Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Notebook #25 And Rick's Story

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.

So far in looking at the thirty-six notebooks that Dave Sim used while creating Cerebus, we haven't looked  at notebook #25. When Dave sent me the notebooks, he would put a small post-it note on the cover of the notebook with the issue number(s) covered in the notebook. For notebook #25 the post-it said 'issue 227'. Notebook #25 stated 100 pages, but only 40 were scanned and there were 40 blank pages and 20 missing pages.

Going through those 40 pages, while it starts with issue #227 in Rick's Story, there is a bit of a few later issues and even Going Home in notebook #25 as well. On page 2 of notebook #25, we see dialogue for page 11 of issue #227 - page 157 in the Rick's Story phonebook. It starts with Joanne talking to Rick with Cerebus sitting nearby thinking to himself and listening to the conversation.

Notebook #25, page 2
Dave has crossed out some dialogue between Rick and Joanne where Joanne states Rick rather spend time with Cerebus then with her. Instead on the finished page we see Cerebus sitting there trying to make a reason - cleaning the wood stove with a stick - to stay around and listen to their conversation.

We'll skip to page 5 in the notebook, where see a sketch of Cirin and a thumbnail for pages 16 and 17 of issue #225 (pages 162 & 163 of the phonebook).

Notebook #25, page 5
The thumbnails don't match the finished pages panel for panel, but the intent is still there: Cirin coming up the stairs with a sword to do something to Cerebus. I can't find the dialogue in the Rick's Story. It sounds like it is Cerebus thinking about where Rick went and what he thinks happened to him.

Then on page 6 we see a sketch of Cirin with her sword and then a quick glimpse from issue #229 wherein Dave appears:

Notebook #25, page 6
We also see a quote from Dave "After five years it was just about time to leave." He must be talking about Peter's Place, the bar in Kitchener he used to go to.  Though in issue #229 he says he spent the better part of ten years there, not five.

1 comment:

ChrisW said...

Did he include the entire conversation between Rick and Joanne where he points out that the Cirinists changed their minds about hemlines? In the finished version much of the dialogue was covered up by Cerebus' thought balloons.