Monday, September 8, 2014

Dork Art: Howard The Duck & Man-Thing Puppet

This past weekend Guardians of the Galaxy officially became the highest grossing August film ever - it's not only the biggest film of this summer, but it's already made more money than last year's Man of Steel.  That is crazy.  Nothing to bring the crowd in besides an excellent trailer, and the Marvel brand.  Talking trees, rocket raccoons.  What's next?  Doctor Strange?  Black Panther?  How about Howard The Duck?  As we saw in the post credits tag of the James Gunn movie, Seth Green brought voice to a new Howard.  The first time I saw the film, the tag brought a few "Wha??"s & a couple "WTF??"s from the crowd.  Me?  A big fanboy grin.  I've always been a fan.  I dig the George Lucas flick.  It's a awkward whackjob flick, perfectly encapsulating the confusion of the 80s.  But I understand the disdain.  I just wish that disdain didn't block fanboys from exploring the original comic book.  However, now's the time folks.  Howard The Duck is cool again.

Created by Steve Gerber & Val Mayerik, Howard The Duck first appeared in the pages of Adventures into Fear #19 when Marvel's Man-Thing fell into the Nexus of Realities, encountering both Howard and The Peanut Butter Barbarian....yeah, you read that right, The Peanut Butter Barbarian.  Eventually Howard The Duck got his own title, and it allowed for Steve Gerber to write some scathing satire amongst the webslingers and fantastic families.  It's a goofy, weird, and immensely fun book.  If all you know about the character is the Lucas flop, then I encourage you to snatch up a few of those early issues.  They run fairly cheap at cons, but maybe not for long.  Do I expect Howard The Duck in Marvel's Phase 3 or 4?  Doubtful.  The James Gunn tag is pretty much a one-shot joke.  Still, it's possible that Howard pops up in Guardians 2 or some other cosmic outing.  Right now, Marvel's testing the waters.  They're re-releasing the omnibus in October, Funko is adding him into their Pop Vinyl line, nd artist Val Mayerik is finding himself in the spotlight once again.

On September 20th, coinciding with Fantastic Fest, Mondo will be holding their very first Posterpalooza dedicated to the art of the one-sheet - Mondo Con.  The typical Mondo artists like Jason Edmiston, Tyler Stout, and Jay Shaw will be on hand hosting panels & releasing new exclusives.  But there's plenty of new blood.  Mike Mignola, Tim Sale, Bernie Wrightson and Val Mayerik.  Seriously enjoying the inclusion of these comic book greats.  Mayerik recently did a signing at Austin Books, where he was selling the Howard the Duck/Man-Thing print seen all the way at the top of this post.  I've already hit up ebay looking for this beauty, but no luck so far.  I want it.  I need it.  Hopefully, Mondo will make it available to the public soon enough.  Whatever the case, the time for Howard the Duck is once again upon us.  And there's no George Lucas to muck it up.


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