For comedians, getting a superhero role can be life changing.
A few years ago one of the great pre-movie promotional campaigns began, for the sequel to a film that pretty much changed the world of big movie-plugging. If the superhero spoof Deadpool launched with a bang, then Deadpool 2 trumped it. And it began by focussing its trailer on the brilliant British-based stand-up Rob Delaney.
That trailer featured an interview panel where Deadpool and his pal Weasel - played by Ryan Reynolds and the US comic TJ Miller, respectively - put together a superhero team. And the Catastrophe star absolutely steals it, as the out-of-shape regular-guy who somehow gets invited to join up: that short teaser then ends in a spectacularly crowd-pleasing fashion, as we see Delaney's character, Peter, leap out of a plane. He became an instant sensation.
Now, say you saw a genuine ad for a superhero team in the paper: would you take a chance at that audition? Or stay home and immerse yourself in a movie, or play Heads Up Hold 'Em at a virtual poker table, or stick on a VR headset and just pretend you're a superhero? Given how Peter ends up after diving out of that plane, you probably wouldn't fancy going that far out of your depth. Although he does get a reprieve in the after-credit scene - great super-characters never die.
Why are we asking that odd question? Well, because it must be a little bit like that when you're a comedian and get asked to actually star in one of these blockbusters: can you really handle it? That thought arose for a lot of stand-ups when pictures emerged last year of Kumail Nanjiani, who suddenly appeared to have somebody else's body: somebody well fit.
Nanjiani is a stalwart of the US comedy circuit who rose to much wider prominence a few years back with the movie The Big Sick, which popped up on BBC Two recently. It's the real-life tale of the comedian and his now-wife, and is great, but hardly suggested that Nanjiani was going to look super-buff anytime soon.
But then the Marvel Cinematic Universe came along, and hired the comic/actor to appear in its upcoming flick The Eternals, alongside Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek, and the like. And so he got in shape. The response? General amazement, envy, admiration, plus also a lot of comics going 'I'm kinda glad I got passed over, if that's what I'd have to do.'
Now, if you look at Rob Delaney's press photos, you could totally see him getting a leading-man role in the MCU, even though he's mainly known for comedies - Doctor Strange featured alumni from the sitcoms 15 Storeys High and Cabin Pressure, after all - as he's definitely got the tall, dark and handsome thing going on. And they hired Paul Rudd to play Ant Man, who got pretty buff too.
In fact, Delaney landed a great part in a big superhero movie, and got to put on a bunch of weight for it. Now that's an ambition we can all dream about.