‘Spider-Man: Homecoming’: What Happens to The Vulture Next in the Comics?

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Marvel Studios/Columbia Pictures Michael Keaton as The Vulture in Spider-Man: Homecoming.

At the end of Spider-Man: Homecoming, (spoiler alert!) The Vulture is still alive, being taken to prison and having a conversation with Mac Gargan. This makes him one of the few Marvel Cinematic Universe villains who lives to fight another day, along with Justin Hammer and Loki. We’ll likely see The Vulture again, so for those fans who are anxious to find out the spoilers for the sequel, what happens next with The Vulture in the comics?

Well, the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s version of The Vulture is a lot different than the Vulture depicted in the comics. However, there are a number of storylines involving The Vulture getting out of prison that Marvel may draw inspiration from in the Spider-Man: Homecoming sequel.

The first time Spider-Man ever encounters The Vulture in the comics, this ends with The Vulture going to prison. A few issues later, we find out that Adrian Toomes has been smuggling parts from the prison machine shop so that he can rebuild his flight harness, kind of like how Tony Stark builds the Iron Man suit while kidnapped in Iron Man. After recreating his flying device, The Vulture breaks out of prison.

Spider-Man soon hears that The Vulture escaped, and he goes after him. This time, The Vulture is a much more difficult foe, and he easily defeats Spider-Man in their first encounter. Eventually the two fight on the Daily Bugle building, and Spider-Man defeats him, turning The Vulture over to the police once again.

The next time we see The Vulture, he has been recruited to the Sinister Six by Doctor Octopus, fighting alongside Mysterio, Electro, Kraven the Hunter, and Sandman. At the end of Spider-Man: Homecoming, it is implied that the Sinister Six is beginning to form, although it’s unclear whether The Vulture will be joining up with that team quite yet. After all, Mac Gargan (Scorpion) asks Adrian Toomes in Homecoming‘s first credits scene if he knows Spider-Man’s identity, and Toomes lies and says he does not.

After being jailed following the Sinister Six’s encounter with Spider-Man, The Vulture in the comics reveals to his cellmate, Blackie Drago, that he has a second Vulture costume. Drago proceeds to break out of prison, steal this second suit, and become the new Vulture. Later, The Vulture himself escapes and takes down Blackie Drago. A number of other people would assume the Vulture identity over the years other than Adrian Toomes himself, including Clifton Shallot and Jimmy Natale.

One future Vulture plot point that Marvel may adapt on screen involves Toomes being diagnosed with cancer. During Civil War, Toomes goes after Spider-Man but ends up collapsing, with Spider-Man rushing him to the hospital. In the hospital, he asks Spider-Man to kill him; Spider-Man does try to suffocate him with a pillow, but Toomes fights back, and Spider-Man stops.

After Spider-Man: Homecoming, Marvel Studios could also be interested in adapting some of The Superior Spider-Man #12. In that comic, The Vulture ends up in prison with Mac Gargan, just like he does at the end of Homecoming, and the two are broken out by Alistair Smythe in exchange for their help in defeating Spider-Man. In the movies, then, perhaps the Spider-Man: Homecoming sequel will feature a new villain who breaks The Vulture out of prison in exchange for his help defeating Spider-Man. He could also break him out in exchange for learning Spider-Man’s true identity; at the end of Homecoming, Mac Gargan seems to be aware that Adrian Toomes knows who Spider-Man is.

The untitled Spider-Man: Homecoming sequel will be released on July 5th, 2019.