Monday, 11 March 2013

Cerebus #23: "Nothing Fails Here"

Cerebus #23 (December 1980)
Art by Dave Sim
(from a review by Tucker Stone at, 8 February 2013)
Cerebus #23: An excellent issue of Cerebus that consists almost front to back of the character seated in a bed, listening to the goings on around him. Opening with a standard sex comedy set-up - a wounded Cerebus is taken in by a bunch of buxom young women being looked after and lorded over by a crotchety old crone, and the ladies almost immediately begin to persuade our hero to get his good leg thumping - Sim quickly twists it into something way more interesting by forcing a larger story to wedge itself into the gag. It’s even more intriguing when one considers the timing - a higher price is on this issue, the beginning of the longer, more serious business is upon the comic, and all of that is here, in the microcosm of one issue. It’s also a brilliant looking thing, a comic that takes place in dark rooms, between the light that escapes the blinds, amongst the stoic, unbending faces of the old woman and Cerebus himself. After indicating that the young women are, in fact, desirable, Sim shutters them off to the sides and corners, barely depicting them again, preferring instead to close in on the faces of the drunken forces of an outside world that would do them harm. Nothing fails here.

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