May Parker thought she had hung up her webs months ago, but just when she thought she was out... along comes a mysterious resident at the woman's shelter where she volunteers named Mona Carol who is in possession of a mysterious item, her loser ex-boyfriend (or is he?) who has picked up some enemies of his own, and a brand new crisis of conscience for the daughter of Spider-Man. And what May DOESN'T know is that the man behind this whole conspiracy is none other than... the Hobgoblin!
Peter Parker and Phil Urich are at the St. Andrews Battered Woman Shelter investigating the aftermath of Hobgoblin's attack that put Caitlin Leiber, the director, in the hospital. Both are worried that the attack could have something to do with May, who is at that moment taking the "high road" to school and feeling guilty about it. Her guilt ratchets up a few notches when she meets up with Courtney and learns that Caitlin has been assaulted. Unable to quell the suspicion that she had something to do with the attack, she suits up (in tights and a red hoodie) and heads over to the ice cream parlor where she tracked two of the Hobgoblin's goons to last issue.
At the aforementioned ice cream parlor, Hobgoblin informs two of his minions of his belief that Spider-Girl has an connection to St. Andrews, and orders them to target the teenage volunteers one by one. One of the hoods wonders what to do if Spider-Girl shows, and Hobgoblin shows him a battle suit employing "some advanced sonic technology that recently came into my possession." Hobgoblin leaves the two to bicker about who will wear the suit, and May arrives, making too much noise to enter undiscovered. She subdues the first criminal easily, but gives the second time to don the suit, assume the name of "Reverb," and use his sonic power to blast her through a window. Completely disoriented, May decides discretion is the better part of valor and flees back to school, where she is busted by Principal Slattery and thrown into detention.
Back at the Midtown South precinct, Detective Drasco has come to warn Peter after speaking with Caitlin in the hospital: "the perp asked her about her volunteers. I'm warning all of their parents to keep their eyes open." Peter tries to call May, but can't reach her. He calls MJ, who calls May's cell phone but is told in no uncertain terms by Mr. Slattery that May is unavailable for comment. Realizing that Courtney Duran is on her way to St. Andrews and could be in danger, MJ heads over to Midtown High and pulls May out of detention. May is shocked when MJ gives her her costume back, but honors MJ's one request: "please don't tell your father I caved!"
Still guilty about lying to her mother and now having to keep a secret from her father, May swings off as Spider-Girl in pursuit of Courtney. Webbing her ears shut to keep the sonic blasts from affecting her inner ear, Spider-Girl catches the two thugs just before they attack Courtney and knocks them into a construction site. Dodging a few blasts, May webs all of Reverb's speakers and stomps him deep into a freshly poured building foundation, blowing out his entire costume.
Back at the Hobgoblin's secret base of operations, Detective Drasco is giving Hobby a copy of Mona's jacket, telling him that he has questioned most of the people she knows and that everyone is playing dumb. This does not impress Hobgoblin in the slightest. "Find her! Recover what she stole! And kill anyone who gets in your way!"
Not bad. "Reverb" was a fairly generic throw-away villain and the obligatory fight scene was cookie cutter, but the overall story arc is picking up steam. I thought having MJ give May her costume back was a nice touch and completely in character (no matter how much it scares her, she knew her husband had a duty and now her daughter has that same duty.) May's guilty ruminations were a tad over the top, however. Granted, she hadn't been following the letter of her mother's previous edict, but it's not as if she was doing it for kicks, either. That's the Parker guilt for you, I suppose.
So Hobgoblin is trying to become the new Kingpin of Crime, eh? Also completely in character, and a nice parallel to his war against Wilson Fisk back during the Hobgoblin run in the 80s. Hopefully next issue we get a bit more about why this mysterious object in Mona's possession is so central to his plans.
Not a lot going on in this issue, but it gets from point "A" to point "B" rather decisively and is setting up what looks to be a good story arc. Bonus points for the snazzy cover.
I'm sticking with three and one half webs for the time being, as this issue didn't really have anything special other than the inevitable return to the costume. But I've got high hopes for this storyline.