We examine the use of chemisorptive emission (electron emission accompanying the adsorption of a reactive gas on a metal surface) and atomic force microscopy as measures of plastic deformation during fracture along a metallic Mg/glass interface. Localized ductile deformation in the metallic phase enhances the fracture energy, exposes metallic Mg to the reactive O2 atmosphere, and produces intense emissions. The number of electrons emitted following fracture in low-pressure oxygen atmospheres is strongly correlated with the total energy expended during failure (peel energy). The presence of localized ductile deformation is verified by atomic force microscopy (AFM): voids are observed on surfaces yielding significant cmissions and enhanced fracture energies. These voids are not observed on samples yielding the lowest peel energies and emission intensities, i.e., where the contribution of deformation to the peel energy is negligible. Quantitative use of roughness data derived from the AFM images is, however, problematic. The potential for chemisorptive electron emission as a probe of deformation along interfaces involving Mg, Ti, Zr, and Al is promising.