Friday, 24 August 2012

HARDtalk: The Dave Sim Interview (22b)

Since finishing Cerebus, you have done some work with other creators, even occasionally scripting for others (e.g. the issue of Gun Fu you co-wrote), something you'd done early on but, except for with Gerhard, rarely have done since that partnership formed.  How do you find it to have to script for another artist, or to accomodate your style to someone else's work?  

So, I had mocked up the whole "Ebony Dreams" with pasted-together photocopies with Richard's own Joe Kubert computer font lettering (In Pace Requiescat, Joe Kubert!! Your computer ROCKED, ROCKS & WILL ALWAYS ROCK MY WORLD!)  I wanted the three Elephantmen pieces in black and white.  Well, he obviously tried that on the computer screen, mocking it up and went, "No, this isn't working for me".  And then, trying to stick over in my direction, he said he was going to colour it a light monochrome -- 20 percent cyan or something.  And then, obviously, looked at that and said, "No, this isn't working for me either." It's still a good 80 percent or more of what I sent him. Which is a pretty good track record for making someone else's jigsaw puzzle piece.

Which, even just in the story sense, is amazing in itself because I was definitely taking his storyline in an entirely new direction.  This storyline he's been working on for years.  "Mappo but higher up".  Well, Rich --  there it is.  You can rewrite the ending or do a transition that establishes it JUST as a dream and edit the "Mappo but higher up" out of the other two stories.
Ebony Dreams by Dave Sim (2012)
Black & White version: Hero Comics 2012 (Hero Initiative)
Colour version: Elephantmen #42 (Image Comics)
But if you stick with it it's, at the very least, a long-range story arc across the three characters who have roughly the same dream.  A game-changer.  Well, he decided to go with it.  Which is very flattering and very gratifying -- I can DO this for other comics, I can satisfy another creator with this. It showed he had confidence not only in my writing but in my conceptualizing.  "This appeals to me -- I could do some good things with this."  I'm an Elephantmen fan so it was me saying "Here's what I would do and here's the three characters I'd do it with and here's the escape hatch if you don't want to do it."  I even included some sample snapshot dialogue it could lead to.  It's there if he needs it.  If he can't use the snapshot dialogue maybe it will trigger something for him.  It's like tennis doubles -- you work with your partner and try to set things up.  You do what works.

Okay, Eric and Dominick, you have a follow-up question for this?

Can we expect to see more Dave Sim collaborative work in future? 

Okay, that's a good one.  Tune in tomorrow to see if The Caped Crusader will sober up from The Riddler's Mickey Finn and doing the Batusi in time to drive the Batmobile to Robin's rescue.  (That was actually the first Batman TV cliffhanger back in January 1966... unless I dreamed that part) Same Moment of Cerebus Time, Same Moment of Cerebus Channel!

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