Deathstroke of Genius

Matt Tuck Nov 28, 2017
Deathstroke, the Terminator #1

The villains/anti-heroes are envogue these days.

First there was the Deadpool movie, then we got Suicide Squad (as terrible as it was) followed by the first set photos of Tom Hardy on the set of the Venom solo movie. Now it’s time to prepare for the Deathstroke onslaught.

If you caught the Justice League movie and didn’t leave early (and who does that nowadays?), you saw a quick glimpse of Joe Manganiello in full Deathstroke armor. And with that, Deathstroke’s cameo became the best part of the movie, which is better than most critics are giving it credit for, but that’s a different subject altogether.

We’ve been getting teased with Slade Wilson’s big screen debut for months dating all the way back to the rumored Ben Affleck Batman solo film with Slade as the antagonist. And who knows if that movie will even happen with all the Hollywood controversy and Justice League losing record amounts of money? For now, fans can bask in the knowledge that Deathstroke finally showed up on the silver screen.

Supposedly a Deathstroke feature film is in the works. While nothing has been announced regarding any details of the plot, all we know at this point is that Manganiello will play Slade Wilson. The further this movie gets in development, the more excited collectors will be for Deathstroke keys.

Remember how Venom and Carnage exploded this summer when details emerged about that movie? Yeah, Deathstroke will be like that. That being said, here are some key issues you’ll want to put your hands on ASAP.


Of course you’ll want Deathstroke’s first appearance, and you’re not alone in coveting it. For the month of November, New Teen Titans #2 has been inching its way through the Hottest Comics’ list, reaching as high as 11th as of the time this article was written.

All grades of this issue are on the rise when it comes to sales. If you want one, you can get a mid-grade copy for somewhere in the $100 range. For those who only deal in near mint comics, get ready to spend over $200 with a 9.6 averaging $280. Want a 9.8? That’s averaging $585.

If you’re strapped for cash and looking to work you way up to that all-important first appearance, I suggest the cheaper New Teen Titans #9. Although not the major key of its predecessor, this is still the second full appearance of the original Terminator (on a side note, a common misconception is that Deathstroke the Terminator ripped off the Arnold Schwarzenegger movie. Not so. New Teen Titans #2 debuted in December 1980 while “The Terminator” was released in 1984). You can get a near-mint 9.8 for less than $100, and it’s still part of Deathstroke history.


Another major Deathstroke key, Tales of the Teen Titans #44 gave us the origin of Deathstroke the Terminator. Not only that, but it’s the third part of the Judas Contract, which is an iconic Teen Titans story. Considering the Titans are getting their own live-action show, it would be safe to say that the Judas Contract will find its way into the show.

Speaking of the Titans’ new show, you’ll want Tales of the Teen Titans #44 because this is where you’ll find the first appearance of Dick Grayson as Nightwing. In case you aren’t aware, Nightwing will be a major character in the Titans show.

Suppose you want a graded copy of this key. How much should you expect to pay? If you want anything 9.0 and above, you’re going to be in the $100 neighborhood, which is not bad for a comic that is likely to jump in value.


Although not the most valuable comic in this list, it’s certainly the prize issue for the cover collectors out there. The Mike Zeck art captures the character perfectly with his massive gun propped on his shoulder.

Once more details about the movie come out, there will be interest in this old 1991 solo series. When that happens, as always, that first issue will be the most coveted. At the moment, it’s affordable even in a high grade. A 9.8 is averaging close to $60 and a 9.0 is under $30, so it won’t set you back too far.

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