Appearing in "Mask"
- Daily Bugle Staff
- Marla Madison-Jameson (See chronology)
- Ned Leeds (Corpse) (As Hobgoblin in recap)
- Alfredo Morelli
- Kingsley Limited
- "Roderick Kingsley" (Poses as Roderick Kingsley)
- "Captain Kris Keating" (Foreigner in Disguise)
- Mr. Varley (Death)
- Mr. Johnston (Death)
- Black Cat (Vision)
- Kingpin (Recap)
- Daredevil (Recap)
- NYPD (Mentioned)
- Flash Thompson (Mentioned)
- United States of America
- Germany, Europe (Referenced)
- Berlin (Referenced)
- Hobgoblin's Suit
- Pumpkin Bomb
- Spider-Man's Black Suit
- Adamantium Claws
- Wolverine's Suit
- Daredevil's Suit (Recap)
- Daredevil's Billy Club (Recap)
- Goblin Glider
- Hobgoblin's Battle Van
Synopsis for "Mask"
Peter Parker attends the funeral for Ned Leeds who was murdered while they were on assignment in Germany.[Continuity 1] As Ned's co-workers pay their respects, Richard Fisk pays his respect from afar. As the mourners file out, Peter wonders what Betty is going to do now that her husband is dead, and blames himself for leaving Ned alone to get killed.[Continuity 2] With everyone else gone, Richard Fisk approaches Ned's coffin to leave a rose. He is caught in the act by Joy Mercado and Lance Bannon, who ask him to ask him why the son of the Kingpin is here to pay his respects. Fisk tells them to stay out of his business and runs to his car where his friend Alfredo and Dinah are waiting for him. As they speed away, Alfredo points out that it's hardly a surprise that the press are asking difficult questions. He decides to tell Dinah about his connection to Ned Leeds.
He explains that Ned Leeds was really the Hobgoblin and that they both worked together to try and overthrow his father's criminal empire.[Continuity 3] Realizing that there are a number of loose ends that could reveal his plans and calls his assistants to set things in motion. Meanwhile, Peter stops at a payphone to call Mary Jane and ask if he can come over. After the call, he wishes he could work out what happened in Germany. Thinking about another hero he can confide in, he realizes the only other person is Daredevil, who Spider-Man is still upset with him for his involvement with the recent gang war.[Continuity 4] He finally settles on going back home to talk to the Black Cat who has been crashing at his place for a while.[Continuity 5]
At that moment, at the offices of Kingsley Limited, Lieutenant Kris Keating, and Roderick Kingsley are arguing over the situation. Keating assures Kingsley that he can go back to being a fashion designer again, but Roderick is concerned that someone will could connect them to Ned Leeds and the fact that they framed Flash Thompson for the Hobgoblin's crimes.[Continuity 6] Suddenly, they are interrupted by Mister Varley and Mister Johnson, the Rose's assistants. They have come to kill to kill both men as part of Fisk's plan to cover everything up. Roderick is winged with a bullet, but Kris Keating manages to escape. The two assassins decide to finish off Kingsley before taking out Keating.
Meanwhile, in Chelsea, Spider-Man returns home where he finds a note from the Black Cat telling him that she had gone out for the evening. Peter wishes he could have a carefree like Felicia, but he can't. While in Greenwich Village, Richard Fisk gets updated on the situation with Kris Keating and asks his men to meet him at his penthouse. After the call, Richard admits that he has grown weary of the identity of the Rose and decides that it may retire from the roll. Preparing for the next phase of their operation, Alfredo tells Richard that he is overreacting and assures him he'll make sure that Leeds didn't write Fisk's name down anywhere. Hours later, Peter Parker is by the pier wondering why he should continue being Spider-Man now that the Hobgoblin has finally been defeated, unaware that he has been found by someone who has been looking for him. At that moment, the Rose arrives at his condo and discovers that Mr. Varley and Johnson have been murdered. As he begins pruning his rose bushes, the Rose vows that he will kill whoever was responsible for killing them. That's when someone wearing the Hobgoblin's costume enters the room and laughs. The Rose is unphased by this now Hobgoblin, who is prepared to kill the Rose in order to keep his own identity a secret. However, the Rose tells this usurper that the Kingpin has a file that reveals everything and that it has been given to Spider-Man. The new Hobgoblin decides to spare the Rose, as he still has his uses and flies off to recover the file from Spider-Man.[Continuity 7] After the Hobgoblin's departure, the Rose has concluded that he is ending his criminal career for good.
By this point, Alfredo has arrived at the Hobgoblin's former hideout. Using his high tech equipment to get past the security systems, he begins the task of eliminating any evidence that links Richard Fisk to the Hobgoblin. Back at the pier, Peter has decided that he is going to give up being Spider-Man when his thoughts are interrupted by Wolverine. The feral mutant had come looking for Parker in order to settle things. However, their conversation is interrupted by a mugger who threatens them with violence. Wolverine extracts his claws, prompting the mugger's fellow gang members to come out of the woodwork. With a brawl about to start, Peter thinks that he can't deal with this situation. At that moment, Alfredo confirms that there is no incriminating evidence connecting Richard to the Rose's crime, but is interrupted by the new Hobgoblin. While Wolverine fights with the gang members, Parker is doing nothing to fight back. This leaves Logan to deal with the gang members by himself. As Alfredo tries to flee the Hobgoblin, Wolverine forces the gang members to flee. The X-Man then tells Peter to come with him to round them up, but Peter refuses, telling the mutant that he has decided to stop being Spider-Man. Wolverine doesn't buy this, using his claws to cut open Peter's shirt, revealing his Spider-Man costume underneath to prove his point. Not getting through to Peter, Wolverine runs off to catch up with the muggers.
As Alfredo flees in his sports car, Wolverine has changed into costume and waits for the gang, who have regrouped and returned with more members. However, before they can start shooting at Wolverine, their weapons are webbed up by Spider-Man, just as Wolverine expected. Alfredo narrowly avoids the Hobgoblin's pumpkin bombs and calls Richard to tell him what is happening.[Continuity 8] By the time that Spider-Man and Wolverine have finish rounding up the gang members when suddenly the Arranger pulls up in his limo. He tells Spider-Man that the Kingpin would like to see him when suddenly Alfredo's sports car speeds by with the Hobgoblin not far behind. This prompts Spider-Man and Wolverine follow after him. Ultimately, the chase ends when the Hobgoblin blows out on of Alfredo's tires causing his car to uncontrollably swerve into the pier. Hearing this over the phone completely devastates Richard, who thinks Alfredo is dead. However, Spider-Man leaps into the water and pulls him to safety. Unfortunately, while the wall-crawler was doing so the Hobgoblin manages to escape.
Later, Wolverine finally tells Spider-Man what he came to tell him: That the masked hero shouldn't blame himself for the deaths of Charlie and Ned Leeds in Germany. He tells the wall-crawler to let go of his guilt as he has too much to live for. At that moment, Richard Fisk thinks everyone of his friends are dead and flees down the street wondering what kind of monster he has become.
The aftermath of Spider-Man Versus Wolverine #1
- Ned Leeds was murdered in Spider-Man Versus Wolverine #1. This story takes place during the events of Amazing Spider-Man #289.
- Peter says that he and Ned went to West Berlin. This should be considered a topical reference per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616, particularly since Berlin was reunited following the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.
- Richard Fisk is being deceived here. As revealed in Spider-Man: Hobgoblin Lives #1–3, the Hobgoblin was actually Roderick Kingsley. Deciding to take the backseat to his criminal activities, he brainwashed Ned Leeds into thinking he was actually the Hobgoblin. The Hobgoblin and the Rose have been working together since Amazing Spider-Man #258.
- Daredevil prevented Spider-Man from fouling up a speedy end to the gang war which took place in Amazing Spider-Man #284–288.
- The Black Cat has been living at Peter's apartment ever since the Foreigner blew up her home in Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #123.
- Nothing here is what it seems. First of all, neither of these men are who they appear to be. This is not Kris Keating, but the Foreigner in disguise. The Foreigner killed the real Keating and took his place, as revealed in Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #129. Likewise, this is not Roderick Kingsley, but his brother Daniel, who has been posing as Roderick on occasion to hide the fact that Roderick is the real Hobgoblin. This is eventually revealed in Spider-Man: Hobgoblin Lives #1–3. Flash Thompson was framed for the Hobgoblin's crimes in Amazing Spider-Man #276. Flash's name is cleared until Amazing Spider-Man #289, which is also when the Foreigner arranged to have Ned Leeds assassinated.
- This conflict occurs in Amazing Spider-Man #289.
- Alfredo is making the call from a car phone. This should be considered a topical reference per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616 as car phones are an obsolete technology.
Characters in this story also appear in other stories between this issue. The affected characters are:
- Page 1 - Peter attends Ned Leeds funeral.
- Page 2-5 - Peter leaves the funeral.
- Page 6-11, Panel 4 - Peter struggles with his feelings of guilt over Ned's death.
- Page 14-23 - Spider-Man and Wolverine bust up a gang.
J. Jonah Jameson:
- Page 1-13, Panel 4 - Richard Fisk observes Ned Leeds funeral.
- Page 13, Panel 5-Page 23 - The Rose is confronted by the new Hobgoblin.
- Page 11, Panel 5-Page 13, Panel 4 - The new Hobgoblin launches an attack on the Rose.
- Page 14-23 - The Hobgoblin appears to kill Alfredo.