Monday, February 11, 2008
RIP Steve Gerber
It's more sad news that Steve Gerber died last night. He'd been blogging from his hospital bed after suffering from pneumonia while awaiting a lung transplant. His blog posts were filled with the same wit and wry cynicism that marked his best comic work. Mark Evanier also has a nice rememberance of Gerber up on his own blog here.
Gerber was reaching his peak as a writer early in my comic reading hobby. While his work could be darkly funny, as in Howard the Duck, it could also be deeply spiritual and moving, as was especially the case with his most recent work, the new Doctor Fate series for DC.
Evanier and others have said pretty much everything there is to say about Steve Gerber. He was really one of the greats. Here's a quick list of just some of my favorite comics and moments from his prolific and influential career.
Mister Miracle 24, where Gerber built on Kirby's creation to make the character the messiah of the Fourth World, as Kirby intended.
The Phantom Zone miniseries: a story that 13-year-old Dr. K found both unsettling and awesome, which is a feeling I would have continuously in Gerber's comics for years to come.
Omega the Unknown: along with Howard the Duck, probably Gerber's purest creation.
Some pretty badass and hilarious lines from the final page of the Void Indigo graphic novel, and the start of a series that scared Marvel so much that they cancelled it after only two issues. An alien warrior comes to Earth, names himself Mick Jhagur, and watches a lot of TV.
To see Gerber's best work, check out The Essential Defenders, The Essential Man-Thing, and the forthcoming Howard the Duck Omnibus.