Wolver-Keys: How Hulk #180 is Outshining Hulk #181

by Matt Tuck

Incredible-Hulk-180-Wolverine-238x300 Wolver-Keys: How Hulk #180 is Outshining Hulk #181Which is the better investment: Hulk #180 or #181? Although #181 may get the nod as the “holy grail,” Hulk #180 is the hotter comic with the stronger upside. With no shortage of casting speculation from questionable sources, it will only keep rising.

Speaking of sketchy, no, Henry Cavill isn’t going to play Wolverine in Captain Marvel 2, but I predict that we will have a casting announcement by year’s end. Word has been making the rounds that Superman himself, Henry Cavill, will pop the claws and replace Hugh Jackman as Logan.

Is it an interesting story? Certainly. Does it make sense? Not really.

Cavill would be a better Wolverine than, say, Jason Momoa or Daniel Radcliffe (who’s been rumored for both Wolverine and Moonknight at one point or another), but ever since Disney/Marvel acquired the film rights to Logan, pretty much everyone has been named to play him. Personally, I lean towards Taron Egerton, but I digress.

Marvel Studios has said nothing about introducing Wolverine. Sure, it is guaranteed that one of Marvel’s all-time most-popular characters will be pulled into the MCU, but it’s not in the foreseeable future. Still, I stand by my statement that in 2020, the studio will know which actor is going to suit up. That will have a significant impact on the values for those Wolver-keys. Naturally at the top of that list will be Incredible Hulk #180 and #181, Logan’s first two appearances.

Hulk-181-panel-253x300 Wolver-Keys: How Hulk #180 is Outshining Hulk #181INCREDIBLE HULK #181

The first full appearance of Wolverine, this comic will always be a holy grail with the fair market value to prove it. When a coverless 0.5 is garnering over $500 at auction, that says everything you need to know about this comic’s popularity. 

As I have pointed out, virtually all the holy grail comics are dipping in value at the moment, and Hulk #181 is not immune.

Based on 90-day averages, every graded, complete copy that has sold online is down compared to its 2019 FMV. While that doesn’t make it cheap (after all, it’s called a holy grail comic for a reason), it does help stretch your budget a tad further. Last year, a graded 1.5 sold for $1,250. At today’s prices, you can take that same $1,250 and go all the way up to a 3.0. Like I keep advising, buy this now if you’ve got the money to spend.

Hulk-180-201x300 Wolver-Keys: How Hulk #180 is Outshining Hulk #181INCREDIBLE HULK #180

Even Marvel has acknowledged this as the true first appearance of Wolverine. Of course, that’s never been the argument. Clearly, he’s on the last page of this issue. Since he’s on the cover and in the entire issue of Hulk #181, it gets all the attention. Lately, it’s the cameo first that has been making the bigger strides.

Whereas Hulk #181 has been losing value, Hulk #180 is quietly gaining. So far in 2020, there are twice as many grades (12 of the past 18, to be exact) that have increased their FMVs in the past 90 days compared to those that have shown losses. The lower and mid grades are doing exceptionally well, the highest of which is still in the $500-$650 range. That being said, keep in mind that even the incomplete 0.5 recently sold for $132, so it’s still on the expensive side for many collectors.


It’s a good time to invest in your Wolverine keys, and things are only going to get more pricey as the anticipation for his MCU debut builds. Neither issue is a bad investment, but #180, with its lower investment risk, is a solid comic to keep in your collection.


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