For those who don’t happen to remember That One Episode From August 2010 That Featured the Arbiter of Funk, this might help explain the last panel.
In the normal historical timeline, our boy Kerouac was deep in the grips of trying to find his way towards On the Road in 1953. His first novel had been published in 1950 to no particular acclaim, and it would be seven long years until his masterwork became the central text of the Beat Generation. During that time, he wrote and rewrote On the Road, haunted by the influence of his favorite authors, never Quite achieving what he felt was needed. At one time, he felt the issue was the jarring interruption caused by putting fresh paper in a typewriter, so he connected a bunch of sheets into 12 foot long strips, sat down, and banged out one version of the full novel at breakneck speed on these mammoth paper ribbons over a matter of weeks. An alcoholic Catholic hitch-hiking former athlete literary student interested in Buddhism, hobos, and 19th century philosophy, nothing about the man entirely makes sense, and I think it’s all of that living tension- that full blooded desire to just Consume The World, distributed across several characters, that makes On the Road still so eminently enjoyable.
– Count Dolby von Luckner