Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Thesbian Tavern Tramp Drunk

A few years ago I scanned all of Dave Sim's notebooks. He had filled 36 notebooks during the years he created the monthly Cerebus series, covering issues #20 to 300, plus the other side items -- like the Epic stories, posters and prints, convention speeches etc. A total of 3,281 notebook pages detailing his creative process. I never really got the time to study the notebooks when I had them. Just did a quick look, scanned them in and sent them back to Dave as soon as possible. So this regular column is a chance for me to look through those scans and highlight some of the more interesting pages.

Some of my favorite bits of humor in Cerebus are in Guys. One such case is with Cerebus' inner dialogue in issue #217 as he is taking with Joanne: it makes me laugh out loud. That Cerebus confuses lesbian with thesbian. a misspelling of thespian. His whole self-doubt and assumptions he makes about what Joanne has been doing. Gets me every time. 

In notebook #22 Dave writes out some of the dialogue for the conversation between Cerebus and Joanne, as seen on page 36:

Notebook #22 page 36
The top left hand corner is a sketch of the top panel of page 359 of Guys (issue #217 page 11). The bottom right hand corner of the page has the dialogue for page 360 of Guys. This first draft of the dialogue has lesbian instead of thesbian and instead of Louise the name of Joanne's friend is Gerta. So far it is just the dialogue, no word balloons. 

On the next page of the notebook, there are some notes on issue #218 and the Starchild tavern. On page 38 of the notebook we see the same dialogue again but it has been updated from lesbian to thesbian and put into word balloons:

Notebook #22 page 38
On page 39 Dave continues with the thesbian tavern tramp dialogue with some more colorful language. 

Notebook #22 page 39
Well, kind of colorful language. Using what I thought was a pretty neat trick with the 'no swearing' in front of the cuss words. Interesting to see Dave playing around in his notebook with what he is going to do with the lettering and word balloons as well as the layouts and dialogue.

1 comment:

Travis Pelkie said...

Y'know, I'm not sure I noticed that "thesbian" was a misspelling. D'oh!