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20 September 2009 @ 09:40 pm
Steve Gerber Would Have Been 62 Today  
Today was supposed to have been Steve Gerber's 62nd birthday. In a just world, he'd still be with us. In a just world, when Steve was still alive, he would have participated financially in the success of Howard the Duck, instead of having to engage in legal battles which proved expensive and exhausting.

Sure, all most people remember now is the punch line that the Howard the Duck film became, but remember, too, there was a valid reason the film got made in the first place. Long before the film, the character had been a genuine hit. So on Steve's birthday that might have been, should have been, let's take a look back at a happier time—the moment Marvel Comics seemed to recognize exactly what it had on its hands.

[Click on the pages below to see them at a more readable size.]

There's plenty of interesting info in this memo, but the two items of note today, the two things which would have thrilled Steve, are a note (on the first page) that "Howard the Duck will go to a monthly frequency, effective #9, December," and a request (on the second page) to "Please schedule a new $1.50 special, (Treasury size) entitled HOWARD THE DUCK #1, 1976, 80 pages."

Steve must have been thrilled that his creation had done so well in the marketplace that it went monthly and spawned a treasury edition.

Unfortunately, that joy wouldn't last. A bitter battle was still to come.

But spare a thought for Steve on his birthday today anyway, OK?
coppervalecoppervale on September 21st, 2009 04:45 am (UTC)
Yep. Been reading some of his stuff all evening.
Melopoeia, Metoikosmelopoeia on September 21st, 2009 04:12 pm (UTC)
Thank you. I'd never have heard of Steve Gerber otherwise.
Because well, I've only dipped into comics so far, reading what people I knew read, borrowing their graphic novel collections. So I mostly got to read the Vertigo sort of stuff. Missed a lot. Now I want to track his stuff down, his stuff and Elastic Man...I wonder if the incomparable Biblio of Montréal has it in translation...I remember René taking me there once, how astounded I was to see a huge section of room full of beautiful comic books anyone was allowed to read and (I think) check out!
That there is manga in libraries now blows my mind, I should go look for it.
rab62rab62 on September 22nd, 2009 07:48 am (UTC)
Birthday or no, not a day goes by that I don't think about Gerber...and I know for a fact there are a lot of other folks who feel the same as we do.