Friday, December 4, 2009

SPIDER-MAN #7 - February 1991

Masques - Part Two

Credits: Todd McFarlane (artist/writer), Jim Novak (letterer), Gregory Wright (colors)

Summary: Ghost Rider arrives, interrupting Spider-Man’s fight with the Hobgoblin. Spider-Man warns Ghost Rider to watch out for Adam, but he doesn’t seem to listen. During the fight, Ghost Rider knocks Hobgoblin unconscious after he grabs the boy, causing Adam minor injuries. Ghost Rider leaves, ignoring Spider-Man’s lecture on heroism.

Panel Count: Fifty-nine panels. That averages out to less than three panels per page.

Where’s Felix? : For the second issue in a row, I don’t see a Felix.

Review: It’s a big fight issue, although McFarlane tries to add depth with some tacked on messages about true heroism. I appreciate that he’s trying to make the stories about more than the surface-level plot, but this is just too ham-fisted and obvious. I’ve only read a few Ghost Rider comics from this era, but it seems to me like he’s not even in-character. Was Ghost Rider ever one of those anti-heroes who just wanted to massacre villains and didn’t care about the bystanders?

The fight scene’s choreography also leaves a lot to be desired. Most of the page layouts just consist of a page divided in two by giant panels, and the characters often seem to be posing instead of moving. I can’t even make out how the Hobgoblin is defeated, as he just falls over before the Ghost Rider seems to reach him on his motorcycle. (By the way, I haven’t mentioned yet that I always thought remaking the Hobgoblin into a religious freak was a dumb idea, and it only got worse when later writers tried to deal with his new personality.) I will give McFarlane credit for the Hobgoblin’s new glider, which is now a literal goblin made of fire. It looks amazing, and it’s the type of thing the Hobgoblin should’ve been doing with his new powers.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

If you have some Spectacular/Web issues from this time, you should throw some reviews of them in too! The DeMatteis/Buscema stuff from this period was great.

Matt said...

"I will give McFarlane credit for the Hobgoblin’s new glider, which is now a literal goblin made of fire. It looks amazing, and it’s the type of thing the Hobgoblin should’ve been doing with his new powers."

I'm pretty sure (or I just have a very overactive imagination) that in one of the Conway/Buscema Spectacular issues, he lost the glider and re-created it. It appeared first as flame, then solidified into the normal purple glider. It sounds like McFarlane decided it would look better at the "halfway point" (and he was probably right)!

The Estate of Tim O'Neil said...

Looking back, although the Demon Hobgoblin started off cool, what it really did was begin the long downward spiral of a villain who had been the best addition to Spidey's rogues gallery during the 80s.

wwk5d said...

I remember the demonic version of Hobgoblin was used in another Spider-title around or before this story...he teams up with Carrion, I think, against Spider-man for a 2 parter. I don't remember him having a religious angle, however...

Anonymous said...

Reading the awesome howard mackie ghost rider early issues. yeah it seems like Mcfarlane ignore Mackie's characterization of the ketch ghost rider and use the look only. Ghost Rider was always concerned and put innocent life as priority. I guess he needed him to act that way so Spidey can lecture him.

oh wwkd, Hobgoblin appeared in the spec title by conway when he team up with carrion. Jason Macadale personality was still dominate so the religious fever didnt appear until Mcfarlane. He also appear in Amazing in the Return of the Sinister Six 6 parter which he obvious Macadale is calling the shots in that story.

Jeff said...

Thank God Roger Stern fixed all the Hobgoblin crap by having the original Hobby firebomb Macendale in his jail cell.

G. Kendall said...

Gerry Conway did a great job with the demonic Hobgoblin, and that Carrion two-parter is probably the best Carrion story ever. McFarlane arbitrarily changing Hobgoblin's personality just seemed to encourage future writers to keep screwing around with the character.

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