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November 12, 2009

Princess Powerful Attacks: Howard the Duck

Howard the Duck was a character created by Steve Gerber and Val Mayerik in 1973.  Three years later, Howard received his own book title called Howard the Duck, which developed a cult following that lead to a film in 1986.  Produced by Lucasfilm and Universal Pictures, Howard the Duck was a box office bomb.  In the movie, Howard had to find his way back home after being transported from his home planet, Duckworld, to Earth.  The comic book adaptation of Howard the Duck was tame in comparison with the film.

mssphoward

Marvel Super Special #41 Cover

Title: Marvel Super Special: Howard the Duck
Writer:
Danny Fingeroth
Art:
Kyle Baker
Color:
Glynis Oliver
Letters:
Janice Chiang
Cover:
Kyle Baker
Issue:
#41
Publisher:
Marvel Comics Group
Release Date:
1986
Price: $2.50

Side Notes: It was the last issue of Marvel Super SpecialMarvel Super Special #41 was an adaptation of the movie Howard the Duck.  You can find the comic on auction sites, like eBay, or through a search online.


howardi3

Howard the Duck: The Movie Issue #3 Cover

Title: Howard the Duck: The Movie
Writer:
Danny Fingeroth
Art:
Kyle Baker
Color:
Glynis Oliver
Cover:
Kyle Baker
Issue:
#123
Publisher:
Marvel Comics Group
Release Date:
12/1986 – 02/1987
Pages:
36
Price:
$.75

Side Notes: A three-issue limited series of Marvel Super Special #41. You can buy it on eBay or look for it through a search online.

The drawings of the comic book  adaptation stood out to me.  Instead of drawing Howard as how he appeared in the film, his design was lifted straight from the Howard the Duck series. It was strange, yet more believable to read the story that way.  The characters didn’t point out that Howard was an anthropomorphic duck like others in the film.  The drawings made it obvious that he didn’t belong, so it wasn’t necessary to tell the audience.

Howard and Beverly

Howard and Beverly

Howard the Duck flowed better than the movie, because it didn’t include unnecessary dialogue or actions written to flesh out the story.  In a scene with Howard and Beverly where they were going to bed, Howard didn’t know that Beverly was teasing him about finding a girlfriend on Earth.  She admitted that she was kidding and gave him a sentimental kiss on the forehead for being gullible.  However, the movie depicted that scene in a very uncomfortable light.

Not only did the comic book adaptation had a revised story, it also filled in plot holes that the film created.  For example, the owner of the Health Spa who gave Howard a job was near-sighted and wore foggy glasses.  As a result, he was unable to determine that Howard was a duck.

Dark Overlord taking shape

Dark Overlord

At the climax of the comic, the Dark Overlord, who was previously beamed down to Earth, took the shape of a duck.  I’m unsure why that decision was made, but I suspect it was the initial intention of the film or artistic license.  I actually understood the true form of the Dark Overlord in the comic than I did watching the movie.

The comic book adaptation of Howard the Duck: The Movie was tame in comparison with the film.  The story was straight to the point and had no forced jokes or actions to flesh out the story.  Howard gave the appearance that he didn’t belong on Earth by looking like a cartoon character, instead of a real duck.  The story was a nice adaptation of how the movie could have been properly depicted.

“So long, Duckie!”

Princess Powerful
princesspowerful@comicattack.net

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4 Comments



  1. The cover says, ‘The official comics adaptation of the blockbuster movie’??? BLOCKBUSTER MOVIE???!! hahaha …and yes, I can understand how this would read better as a comic.



  2. I have never read anything Howard the Duck related…


  3. billy

    I wonder if Leah Thompson laid eggs after she made love to Howard?


  4. Princess Powerful

    Howard the Duck is fun all around. The movie is campy enough for me to like…and I do believe their children would look like Bird Lady from KITH….but hotter.



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