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1962 comic starring Crumb’s insecure alter-ego, Little Billy Bean
Early and original complete comic strip, signed “R. Crumb,” on both sides of a 6.75 x 8.5 off-white lightly lined sheet, titled “A Sad Comic Strip,” dated St. Patrick’s Day 1962, starring Little Billie Bean. All twelve ‘panels’ feature Billy lying flat on his back, with thought balloons above each sketch. His thoughts read:
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“I am completely confused. I utterly don’t know what to do.”
“Should I lay here or should I get up?”
“There surely isn’t any sense in getting up, since I have no purpose, no goal, no reason for doing anything.”
“My life is without meaning. All is chaos and confusion. I might as well lay here till I rot.”
“What’s the use in getting up and trying to do anything? It’s all so futile. Why struggle? Why fight for survival? It’s all for nothing.”
“Maybe it wouldn’t be for nothing if there was something to believe in. Something of joy and love.”
“But there isn’t. Not for me, anyway. For me there is nothing. I’ve tried in vain, struggled and strived for years and years to get love, and peace, and understanding.”
“All I ever got for all the effort was frustration, heart-ache, despair, confusion. All my dreams have been shattered. Life has let me down.”
“So why go on? Why go on feeling frustrated and lonely and depressed. I must come to accept my lot.”
“I must accept defeat. I must give myself up to emptiness, blankness. A life without caring, without striving. A life without life. A state of vegetation.”
“So I’ll lay here till my heart stops beating and life goes out of me. Till death and oblivion overtake me.”
In fine condition. An early and most likely unpublished example from the influential cartoonist, whose original artwork is very scarce and of ever-increasing desirability. Pre-certified PSA/DNA.