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RevolutionSF Remembers Steve Gerber
Revolution News
© RevolutionSF
February 11, 2008

Comic book writer Steve Gerber died Feb. 10.

Gerber wrote for Marvel and DC. He created Howard the Duck and the Thundarr the Barbarian cartoon.

Rick Klaw runs through Gerber's comics history in this Dark Forces feature.

Comic book writer Steven Grant remembers Gerber here.

He wrote one of my favorite comics, the KISS Super Special, where the band debuts in the Marvel Universe as medallion-powered superheroes.

He wrote for cartoons in the 1980s. He was story editor on G.I. Joe, Transformers, and he created Thundarr the Barbarian. He wrote episodes of Yu-Gi-Oh!, Mr. T, four episodes of G. I. Joe, three of Batman: The Animated Series, and one Star Trek: The Next Generation in its second season, "Contagion."

His last published work is a trippy Doctor Fate series for DC in Countdown to Mystery.

I have every issue of Defenders from the 1970s. It's my favorite comic series. It has superheroes fussing, then a page where a Christmas elf shoots somebody. With no explanation.

Man-Thing and Howard the Duck are weirdly awesome, and awesomely weird. Gerber defined Marvel Comics in the 1970s. Those comics are a creative joy, fantasy, sci-fi, horror, and comedy all at once. Reading them will make your brain fire in a zillion different directions. -- Joe Crowe

* * *


I haven't read Gerber's work in years and years, but as a youngster I watched Thundarr the Barbarian every week, and as a teenager I dug the hell out of Howard the Duck. I never knew they had anything in common.

It's a shame Howard the Duck is as well known for that godawful George Lucas movie; by the time it came out Lucas had passed his Empire peak and was creating nothing but drek.

Howard in the comics was irreverent and hilarious. Although he never wanted anything but to live his own life in peace, he battled the weirder Marvel Comics villains (Dracula), ridiculous parodies of Marvel Comics villains (Bessie the Hellcow, Doctor Bong), and over-the-top villains that seemed to embody, basically, anything that annoyed or amused Steve Gerber at the time (the hypermoralizing Kidney Lady, cult leader Joon Moon Yuc).

In 1976 Howard ran for president under the banner of the All Night Party. He lost the race, but in (human) redhead Beverly Switzer he had the hottest girlfriend in comics.

That Steve Gerber wrote one cool duck. -- Shane Ivey

* * *

No! Not Howard's daddy! -- Jayme Blaschke

* * *

Truly an original creator of comics. Comics by Steve Gerber were like nothing else on the stands in the 70s.

Still can't see what Bev saw in Howard, however. That was just creepy. -- Jay Willson

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