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10 Reasons Why Howard the Duck Is Poised for a Comeback

Triggered by a brief tag scene at the conclusion of the new Guardians of the Galaxy movie, Marvel Studios' latest summer blockbuster, the surprise appearance of the acerbic fowl has quickly set the fan community abuzz.

by
Pierre Comtois

Bio

August 11, 2014 - 7:00 am
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Waugh!

Howard the Duck is back!

Does Howard’s appearance (in a speaking role no less!) suggest a bigger part for the malicious mallard in the next film? (There was a “Guardians of the Galaxy will return” consumer warning at the end of the movie…) If so, there will likely be many happy fans who hold fond memories of Howard from comics of the 1970s and ’80s, when the character was riding high and didn’t mind pointing out the absurdities of human behavior in general and skewering establishmentarianism in particular. What rich pickings he’d have in the Guardians’ corner of the universe with its amalgam of alien civilizations, warring empires, and mashed-up values! (Imagine Howard face to face with the self-important Thanos!) He might even find his way to the Earth of the Avengers where audiences can be treated to the spectacle of Captain America debating the finer points of the Constitution with him! (Howard would likely get along better with the more cynical Tony Stark.)

But first, Howard will need to convince audiences to accept him.

Which may be easier than some might believe. With today’s moviegoers mostly being under the age of 30, they have no direct knowledge of Howard’s last disastrous brush with movie stardom. And though they may feel some instinctive negativity toward the character, they likely have no idea that it has been inculcated into them by the overwhelming condemnation that had been aimed at George Lucas’ original Howard the Duck film. Over the years since, the poison has long since filtered into the public consciousness. Howard the Duck has become synonymous with camp, junk, and the worst kind of movie making.

But a lot of water has gone under the bridge since 1986 and there’s definitely a sense that audiences are ready to move on with the subject of Howard the Duck. The electricity felt in theaters over the tag scenes at the end of the new Guardians film was palpable. Thus, it’s perhaps time to review a bit of Howard’s checkered history and find out if the madcap mallard is really ready for a comeback…

10) Howard the Duck, movie star

It’s been 27 years now since Howard the Duck crashed Hollywood in a big way starring in his very own big-budget movie produced by Star Wars super genius George Lucas. At the time, following his breakout film American Graffiti and then the worldwide phenomenon that was Star Wars, it was widely accepted that Lucas, like his contemporary Steven Spielberg, could do no wrong. That belief was quickly dispelled with the release of Howard the Duck in 1986, a film roundly savaged by critics and filmgoers alike. It not only proved to be a Waterloo for Howard, but Lucas as well, as the myth of his infallibility was burst forever. For the maligned mallard however, things would be a little different. Although his comic book career continued to be much admired by fans, to the general public he was at his lowest ebb, reduced to a laughingstock and a tinseltown untouchable seemingly for good.

All Comments   (9)
All Comments   (9)
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Comic geeks. Start reading Heavy Metal (stay away from the flicks) and grab a bong. I outgrew the Marvel/DC monoverse after I sprouted pubes. You guys are just sad-making.
6 weeks ago
6 weeks ago Link To Comment
Ah, Howard the Duck, Tim Robbins' finest moment on the silver screen.
6 weeks ago
6 weeks ago Link To Comment
If done right it would be amazing :)
6 weeks ago
6 weeks ago Link To Comment
On the whole, I think Elric is more likely for a comeback. If it happens, please keep Disney away from it so it doesn't get John Cartered.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
Like Moorcock Elric? I'd watch that film if done correctly.
6 weeks ago
6 weeks ago Link To Comment
No, just please no. The only disappointing thing in the entire Guardians of the Galaxy movie was in fact the appearance of Howard the Duck in the after credit scene. If I'd known about it, I never would have stuck around for it.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
Not sure where you saw this movie but I and the audience around me loved seeing Howard at the end of the film.
6 weeks ago
6 weeks ago Link To Comment
Exactly right. A HtD reboot may very well kill the Marvel renaissance.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
Entropy, all winds down.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
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