I am enjoying this mini-series more than I probably should. I liked Stern/Romita Spider-Man in the ‘80s and was interested in the mystery surrounding the Hobgoblin’s identity. As soon as Tom DeFalco took over the writing from Roger Stern, though, he began diluting the mystery into a hokey “comic-booky” resolution. Because DeFalco was Stern’s editor before taking over the writing, I assumed at the time that the hints concerning the Hobgoblin’s identity were consistent from writer to writer, but that was not the case. Starting with his very first script (over Stern’s plot), DeFalco wrote dialogue inconsistent with the clues Stern had established. By the time the Hobgoblin’s “true identity” was revealed, I no longer cared.

Several years later, in the mini-series Hobgoblin Lives! (drawn by Ron Frenz and inked by George Perez), Stern was given the opportunity to overturn DeFalco’s resolution in favor of the ending he had originally planned. I enjoyed the series at the time, but no longer cared about the Hobgoblin’s identity. Until earlier this year I hadn’t read Roger Stern’s 1980s run on Spectacular Spider-Man (which introduces the character who would become the Hobgoblin), and by the time I did, I had forgotten who it was. (Hey, it’s been 17 years since Hobgoblin Lives!) After I finished reading the 1980s Stern stories, I re-read Hobgoblin Lives! just in time for the new Hobgoblin series.

After I read the first issue, I re-read the character’s initial appearances in Spectacular Spider-Man, as well as the post-Stern Hobgoblin stories written by Tom DeFalco in the ’80s. This is the kind of convoluted story that can appear only in comic books (when one writer overturns something established by an earlier writer, and a later writer overturns that). The second issue of the new mini-series shipped yesterday, and I spent some time earlier today catching up on Goblin-related plot developments I have missed over the course of the last 17 years. I may even pick up some back issues before #3 ships!

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I just read issue no. 1 yesterday. I liked the concept of the book and its effort to rationalize the confusing Hobgoblin backstory. Most of all, however, I liked the "appearances" of a number of C-List heroes in the book and trying to remember their names. 
I'll grab No. 2 the next time I'm back at my store for sure! 

So don't keep me in suspenders! Is the Hobgoblin the fashion guy, his twin brother, Ned Leeds, or what?

Suspenders? This is the 21st century! Get with the times, hepcat!

 

Yeah, it's "the fashion guy" (Roderick Kingsly), seen here on the cover of his very first appearance.

Although never explicitly stated, Roderick Kingsly was obviously intended to be gay, predating Northstar as Marvel's first gay super-powered character by quite some time.

I'm just digging it because it's goofy fun.

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