Monday, October 17, 2016

Howard the Duck #11 Review and **SPOILERS**

Raw Meat is Extruded Through Small Holes Into an Intestinal Casing

Writer: Chip Zdarsky
Penciler: Joe Quinones
Inkers: Joe Rivers and Marc Deering with Joe Quinones
Colorist: Jordan Gibson with Joe Quinones
Letterer: Travis Lanham
Cover Price: $3.99
On Sale Date: October 12, 2016


Most people can recall Wimpy J. Wellington’s refrain, “I’d gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today” from Popeye cartoons and comics, but how many people remember “Come on up for a duck dinner—you bring the duck!”? That one was really popular in the early E.C. Segar comic strips and Fleischer Studios cartoons. In fact, in the triple-length film Popeye Meets Sindbad the Sailor, Wimpy is seen on Sindbad’s island chasing a duck around with a meat grinder. Anyway, here’s a review of the last issue of Howard the Duck by Chip Zdarsky and Joe Quinones, which is, incidentally, not as good as Popeye.

Explain It!

This issue opens with Howard, dead. Okay everyone, so long! Hope you enjoyed my review! Just kidding, unfortunately. Howard really is dead, though, a cradled in Tara’s arms while shit is just smoking and on fire around them. Tara gets super mad and changes into a robot warrior duck head, which was something I forgot she could do. I recall a bit about her having Skrull blood or something? Tara is looking for the totally obvious analogue of Chip Zdarky, who is responsible for stabbing Howard at the end of last issue, which was the main contributor to him dying. Chip got a hold of some of the Power Cosmic, though, and lets it infuse him with a golden body just like Galactus’ herald, Scout has. While all of this is going on, that Punisher Sentinel is still stomping around, killing metahumans, while Spider-Man makes ineffectual attempts to stop it.

At the analogue to Marvel Comics, Joe Quinones is somehow there, skulking around and hiding from someone that is most likely a Marvel staffer. Ryan North cruises by on his hoverboard and whisks Joe Quinones to safety and to be honest I am seriously thinking that the pagination was wrong for this comic book. Back on Earth, Tara changes form and takes Major Domo, who had been filming Howard’s stupid life as a reality show, into custody. Over to Spidey and his problem, Punisher Sentinel spies Biggs the half-robot cat lying on its back and warming its belly in a sunbeam. Punisher Sentinel is touched and pets the robo-cat with a finger the size of a Volkwagen Jetta, which Biggs likes an awful lot. So this stops its rampage. Swell. Back at Marvel Comics, Ryan North is speeding Joe through a shared room that depicts every Marvel creator as purple aliens. I spotted a few, but this whole thing was so self-indulgent that it turned me off. The guy that is probably Purple Wil Moss is closing in on Joe, but he sics all of the Marvel writers and pencillers on the guy by shouting “creators’ rights!” and running away. Joe is tackled by probably Purple Wil Moss, and is able to depress a button on his tablet computer that takes to the afterlife, where Howard is rising to Heaven. Thanks to the efforts of sorcerer/surgeon Dr. Strange, Howard is yanked back to the real world which is a really mean trick if you ask me. Aunt May and Tara are thrilled, then Chip Zdarsky with the Power Cosmic shows up to kill Howard. The gang, including Spider-Man, protects him until Howard calls his pal Scout the Herald, who surfs in and takes the Power Cosmic away from Chip. Howard punches his lights out, which seems unlikely despite the fact that I bet Zdarsky has a glass jaw.

An obvious analogue of Axel Alonso appears in his Marvel transport ship to take Chip away, and then Axel asks Howard what they should do about the Punisher Sentinel. Howard doesn’t want to give up Biggs the robot cat, so Joe Quinones gives up his own Biggs, the source DNA for robot Biggs or something, and also its green for some reason. This works well for Punisher Sentinel and he fucks off quickly. Then Axel grants Howard one wish, so he asks to remain in the Marvel Universe I guess? I’m not sure, but it looks like a happy ending so revel in that. The letters section at the end is Wil Moss, Chip Zdarsky, and Joe Quinones waxing on and on about how great this series was, which seems pretty desperate when considering the final issue.

That was a let down. All of this “inside baseball” shit left me completely cold, and the humor of the convenience of being a “Sparkitect” or whatever you want to call it ran out about three issues ago. This issue is like the moronic yearbook quote left by some attention deficit-addled goofball that styled himself the funniest kid in school. I hope it got autographed by some better writers dispensing advice. Joe Quinones’ art is great as usual, but certainly not enough to carry this navel-gazing bore.
Gosh but I do love these variants!

Bits and Pieces:

Daffy Duck being hassled at the drawing table by artist Bugs Bunny, this is not.


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