Wednesday, 1 February 2017


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.

This week it is going to be a quick column as I was in New Jersey this weekend rather than at home working on this article. . .Such is life some times. Anyhoo, this week we're looking at Albatross, Too. Also known as Dave Sim's second Cerebus notebook, we've only seen it once before in Albatross, Too. It covers Cerebus #28 to 37.

So without follow ado, some Dave Sim sketches of Moon Knight Roach. Plus what appears to be Moon Roach's alter ego, the cab driver, Blake Jockley.

Notebook #2, page 74

Notebook #2, page 75
Notebook #2, page 76


Travis Pelkie said...

You were in New Jersey? What did you do wrong?


Typo finding pedant (not named Jeff): it should be without "further" ado, not "follow". I am willing to say it was autocorrect, not you, Margaret!

But this is a damn cool entry. You can definitely see where Dave was trying that Neal Adams "draw some lines on the paper and then make them connect into a figure" method that Dave has talked about before. He certainly seems to achieve a decent Neal Adams via early Billy the Sink style here.

I wish I had seen Neal Adams actually drawing when I met him at a con. These days, with what he charges for autographs, all I can afford to do is watch!

Jeff Seiler said...

"Romantic Adams shit".

The best thing Dave ever wrote?

You tell me.

Jeff Seiler said...

Yeah, Travis, I saw it, too, but I was afraid M. would call me an idiot again...

A great memory is when I was at the St. Louis (Minneapolis? I forget.) and Neal was there (NO! Minneapolis, 'cause I went home to get my copy of Following Cerebus and took it back to the convention center [two blocks from my building]) and I asked Neal to sign it.

He looked at it with a squint-eye and, then signed it.

And, then, he started talking. I finally had to ask him if I could pull up a chair and sit down.

He talked and talked and talked (to borrow a phrase from Sid Caeser) about that trip to Niagara Falls with his wife and son and Dave.

It was fascinating, listening to him, as people occasionally approached for autographs. He certainly has a great deal of respect for Dave.

At the end of our time, sitting there, just talking, with (BTW) no time limit (super nice guy), he said something very much like, "You know, Dave kept calling me back for days, asking me about different parts of the interview, to get it right."

I replied, "Well, Dave Sim is nothing if not thorough."

Neal laughed, and said, "You got that right."

And, then, I took Ger and Shel over to meet my cat.

Travis Pelkie said...

A woman call you an idiot, Jeff? NOOOOOO!

j/k, but you did walk into that one ;)

I got to chat with Neal's son (Josh, I think) and asked him a bit about the Niagara Falls trip. I think he enjoyed it, from what I remember him saying.

You got more time with Neal than I did. His handler seemed to be pushing people to buy stuff for time with him, but that may just have been my impression. I heard from someone else who had complained to his handler that he was the only one charging for all autographs, and the complainer said her reply was something like, "well, he's the only Neal Adams." True, though!

I got a copy of the Anything Goes with Neal's Cerebus on the cover signed as one of my 2 sigs from him (the other was Action 466, a personally significant one) (two was as many as I was willing to pay for at 5 bucks a pop a sig). I nearly smeared it because he had to use a silver pen to sign the black cover. Luckily, I got another copy of that book just a couple weeks ago for cheap, so now I have a reading copy!

Tony Dunlop said...

That's Artemis Strong, not Blake Jockley. Like the Moon Knight character he parodied, Moon Roach had multiple "secret identities."