|"Howard the Duck" #1 on sale this week|
The bill is back.
Ty Templeton, a creator known for his delivery of pin-point comic dialogue, is living the dream as he brings "Howard the Duck" back to the mainstream Marvel Universe for a four-part miniseries, kicking off this week, October 3, 2007.
Templeton teams with his "She-Hulk" co-conspirator, artist Juan Bobillo on the new "Howard" series. "I giggle when I read them and I wrote them," Templeton told CBR News. "And the art made it so much funnier than I scripted. Juan Bobilloâ€¦ brings the funny. He really brings the funny."
Howard the Duck, for those living with head below water for the past three decades, was originally created by Steve Gerber ("Omega: The Unknown," "Shanna the She-Devil") in 1973 and became a pop culture icon in late 1970s/early1980s when he not only received thousands of write-in votes in the 1976 presidential election but starred in his own feature film produced by George Lucas.
Appearing for first time in "Adventure in Fear" #19, the anthropomorphic quacker was transported to Earth by Thog the Overmaster in a Man-Thing feature and ever since, the hilarity of Howard has ensued
|"Howard the Duck" #1, pages 1 and 2|
Templeton brings Howard up-to-date right away in his miniseries by dropping the duck and his lady friend, Beverly Switzler, right smack in the middle of a society obsessed with instant celebrity and the surreal life. "The story is all about how somebody shoots Howard for the internet and he becomes the world's most famous internet video," teased Templeton. "You know the Coke and Mentos thing? He's the next Coke and Mentos thing. Everybody starts emailing it to each other and he becomes so famous, that he and Beverly become internet and media darlings.
|"Howard the Duck" #1, pages 3 and 4|
Larry King and Jon Stewart aren't the only two heavyweights making cameos in the series, as just from the solicitations alone, it is revealed that both M.O.D.O.K. and the sensational She-Hulk will be playing in the pond with Howard, as well.
|"Howard the Duck" #1, pages 5 and 6|
|"Howard the Duck" #2|
With Howard, Captain Carrot and Groo the Wanderer all enjoying comebacks this month in new miniseries, Templeton says it's great to see some people actually still want to have a laugh while reading a comic book. "I think the reason â€“ hopefully, the reason -- is that comic books like 'Punisher,' and raping the Elongated Man's wife and killing Captain America and the fact that every crossover requires a body count are not so fun," said Templeton. "Literally, on some level, these are still comics, they should be fun. When you pick up 'Howard the Duck' or 'Groo' and then put it down, your day just got a little lighter. You are all of a sudden having a slightly better afternoon.
"I didn't have a better afternoon after 'Identity Crisis.' I just wanted to punch a car. Or after 'Civil War' or 'Avengers Disassembled' when they ripped the Vision apart or killed Hawkeye, I wasn't happy after that. Last year, in 'The Ultimates,' when they killed Hawkeye's kids in front of him, I threw the comic across the room. Why would you do that to me? So I think 'Howard the Duck' and 'Groo' and 'She-Hulk,' another comedy comic book I work on, is a lovely antidote to that."
|Pages from "Howard the Duck" #2|
"And this is the part where I hold you up for ransom," teased Templeton. "If the first mini-series does well and they let us do a second, I promise, that we are bringing back the all-new Dr. Bong, who has a lighter for a hand instead of a ball."
|Pages from "Howard the Duck" #2|
"There was a run in 'Howard,' a couple of years ago in a weird little miniseries where he was hanging out with Generation X and the art was gorgeous, but the Howard was mean and he punched people and threw cigars at them. He was a jerk. Every issue, I was like, 'When is Howard going to rape the Elongated Man?' It was the wrong Howard. And I really hope I brought back the funny to Howard."
Now discuss this story in CBR's Marvel Comics forum.