Killing Nick Fury

By  · Published on February 12th, 2015

Marvel/Disney

One of the worst elements of an otherwise strong Captain America: The Winter Soldier was the Marvelly decision to fake Nick Fury’s demise. Samuel L. Jackson’s lynch pin character is busted up during a street battle, then ended on a surgery table until we discover that, of course, he didn’t die. Fury can’t die. Jackson’s still contracted for more movies.

This has been a problem for Marvel since nearly the beginning, as EW’s James Hibberd thoroughly pointed out after Guardians of the Galaxy pulled the emotional death fake-out again with Groot. Not only are they seemingly incapable of killing off their characters, they can’t resist killing them, and they’re robbing themselves of potential power when they finally decide to kill a favorite hero.

However the studio will have opportunities to do exactly that soon, most notably with Nick Fury. As Screen Rant’s Rob Keyes reminds us, Jackson’s contract with Marvel is coming to close after whatever next two films he appears in (maybe Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War – Par 1 – Subsection 9?).

He isn’t the only actor with a contract winding down, and it’s easy to imagine Marvel extending contracts with its stars, but they’re afforded a baton-passing, legitimately touching chance with Jackson to let the real-world realities of filmmaking dictate an appropriate send-off for a Godfather character. Everyone, say hello to Maria Hill, Director of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Obviously, Civil War may be a moment where Marvel can radically shake off its reputation by killing off the multiple figures who have built its empire, allowing for a new crop to shoulder the billion-dollar burden. Considering the money at stake, the familiarity, and the comic book tradition of Lazarus-ing favorite corpses, that either seems unlikely or merely, ultimately temporary. It feels strange to say that it would be a pleasant surprise to see characters like Captain America and Black Widow die, but it would be a pleasant surprise to see a Marvel movie have genuine life-or-death stakes that don’t get shrugged off with a quick stop for shawarma. Nick Fury, I’m looking at you.

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