“I can make it here in Hunger City, nothing’s gonna stop me. I’ll know I’ll survive.”
Those lyrics from Cherry Bomb’s “Hunger City” from the Howard the Duck soundtrack have proven to be quite prophetic in the three decades since the infamous megabomb first hit theaters. As someone who was there on opening day and has enjoyed seeing the transition that the movie has made from cliched punchline to cult hit, there’s more than a little bit of vindication that I, an outsider, feel about the flick’s reversal of fortune. So I can only imagine the daffy trip that Lea Thompson must look back at the Howard the Duck experience as.
Over the years, Thompson has regularly discussed the film without any real shame or snark. It was a bomb for sure, but one from which she escaped unscathed (another 1986 dud that she starred in, SpaceCamp, is also celebrating it’s 30th anniversary…as well as its own renaissance). Yesterday The Hollywood Reporter broke the news that the just-released 8th issue of Marvel’s Howard the Duck comic would feature Lea Thompson as herself. Having just read the issue, we have some thoughts. Spoilers follow.
Written by the great Chip Zdarsky (whose concurrent work on Jughead cements his rep as a true herald of outsider characters) and featuring art from Joe Quinones, this issue is primarily concerned with Howard’s return to Earth after some comic adventures. Once he is back in the world he never made, he finds himself reunited with former companion/love interest Beverly Switzler. Their reunion is a bittersweet one, made more difficult by the sudden appearance of a Sentinel and Howard’s inability to listen (further complicating things is a surprising secret that Bev seems to be hiding from her feathered friend). The issue ends with Howard back in his detective office when, in the very last panel, Lea Thompson appears, stating “I need your help finding a missing person: myself?” TO BE CONTINUED. With the ad for the next issue teasing Thompson as well as aliens and TV execs, it seems like the next issue will be exceptionally crazy.
But what role will Lea Thompson play? Will she reference the Howard the Duck movie? (I mean, how can she not?)
We will have a review of that issue when it hits, but for now the important thing to realize is that Lea Thompson, the actress who portrayed Beverly Switzler on screen, is now an in canon part of the Marvel Universe. I can’t help but think that somehow, Howard creator Steve Gerber would find this hilarious…if more than just a little obtuse.
Lea Thompson and Joe Quinones. Photo via Marvel
Chris Cummins thinks this election cycle would be way more tolerable if Howard the Duck were running again. Follow him on Twitter @bionicbigfoot and @scifiexplosion.