I've just learned that comic book writer Steve Gerber, creator of Howard the Duck and Omega the Unknown passed away on Sunday.
Steve had been suffering from pulmonary fibrosis, and had been writing about the process on his blog for some time. Mark Evanier has a testimonial to his friend over on his site his site. And Mark has been given permission by those close to Steve to log into Steve Gerber's blog. I recommend reading the posts their to get an idea of Steve's contributions to the industry.
As a kid in the 70s, I became a huge fan of Gerber's HOWARD THE DUCK, one of the most unusual Marvel Comics at the time. A talking Duck, with a sarcastic wit that would make Archie Bunker blush. Steve used a lot of social and political satire in the book, poking fun at us 'hairless apes' and the way we screw things up. As a 10 year old, I may not have even been aware of some of the satirical points he was making, but the book was so captivating to me that I still loved it. No doubt the amazing artwork by Gene Colan helped.
Lately, I've been on a big Howard trip. I even finally bought, after never owning one, a nice copy of HOWARD THE DUCK #1. Steve really was the first writer that taught me satire. This from a talking Duck, with a sexy, human, model as a girlfriend!
I'd like to share more thoughts on his writing, his influence and my huge affection for Howard the Duck. But tonight though, I miss Steve Gerber. Thank you Steve, for your great storytelling gifts, your professional impact, and for your unique insight.