Todd McFarlane’s Spider-Man Nearly Had Green Goblin As Its First Villain


In the newest Comic Book Legends Revealed, see how shut Green Goblin got here to being the primary villain of Todd McFarlane’s Spider-Man collection

Welcome to Comic Book Legends Revealed! This is the eight hundred and fifty-ninth installment the place we look at three comic book legends and decide whether or not they’re true or false. As typical, there will likely be three posts, one for every of the three legends.

NOTE: If my Twitter page hits 5,000 followers, I’ll do a bonus version of Comic Book Legends Revealed that week. Great deal, proper? So go comply with my Twitter page, Brian_Cronin!


Green Goblin was initially going to be the primary villain of Todd McFarlane’s Spider-Man collection.



Recently, I did a Comic Book Legends Revealed about Todd McFarlane’s 1990 launch of a brand new ongoing Spider-Man collection for Marvel, and particularly how the thought WASN’T his, however fairly, one thing that Spider-Man group editor Jim Salicrup got here up with in order that he wouldn’t lose his famous person artist from the Spider-Man places of work.

In Comics Scene Spectacular #2, McFarlane defined what occurred to Daniel Dickholtz, “If it was my choice, I wouldn’t have created another Spider-Man book. You’ve got four, so you’re going to hit them with a fifth book? But the decision to do a Spider-Man book wasn’t mine. I just wanted to go into a new book and do some writing as well as the artwork, and they [specifically Salicrup – BC] wanted me to continue doing Spider-Man, so the best way to keep everybody happy was to create another Spider-Man title. And I’m going to turn that down, being the character that he is. I mean, I would have had to go to a lesser character or create a new one that nobody really knew about, but this way, I can have my cake and eat it too.”

By the best way, the 4 books on the time that McFarlane is referring to are Amazing Spider-Man, Spectacular Spider-Man, Web of Spider-Man and Marvel Tales, a ebook that reprinted older Spider-Man tales (I do not assume lots of people consider that as a “Spider-Man” comedian ebook, nevertheless it was within the Spider-Man workplace on the time).

McFarlane famous, although, that that led to his fears over making his ebook standout, as he identified, “Since I’m doing it, my biggest thing is to make this book different from the others, just to justify having it out there.”

RELATED: The Image Comic Barry Windsor-Smith Decided to Re-Write as He Drew It

One of the ways in which Salicrup determined to assist McFarlane was to make the ebook a bit completely different from the opposite titles, when it comes to continuity, within the sense that McFarlane’s Spider-Man comedian didn’t must comply with the identical type of strict continuity of the opposite three books, which regularly mirrored one another’s ongoing subplots in them (for a time, Gerry Conway was truly writing Spectacular Spider-Man and Web of Spider-Man, giving these two books a REALLY tight continuity). Before McFarlane left Amazing Spider-Man, the books had only recently accomplished a quasi crossover the place Spider-Man gained Cosmic superpowers that was fairly tight, continuity-wise.

McFarlane famous about this continuity method that “They were doing it basically to save me from floundering and to minimize my mistakes,” nonetheless he additionally realized that the tradeoff additionally allowed him “to do bigger storylines. So, we’re going to play it like a mini-series within a series, although I can’t very well do anything major-major. I can’t chop Peter Parker’s arm off because then we would have to chop it off in the other books. I can chop it off within my story; I just somehow have to re-attach it by the time the story’s over.”

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However, the liberty that McFarlane had had some limitations, together with him not being allowed to launch the collection with the unique villain he needed to make use of, the Green Goblin!

He recalled, “I wanted to start off with a Spider-Man/Green Goblin confrontation. I figured the two classic guys in the first five issues, I mean, what better way to start off a story? but they’ve already got plans for the Green Goblin. With some of the others, I would go, ‘Well, how about this guy?’ ‘No, he’s tied up.’ By the time we ran through the list, I was limited as to who I could use, so I made it a hybrid, bringing in an old guy, crossing it over with a new bad guy, to see if I can pull off a semi-interesting story.”

In the tip, McFarlane selected one older Spider-Man villain, the Lizard…

however he combined the Lizard up with a more recent villain, Calypso, a minor villain related to Kraven who had solely made two appearances within the mid-Eighties earlier than McFarlane introduced her again as a principally behind-the-scenes villain in “Torment,” together with her full reveal not even coming till the penultimate challenge of the story…

“Torment” positively was an fascinating story, and it was an enormous hit! Spider-Man remained principally in its personal type of continuity till it briefly tied in with Maximum Carnage with points #35-37, earlier than then REALLY looping into the opposite three Spider-Man books with challenge #44, as Howard Mackie left Web of Spider-Man to take over Spider-Man with the late, nice Tom Lyle.

Thanks to Todd McFarlane and Daniel Dickholtz for the knowledge!


Check out some leisure legends from Legends Revealed:

1. Was There an Ending Filmed for Raiders of the Lost Ark That Was Cut From U.S. Prints of the Film?

2. How Did Missing Scrabble Pieces Lead to the Creation of Trivial Pursuit?

3. Did Van Morrison’s Record Company Force Him to Change the Name of His Song “Brown Skinned Girl” to “Brown Eyed Girl?”

4. How Did Abe Lincoln Growing a Beard Kick Start Milton Bradley’s Gaming Career?


Check again quickly for half 2 of this installment’s legends!

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