In comics, a heroes origin story may often occur in a different comic book from the first appearance. That creates yet another key to own and is highly sought after by collectors and speculators alike. During the Bronze Age, the fantasy epic was very popular; Fritz Leiber, Robert E. Howard, and Michael Moorcock ruled the roost back then, right up there with Tolkien. Now in all deference to everything that came after; these authors literally created a sword and sandals believability to their fantasy worlds. Great creativity, good writing, and the popularity of fantasy drove Marvel to the fantasy epic. During that time Marvel kept pace creating books for Kull, Conan the Barbarian, and the superhero the Black Knight. Our hero Dane Whitman goes to England and finds the Ebony Blade as a tourist. He must defeat the Guardian of the Blade in the dungeons of an English castle. Whitman defeats the guardian and takes possession of the Black Blade becoming the Black Knight.
Marvel made a choice to have the Black Knight as a superhero instead of the villain portrayed in Hollywood. This issue Marvel Super-Heroes Presents #17 is the origin story of Black Knight. It was created by Roy Thomas (Conan famed scriptwriter) and pencils by an entire team of artists: Howard Purcell, John Romita Sr., Dick Ayers, Bill Everett, Al Avison, and Vince Alascia. Whew! That could be the entire infield for an MLB baseball team.
The most recent sales for a grade (9.0) have this book right at $100. The highest grade sold was (9.6) in August of last year on eBay for $399. This comic book is old enough to be rare with only 63 copies logged into the CGC Census. Plenty of room for growth with this issue. The trend on this book according to the GoCollect Sale History Analyzer is positive returns. This book doesn’t have a negative or bad sale over the last 19 years. That being said, there are only about 20 recorded, but the results will cause you to hear the Host of Avalon riding to your rescue. This book is an early key with the following outstanding trends: grade (9.6) +52.1%, (9.4) +47.5%, (9.2) +15.2%, (9.0) at +89.8% and (8.5) grade very fine plus at a positively astounding +109.1%. All green across the board with positive results and the only drawback limited sample size scope. But the inference here is clear, origin stories have staying power.
The rumor mill in Hollywood is not trusted generally. However, the word is that Captain Britain and the Black Knight have a movie in the works. The director could be Guy Ritchie. This bit of news and rumor was in an article back in September of 2018. Captain Britain #1 goes for substantially more money. The price for the British Captain’s first appearance in grade (9.8) is $1300 FMV. This book also has the same world-class results but with quadruple the sales.
Either of these classic sword swinging superheroes is worthy of consideration. In my opinion, the best bet for your money is to pick up Marvel Super-Heroes Presents #17. It is still at a very reasonable price. Lower the drawbridge, open the gates and send a squad of royal guards to retrieve one of these keys. Don’t cross swords with the Black Knight (no pun intended) just crusade for a copy of his origin story.