The Green Goblin and Spider-Girl meet for their final showdown, but what chance will May have without her spider powers? Plus, Moose has a showdown of his own with Jack Jameson. Let's get ready to rumble!
May apparently couldn't put up much of a fight without her powers, as the issue opens with her tied to a chair unable to avoid a vicious slap in the face from the Green Goblin. Normie, without his mask, brags that they are finally going to end the war between the Parkers and the Osborns "as soon as one of us dies!" May tries to convince him that the troubles between her father and his grandfather have nothing to do with them, but Normie insists that he has a destiny, and instead of "putting you in some kind of ornate deathtrap and leaving you unattended so you have a chance to escape--" he whips out a butcher knife "--I've decided to dispense with the usual formalities and just go for the throat!"
Meanwhile, at Midtown High, Jimmy Yama (where has he been?) overhears a conversation between Brad and Davida. Brad tells her that he thinks Moose is going to thrash JJ. He doesn't care because, in his mind, "[JJ's] a two-timing weasel! If it weren't for him, May wouldn't have dumped me!" Davida quickly sets him straight, telling him that if he feels anything for May he should do something about it now, but what Jimmy cares about is Moose. Catching up with him in the hall, Jimmy tries to convince him not to beat up JJ. "Like I'm really going to listen to you, Yama. You don't care about me." Jimmy concedes that point, but tells Moose that "Courtney will never forgive you if you go off on JJ." Moose shrugs him off and goes looking for JJ anyway.
On the other side of town, despite Peter's protests, Phil Urich has suited up as the Golden Goblin again. Looking to protect May as well as build a reputation for himself, Phil fails miserably on both counts when he's ambushed by Nova, who thinks he's Normie Osborn. Phil tries to convince Nova of his innocence, and Nova asks if there is a legitimate super hero who will vouch for him. "Spider-Girl?" he offers. "I said legitimate." Phil is left at a loss for words.
Back at Midtown High, Moose finally manages to catch up with JJ. JJ gives him some attitude, seemingly unaware of the peril he might be in, but Moose doesn't deck him. "Much as I'd love to smash your face, I know how Court would react... and I... I couldn't do that to her." Moose says that he'll step aside, and a stunned JJ tries to tell him that all is not as it appears. Moose ignores him, only staying long enough to warn JJ not to hurt her "or you can supply your own threat."
In Osborn's secret hideout, Normie has been ranting the entire time, occasionally pausing long enough to backhand May across the face. Normie screams at her, wondering why she hasn't tried to escape, and May finally puts it together. He wants her to escape so she can stab him in the ensuing fight. Normie insists that one of them has to die, and plunges the knife... into her ropes, setting her free. With a look of disgust, he flings the knife into the Goblin mask on the desk. May, bruised and battered, falls down beside him and puts an arm around his shoulder, promising to get him some help. "The Parker/Osborn war is over... it's finally over!"
I have to admit, I thought Normie would end up dead after this issue, and I thought Moose would thrash JJ within an inch of his life. Maybe I'm just really morbid.
Well, let's hope Tom DeFalco (and all subsequent writers on this book) keeps the promise and don't turn Osborn into a villain again. Although it'll cost him a fortune to get that "Honor Thy Father--Kill The Spider" tattoo off of his back. I wonder what future Normie has in the MC2 Spiderverse. Does he just sort of fade away now that he's "cured," or does he have some role to play yet? I'm all for keeping him around if it can be turned into an interesting plotline, but I can't think of anything myself. Take the safe course for now and let him fade. You can always bring him back later if the mood strikes (but not as a Goblin!)
Speaking of Goblins... Phil, buddy, I TOLD YOU SO! Let's hope he quits for good this time!
As for Moose, I am very impressed. Considering that the only reason he hung out with Courtney in the first place is that he thought she was Spider-Girl, it's a little surprising how much he has come to care for her. I thought he was completely believable in how he wanted to smash JJ but didn't for Courtney's sake, and it hurt to see him walk away thinking that he lost his girlfriend to someone he really loathes. Not bad for someone who was originally just the school bully, although there was always something more to Moose even in his earliest appearances (remember when he saved Jimmy from the Dragon King?) What exactly IS up with JJ and Courtney, though? That's what I want to know next.
The art looked a little rushed in places, particularly May's headshot on page 5, which was kind of odd considering how good Olliffe and Williamson usually are. Don't go slipping on us, guys!
Three-and-a-half webs for the basic story, with an extra half web for Moose because he earned it. Now let's see about getting May her powers back.