The Comic Book Fools of April – The Heckler
Every day in April I will be featuring a humorous comic (either an issue or a series of strips) that I found particularly amusing. Feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org the comic stories that are your favorites when it comes to hilarity, and I’ll see if I can’t feature some of them this month, as well!
Today we look at Keith Giffen, Tom and Mary Bierbaum and Malcolm Jones’ short-lived, but hilarious Heckler series!
Plotted and penciled by Keith Giffen, with scripting duties done by Tom and Mary Bierbaum and inks by Malcolm Jones, the Heckler was a short-lived series, lasting only six issues before being canceled. However, as we are coming up on twenty years since it came out, the rights might very well be reverting back to Giffen relatively soon, so maybe he the Heckler can make a comeback!
The gist of the series is that the Heckler is a superhero parody consisting of a superhero (the Heckler, natch) who has powers similar to that of Bugs Bunny in a typical Looney Tunes cartoon (you know, malleable, able to pull items out of seemingly nowhere, great speed when necessary).
Here’s the Heckler in battle with a bad guy to give you an idea of what I’m talking about…
A later issue introduced probably my favorite villain, John Doe, whose touch…genericizes stuff!!
He comes up with a plan…he will infect the water of the city!!!
This leads to a confrontation with Doe and the gun-toting woman you see above, plus the Heckler plus a pair of thugs sent by the mob to silence John Doe (as they don’t want to be genericized, either)…
Man, looking at Giffen’s art, it’s a real shame that he didn’t DEBUT with this style, as I think he’d get a lot more acclaim for his artwork instead of folks remembering how he USED to draw. He is such a skilled sequential artist – such great storytelling skills.
In any event, this series did not last long, but boy was it a fun ride while it lasted!!
[NOTE: This was also featured in Year of Cool Comics – BC]