Norman Osborn was the son of scientist Amberson Osborn and Martha Osborn. When he was 16 years old, both of Norman's parents died on a car crash, which then left him an orphan. When in 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 later used 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 then created a rift between the two.
Years later, Emily fell ill from a unknown genetic disease. After he wanted to do something in order to save his wife, Norman began to research on a revolutionary serum, that was 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: it resulted in the death of Li's parents and permanently altered Martin physically and mentally. That incident caused Otto to leave Oscorp to do his own experiments in 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 she gave birth to their son, Harold "Harry" Osborn. In secret, Norman kept working on the serum, believed that 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 that were used to test them dead. That caused the scientists to nickname it Devil's Breath. In the 2010's, Norman was elected Mayor of New York City.
Time passed, and Harry, Norman's only son, started to show symptoms of the disease that killed Emily years earlier. Harry's Bedroom was fitted with various pieces of hospital equipment that were meant to keep him alive until the cure was finished. That later proved to be ineffective, and Norman convinced Harry to try an another way to prolong his life, a symbiotic life form that was capable of keeping most diseases in check. Norman told the press that Harry would be visiting Europe and told Oscorp that Harry would be taken proper care of in Europe, but in reality, Harry was kept in suspended animation in a healing tank inside a secret room in Norman's Penthouse, a fact that was only known by few people if even them.
During his re-election campaign, one of Norman's campaign rallies was attacked by Martin Li's personal army, the Demons. That attack left Jefferson Davis, the father of Miles Morales and several dozen innocent attendees dead and also 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 Li gave Norman 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 in 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 the RAFT by Otto Octavius, who then released the bio-weapon on Times Square in order 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 then entered the premises through the ceiling, beat Spider-Man half-dead, and took Norman with him. After he received extensive medical care, Peter chased after Octavius. Otto then took Norman to the roof of Oscorp Tower, before he dangled him above the streets and demanded that Norman to confess his crimes to the whole world. Norman refused, which then caused Otto to drop him before he grabbed him again. Once again, Norman refused, and challenged Otto by claiming that he was only worth anything when he worked for him before he called him a failure. Furious, Otto let go of Norman before he turned around to continue his plan of letting Manhattan suffer and die from the virus. Osborn survived however, as Peter grabbed him from the air and dropped him off to a lower rooftop, from which Osborn then escaped.
Three months after the defeat and imprisonment of Octavius, Norman, was discredited, disgraced, and losing the election, entered the secret lab at his penthouse, opened the window to Harry's tank, and promised to cure him. With his eyes closed, Norman then leaned in to touch the glass, which caused the symbiote to respond by doing the same.
Like most incarnations, Norman Osborn was 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 Norman's rough exterior, was a man who cared deeply for his loved ones, as seen by his efforts to cure both Emily and Harry, no matter how dangerous the research. Norman was also shown to be somewhat petty, such as his interruptions on Otto Octavius' prosthetics research.
Under his leadership of Oscorp, the company developed equipment that was very similar to the gadgets that were seen on other incarnations of the character. One of those was a transparent helmet that showed weaknesses in walls and opponents and was capable of synchronizing to an unseen glider.
Among those inventions was also a drone that was meant to transport wounded soldiers out of the battlefield. Whether or not it was the above-mentioned glider was unknown.
The research also resulted in small, purple grenades, which resembled those used by other versions of the character.
- Norman was very visually similar to U.S. President Donald Trump, barring his hair.
- Norman's social network account was MayorOsborn. It was unknown if it changed since his resignation.
- 8 Appearances of Norman Osborn (Earth-1048)
- Minor Appearances of Norman Osborn (Earth-1048)
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