Howard's first appearance in comics is when he is abruptly abducted from his home planet by an unseen force and randomly dropped into the Florida Everglades by the demon-lord Thog the Nether-Spawn. He meets the Man-Thing, who had been attacked by Korrek of Katharta, and the three of them are confronted by warriors of the Congress of Realities. He then meets Dakimh the Enchanter and Dakimh banishes the warriors and transports Howard, Man-Thing, and Korrek to his castle, where they are joined by Jennifer Kale. They then travel to the realm of Therea and destroy Thog the Nether-Spawn. Howard then accidentally falls off the inter-dimensional stepping stones that the group were traveling on and materializes in Cleveland, Ohio, where he battles Garko the Man-Frog. Howard is arrested at this time for disturbing the peace and is mistaken for a mutant during a strip search, but is released because the police fear he has mutant abilities. Howard also briefly encounters and kills a vampiric cow named Bessie the Hellcow.