Will Eisner original Spirit artwork --- "As Ever Orange" (2/10/46)

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The title of this story was inspired by a bestselling 1946 book: Forever Amber by Kathleen Windsor (adapted the following year into an Otto Preminger film). This Valentine story features The Spirit's sidekick, Ebony White trying to impress a new girlfriend named As Ever Orange. Also introduced is an African American army captain Fraternization H. Shack, a rival with a very proper British accent (and a character who will return in later episodes). Ebony dons a Spirit mask throughout this story, to underscore his affiliation with The Spirit. Will Eisner, who was sensitive to some criticism that Ebony could be construed as having racist overtones, depicts Ebony in this story as being self-conscious about his "minstrel accent." Humiliated by As Ever's put-down, Ebony decides to go to school to improve his English. The story ends with Ebony taking a train to school and, thus, an unexpected leave of absence from the strip. He is replaced temporarily by an Eskimo boy named Blubber in the subsequent February 17, 1946 story. (The original "Blubber" art is also available from this agency.)

Complete 7 page story.................$10,000