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1986 Topps Howard the Duck Trading Cards

1986 Topps Howard the Duck Trading Cards

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Every year there seems to be one or two would-be blockbuster that falls flat on its face, rolls around a little and is mocked for years to come. In 1986, Howard the Duck was that movie. Despite having the backing of George Lucas, an emerging star in Lea Thompson and the big-screen debut of one of comicdom's fan favorites, the movie was an embarrassing flop. But that didn't stop the marketing blitz surrounding it that was likely planned months in advance. Part of that blitz was 1986 Topps Howard the Duck trading cards, a collectible that captures the film's epic weirdness better than anything else outside of the DVD.

On the one hand, 1986 Topps Howard the Duck is your standard set of '80s movie trading cards. On the other, it shows how strange it is. All the Hollywood suits would have had to have done is take a look at some of the images captured on cardboard and they could have known this wasn't your average comic adaptation -- even one based on a cigar-smoking duck.

At 77 cards, the base set is a little on the small side. The design is simple. Fronts are surrounded by a red border. Images are stills from the movie that are joined by the film's egg logo and a caption at the bottom.

1986 Topps Howard the Duck Trading Cards 1 1986 Topps Howard the Duck Trading Cards 2

Backs are dominated by yellow and red. The top half of the card has a Howard the Duck logo headline. The right side has a full-body illustration of the title character. The remainder of the space is filled with a writeup.

Every pack also has one of 22 different stickers. These have two designs. Both have yellow backgrounds. The difference comes from the backgrounds. Some have the traditional outlined look. These have a thick border around the image. Others are complimented by a film strip design. Backs double as puzzle pieces.

Given the film's popularity (or lack thereof), it shouldn't be surprising that this set is still very affordable. That said, as the movie's status grows, there could be renewed interest in 1986 Topps Howard the Duck trading cards.

2013 Topps 75th includes autographs of stars from several past sets. Among them is Ed Gale who played Howard in the movie.

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1986 Topps Howard the Duck Checklist

Base Set Checklist

1986 Topps Howard the Duck Trading Cards 3

1 Title Card
2 Introducing Howard!
3 Beverly Switzler
4 Phil Blumburtt
5 Dr. Jenning
6 Howard on Duck World
7 Duck-O-Vision: The Game Show
8 Duck-O-Vision: Crazy Webby
9 Duck-O-Vision: Teen Bandstand
10 Duck-O-Vision: Medical Program
11 Duck-O-Vision: Public Affairs
12 Duck-O-Vision: Football Commercial
13 Duck-O-Vision: Count Duckula
14 Landing on Earth (Plop!)
15 Motorcycle Maniacs!
16 Cherry Bomb's Best Lady!
17 Bev in a Jam!
18 No More Mr. Nice Duck!
19 Little Duck Lost
20 Weird...But Cute!
21 Special Delivery!
22 A Feathered Phenomenon!
23 At the Dynatechnics Lab
24 'Ascent of Duck'
25 Waddling Off in a Huff
26 Bug Off, Blumburtt!
27 Humans...Phooey!
28 So Long, Ducky!
29 How a Duck Can Make a Buck
30 Howard In Hot Water
31 Howie & Bev...Together Again!
32 A Scientist Possessed!
33 Jenning's Mad Lab
34 A Fowl Shakedown!
35 Beverly's Packin'!
36 Master of Quack Fu
37 The Thing Within Jenning
38 Diner Dilemma
39 Bottoms Up!
40 Eggs? You're Kidding!
41 Duck vs. Truckers
42 Stop That Duck!
43 Doctor of Doom!
44 Ketchup Catastrophe!
45 Howard the Swinger!
46 Destroying a Duck
47 He's Not on the Menu!
48 Dr. Destructo!
49 Earth vs. The Flying Cleavers
50 Howard Gets a Lift!
51 The Dark Overlord
52 Everything's Ducky!
53 Help Us, Howard!
54 Hell on the Highway
55 Hit Me With Your Best Shot
56 The Immunity Syndrome
57 Facing the Fiend
58 Howard to the Rescue!
59 How About Plan "B"?
60 The Switzler Sacrifice
61 The Girl Has Problems...
62 Diabolical Dynamo!
63 He's Unstoppable!
64 Zapped!!
65 Howard's Last Chance
66 Howard the Hero!
67 Overloaded Overlord
68 Duck, You Sucker!
69 Spectroscopic Disaster
70 One Last Chance!
71 Ka-Blooey!
72 Quack to Me, Howard!
73 Lord Love a Duck!
74 Cleveland Triumphant!
75 I Want My H-TV!
76 A Comic Classic!
77 Checklist

Stickers Checklist

22 cards. Inserted 1 per pack.

1 Howard Pointing
2 Howard Looking Up
3 Crazy Webby
4 Spaceship
5 Beverly
6 Howard with Gun
7 Howard with Cigar
8 Howard - Arms on Table
9 Howard in Housecoat
10 Howard in Football Gear
11 Dark Overlord Screaming
12 Phil
13 Howard Pushing Cart
14 Howard with Group
15 Beverly Posing
16 Dark Overlord Watching
17 Howard In Egg
18 Howard - Arms Crossed
19 Howard In Sunglasses
20 Dr. Walter Jenning
21 Howard -Face
22 Beverly and Her Big Hair
1986 Topps Howard the Duck Trading Cards 4

Ryan is a former member of The Cardboard Connection Writing Staff.   His collecting origins began with winter bike rides to the corner store, tossing a couple of quarters onto the counter and peddling home with a couple packs of O-Pee-Chee hockey in his pocket. Today, he continues to build sets, go after inserts with cool technologies, chase Montreal Expos and finish off his John Jaha master collection.

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