Thursday, 9 January 2020

A Soliloquy in Graveyard


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 for the last few entries we've been looking at the "(t)wenty pages of closely-spaced Suenteus Po / Cerebus dialogue" from Dave's second Cerebus notebook. We've seen four of those pages so far, so how about a couple more?

Notebook 2, page 6

Po: Building on them an enchanting them, selling your audience falling in love with your own excess verbiage. You've got it figured out to the last comma. But when someone jumps though one of your elephant sized loopholes, you grant him a couple of grudging chortles and a "[illegible] fellow well-met" little comment to shove his eyes and distract him from the essence of the issue at hand.
Cerebus: Which is?
Cerebus: You're full of it.
Po: All right, let's suppose that I'm not the Illusionists aren't what I say they are. What reason would I have to make for lying to you.
Cerebus: Cerebus wouldn't know - but that wouldn't alter the fact that you were lying.
Po: Well said. I know you think I'm just stroking your ego, but I genuinely admire your ability to get to the heart of things.
Cerebus: Sure. For one thing Cerebus was led to believe that it was Wenda's drug that caused Cerebus to get to the seventh sphere last time. Cerebus hasn't been drugged this time. Not to his knowledge anyway.
Po: Are you quite sure? What's the last thing you remember?
Cerebus: Being knocked unconscious.
Po: By whom?
Cerebus: Cerebus doesn't remember.
Po: I don't believe you.
Cerebus: Well, that makes us even, doesn't it.

So I thought there would be more pages of Cerebus and Po dialogue. . .but nope. On page 7 there is more text, and while a bit of it appears to be dialogue, it doesn't appear to be a continuation of the previous conversation.

The top line: 'Cerebus soliloquy in graveyard' appears to be written at a different time then the rest of the page and so does the 'dream sequence' text beside it.

Notebook 2, page 7
The bottom half of the page:

When Cerebus was in Palnu, there seemed to be a lot of illusionist talk going around. They seemed most interested in seeing a kind of leveling off of real change change. They wanted the bureaucracy changed, they wanted control of the decision making changed. They wanted a fairer distribution of wealth and a change in the immigration laws. It seems like the Illusionists is the urge to change is there anything  things. Even if they [illegible] talk about change like it was a magic [illegible] ritual. If something doesn't work, change it and it will work. Of course, what you saw was the surface and form and not the substance of Illusionism. We want change because we feel the power groups in control of Estarcion's wealth aren't capable of reaching a consensus, -- there is no sense of universal truth to what they do.
 Universal truth? You think the Illusionists had any better idea of truth than the governments? They know universal truth, all right.


Dave Kopperman said...

I think the word is 'purifying', so it's 'magic purifying ritual' - maybe?

Rodger said...

The last sentence from Po's first dialog:

..."HAIL fellow well met" little comment to STOKE his EGO...

Birdsong said...
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