Movie Spec Revisited: Black Widow & Rick Mason–The Agent

by John Gerlach

122121D-1024x536 Movie Spec Revisited: Black Widow & Rick Mason--The AgentWe know the movie spec drill.  Movie hints/rumors drop.  The movie is announced.  Movie released.  Buy spec early, sell before the inevitable post-movie downturn in value.  But what if some situations don’t fit the usual movie spec drill?  I’m going to explore the spec follow-up possibilities from Black Widow.

The unique situation in the film was the “demise” of the title character, but are there continued possibilities?  With a fairly healthy Black Widow box office of around $380 million, there definitely could be a sequel, though without Natasha Romanoff.  This brings into focus two characters: Yelena Belova and Rick Mason.

So, let’s chase Yelena Belova and Rick Mason keys, which have experienced the post-movie drop in value.  

Yelena Belova Keys

The first Black Widow, as played by Scarlett Johanson, met her end in the recent 2021 movie.  However, her adopted sister, Yelena Belova, is primed to be the next Black Widow in a sequel. eyJidWNrZXQiOiJnb2NvbGxlY3QuaW1hZ2VzLnB1YiIsImtleSI6IjVhOWU4ZjdlLWQwMDEtNDVjMi1iOGJhLTFhZGJmNDQ0ZjUwMC5qcGciLCJlZGl0cyI6eyJub3JtYWxpc2UiOnRydWUsInJlc2l6ZSI6eyJ3aWR0aCI6NjAwfX19-198x300 Movie Spec Revisited: Black Widow & Rick Mason--The Agent

Obviously, the Hawkeye television show (2021) was teased in the final scenes of Black Widow after the closing credits when Clint Barton was accused of setting Natasha Romanoff up.  Yelena Belova appears in Hawkeye, and the exposure there can only help the possibility of a Black Widow sequel. 

Inhumans #5 (1999)

CGC labels this issue as: “First appearance of the New Black Widow (Yelena Belova).

This issue was published three months prior to the self-titled Black Widow mini-series.  

Black Widow #1 (1999)

Thisis the first of a Marvel Knights three-issue mini-series and the first appearance of the Red Room where the Black Widow Ops training took place.  This issue was promoted as: “The proposed replacement of Natasha Romanova, a.k.a. the Black Widow!”  Cover art by J. G. Jones.  The cover features a redheaded Natasha.  

Black Widow #1 Variant (1999)ezgif-4-2f741789ea69-197x300 Movie Spec Revisited: Black Widow & Rick Mason--The Agent

Cover art also by J. G. Jones.  

This cover highlights a blonde Yelena Belova.  So, the variant has the Yelena cover, while the regular cover does not.  

Rick Mason–The Agent Keys

Rick Mason made his film debut in the live-action Marvel Cinematic Universe film Black Widow, which was released this summer.  Mason was an ally to Natasha Romanoff from her past with S.H.I.E.L.D. and also was a romantic interest.  

Does this character have future possibilities?  All Rick Mason keys are off the radar and available on the cheap, so they are worth considering as potential low-cost spec.  

What is Rick Mason’s comic book background? What keys related to Rick Mason are worth considering?  Here is my pick.

Marvel Graphic Novel #57 (1989)

ezgif-2-dfa1b1a0c38d-227x300 Movie Spec Revisited: Black Widow & Rick Mason--The AgentRick Mason’s first comic book appearance was in Rick Mason: The Agent.  This graphic novel was written by James D. Hudnall with art by John Ridgway.  Mason is portrayed as a master of disguise who speaks several languages, an expert at intelligence gathering, a genius at improvising, and a master at hand-to-hand combat.  

Mason is the son of weapons designer Phineas Mason, a supervillain known as the Tinkerer.  The Tinkerer has been around since his first appearance in Amazing Spider-man #2 (1963).  Rick Mason is a highly skilled covert operations specialist that has worked for the governments of Israel, Japan, the United States, and the United Kingdom.  Rick Mason turned away from his father’s path and became a mercenary for S.H.I.E.L.D as well as completing missions for the various international governments.  

GoCollect has no recorded graded sales for this graphic novel.  However, online raw copies are being listed from $25-100 currently, depending on the condition.

The Bottom Line

The Black Widow franchise offers interesting possibilities that don’t follow the typical pattern related to movies.  These keys are worth keeping an eye on for the near future.  

“The Red Room wants me dead?  You won’t be the one to do it!  Not you!  Not ever!”    Yelena Belova

00080221C_Green-Footer Movie Spec Revisited: Black Widow & Rick Mason--The Agent*Any perceived investment advice is that of the freelance blogger and does not represent the opinion or advice of GoCollect.

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1 comment

Kenloi January 3, 2022 - 5:50 am

i do like comparing cgc labels with cbcs as they are sometimes so very different. CGC Inhumans 5 1st new Black Widow (face not shown) Black widow 1 variant 1st full Black Widow. CBCS Inhumans 5 1st appearance. Black Widow 1 variant Nothing. Are these companies reading the same books!

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