flight?"

"Some flight! No peanuts. No Stallone movie. I'm outta here!"

-Hobgoblin & Spider-Man

"Perfect landing. Just as I planned it."

-Spider-Man after accidentally grabbing a curtain which stops him from hitting the ground

"How do I manage to find all these nutcases? Where do they come from? And how do I get 'em to go back?"

-Spider-Man

"You can't talk to me like I'm some punk!"

"Before a wing and the weapons you were just a punk! An ambitious hood in a mask! I made you the Hobgoblin and now I'm unmaking you! Don't forget I know your real identity. I've stored it where it will come out if anything happens to me!"

"You owe me Osborn and I'll take the wing as my down payment."

-Hobgoblin & Norman Osborn

"I knew you'd understand. But I want you to know something. No matter where I go I'll always be here for you when you need me."

-Peter Parker to Aunt May

"Peter what a beautiful place. I just hope you two bachelors don't ruin it with dayglow velvet paintings."

"And I suppose your place is gonna be filled with Warhol's."

"Please, Hockney's and Motherwell's. No offense but you and Harry could be busted any minute by the design police. Lucky for you I'm here to help."

-Mary Jane & Peter Parker

"Big windows. Perfect for web slinging. Moving out it could be the best thing I ever did."

-Peter Parker

"What are your secrets Fisk? There's money to be made from secrets."

-Hobgoblin

"Not even you can fly high enough or fast enough to avoid a trip to the next world."

-Kingpin to Hobgoblin

"So this is what it's all about. I didn't think this place existed. I thought it was a legend like El Dorado or Shangri-La. A pipe dream followed by criminal lunatics to entertain the gullible. But it's true isn't it! There really is one nerve center that controls most of the crime on this planet. And this is it! Call off your men Fisk."

"And why should I do that?"

"Cause you can do just about anything Fisk. Or should I say Kingpin?"

-Hobgoblin & Kingpin

"Why do you dress that way?"

"For centuries the hobgoblins been a symbol of irrational fear and terror. I want this face to be the very last thing me enemies see."

-Alistair Smythe & Hobgoblin

"Why do the people I care about always get hurt when I'm just trying to do the right thing? It happens whether I'm Spider-Man or Peter. I just can't seem to win. First Uncle Ben now this. How can I live with myself if anything happens to Aunt May?"

-Peter Parker

"Hello Osborn. I found a new job. Ha ha ha ha. Hope you don't mind but I used your name on my resume."

-Hobgoblin

"I know that laugh anywhere."

-Peter Parker

"Different wing same jerk."

-Spider-Man

"Tell me Spider-Man, how did you find me?"

"I followed the slime trail."

-Hobgoblin & Spider-Man

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