Howard the Duck's first appearance, from Adven...

Howard the Duck’s first appearance, from Adventure into Fear #19. Art by penciler Val Mayerik and inker Sal Trapani. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Howard was, well a duck.  But he was no Donald or Daffy.  Created by Steve Gerber he first appeared in Marvel Comics in 1973.  He was, “trapped in a world he never made” by slipping through a dimensional warp in the Fear #19 (December, 1973). After an unexpectedly enthusiastic response, he got a feature inside “Giant-Size Man-Thing.” When that series was canceled Marvel gave him his own comic with a January, 1976 cover date.

Howard the Duck (film)

Howard the Duck (film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

During his various escapades he met the rock group Kiss, briefly became a member of The Defenders and during the election year of 1976 was the nominee of the All-Night Party for president of the United States.

Curiously Disney threatened to sue Marvel over the character.  Marvel got around the allegations by creating a story for the character where Howard the Duck is sued for public indecency, which resulted in requiring Howard to wear pants.  And once Howard started wearing pants the Disney suit went way.

Eventually, Howard’s popularity waned – but not without one last great fizzle.  In 1986, Howard starred in a major motion picture produced by George Lucas of Star Wars fame.  The film was universally lambasted and Howard essentially faded into oblivion.