Spidey Split: Who is the Next MCU Headliner?

by Norman Robinson III

147540_099b4fbcf31cc85003de83875666471105bffdcf-194x300 Spidey Split: Who is the Next MCU Headliner?With the big split by Disney/Sony who will be the new headliner for the MCU? After all, without Spidey tying all the various skeins of Marvel superhero existence; will Disney still be able to develop their various character (properties) without Spider-Man? Yes, and my Spidey-Sense tells me to get ready for one of several characters to potentially carry that load. Who might take Spidey’s place as a unifying figure tying in an Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, and Captain Marvel in the MC Universe? Three come to mind as good speculations. This is a big load for any one character to carry but these heroes are up to the task; one is a hero of WWII, another is a somewhat mouthy merc, and the third is a character who takes professional sidekick to a whole new level in Marvel.

All three of my picks make sense, as each has already been tied into multiple characters. The greatest generation is represented by none other than Nick Fury. He has been in many franchises from Iron Man to Avengers, and fans seem to like Samuel Jackson (I know I do). Strong, stoic and definitely can tie in other characters to the MCU.

How about Deadpool, the ‘Merc with a Mouth?’ After all, given Ryan Reynolds unquenchable thirst for stardom; we know he would jump through as many hoops as needed to get the job. If Deadpool seems a little bit too adult R-rated I understand. After all, does anyone want to see the House of Mouse de-pantz, someone? Boy, could that generate an ugly shareholder meeting? Perhaps someone more kiddie-sized, like Rick Jones. You remember Rick, he was the sidekick of just about everyone in the Marvel Universe. Which of these is the best bet going forward to hold up Spidey-Spirit: Deadpool, Rick Jones, or Nick Fury? The “Chosen One” (no intended political reference here) would need a combination of good numbers and the ability to keep your attention. The answer might surprise you…

115861_d8ee1f1b4d85c817200d7150f3c6b49747235344-201x300 Spidey Split: Who is the Next MCU Headliner?The Incredible Hulk #1 

The Incredible Hulk was the starting point for Rick Jones and his first appearance. Of the three books, this one is a wee bit expensive. But it is the first appearance of Rick Jones; who knew he would be as expensive as Hulk? Rick Jones isn’t alone of course Hulk is there along with his nemesis General Thunderbolt Ross. The Incredible Hulk #1  is incredibly expensive. The most recent sale was for grade 9.2 near mint minus for $336,000!! Yep, ready to sell the house and own a piece of history, and little else? No, I thought not, that is for the rarified air of multi-millionaires only.


  • Grade 9.2 $330,000 FMV returns positive +688%
  • Grade 6.5 $33,000 FMV returns positive +83%
  • Grade 2.0 $8250 FMV returns positive +59.8%

These numbers are Hulk-tastic, to say the least. Unfortunately, I put Rick Jones out there to test the theory but I think he is too minor a character to cover that big a spotlight. The Incredible Hulk #1  maybe one of the strongest of the Silver Age keys but it is far from the best pick to unify the MCU. Other then comic book fans no one else would know Rick Jones, and many just wouldn’t get it. Reminder: the MCU is written for the average moviegoer by comic book fans, not for them.


116570_4b23be06ea501a1e0f47331ac309491355fc0ebe-200x300 Spidey Split: Who is the Next MCU Headliner?Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos #1

The first appearance of Sgt. Nick Fury and the Howling Commandos was in Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos #1. Nick Fury is the man in Marvel circles, and already plays more of a lead and tie-in roll than Peter Parker ever did. He would make a very strong replacement for Marvel and provides an easy plot assist under the auspices of national security. Remember in Pulp Fiction Jackson had the treasure with him the whole time. Perhaps he carries the “key” ingredient needed to tie in all of Marvel. He has already proved his worth in both the Iron Man and Avengers franchise.


  • Grade 9.4 $43,000 FMV returns negative -49.4%
  • Grade 9.2 $18,500 FMV returns positive +109.5%
  • Grade 8.0 $5,000 FMV returns positive +34.4%
  • Grade 6.5 $2,000 FMV returns positive +12.8%

Nick Fury is probably the most obvious choice, but not as fun as Rick or Deadpool would be. My guess is they are looking for a younger character, Nick Fury is not of this generation.



clean-195x300 Spidey Split: Who is the Next MCU Headliner?New Mutants #98

The first appearance of Deadpool is a solid key in the Modern Age of comic books. I honestly believe this superhero will last throughout this century, to say the least. New Mutants #98 was created in 1991 by Rob Liefeld (script and pencils). Now a lot has been written about Mr. Liefeld but I found him to be articulate, and fun to talk to. After all, he did create one of the most vibrant characters of the Modern Age: Deadpool. Below the numbers are good, not great, but the character is a perfect fit as the headliner.


  • Grade 9.8 $750 FMV returns positive +8.2%
  • Grade 9.2 $260 FMV returns positive +8.6%
  • Grade 8.0 $210 FMV returns positive +37.8%
  • Grade 7.0 $190 FMV returns positive +10.6%






147540_099b4fbcf31cc85003de83875666471105bffdcf-194x300 Spidey Split: Who is the Next MCU Headliner?Of all three characters, Deadpool is the obvious choice to lead Marvel into the future. The character is more a millennial superhero than any other to come along in quite a while.  Hence, he represents the new generation well, and they have the largest purchasing power, or will soon as a demographic. I am just brainstorming here, but I believe Disney will use Deadpool to tie in the various MCU characters. This makes New Mutants #98  (his first appearance) great speculation going forward. Bet on Deadpool, the “Merc with the Mouth” he never loses.










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John September 3, 2019 - 6:24 am

Please let me know what the duration is got these long term return numbers listed. Thanks.

Norman Robinson III September 3, 2019 - 3:27 pm

They are from the GoCollect Analyzer, and they take the returns back about 19 years or so. Now, this does not include raw copies, only slabbed books.

Norman Robinson III September 4, 2019 - 9:55 pm

I believe I answered this on FB. The data is up to 10,000 comic sales over 20 years for long-term designation.

Joseph F. Overaitis September 3, 2019 - 12:29 pm

The only problem is that you would have to alter what makes his movies great to be the new focus of the MCU. He is a great character and teens love the character but if you target him for mainstream markets to hit the kids, teens and adults that Spider-man targets. When it was mentioned that Deadpool might go to PG13 their target market cried out that they would not return to see the sequel in great numbers. Why mess with a good thing but instead take what you have at your feet and get ready to let it out. Who better to discuss different universes with Dr. Strange than Mr. Fantastic. Who better to demonstrate take over the strong female lead on a team in the absence of the Black Widow than the Invisible Woman. One youngster in Spider-man with a hot head and let us not forget a powerhouse in the Thing now taking the seat of the Hulk? I believe the better place to put your money is FF books. The FF touch all areas of the MCU. You even have connection with TV with the recently announced She-Hulk series. It is the perfect place to go and probably the safest.

Norman Robinson III September 3, 2019 - 3:24 pm

Mr. Fantastic is a good choice

Norman Robinson III September 4, 2019 - 9:54 pm

Yes, sadly Deadpool might have to grow up a little bit. I don’t think he necessarily represents in every circumstance but he could tie-in characters and events, even subtly.

sfkeepay September 3, 2019 - 12:35 pm

Deadpool? Interesting, sure, but he’s not a superhero. At best, he’s a vigilante anti-hero…he’s way, way to violent.

Try this: Pepper Potts and Nick Fury work together to bring Claire Temple (from Daredevil, etc.) into Shield, and she takes over recruiting and unifying heroes, eventually getting the armor from Pepper and becoming Iron Force. Gotta bring these world’s together. Too bad, though, that we’ll probably never get to see Tom Holland and Charlie Cox together onscreen. The friendship between DD and Spidey has a long history on the page, and it might have been deeply interesting to explore how the two of them might bond, especially as they both recently lost their mentors. Plus, while it would have to be written carefully and skillfully, I think the very-different tones established for the worlds inhabited by the characters could mix in deeply compelling ways. And, of course, there’s Kingpin. Oh yes.

Norman Robinson III September 3, 2019 - 3:23 pm

interesting take…


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