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The Brand of the Brainwasher[]

Developed by Gerhard Winkler within Kingpin's organization, it was built with stolen equipment from Norman Osborn and created to brainwash victims to do Kingpin's bidding, from random henchmen to Capt. George Stacy, whose disappearance led Spider-Man to encountering the conspiracy.[1] Kingpin used the device to compel George Stacy to steal confidential documents, with evidence published by the Daily Bugle by Peter Parker, forcing Kingpin to order the Stacys and Parker be terminated.[2] George Stacy was helped out of his brainwashing by Gwen and the pair were almost killed by Kingpin's men before the timely rescue by Spider-Man and Norman Osborn. However, Dr. Winkler himself was killed as the Kingpin originally escaped.[3]


After a fight with Spider-Man left everyone assuming he had drowned to death, Roderick Kingsley concluded direct criminal action wasn't for him. Using the Winkler device, he brainwashed news reporter Ned Leeds into taking over the mantle the Hobgoblin,[4][5] which led to Ned being killed by the Foreigner to allow Kingsley to escape pursuit.[6] Kingsley later brainwashed his favorite butler, Claude, to behave identically to him, but Claude was killed by Osborn at the start of the Goblin War. While Kingsley was saddened losing his favorite man-servant, he was already conditioning another impersonator.[7]

After Ned Leeds returned to life and resumed journalism,[8] he underwent the Winkler Device once again, brainwashing him into being obsessed with a conspiracy around Norman Osborn while also helping Roderick Kingsley as a concurrent Hobgoblin.[9] After Norman Osborn helped Spider-Man defeat the enthralled Ned Leeds, Kingsley escaped and returned to the relocated Winkler Device. Kingsley then sat in the device himself per the orders of his master, Queen Goblin, the mastermind behind Kingsley and Leeds's concurrent villainy.[10]

See Also

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