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Harvey Kurtzman Original Art: pencil layouts (lot of 3) from Humbug 3


Harvey Kurtzman Original Art: pencil layouts (lot of 3) from Humbug 3
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    "You Are There Then' pencil layouts from Humbug" --- Lot of 3 pages + the 1957 comic book

    Art consists of two (2) sheets (1 sheet has 2 pages) of 19.5" wide x 14" high

    Pencil and pen & ink on blue-lined bristol board, each folded vertically through the middle.

    In 1953 an CBS television show called You Are There debuted. It presented historic events but restaged with reporters in contemporary attire reporting "live" from the scene. Walter Cronkite was the host. Kurtzman parodied this docu-drama in a 3-page feature in Humbug No.3 (1957) using the assassination of Julius Caesar as his foil. Offered here are his pencil layouts which Will Elder followed for the finished art. Though not as tight as his pencil layout style used later for "Little Annie Fanny," these are still quite tight. This example is most notable for the "extra art" outside the specific page layouts. Note on page 1 where Kurtzman instructs Elder to "make Caesar look like [TV comedy star] Sid," a sight gag he recycled several years later for the front cover of Help! magazine No. 1. Another marginal note instructs Elder to make a Roman look like [Egyptian President] "Nassar," while other suggestions that Sid Caesar be surrounding by fellow comedians "Milton Berle, Arnold Stang, Bilko, Gleason" are not implemented. At the bottom of page 2 the perfectionist Kurtzman has an afterthought and adds two improved variations of inked stabbing figures with the notation, "these poses are better for action postitions." At the very end the final panel layout is unrealistically cluttered with voice balloons, so Kurtzman adds the correct layout with the retreating Cronkite outside the intended page layout. The issue of Humbug No. 3 that is included with the lot is in VF+/NM condition.

    (click image to see a larger view)

     

    PAGE 29 OF HUMBUG NO.3

    (click image to see a larger view) 

    PAGE 30 OF HUMBUG NO. 3

    (click image to see a larger view) 

    PAGE 31 OF HUMBUG 3

     A close-up view of one panel: 

     COVER OF HUMBUG NO. 3: