Norman was the son of the scientist Amberson Osborn and Martha Osborn. When he was 16 years old, both his parents died on a car crash, leaving him an orphan. When on college, Norman met and befriended his rival Otto Octavius, and also met and fell in love with his future wife, Emily at some point. Thanks to their strong friendship, Octavius and Osborn earned the nickname "The O's", which the two would later use as the basis for their shared company, Oscorp. However, while Otto wanted to use their genius for the benefit of others, Norman was more focused on the financial gain, which created a rift between the two.
Years later, Emily fell ill from a unknown genetic disease. Wanting to do something to save his wife, Norman began to research on a revolutionary serum, capable of curing any genetic diseases, called GR-27. During the early stages of development of the serum, a young Martin Li was used as test subject, but the experiment failed, resulting in the death of Li's parents and permanently altered Martin physically and mentally. this incident caused Otto to leave Oscorp to do his own experiments on his own lab. However, despite Norman's best efforts on his research, he couldn't save her, with Emily passing away years later, but not before giving birth to their son, Harold "Harry" Osborn. In secret, Norman kept working on the serum, believing it could still one day be a potential cure, and while some tests did show promise, GR-27 proved to be extremely contagious and left the mice used to test them dead. This caused the scientists to nickname it Devil's Breath. In the 2010's, he was also elected the mayor of New York City.
Time passed, and Harry, his only son, started showing symptoms of the disease that killed Emily years earlier. His room was fitted with various pieces of hospital equipment meant to keep him alive until the cure was finished. This later proved to be ineffective, and Norman convinced Harry to try an another way to prolong his life, a symbiotic life form capable of keeping most diseases in check. Norman told the press that Harry would be visiting Europe, told Oscorp that Harry will be taken proper care in Europe, but in reality Harry is being kept in suspended animation in a healing tank inside a secret room in the Osborn penthouse, a fact only known by few people if even them.
During his re-election campaign, one of his campaign rallies was attacked by Martin Li's personal army, the Demons. This attack left Jefferson Davis, the father of Miles Morales and several dozen innocent attendees dead. This caused Norman to hire Silver Sablinova and her mercenaries to help protect New York City, as the NYPD couldn't handle the Demons alone. While Li was planning on attacking other campaign events, Spider-Man's research on him gave him enough evidence to convince Yuri Watanabe to both cancel and evacuate these events. Norman's support among New Yorkers started to fall. Li's attempts on discrediting and killing Norman finally ended after Spider-Man and Mary-Jane Watson stopped Li on the Grand Central Station, where Martin had planned on forcing Norman on releasing the Devil's Breath on innocent hostages.
Some time later, Li, among with various other supervillains was broken out of RAFT by Otto Octavius, who then released the bio-weapon on Times Square to exact revenge on Norman. To buy himself time, Norman blamed the breakout on Spider-Man. After Peter arrested the escaped convicts, he found Norman and Li under an Oscorp laboratory, fought and defeated Li and rescued Norman... temporarily. Otto entered the premises through the ceiling, beat Spider-Man half-dead, and took Norman with him. After receiving extensive medical care, Peter chased after Octavius. Otto took Norman to the roof of Oscorp Tower, before dangling him above the streets and demanding Norman to confess his crimes to the whole world. Norman refused, causing Otto to drop him before grabbing him again. Once again, Norman refused, and challenged Otto by claiming that he was only worth anything when he worked for him before calling him a failure. Furious, Otto let go of Norman before turning around to continue his plan of letting Manhattan suffer and die from the virus. Osborn had survived however, as Peter grabbed him from the air and dropped him off to a lower rooftop, from which Osborn made his escape.
Three months after the defeat and imprisonment of Octavius, Norman, now discredited, disgraced and losing the election, entered the secret lab in his penthouse, opened the curtains to Harry's tank, and promised to cure him. His eyes closed, he leaned in to touch the glass, causing the symbiote to respond by doing the same.
Like most incarnations, Norman is a ruthless businessman with disregard to ethics, as evidenced by his decision to experiment on Martin Li, keeping an extremely unstable and dangerous cure/bio-weapon within the borders of a busy city, his alleged theft of Otto Octavius' work and his tendency to cover up and shift his own failures and shortcomings to others. However, under the rough exterior is a man who cares deeply for his loved ones, as seen by his efforts to cure both Emily and Harry, no matter how dangerous the research. He is also shown to be somewhat petty, such as his interruptions on Otto Octavius' prosthetics research.
Under his leadership of Oscorp, the company has been developing equipment very similar to the gadgets seen on other incarnations of the character. One of these is a transparent helmet that shows weaknesses in walls and opponents, and is capable of synchronizing to an unseen glider.
Among these inventions is also a drone meant to transport wounded soldiers out of the battlefield. Whether or not it is the above-mentioned glider is unknown at the moment.
The research has also resulted in small, purple grenades, resembling those used by other versions of the character.
- Norman is very visually similar to U.S. President Donald Trump, barring his hair.
- His social network account is MayorOsborn. It is unknown if it has changed since his resignation.
- 7 Appearances of Norman Osborn (Earth-1048)
- Minor Appearances of Norman Osborn (Earth-1048)
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