Amazing Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #14

Credits:

Cover Date: July 1964

Cover Artist: Steve Ditko

“The Grotesque Adventure of the Green Goblin”

Plotters: Stan Lee, Steve Ditko

Scripter: Stan Lee

Penciller: Steve Ditko

Inker: Steve Ditko

What’s Going On?

Spider-Man gets an offer to star in a Hollywood movie, but it was all part of a plan to ambush the hero by his newest villain, the Green Goblin!

Details:

  • A new villain, the Green Goblin, is plotting against Spider-Man, and he’s got the Enforcers on his side.

  • The Green Goblin then approaches a Hollywood producer about a movie starring Spider-Man fighting the Enforcers.

  • Once things were in place for his plan, the Goblin cruises around NYC on his broomstick until Spidey decided to investigate. The Goblin then tells Spidey about a chance to be a movie star.

  • Spidey agrees to the movie deal, but mainly because the Parkers need the money.

  • J. Jonah Jameson decides to send Peter to Hollywood to photograph the Spider-Man movie. Meanwhile, Betty Brant is upset with Peter because Liz Allan has been giving him attention lately.

  • On the New Mexico shooting location for the movie, Spider-Man doesn’t realize that his co-stars are not actors, but the real Enforcers. It doesn’t take long for Spidey to find out, because they are quick to attack him!

  • The Enforcers and Green Goblin work pretty well as a team, although they are not quite able to overwhelm Spider-Man.

  • Spider-Man retreats to a nearby cave to catch ha breath, but the Green Goblin and Enforcers are right behind him. In the dark, Spidey is able to take out the Enforcers.

  • In a bizarre coincidence, this cave happens to be where the Hulk is currently hiding out! The Hulk is not excited to meet Spider-Man, though…

  • Spidey is outmatched in a fight with the Hulk.

  • Spidey does what he can to avoid the Hulk’s punches until he can get out of the Hulk’s cave; the Hulk eventually gave up chasing Spider-Man. Spidey noticed the Green Goblin try to sneak away; despite the hero’s best efforts, the Goblin escapes.

  • Spidey left the Enforcers tied up and unconscious for some local police before heading back to the movie studio. Apparently, since they didn’t make a movie, Spidey isn’t getting paid!

  • As Peter Parker begins making his way back to New York from California, the Green Goblin returns to his unknown base of operations in New York. Apparently, his ultimate plan had been to create a worldwide criminal organization.

  • The Green Goblin states that his true identity is still secret, and his power is undiminished, even after failing in his first effort at villainy.

Is It Good?

This is an absolutely silly story, but it was still good. Even when the plot is convoluted —- and “casting Spider-Man in a movie to ambush him, but accidentally get into a fight with the Hulk at the same time” is definitely that —- the characters are very fun to watch. The Green Goblin is a scheming villain, which is a nice change for Spidey’s rogues gallery. It doesn’t hurt that the Green Goblin’s character design is great.

Continuity:

  • This is the first appearance of the Green Goblin. He has a flying “broom” that he rides, and various bombs that he carries in his satchel. He wears a mask, so he doesn’t actually have green skin.

  • Unlike most Marvel villains at this point, the secret identity of the Goblin is kept secret from the readers.

  • The Hulk last appeared in Avengers #5.
  • The Enforcers (Fancy Dan, Montana, and Ox) last appeared in Amazing Spider-Man #10.
  • Timeline alert! Peter is a high school senior.

  • Spider-Man is strong enough for his punches to hurt the Thing, but not strong enough to hurt the Hulk.
  • In the letters page, Stan Lee explains why Bill Everett is no longer drawing Daredevil; it is implied that he is too busy with other work.

Comics Are Goofy:

  • Goblins can’t count.

  • The Green Goblin flew into the movie producer’s Hollywood office. That means he either flew on his broom from New York to LA, or else he checked his costume and broom on an airplane flight. And he flew back at the end of the story!
  • I love Flash’s “Archie”-style sweater.

  • Betty, relax. Peter has no money, has no Hollywood connections, and is a teenager. Why would any starlet look twice at him?

  • This is the second Marvel story where a villain lured the hero into a trap by casting them in a movie. The other is Fantastic Four #9.

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