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Steve Gerber (1947–2008)

Author of Essential Howard The Duck

295+ Works 1,659 Members 36 Reviews 2 Favorited

About the Author

Comic book writer and creator Steve Gerber was born in St. Louis, Missouri on September 20, 1947. After receiving a bachelor's degree in communication from Saint Louis University in 1969, he worked as an advertising copywriter before joining Marvel Comics as an associate editor and writer in 1972. show more He began by writing stories for Daredevil, Sub-Mariner, and other superhero titles. He created Howard the Duck, Omega the Unknown, and the animated series Thundarr the Barbarian. Howard the Duck No. 1 was published in 1976 and Gerber wrote the first 27 issues. After he was fired from Marvel in the late 1970s, he sued the company for ownership of the Howard the Duck character. The case was settled out of court with Marvel retaining the rights to the character and Gerber receiving an undisclosed sum. This suit was one of the first cases to bring the issue of creators' rights to the attention of the public. In 1986, Howard the Duck was released as a live-action film produced by George Lucas. Gerber also wrote for animated television series like G.I. Joe and Dungeons and Dragons. He died due to complications of pulmonary fibrosis on February 10, 2008. (Bowker Author Biography) show less
Image credit: Portrait by Val Mayerik

Series

Works by Steve Gerber

Essential Howard The Duck (2002) 129 copies, 1 review
Howard The Duck Omnibus (2008) 74 copies
Omega: The Unknown Classic (2006) — Author — 55 copies, 2 reviews
Howard The Duck (2002) 54 copies, 1 review
Essential Defenders, Volume 3 (2007) 47 copies, 1 review
Hard Time: 50 to Life (2004) 43 copies
Nevada (1998) — Author — 40 copies, 2 reviews
Man-Thing Omnibus (2012) — Author — 35 copies
Dr. Fate: Countdown to Mystery (2008) 28 copies, 4 reviews
Essential Captain America, Volume 4 (2010) 27 copies, 1 review
Vampire Tales - Volume 1 (2010) 25 copies, 1 review
Stewart the Rat (1980) 25 copies, 1 review
Superman: Phantom Zone (2013) 24 copies
Infernal Man-Thing (2012) 20 copies, 1 review
Essential Daredevil, Volume 5 (2010) 19 copies, 1 review
Thundarr the Barbarian: The Complete Series (1980) — Creator — 18 copies
The Son of Satan Classic (2016) — Author — 16 copies
G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero: Season 1.1 (2009) — Developer — 16 copies
Bloodstone & The Legion of Monsters (2017) — Author — 13 copies, 1 review
The Original Transformers: The Complete Series (1987) — Developer — 11 copies
Howard the Duck (1976) #16 (1977) 10 copies
Hard Time: Sixteen (2013) 7 copies
Howard the Duck (2002) #1 (2002) 6 copies
Howard the Duck (1976) #1 (1975) 6 copies
Howard the Duck (1976) #6 (1976) 5 copies
Nevada #1 (1998) 5 copies
Nevada #2 (1998) 5 copies
Nevada #3 (1998) 5 copies
Howard the Duck (2002) #2 (2002) 5 copies
Nevada #5 (1998) 4 copies
Nevada #6 (1998) 4 copies
Howard the Duck (2002) #4 (2002) 4 copies
Howard the Duck (2002) #3 (2002) 4 copies
Violated (Volume 1) (2011) 4 copies
Howard the Duck (1976) #5 (1976) 4 copies
Countdown to Mystery #4 (2008) 4 copies
Nevada #4 (1998) 4 copies
Man-Thing # 22 4 copies
Howard the Duck (1976) #3 (1976) 4 copies
Transformers: Seasons Three & Four (2014) — Developer — 3 copies
Supernatural Thrillers # 5 (1972) — Author — 3 copies
Howard the Duck (1976) #4 (1976) 3 copies
Adventure into Fear, No. 19 (1973) 3 copies, 1 review
Howard the Duck (2002) #5 (2002) 3 copies
Countdown to Mystery #2 (2007) 3 copies
Countdown to Mystery #3 (2008) 3 copies
Howard the Duck (1976) #8 (2000) 2 copies
HeartThrobs, Issue 4 (1999) 2 copies
Destroyer Duck #4 (1983) 2 copies
Metal Men [1963] #45 (1976) 2 copies
Howard the Duck (2002) #6 (2002) 2 copies
The Easy Path (2011) 2 copies
Countdown To Mystery # 8 (2008) 2 copies
Foolkiller #6 (1991) 2 copies
Daredevil, Vol. 1 #107 (1973) 2 copies
Kiss 2 copies
The Transformers [1984]: Season 3 (1986) — Developer — 2 copies
The Transformers [1984]: Season 4 (1987) — Developer — 2 copies
Transformers: Season 3, Part 1 — Developer — 2 copies
Thundarr the Barbarian: Season 1 (1980) — Creator — 1 copy
Foolkiller #7 May 1991 (1991) 1 copy
Foolkiller #5 (1991) 1 copy
Adventure Into Fear #11 1 copy, 1 review
Adventure Into Fear #12 1 copy, 1 review
Adventure Into Fear #13 1 copy, 1 review
Adventure Into Fear #14 1 copy, 1 review
Adventure Into Fear #15 1 copy, 1 review
Adventure Into Fear #16 1 copy, 1 review
Adventure Into Fear #17 1 copy, 1 review
Adventure Into Fear #18 1 copy, 1 review
G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero [1985] - Season 1 (1985) — Developer — 1 copy
Mister Miracle (1971-1978) #24 (1978) — Author — 1 copy
Foolkiller #9 (1991) 1 copy
Hard Time #9 1 copy
Thundarr the Barbarian: Season 2 (1981) — Creator — 1 copy
Hard Time #8 1 copy
Hard Time #7 1 copy
Hard Time #6 1 copy
Hard Time #5 1 copy
Cybernary #1 1 copy
Hard Time #4 1 copy
Hard Time #3 1 copy
Mister Miracle (1971-1978) #25 (1978) — Author — 1 copy
Mister Miracle (1971-1978) #23 (1978) — Author — 1 copy
Sludge #6 1 copy
Morbius 1 copy
Hard Time #1 1 copy
Captain America and The Falcon [1968] #221 (1978) — Author — 1 copy
Sludge #1 1 copy
Toxic Crusaders # 3 (1992) 1 copy
DESTROYER DUCK: Mar #6 (1984) 1 copy
DESTROYER DUCK: May #7 (1984) 1 copy
Fear #23 1 copy
Daredevil, Vol. 1 #109 (1974) 1 copy
Daredevil, Vol. 1 #106 (1973) 1 copy
FoolKiller, Edition# 1 (1990) 1 copy, 1 review
Supernatural Thrillers # 7 — Author — 1 copy
Sludge #5 1 copy
Sludge #4 1 copy
Sludge #2 1 copy
Exiles #2 1 copy
Exiles #1 1 copy
Exiles #4 1 copy
Exiles #3 1 copy

Associated Works

Howard the Duck [1986 film] (1986) — Original characters — 172 copies, 2 reviews
52: The Companion (2007) — Contributor — 43 copies, 2 reviews
Star Wars: The Classic Newspaper Strips, Vol. 1 (2017) — Author — 34 copies
Essential Incredible Hulk, Volume 4 (2006) 30 copies, 1 review
Essential Marvel Horror, Volume 2 (2008) — Contributor — 30 copies, 1 review
Women of Marvel, Vol. 1 (2006) — Contributor — 27 copies, 1 review
Marvel Firsts: The 1970s Volume 1 (2012) — Author — 19 copies
Women of Marvel: Celebrating Seven Decades [Omnibus] (2011) — Contributor — 14 copies
Perverts, Pedophiles & Other Theologians (1997) — Foreword — 11 copies
Monsters Unleashed (1973) #4 — Author — 6 copies
Monsters Unleashed (1973) #9 — Author — 5 copies
Monsters Unleashed (1973) #8 (1974) — Author — 4 copies
Crazy Magazine #64 (1980) — Contributor — 1 copy
Crazy Magazine #61 (1980) — Contributor — 1 copy

Tagged

Common Knowledge

Members

Reviews

Access a version of the below that includes illustrations on my blog.

Bloodstone & the Legion of Monsters collects all of the original 1970s appearances of the monster hunter Ulysses Bloodstone, plus a few one-shots featuring his daughter Elsa, and a four-part miniseries, Legion of Monsters. It does not collect, despite what the solicitation indicated, the 2001-02 miniseries that introduced Elsa and indeed, remains inexplicably uncollected. The stories are put in a somewhat weird order here (though I can see the logic), but I will go through them in publication order.

The earliest issues are nine featuring Ulysses Bloodstone. Ulysses made his debut in Marvel Presents #1, appeared again in the second issue of that title, and then transferred over to the black-and-white series Rampaging Hulk, appearing in seven of its first eight issues. Ulysses an immortal; ten thousand years ago, he was present when the magical bloodstone was shattered, and a bit of it was embedded in his chest, granting him immortal life. He's spent his time tracking down other fragments, stopping those who misuse them—especially rampaging kaijuesque giant monsters. There's a core of a good idea here, but I didn't find it to be terribly well executed. The first two issues, in particular, a very choppy; writer John Warner clearly thought he was setting up a long epic when he wrote Marvel Presents #1, and then issue #2 has to hastily wrap up and explain everything, and completely ignores some key aspects of issue #1 in the process!

His six issues of Rampaging Hulk are fine; mostly the high point is the beautiful black-and-white artwork. I did like Bloodstone's supporting cast, a lackadaisical actor turned assistant monster hunter and a crusading journalist, but the actual stories focused too much on the tedious machinations of a globe-spanning conspiracy, and never seemed to really go anywhere. Bloodstone was always on the backfoot, bizarre twists were being piled on top of bizarre twists, new complications being introduced at random. And again, it all gets abruptly cut short, this time in a one-issue conclusion by writer Stever Gerber that somewhat tastelessly discards the characters you've spent six issues getting to know. So what was the point?

That was (spoiler) the end of Ulysses Bloodstone, and as far as I know, he's stayed dead. I did pause reading the collection at this point to read the 2001-02 miniseries, but that's outside the scope of this review. The short version, though, is that Ulysses's somewhat overcomplicated backstory was played down; no more mention of the bloodstone fragments or the conspiracy, he just became a flamboyant hunter of monsters of all sorts and his mantle passed on to his daughter, Elsa. The omission of this miniseries from this collection is, frankly, obnoxious and inexplicable. Elsa was then reinvented with a somewhat different backstory in the miniseries Nextwave: Agents of H.A.T.E., which I haven't read yet but will next. I can see why this isn't here (it's twelve issues long and not all about Elsa) but the retooling of a retooling is a jarring thing to happen between stories.

It's this retooled Elsa who is the focal character of three short comics from 2009-10, reprinted from Marvel Assistant-Sized Spectacular #2, Astonishing Tales: Boom-Boom and Elsa #1, and Girl Comics #2. The first is kind of meh, but the other two are fun stories about her overdramatic, overviolent life and her friendship with Tabitha "Boom-Boom" Sparks. You can never go wrong with some Faith Erin Hicks.

Lastly, there's Legion of Monsters (2011-12), a miniseries where Elsa has to work with some monsters, helping defend an enclave of ostensibly peaceful monsters from an attack via plague. The art is nice to look at, dark and moody, and I certainly appreciate any superhero comic that attempts to do something different, but I found both art and writing difficult to follow and ultimately got a bit lost in the contortions of it all; I think the story assumes a deeper familiarity with Marvel's bench of monster characters than I actually possess.

So overall, it's not the best Bloodstone collection that could have been published. If I hadn't read the 2001-02 miniseries in the middle, I don't think it would have been coherent at all; as it is, it seems to be about two characters related in nothing other than their name and the vague concept of monster hunting.

Elsa Bloodstone: Next in sequence »
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Flagged
Stevil2001 | Jan 15, 2024 |
I have an ongoing frustration with the Guardians of the Galaxy. I love the idea of them, but for the most part, I have not truly enjoyed the actual stories that have been written for them.

I should also say that, while the world knows the GotG as Star Lord, Drax, Gamora, Groot, and Rocket, that's never been my GotG line up. Mine was always Major Vance Astro, Martinex, Charlie-27, Yondu, Nikki, and Starhawk.

Which brings me to this collection. Unfortunately, while there was some brilliant stuff coming out of Marvel in the mid-to-late 70s, there was also an awful lot of crap. And unfortunately Steve Gerber produced more than his fair share of it. The storyline presented here is...well, it's a hot mess. Gerber does a trial run of his Omega the Unknown character with Starhawk who constantly says something along the lines of "Take the word...of One Who Knows!" but never explains how one happens to know. And when it came to providing the origin of the One Who Knows, he started it, then handed the entire mess over to Roger Stern with the admission that he really didn't know where he was going with it.

Which is the central problem, right? Someone who doesn't know what he's doing is writing a character who's defining characteristic is to be the One Who Knows.

Gerber's other problem is, despite having an entire universe as his sandbox, he rarely plays with anything that doesn't seem to tie back tightly to NYC. The imagination just wasn't there.

Roger Stern fairs a little better, steering the storyline away from hamfisted social commentary and Really! Deep! Stories! about very little toward more of a space opera.

I do think, had Stern had more time, he probably could have turned this iteration of the GotG into something fantastic. Unfortunately, he'd taken over a ship that Gerber had purposefully and wantonly kicked holes in.

I'll never understand why Marvel thought their Steves...Gerber or Englehart...were good at cosmic, galaxy spanning stories. They weren't.
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TobinElliott | Jan 7, 2024 |
 
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zot79 | 4 other reviews | Aug 20, 2023 |
 
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lulusantiago | Mar 11, 2023 |

Lists

Awards

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Associated Authors

Sal Buscema Illustrator, Pencils (Ta)
Gene Colan Illustrator
Jim Mooney Illustrator
John Buscema Illustrator, Pencils (3), Art (16)
Val Mayerik Art (Tc, A, 23), Pencils (F, M, 22), Illustrator
Gil Kane Cover artist, Illustrator, Cover Pencils (3, 5, 8-9, front)
Al Milgrom Inks (D77), Cover Inks (2, D77), Editor (D75-78), Inker
Jaeho Hong Director
Ken Spears Creator
Roger Stern Writer (8)
Joe Ruby Creator
Mary Skrenes Writer (1-6, 9-10)
Phil Winslade Illustrator
Terry Lennon Director
John Gibbs Director, Director
Russ Heath Illustrator
Kevin Nowlan Illustrator
John Kimball Director
Rudy Larriva Director
Bob Brown Illustrator
Juan Doe Illustrator
Mike Vosburg Illustrator
Alan Kupperberg Illustrator
Flint Dille Developer
Bryce Malek Developer
Michael Golden Illustrator
Steve Ditko Author, Illustrator
Vince Colletta Illustrator
Don Hudson Illustrator
Rick Leonardi Illustrator
M Esposito Illustrator
Pat Broderick Illustrator
Klaus Janson Art (16), Inks (Ta, 14, 15, 17-21, 25-27), Cover Inks (25-26), Illustrator
Dave Cockrum Art (16), Cover Art (7), Cover Pencils (10), Cover Inks (6)
Herb Trimpe Pencils (D75-78), Illustrator
Carmine Infantino Pencils (21)
Steve Leialoha Inks (1-13), Cover Inks (3, 10-11)
Terry Austin Inks (16)
William Wray Inks (22)
Frank Brunner Illustrator
Gerry Conway Contributor, Author
John Romita Sr Illustrator, Cover artist
Sonny Trinidad Illustrator
Dean Elliott Composer
Dick Tufeld Narrator
Scott Edelman Writer (7)
Mike Esposito Inks (6, D75, D78), Cover Inks (8-9)
Lee Elias Pencils (8)
Allen Milgrom Illustrator
Faith Erin Hicks Contributor, Illustrator
Ed Hannigan Afterword, Illustrator
Archie Goodwin Editor, Author
John Romita, Sr. Cover artist, Cover Pencils (6), Prototypic Omega Costume
Gray Morrow Illustrator
Roy Thomas Contributor
Arthur Adams Illustrator
P. Craig Russell Illustrator
Jim Starlin Illustrator
Tom Sutton Illustrator
jamesjoh Illustrator
Rudy Mesina Illustrator
Rod Santiago Illustrator
Rudy Nebres Illustrator
Victor Olazaba Illustrator
Rick Spears Contributor
Bob Wiacek Illustrator
Christopher Yost Contributor
Pat Boyette Illustrator
James Callahan Illustrator
Bob McLeod Illustrator
Ron Wilson Cover artist
Mike Harris Cover artist
Brian Bolland Cover Art (front)
Rich Buckler Cover Art (D76), Cover Pencils (2, D77, back)
Frank Giacoia Cover Inks (3-5)
Steven Grant Afterword
Mark Gruenwald Afterword
Andy Kubert Lettering
Ron Fontes Logo Design
Todd Klein Letterer
Khaled Tadil Translator

Statistics

Works
295
Also by
14
Members
1,659
Popularity
#15,496
Rating
½ 3.6
Reviews
36
ISBNs
93
Languages
3
Favorited
2

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