New York: Collier, 1940-1942. First Edition. Thirty-seven issues of Collier's Magazine, dated variously between April 20,1940 and July 11, 1942, all featuring Crockett Johnson's first magazine comic, "The Little Man with the Eyes." This collection represents roughly a third of Johnson’s work for Collier’s.
Johnson’s popularity as a sketch artist grew with the publication of “Harold and the Purple Crayon” (1955), but it was in an earlier comic strip, collectively known as “The Little Man with the Eyes,” where his humor was at its most subtle. Beginning in March, 1940, the comic ran for nearly three years, until January, 1943; Johnson’s other comic strip, “Barnaby,” a political series, was just taking off, begun in 1942.
“The Little Man with the Eyes” usually featured four or five small vignettes of a little man with big white eyes, his facial expressions doing all of the narration. Subtle to the point of obscurity, the comic captured Johnson’s own gentle character, with apolitical themes, and capped the first phase of his career before venturing into children’s books.
Issues range widely in condition, from Fair to Near Fine in illustrated, stapled wrappers. A few issues have detached wrappers, a few lack wrappers, one issue is incomplete and lacking wrappers (the comic is present), and one issue is a duplicate.