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You'll address me, Mr. Negative, as the Goblin King. I've earned it.
~ Goblin King

Goblin King is a superhero turned supervillain in the Marvel Comics universe. He is an enemy of the following heroes: Turbo, Darkhawk, Spider-Man, Hercules, Spider-Girl, Agent Venom and Superior Spider-Man.

History

Born to Arnold and Mindy Urich, Phil started working with his uncle Ben Urich as a journalist at the Daily Bugle. On a journalism assignment, the two discovered one of the late Harry Osborn's secret lairs. Phil discovered that Harry, before his death, had been working on new goblin gear, notably a new goblin suit and glider. When a group of thugs who were looking to extort the new goblin gear, Phil was knocked into a chemical bath of an untested version of the Goblin Formula. Donning a new goblin mask, which delivered a 'zap' giving Goblin-level strength without the psychotic side-effects, he scared off the hoods. Later on, he decided that the costume and equipment could be put to good use, and set out to be a superhero instead of a villain like the previous Goblins.

Phil would start parading around as the Green Goblin and getting into fights with super-villains including Hobgoblin (Macendale), Rhino, Joystick, and Angel Face. Some believed Phil to be as maniacal as the rest of the Goblins, but he claims he was only doing it for kicks. When a corrupt judge sent the assassin Purge to kill his uncle Ben, Phil decided he needed to take on his new persona with responsibility. Teaming up with Daredevil, they were able to stop Purge, giving the new hero a lot of attention and developing a small but devoted following. After Phil saved Liz Allan and her son, Normie, from Angel Face she gave Phil her "blessing" to use the Green Goblin identity. Phil's costume would later become damaged during the Onslaught saga after Phil crashed his glider into a Sentinel attacking the Daily Bugle in order to destroy the robot. Repairing it was beyond his scope, and after getting beaten without his powers, he finally decided to give up being the Green Goblin.

Later, Phil, and Mickey Musashi (formerly Turbo), form a superhero self-help group called The Loners to prevent teenagers from becoming superheroes and aiding young former superheroes get over their pasts. Eventually Phil suffers a mental breakdown when he witnesses Musashi and Chris Powell kiss, having convinced himself that he and Mickey had feelings for each other. He attacks them and steals the Darkhawk amulet. The Loners manage to defeat Phil and depower him, but he manages to escape with Hollow.

Back in New York, Phil lands a job at the new Front Line offices. There he develops a crush on his co-worker Norah, who was researching the "Goblin Gangs" for a story. Hoping to impress her with Goblin tech Phil goes to one of Norman's Goblin labs where he runs into Daniel Kingsley, the twin brother of the first Hobgoblin Roderick Kingsley. Kingsley attempts to kill Phil, when Phil snapped and was able to activate his sonic goblin laugh to incapacitate him. Using the new fire sword that Kingsley had just found, Phil decapitates him and takes over the mantle of Hobgoblin.

Operating as a supervillain, he attacks a local think tank, where he is confronted by Spider-Man. Using his “Lunatic Laugh” Phil manages to incapacitate the hero. When he attempts to decapitate the Wall-Crawler one of the think tank members disrupts the laugh freeing Spider-Man. Despite this Hobgoblin succeeds in escaping with the experimental metal he had come to steal and deliver it to the Kingpin. Spider-Man and Black Cat eventually catch up and battle Phil and the Kingpin to an attempt to retrieve the metal. During the fight, Phil uses his Laugh which causes the building to collapse. He manages to save the Kingpin from falling to his death and they both escape.

Still obsessed with Norah, Phil tries to break up her and Randy Robertson. When Alistair Smythe's minions attack the Front Line offices Phil seizes the opportunity and breaks a support beam, causing the ceiling to collapse on Randy. However, Randy somehow survives the collapse. After Hercules takes out one of Kingpin’s gangs Phil, as the Hobgoblin, is sent to deal with him. In an attempt to boost his popularity Phil filmed the fight with hidden cameras and aired the footage live. This plan backfired when Hercules won the fight, ironically boosting his popularity. In another attempt to impress Norah, Phil attacks Spider-Girl, after she comment on how impressive the female super hero was. In the ensuing fight Spider-Girl gains the upper hand and is on the verge of defeating him when Spider-Man decides to intervene, which allows the Hobgoblin to escape. Through various means Phil eventually succeeds in breaking up Randy and Norah. Knowing how to seduce her, Norah then kisses Phil shortly after.

During "Spider-Island" under orders from the Kingpin, Phil teamed up with Spider-Girl to fight the Sisterhood of the Wasp. The two were able to defeat the Sisterhood and then Spider-Girl ended her deal with the Kingpin after he was cured of his own spider powers by Spider-Man. Later Phil is sent to infiltrate a prisoner transport in order to eliminate the Human Fly for stealing money from the Kingpin. The hit is stopped due to Agent Venom also being on the transport. During the subsequent fight the Human Fly escapes. In an attempt to learn Spider-Man’s identity the Kingpin has Phil abduct Peter, who unbeknownst to them is Spider-Man. During the interrogation Roderick Kingsley appears garbed in his Hobgoblin costume and engages Phil. During their fight Parker escapes and Kingpin then orders the two Hobgoblins after him. They pursue him and both end up battling Spider-Man. However, the fight is interrupted when Kingsley decides to just kill Urich, but changes his mind at the last moment and allows Phil to retain the Hobgoblin persona on the condition that he gives Kingsley a cut of his profits. Reluctantly, Phil agrees.

Behind on his payment to Kingsley, the former Hobgoblin suggests that Phil just steal the money; causing Phil to start a chain of bank robberies, which attracts the attention of the Superior Spider-Man. During their fight Phil’s tech begins to fail, having been tampered with by the Tinkerer’s apprentice for Phil’s mistreatment of him, allowing Spider-Man to defeat Phil. Urich, however, manages to escape, but having placed a spider tracer on him, Spider-Man is able to discover Phil's identity as the Hobgoblin, which he reveals to the public. With his secret revealed, Phil realizes he has nowhere to run as his co-workers turn against him. Learning of his location Spider-Man confronts and defeats a manic Phil. He is later freed by Menace and delivered to the Goblin King, who upgrades his armor and weapons asking for his full dedication to Phil's only and new identity as the "Goblin Knight". Goblin King begins to train Urich, who becomes anxious to go up against Spider-Man again. Goblin King reprimands hims, telling him that it was his fault that he had to shut down his Goblin Protocols to avoid being detected.

When Monster is sent to prove herself the Goblin King sends Urich to observe. After witnessing the Goblin girls take down some of Rodrick's men, he reports back that she is legit. Before heading back he kills Steeplejack, one of Kingsley's men, impaling him with his sword. During the Goblin turf war, Urich is seen at the side of the Goblin King along with other unnamed Goblin Knights, some Hand Ninjas, and the remnants of Vulture's henchmen fighting against Hobgoblin's men. After Hobgoblin's defeat at the hands of Goblin King , Goblin Knight decides to make sure that the Hobgoblin killed was indeed Kingsley, recalling when he thought he'd killed him only to discover it was his brother. Upon removing the Goblin's mask, he discovers the face of another impostor. In order to ensure the Goblin King's triumph he decides to destroy the body, but still wonders where the real Kingsley is. He is next seen with Menace and Monster attacking Spider Island.

During the subsequent chaos caused by the Goblin army Phil pays a surprise visit to his uncle Ben promising him safety, but warns him to stay off the streets. Phil then goes to Norah’s apartment to exact revenge only to find Ben waiting for him. Ben tries to convince Phil to turn himself in and is about to inject with him a cure, when Phil’s Goblin minions bring in Robbie, who had been following Ben. Ben tries to convince Phil its not a trap, offering him the cure. Enraged, Phil smashes the vial and taking out his flame sword, slashes Robbie across the chest. Ben yell for help and when Phil’s lackeys try to silence him, Phil kills them instead. He then demands Ben tell him where the rest of the cure is located. It is then that Spider-Man arrives and during the ensuing fight Phil’s goblin mask is shattered. Seeing Phil’s face, Ben realizes Phil enjoys being a Goblin. Otto is able to stun Phil, but he tells them that if they want to save Robbie they’ll have to let him go. Having no other choice Ock and Ben allow Phil to escape, taking Robbie to the hospital. Afterwards, Phil is seen battling the Avengers and Cardiac until Spider-Man shows up and kicks him in the jaw causing him to flee.

With Osborn defeated Urich takes control of the remaining Goblin Underground proclaiming himself the new Goblin King. While at a meeting with Mister Negative to divide the criminal underground, Black Cat and Electro show up. The pair throw Eel (Marvel), who was supposed be at the meeting as well, in between them and tell them they want in on their plans. However, they refused. With the return of Roderick Kingsley to New York Phil sets out to prove his worth as the new Goblin King. Phil tries to free Lily Hollister from police custody, but only manages to destroy the police car in which she was being transferred. Later he kills one of Kingsley's Hobgoblin impostors.

To get Kingsley's attention, Urich attacked a building with children playing inside. As he expected, Roderick Kingsley did arrive to save the children, as he had recently been inverted due to the inversion spell. After a short battle, Urich realized how distracted Kingsley was. Instead of fighting, he told him to buy his new book about becoming a superhero before fleeing. Urich later confronted Kingsley at the latter's headquarters, remarking that Kingsley was insane. Urich attempted to kill Kingsley, but was soon confronted by Lily Hollister. She had amnesia, and had joined Kingsley's cause and taken the alias of the "Queen Cat." Urich battled some of Kinglsey's leased superheroes before being forced to escape through the window, leaving the message "Find Me Lily."

Back to his base, Urich was visited by John Myers, one of Kingsley's leased heroes (aka Missile Mate), who stepped out and wanted to be a villain. Urich was reluctant on inviting him to his army, which was being formed by half of the leased villains Kinglsey had abandoned, however, Myers revealed he had allied himself with the other half of those leased villains. Urich was visited in his base by the Queen Cat, who had agreed to double-cross Kingsley. During a celebration being held for the declaration of a Hobgoblin Day, Missle Mate failed to kill Kingsley, which prompted Urich and the Goblin Nation to jump into the action. Even though he was bested in combat by Kingsley, Urich expected the Queen Cat to betray the Hobgoblin. However, Lily revealed to have merely pretended to have any regard for their past relationship, and stated that having forgotten her criminal life might have been a gift she wasn't going to waste. After a failed attempt by the Missile Mate to escape with Urich, the Goblin King and the members of the Goblin Nation present in the scene were taken into custody.

The Goblin King would eventually return, this time appearing during Alchemax's representation of a new energy source in an attempt to steal it. Despite Spider-Man and Agent Anti-Venom arriving and defeating his henchmen, Goblin King escaped using his sonic scream. He later searched for new weaponry in one of Norman Osborn's old caches. Goblin King broke into Norman's abandoned East Side club, where he was holding J. Jonah Jameson hostage. Norman noticed Goblin King's presence in the lower levels of the building and confronted him. Completely unaware of Norman's new symbiote and the return of his Green Goblin powers, Phil attacked him with his sword. However, Norman stopped the attack and killed Phil by impaling his chest with his symbiote blades.

Other Versions

MC2

  • In the MC2 timeline, Phil Urich marries his girlfriend Meredith and becomes a forensic scientist and friend of Peter Parker. He is aware of both Peter and Spider-Girl's identities. Phil Urich resumes the Goblin identity, first under the name of the Golden Goblin, then as the Green Goblin with the assistance of Normie Osborn. After Urich loses a long series of battles, Normie recreates Urich's original mask, which grants him superhuman strength and other abilities, greatly enhancing his effectiveness. He is also a founding member of the new New Warriors. While Urich originally required the technology in the Goblin mask to enhance his physical abilities, he retained one power that he is able to activate without the mask. Urich is capable of using his laughter as a sonic weapon of sorts. His "lunatic laugh" has been shown to disorient opponents and even shatter their eardrums. He once used the laugh while out of costume to defeat the Venom symbiote after it had taken possession of Peter.

In Other Media

  • The Phil Urich incarnation of Hobgoblin was added to the superhero tabletop game Heroclix in 2013.

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