Hot off his starring role in last summer’s Guardians of the Galaxy — okay, maybe not “starring role,” but definitely one of the most talked about cameos since Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury confronted Robert Downey, Jr.’s Tony Stark at the end of Iron Man — via Entertainment Weekly, Marvel Comics has announced that Howard the Duck will get a new monthly comic series starting in March of 2015. The new series, Howard’s first on-going since his original run ended with issue #33 in 1986, will see the titular water fowl take a job as a private investigator, solving crimes using his brains and his mastery of the ancient art of quack-fu.
Marvel announced that there will be guest stars, as Spider-Man is already lined up to pop in to request Howard’s services. The new series will be written by Chip Zdarsky and drawn by Joe Quinones.
Howard was originally created by Steve Gerber and Val Mayerik in 1973, as the character was pulled from his world of cartoon animals (not a “duck world,” as was later retconned) to aid Man-Thing on a quest in Adventure Into Fear #19. Howard died on the quest, falling off a tree limb and into space, where he was mysteriously warped to 1970s Cleveland — and his own monthly series — in 1976. Gerber was able to use the character to poke fun at everything, including comic books, pop culture, and even politics. Howard the Duck actually ran for U.S. President in the 1976 election as a member of the “All Night Party.”
Howard the Duck became a serialized newspaper strip from 1977 to 1978 and then got his own adult-themed, bi-monthly black-and-white magazine under the Marvel imprint. Howard has guest starred in many mainstream Marvel books since his series ended, and has starred in two limited series of his own in 2003 and 2007. But when most people think of the character, the 1986 movie produced by George Lucas is the only thing they know of the heroic duck. The film — the first Marvel movie — was critically panned and bombed at the box office, setting Marvel movies back for decades and nearly ruining the cult-favorite character.
Recent appearances — including the cameo in Guardians of the Galaxy — have propelled Howard the Duck back into the public eye, and it seems that people love an underdog… er… duck. The new comic series hopes to build off that wave of nostalgia and make Howard a star once again. Who knows, if the comic is a success, maybe Howard will get another shot at a movie, as mentioned in a recent story in the Inquisitr. I mean, we did see a talking raccoon with a gun this past summer, so anything is possible.
Howard the Duck #1 will hit stores on March 4, 2015. Are you excited for a new Howard the Duck series? Are you a fan, old or new? Sound off in the comments below.
[Images courtesy of EW.com; bleedingcool.com; Marvel.com; and ropeofsilicon.com]