With collectors still making a mad grab for all the key issues connected to Marvel’s San Diego Comic-Con presentation, one comic is quietly ascending the ranks – Rom: Spaceknight #1. Here’s why you want it.
Typically, the next sentence after that has to do with the MCU. In this case, Marvel Studios won’t be producing any sort of Rom movie nor will he be making any cameo appearances. Two years ago, director James Gunn explained to ScreenRant that Rom’s character rights are owned by Paramount. Could Disney/Marvel strike a deal the way they’ve worked out arrangements to use Hulk and Spider-Man in the MCU? Of course they could, but Marvel already has so many cosmic properties at its disposal that Rom isn’t necessary for the MCU. However, that doesn’t mean Rom won’t show up on movie screens, and that’s what makes his first appearance worth having.
Many collectors, myself included, think of Rom as a Marvel character, but he was actually created as a toy and marketed by Parker Brothers before he was in a comic. Just like the Transformers, Marvel was given the task of creating an origin and an entire world of stories for the action figure. While “the House of Ideas” came up with the adventures, Rom is a Hasbro/Parker Brothers property, and his film/television rights fall under the Paramount Pictures banner.
Where does that leave Rom? With the success of the MCU, other studios have pitched the idea of shared universes for their respective characters. Most obviously is the DCEU, but it extends beyond the comic book boundaries. Universal attempted it with the Dark Universe, which died on the first try with Tom Cruise’s The Mummy, while Legendary Entertainment has been more successful with its Godzilla/King Kong shared world.
For the past couple of years, there’s been the rumor that Hasbro wants to tie some of its properties together beginning with G.I. Joe and the Micronauts in 2021. In March 2018, it was reported that Paramount was moving forward with a Rom movie, but nothing further has been said about the Hasbro-verse.
What about Rom: Spaceknight #1? Thirty CGC-graded copies have sold on eBay in the past month, which puts it only one sale behind heavyweights Amazing Spider-Man #101 and Daredevil #131. As far as price, now is a good time to get a copy. Since the Rom movie scene has quieted down, many collectors are backing away from the Spaceknight’s first appearance. The 9.8, for one, has peaked at a high-sale of $300 this year, which puts it at a five-year low. At the moment, its 90-day average is $190. Two years ago, it had a fair market value of $304.
At this point, Rom #1 is worth an investment, especially if prices continue to fall. With the volume of sales getting a boost, they might only drop for a short while longer. Between Rom, the Spaceknights, and the Dire Wraiths’ respective first appearances all in this one issue, odds are that one of those three properties will end up on a movie on television screen. As of now, Hasbro is still pushing its shared cinematic universe for G.I. Joe, Rom, Micronauts, M.A.S.K., and Visionaries, though I can’t see Transformers being left out. Until that idea is officially cancelled, don’t give up on Rom.