Marvel Comics has announced via Entertainment Weekly that a new ongoing "Howard the Duck" series is on its way. The comic, Howard's first starring role since a 2007 miniseries, will be written by "Sex Criminals" artist Chip Zdarsky and illustrated by Joe Quinones ("Black Canary and Zatanna: Bloodspell") and feature the titular duck jumpstarting his career as a private investigator. In an interview with EW, Zdarsky says that he considers Howard to be "an everyman who happens to be a duck."
"He's angry, exasperated, and he's had it up to here with the world around him," said Zdarsky, "but he's trapped here! Infinitely relatable!"
Quinones also spoke to his Howard redesign that shifts the character a little bit away from other classic cartoon characters. "I knew I wanted to disassociate his look a bit from being a literal cartoon duck, like Daffy or Donald, and instead into a sort of middle ground. Obviously I'm cartooning him here, but I wanted Howard to get away from the giant cartoon eyes. Howard should be able to sit in the same panel as Rocket Raccoon or Spider-Man, and not have it look like 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit.'"
Howard the Duck was created by Steve Gerber and Val Mayerick in 1973 and went on to star in his own ongoing series from 1976 to 1979. A feature film flop in 1986 seemingly damaged the character beyond repair and he was relegated to comedic guest appearances in other superhero comics for the past few decades. The character stepped back into the spotlight thanks to a post-credits scene in this summer's "Guardians of the Galaxy," which added Howard to the massively popular Marvel Cinematic Universe.
"Howard the Duck" #1 goes on sale March 4, 2015.