Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Oscar Meets Lord Julius

Cerebus #125 (August 1989)
Art by Dave Sim & Gerhard

(from the introduction to Like-A-Looks in Cerebus World Tour Book 1995)
One of the few moments of comedy relief in Jaka's Story occurs when Oscar (based on Oscar Wilde) has a run-in with Lord Julius who, inexplicably, is wearing a dress. I quite liked that. The idea of Lord Julius in a dress attempting to flee Iest in the face of the Cirinist (matriarchal fascists) invasion and take-over. In the few pages that I set aside for it, I got to have a little sport with Oscar Wilde's well-known weakness for the aristocracy (the very soul and essence of composure in the rest of the story-line, he degenerates into a fumbling, bumbling obsequious sycophant in the face of a chance meeting with the legendary Grandlord of Palnu. Naturally, Lord Julius makes short work of him. I wrote the dialogue, I know it off by heart and it still makes me chuckle when I think of it. Nice feeling.) as well as doing a variety of facial expressions in the space of a handful of panels that the restrained nature of the rest of the story-line would not permit.

Of course then the mail started coming in. "Was that the real Lord Julius?" "What's he doing in Iest?" "How did he get there after the invasion?"

1 comment:

Adam Wajnberg said...

I find there's a disappointing dearth of discussion on Lord Julius around the web. To my mind he's surely the most dangerous, awe-inspiring persona in the whole Cerebus tale - part Bugs Bunny, part Odysseus. Imagine if we had a real statesman out there like that - someone who calls out the bullshit of political craft while subtly using it to his own ends (and, one would hope, to the betterment of whatever state he hails from). I can't think of a single good example from real life. Everyone in power seems like the type of humorless prat who LJ would have eviscerated...