Richmond, CA: Sunbury Productions, 1966. First Edition. Wrappers. The only separate printing of the third book by one of the pioneers of Underground Comix. Stories, cover and art by Beck. Original color printed stiff paper wrappers, 16pp. Some toning and staining to the cover, else internally clean and overall very good. Very good. Item #946
Along with Frank Stack and Jack Jackson (Jaxon), Beck helped develop the distinct artistic style and themes of Underground Comix. Marching Marvin is the best art of Beck’s influential portfolio. An out of work Santa Clause has become the official story teller for a horny princess. He tells her the story of ‘Happy Land’ where everyone is happy and they don’t need to practice tolerance because they all get along so well. The social harmony quickly begins to deteriorate with the arrival of pornographic magazine publisher, Hugh F. Hare who presents the fantasy of transforming Happy Land into ‘Best Land’ (for only $40/month plus necessities). Everyone is Happy Land is excited by the prospect of the dreamlike ‘Best Land’ until a citizen from another Best Land, Marching Marvin, a xenophobic nationalist, interrupts to warn the citizens of Happy Land that ‘Komies’ are coming to take over. Marvin hatches a plan to kill the Komies before they, do it first.
Like many of the early Underground Comix, “Marching Marvin” is a warning for readers to open their eyes and see the dangers of everyday life that’s dictated by the ruling class. Whether it is the corporate greed of those trying to sell a fantasy land to the already content citizens of Happy Land, or those sowing fear to turn two like-minded people against each other.