If you have any familiarity with Spider-Man comics then you probably know that the Green Goblin is the main baddie for Spidey. What many people don’t know is that the Green Goblin was not the only goblin to challenge the wall crawler for control of New York City. There have been goblins galore in the past and a recent trend has seen incredible gains for the Pepsi to Green Goblin’s Coke (or the other way around if you are a Pepsi elitist)…The Hobgoblin. The Hobgoblin first appeared in The Amazing Spider-Man #238 in March of 1983. As is the natural evolution of a comic villain there have been multiple people to hold the moniker of the Hobgoblin including: Roderick Kingsley, Ned Leeds, and Phil Urich. The character’s basic concept has remained consistent through most variations and include the goblin glider, a scary suit, and the such. Once the goblin ball started rolling downhill, we were eventually treated to more Greens, a Demogoblin, Protogoblin, a Red Goblin….whew!…..Goblintastic!
Value trends for The Amazing Spider-Man #238 have been up considerably in recent months. Personally, I was happy to snag a 9.8 copy a few months ago below the Fair Market Value (FMV) of $900. The analysis shows all copies above 9.0 trending positive, with 9.8, up 21.4%. However, this book has been extremely volatile the past few months and heating up. Copies have sold for below FMV, but most seem to be selling for inflated premiums when they hit the market. Direct issues have gone on the open market for over $1000 hitting as high as $1100-$1200 range. Yet, every once in a while, a copy will hit the market for a reasonable price (like the one I snagged), so keep your eyes open and wallets ready! If you are lucky enough to snag a newsstand copy (I did, and I always lean Newsstand if all is equal) of the book, that should help your value grow even more significantly over time as Newsstand copies do outpace Direct copies on the market…unless you pulled out the free Tattooz to make yourself cooler!
How significant is cover art to the value of a book? Undoubtedly very important, a pretty book may get more looks and be more desired by hardcore fans. The Amazing Spider-Man #238 has some of the best Bronze/Modern cover art from the Spider-Man series. The classic John Romita Jr. Cover of the Hobgoblin tearing the spidey suit in two is an iconic key cover. It is currently also the subject of many homage covers for Amazing Spider-Man (ASM) #800 and soon will be the basis for future homage cover offerings. In my mind, homage covers are like having an old song in a new movie. It can re-engage an old core audience to repurchase a classic or bring a new audience to the art.
We also have the possibility of getting the Hobgoblin in a future Spider-Man Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) or Sony Marvel Universe offering. Although this is unlikely, it is still a possibility, which for speculating means everything. With the recent jump in comics, like ASM #212 (First Hydro-Man) that went haywire the past few weeks over a maybe rumor at best, anything is possible!
Is the Hobgoblin your favorite goblin in the Marvel Universe? Do you hope that we see another Goblin in movies or are you Goblin-ed out already? Drop you comments and join in the conversation!