Sisyphean is right: The strip's rock has been steady rolling downhill for years. Once appearing in some 380 newspapers across the country, Life in Hell was ultimately dropped by all but 38 outlets, and earned Groening a whopping $18 bucks per paper per week.
Still, its contribution both to Groening's career and the careers of other alternative cartoonists is undeniable.
Though Groening respects the past, he says he is ready to move forward. "Life in Hell prevented me from doing other projects, because every week I had to go back to the same drawing table," Groening told USA Today. "[Quitting] will open me up to new things, more animation, more stuff. I may just sit and stare into space."
Speaking of which, Futurama returns to Comedy Central tonight at 10/9c. Check out an awesome hand-made live-action version of the show's opening sequence below.