Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #49

 Lookback: Filling Gaps
 Posted: 13 Oct 2022
 Staff: Dave Sippel (E-Mail)

Background

After long trying to dodge the consequences of being possessed by a demon, the Hobgoblin finally managed to kill his tormentor, the Demogoblin. He managed this by taking an experimental formula created by Vladimir Kravinoff, the son of Kraven the Hunter. Meanwhile, Spider-Man's anger at criminals for always coming back into his life is consuming him.

Story 'Cold Hearts'

  Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #49
Summary: First Coldheart
Arc: Part 4 of 'Beware the Rage of a Desperate Man' (1-2-3-4)

Spider-Man's rage was making him lash out without pity. Coming across a mugging in progress, he threw the crook against a wall and webbed him to the ground, without a word. He swung away, ignoring the intended victim.

In a classified government facility, a woman entered a room containing state of the art battle armor. She hoped to escape the depression that had overtaken her months ago. The armor represented comfort and revenge, which she took out on a pair of guards that confronted her. Wielding two glowing blue swords, she cut through them and said that she may have been declared mentally unfit to be a field operative but she was going on one last mission.

In Manhattan's upper west side, the Hobgoblin enjoyed the new strength that was filling his body. His career as a mercenary was back on track and he could name any price but there was still something missing. He would not be denied anything. Crashing through the window of his ex-wife's new home, he taunted her asking if she recognized him. He scoffed at her new husband, saying he looked like an accountant. Hobgoblin slammed the new husband into a wall and then said he was taking their son.

The police arrived shortly afterward and Spider-Man followed their sirens to the scene. Even he was surprised at how brazen the Hobgoblin was being, taking hostages in the middle of the city and not bothering to hide the fact. He walked into the front door, telling a cop it would be over soon. The woman in the armor watched from a rooftop, glad to see that both Spider-Man and Hobgoblin were in one place.

In Russia, Gregor told Vladimir that the strength formula was as purified as it could be at that time but asked him to wait for more testing. Vladimir refused, saying that he was the son of Kraven the Hunter and would wait no longer.

In New York, Hobgoblin told Spider-Man didn't want to fight, he just wanted his son back. No one would stop him as his life was finally coming together. Spider-Man silently realized that Hobgoblin's life was coming together as his life was falling apart. His aunt was dying in the hospital, he wasn't speaking with his wife, and his parents turned out to be fakes. He couldn't let himself dwell on it he told himself, as he smashed a mirror. He tried to web the Hobgoblin but the web turned to ice and shattered. The woman with the swords pinned him to the ground, calling him a murderer. Hobgoblin blasted through the ceiling and escaped with his son.

Spider-Man said the woman let them escape and she replied that she'd find Hobgoblin and make him pay for everything he'd done and she was going to do the same thing to Spider-Man. He and all superheroes needed to die she told him, as she pointed the sword at him. He tried to push it away but screamed in pain, realizing that it was cold enough to nearly freeze his hand. He told her that he didn't have time for this and he had to save the kid. She told him not to talk about children, and superheroes only fought for their own glory without thinking about the world around them. She said that the world would be better off without superheroes and Spider-Man was indignant. He put his life on the line all the time to save innocents and was trying to save a child right then. She asked where he had been when her Joey needed them. He had no idea what she was talking about and knocked her back and swung away.

Nearby, Hobgoblin was looking for his son, who had pulled away from him and fallen to a rooftop. Finding his son, he took off his mask to show that he was really his father. That terrified his son as much as anything, telling him to leave him alone. Putting his mask back on, he said that he had been gone for too long and needed to teach his son some respect. He ordered his son to come to him, or else his beating would be even worse. That's when Spider-Man arrived and said he was going to be the one getting the beating. Hobgoblin said that Jay was his son and he'd do what he wanted with him, causing Spider-Man to rant that he was tired of bad guys playin with people's lives. Hobgoblin fought back, saying he'd been living his life in a rage and told him to get used to it.

Enraged, Spider-Man pummeled him saying that he'd been angry for so long that he couldn't remember not being in a rage. Hobgoblin asked if he was supposed to be afraid and Spidey said he should be, and knocked him backward. Hobgoblin said he'd broken his jaw and threw a bomb, saying the kid wasn't worth it. Spidey found shelter before the bomb detonated but Jay was knocked off the roof. Spidey caught him and despite his rage, he still felt relief that the kid was safe.

The woman was there and held her sword to Spidey's throat, telling him not to move. He was going to pay for all of the lives he'd ruined. Spidey knew he couldn't move, the sword had somehow frozen him in place. Jay told her to stop and leave Spider-Man alone. He'd saved him from his father. She looked at him and left to go after Hobgoblin but they both escaped. Spidey knew they'd be back but he was glad Jay was safe.

Somewhere, a mystery man rode off on a motorcycle as his co-workers wondered where he was going. He had been a good worker and suddenly quit his job, only saying he needed to go back east. Someone close to him had had a stroke.

In Russia, Vladimir rose from the medical bed saying that he felt alive, strong and vital. He told Gregor to have the servants ready to travel to America. It was time to claim the legacy of Kraven the Hunter.

General Comments

It's finally over. I keep thinking that this read like a stereotypical comic book. It's stereotypical in the way that the general public thinks about them: lots of pointless action and no character development. Coldheart is a bland character, and actually, she is never called Coldheart in the issue.

I wondered how a small child could break free of his father, now that Macendale is so strong.

The whole story is just empty.

Overall Rating

This sucked.

 Lookback: Filling Gaps
 Posted: 13 Oct 2022
 Staff: Dave Sippel (E-Mail)