Thursday 31 March 2022

Notes on Cerebus #51 & 52

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.

For the last couple of weeks we’ve look at pages 1 & 2 and then 3 & 4 of Dave Sim’s sixth Cerebus notebook. So why not continue that trend and look at page 5 and 6? Dave’s sixth notebook covers Cerebus #52 through 59. Page 4 had notes on Cerebus #52 and the On Governing story from that issue, and the next page in the notebook continues with that:

Notebook #6, page 5

The majority of the page has notes for On Governing, and the bottom of the page has a list of potential characters for Cerebus #51 and then some drawing of Harlon Ellison. 

The next page then has some sketches of page layouts for Cerebus #51, an outline for pages #15 through 20 with notes for page 20 of:

Cerebus leaving 

“hey you up there where are we docked”

Port Seprania it’s the only port between IEST and TOGITH

Do you know how to get a sword out of a barrel lid

Sure I’ve got an axe in my cabin

That’s good enough for Cerebus. Don’t think it hasn’t been a nightmare because it has.

Notebook #6, page 5

That leads into page 7 of the notebook which has thumbnails and dialogue for Cerebus #51. We’ve already seen it in Bureaucrat Pudding. Then on page 8, which we saw in one of the first posts on the notebooks, Dave Sim’s Notebooks: “On Governing”, we see some thumbnails for the layouts to Cerebus #52 and writing for On Governing.

Wednesday 30 March 2022

Cerebus The Emily...OUT NOW... Probably!

Benjamin Hobbs:

In stores this week (PROBABLY!): CEREBUS THE EMILY #1!

The Variant cover will be available on the next SOCIH? KS!

SOCIH? Volume 12 is probably delayed.  Although I haven't heard anything officially about it. Let me know in the comments if SOCIH? V12 or Cerebus The Emily arrived at you LCS!

Now available to order from DIAMOND.  GIANT-SIZE PUBLIC DEFENDERS and the variant cover!

 Next Week: I'll be shipping out a LOT of SOCIH? V7 and V8 hardcovers, God willing.

Tuesday 29 March 2022

Form & Void Kickstarter ends at 8PM EST!

Hi, Everybody!

Like two hours or less until the Form & Void Kickstarter ends. If you're waiting until the last minute, you're REALLY cutting it close.

Ya don't wanna end up like Cerebus, do ya?

And if you have a question you want Dave to answer tomorrow for April's Please Hold For Dave Sim, you got until I send the fax in about three to three and a half hours.
Heritage, they got a bunch of neat Cerebus stuff. Including three pages of original art...
My good friend Steve Swenson
He ALWAYS gets the thumbs up!
sent me:

Hiya Matt -

In case you hadn't seen them, 7 pages and one cover of original art on eBay:

Is all too rich for my blood, but happy bidding! (And if you win
Oliver's Cerebus movie: The Absurd, Surreal, Metaphysical, and Fractured Destiny of Cerebus the Aardvark is currently available "Plex", "Xumo", "Vimeo On Demand", "Tubi".
Up to 35% off site-wide:
In April, I'm sure...
Tell your fans! Remind them that everything will be up to 35% off -- that means $13 tees, $20 phone cases, $30 hoodies, and way more!

Cerebus in Hell?:

And so, with the Kickstarter's end, the 60ft Dave Sim returns to the ocean until we need him again...
next month. because this is freakin' hilarious to me...

Next Time:  Hobbs VS Megalon...

Monday 28 March 2022

24 hours to go...

Hi, Everybody!

As Dave says, he taking a Ramadan break. Which is why he's calling me on Wednesday for April's Please Hold For Dave Sim. Get your questions in by tomorrow night to so I can fax them up to Dave.

ALSO tomorrow is the end of the Remastered Form & Void Kickstarter. Ends at 8PM EST. 
Which leads to today's topical selection from said phonebook:

Coming soon: them pages...REMASTERED!
Not enough pages for a post...

Topical page from Church & State volume 1:
Still not enough...

Topical pages from Church & State volume 2:

I'm just sayin', I think Will Smith has enough character now...
Heritage, they got a bunch of neat Cerebus stuff. Including three pages of original art...
My good friend Steve Swenson
He ALWAYS gets the thumbs up!
sent me:

Hiya Matt -

In case you hadn't seen them, 7 pages and one cover of original art on eBay:

Is all too rich for my blood, but happy bidding! (And if you win
Oliver's Cerebus movie: The Absurd, Surreal, Metaphysical, and Fractured Destiny of Cerebus the Aardvark is currently available "Plex", "Xumo", "Vimeo On Demand", "Tubi".
Up to 35% off site-wide:
In April, I'm sure...
Tell your fans! Remind them that everything will be up to 35% off -- that means $13 tees, $20 phone cases, $30 hoodies, and way more!

And as long as I still laugh at them, I'm still gonna make 'em:
Cerebus in Hell?:

Next Time:  Happy Trails to you...

Sunday 27 March 2022

Cerebus Around the World and AH CRAP HE QUIT!!!! TL:DW: Please Hold For Dave Sim 10/2019 Steve Peters Week II

Oliver Simonsen:

Ah crap, he quit. That means I gotta do this...

Hi, Everybody!

TWO DAYS! Ya got TWO DAYS until the Form & Void Kickstarter ends. Eddie has made a helpful reminder:




What is a micro Cerebus you ask? It is the original, complete 24-page book reduced to 2.5 x 3.5" and is available either raw or slabbed by CPS in collaboration with Studio Comix Press. We are only printing 175 individually numbered copies, so don't miss what is sure to be an instant collector's item!


FORM & VOID has been painstakingly restored and remastered for stunning clarity by digital restoration master, Sean Michael Robinson. Sim and Gerhard's fine line work and nuanced detail that was lost in previous printings can finally be seen and appreciated as it was meant to be. FORM & VOID captures Dave Sim and Gerhard at the peak of their artistic powers. See for yourself why they are among the most important figures in the history of graphic, narrative storytelling!


Thanks Eddie! I owe you a Coke.

TWO DAYS! is also how long you have to get your questions in for Please Hold For Dave Sim 4/2022 which is being recorded in 3/2022 so Dave can have off for Ramadan (4/2/2022-5/2/2022 for those of you playing alone at home...) by Tuesday night, because that's when the Fax happens...

Since we're talking about Please Hold, how's about another one of those neat Jesse Herndon Please Hold For Dave Sim transcripts?

Here's where I'm at (blue link means it's been posted):
1/2019 2/2019 3/2019 4/2019 5/2019 6/2019 7/2019 8/2019 9/2019 10/2019 11/2019 12/2019 
1/2020 2/2020 3/2020 4/2020 5/2020 6/2020 7/2020 8/2020 9/2020 10/2020 11/2020 12/2020
1/2021 2/2021 3/2021 4/2021 5/2021 6/2021 7/2021 8/2021 9/2021 10/2021 11/2021 12/2021
1/2022 2/2022 3/2022

So, Here we go:

Please Hold for Dave Sim 10/3/2019
Recorded by Matt Dow and Dave Sim
Transcribed Jesse Herndon (I owe him a Coke too...)
Posted without editing...
Part One:
Dave: Hello, Matthew!
Matt: Hi, Dave! How’s it goin’?
Dave: Good, how are you doing?
Matt: Pretty good, pretty good!
Dave: Alright. Are we recording?
Matt: We are recordin’.
Dave: We are recording or we’re ready to go?
Matt: We’re recording, we’re ready to go.
Dave: Okay, the first thing I want to specify is that this is official Bill Ritter day across all of Cerebus fandom.
Matt: Okay.
Dave: [laughs]
Matt: What did Bill do?
Dave: Bill, it wasn’t what he did, it was what we didn’t do. Bill is the most, again, #103 of anything’s done on Kickstarter and Sean and David both dropped the ball on it so that he didn’t get the #103 card in the Postcard from Hell #3. So I sent him a #103 out of 1 “Cerebus in Hell?” #1 and there’s a couple of misprinted Postcards #3 that I have re-designated as my authority as David Sim #103. And since we’re recording this on October 3rd, I thought, well, okay that’s another thing I can give Bill. From now on, October 3rd everywhere in Cerebus fandom is Bill Ritter day, which is also a 103.
Matt: [laughs] Okay.
Dave: It’s great having that kind of authority. I can change numbers to other numbers just by saying “by the power vested in me as Dave Sim, I hereby declare this to be, whatever it is that I declare it to be”.
Matt: [laughs] Reminds me of Cerebus’ third wedding!
Dave: Well, yes, it’s got elements of that to it. And it’s very possible that Eddie Khanna could decide to revoke that entirely after I’m dead and he takes over, he’ll just say October 3rd isn’t Bill Ritter day anymore.
Matt: I don’t think Eddie would do that. I think Eddie’s smarter than that. Whatever Dave said goes, unless what Dave said makes absolutely no sense.
Dave: [laughs] Okay, well, maybe he’ll have another good purpose for October 3rd that will be important to him. Anyway, we’re in Steve Peters Week Two, right?
Matt: Yep!
Dave: Okay. I was going to ask, has Steve said anything about the stories that are going to be in “Parallel Comicverses” #1?
Matt: Ahh, he’s vaguely alluded to it, but nothing specific. I believe that’s the post he’s gonna send me for tomorrow, which isn’t gonna be tomorrow cause tomorrow’s the Weekly Update. But basically, he came up with a week’s worth of stuff and I’m like, you do understand that Ben Hobbs and Margaret Liss and Dave have Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday? But don’t worry, I’ll just extend Steve Peters week as long as I want, cause I have that kind of authority.
Dave: That’s right! That’s right. You’re the Matt Dow and when you decide to do that, no one can say thee nay. It’s like, what, do you wanna take over? Here, take it!
Matt: Yeah, there’s been a couple of comments of, ya know, the blog’s unreadable. And I’m like, if you really wanna take over? If you think you’re the William Shakespeare of Cerebus Blog Writers, go ahead.
Dave: There you go. There you go. Okay, I didn’t want to give away the premise if Steve was keeping the premise secret.
Matt: He’s setup the premise of the issue is a fictional future version of him dealing with the fandoms for his three favorite things, which are Yes, Star Wars, and Cerebus. And he’s posted parts of the prologue story. I think he’s posted the whole prologue story on his Facebook or the Comicverse’s Facebook. He sent me a link to it and I was readin’ it, and I’m like, I’m pretty sure this is public.
Dave: Okay. Yeah, the only thing I will add to that in that case, so that I don’t preempt Steve, is that it’s definitely an ultra-feminist future that I was speculating on in writing my story. When the female supremacists have won.
Matt: Okay.
Dave: If that doesn’t ring a bell for you, then I might already be stepping on Steve’s toes. So I’m just going to leave it at that.
Matt: Okay, I mean, all he’s said is that you wrote the story and he hasn’t shared anything… I know that some of the Kickstarter rewards are… your script calls for specific, like there’s supposed to be some World Without Cerebus images and specific pages from specific phonebooks. But it’s just a page from a phonebook but you, the bidder, get to choose which page Steve parodies.
Dave: Oh, that’s pretty cool.
Matt: Yeah, I paid for the “Melmoth” one, cause… “Church & State” has already gone. I think there was a “High Society” one, he’s only got like 4 or 5 of them and “Melmoth” was one of them, I’m like, I’m on a “Melmoth” kick so, okay, I’ll pay for that.
Dave: Alright, okay. You sent along the thing from Steve, where he’s talking about.. he’s asking me, “On one of Matt Dow's recent "Please Hold For Dave Sim" installments, you said that the Kitchen brothers were the first to show you your record in the ‘2018 Guinness Book of World Records’. Just for the record,” (nyuk nyuk nyuk) “I'd like it known that I was the first to call you to congratulate you on your record...and you didn't believe me! I probably should've told you in the phone call what I'm about to tell you now, maybe you would've believed me then...though I did at least read to you the entry from the Guinness book.” And it’s interesting, because I hadn’t known the story of that, and it seems kind of comic-art metaphysics kind of thing that he would’ve discovered it right after he had one of those horrible signings for “Subspace Chatter” #1 where absolutely nobody shows up. So it’s just you and the people working at the story trying to pretend this isn’t upsetting on either side, or a real drag all around. It seems interesting that he would find the entry in the “Guinness Book of World Records” right after he had that particular unhappy experience for himself. It is interesting, the Kitchen brothers didn’t show me my record in the “2018 Guinness Book of World Records”, and they didn’t contact me about it, it just came up in conversation at one of my human being day dinners. Which is, every six months I pretend that I’m a human being and go and just have a human being day with the 5K Kitchens, five children Kitchen, in June and then with 3k Kitchens just around Christmas. This was the one just around Christmas. They didn’t show it to me in the book, they just mentioned, I think it was Jacob who was… Blair’s oldest son had seen it in the “Guinness Book of World Records” I assumed in his school library and remembered it long enough to mention that. It is interesting because now I’m starting to wonder, was it in earlier editions of the “Guinness Book of World Records” and Steve just happened to be the first person to see it in the 2018 edition? I never thought of that but it does seem one of those really odd, could only happen to Dave Sim and could only happen to Cerebus fandom thing, that obviously what is really a watershed kind of thing as far as the real world is concerned, Cerebus being in the “Guinness Book of World Records” that it happened and nobody saw it for 2 editions? 3 editions? Or did it not happen until 2018? So I’m just gonna throw that one out there as a question, I [laughs] don’t want to make your personal quest harder than it already is, because you’re already trying to find copies of the “2018 Guinness Book of World Records”. It hasn’t been easy, so I can’t imagine trying to find 2017, and 2016, and 2015, to find out how far back this goes, will be any easier. But that was just one of those things that occurred to me, was, okay Steve Peters found it pretty late in the day for the “Guinness Book of World Records” for 2018. Is that something that God was having a good laugh about? Hey, this is really important to Dave Sim but nobody’s gonna find out about this. The ‘Guinness Book of World Records” people don’t contact you to tell you that you’re in the “Guinness Book of World Records”, they just put you in the “Guinness Book of World Records”. Which led to another question in my mind, my mind being a playground going, what in the heck was Steve Peters doing looking in the “Guinness Book of World Records” after this really depressing signing that nobody showed up at when he was at Barnes & Noble? I have to say, I can’t think of a single situation apart from Cerebus and Dave Sim being in there, that I would check the “Guinness Book of World Records”. Seems to me like a really really odd thing, first of all, to own. I can’t believe anybody would actually buy a copy of the book, and second of all, for somebody to browse through it if you were in a bookstore or if they were in a library. There’s just… talk about TMI. There’s the TMI book of all time, the “Guinness Book of World Records”. So, there you go, those are the thoughts that occurred to me.
Matt: Well, that’s…
Dave: Go ahead.
Matt: I was lookin’ for a copy of the 2018 and I went to the half-priced bookstore, cause it’s half-priced books, it’s all they have is old books. They have new stuff but most of the time it’s here’s a book from 20 years ago. When I found the Guinness Book I found a copy of “Comic Book Rebels” and I’m like, I remember seein’ this years ago and it was a choice of either buying that or Fantagraph’s ”The New Comics” and the difference in price was $3 so I got the “New Comics” because it was just that much cheaper. So I found another copy of “Comic Book Rebels” and I’m lookin’ for the Guinness Book and I asked the clerk, and they’re like, oh yeah, we send them back, we don’t keep ‘em. And I’m thinkin, but you’re a half-priced bookstore, that kind of your bit, why are you sending them back to the publisher to be destroyed when that’s what you do, you sell old books? We found the 2020, and I’m like, yeah it’s not gonna be in there, and I flipped to the index and looked up Sim, nothing. Looked up Cerebus, nothing. And finally looked up comics, and it said “most consecutive issues written and drawn” and I’m like, okay, page whatever it was. Flipped to page, yep yep, here’s the record, apparently every year they don’t do everything but they’ll go back and forth. Like comics was 2018, they had a big comics section. 2019, nothin’. 2020, big comics section.
Dave: Wow.
Matt: So that’s… So I’m like…
Dave: Have you looked at 2016 or have you ever seen 2016 or 2017?
Matt: Ahh, I’m just thinkin’, I betcha the library might have ‘em. I can’t imagine they’d be gettin’ rid of… they’d buy a book and then get rid of a year later. I don’t see the library doin’ that, so now I’m thinkin’ I’m gonna have to go to the library, go to the kids section, see what they have, and just start diggin’ through to see when it showed up.
Dave: There you go. Yeah. Like I say, these are just things that I don’t really think about it very much, but definitely triggered some further thoughts of, “hey, is any…”

Dave: As Steve mentions, yes, I did do up stickers for the Guinness Book of World Records, or the Guinness World Record. Just found a Guinness World Record graphic online and just had Studio Comix Press cobble something together. I’ve been trying to figure out a way to incorporate that with the Cerebus trade paperback on what I think is kind of a sensible assumption that nobody’s heard of Dave Sim and nobody’s heard of Cerebus and nobody’s heard of any of the individual books, but they have heard of Guinness World Records so… it’s one of those things, all you gotta do is get ‘em to stop and look at the cover for five seconds and if that peaks their curiosity, maybe they’ll pick up the book and look at it. But I don’t think I have enough confidence in that to print up enough stickers for all of Diamond’s inventory and have Diamond put them on there. So it is something I have thought about. I do have one Cerebus trade paperback with one sticker on the front of it. I should probably auction that on one of the Weekly Updates. This is the only one with a Guinness World Record sticker on it to date, anyone interested? I can’t guarantee that this will be the only one to ever exist, but it’s probably going to be the only one that says 2018.
Matt: Plus, it’s the first one, I mean. You’ll get the collector of, “well I need…” Nate Oberstein will probably be the guy beatin’ everybody else up tryin’ to get it, cause, this is the one one edition.
Dave: Right, right. Yeah, as long as I write it on there, that should help. Then the part of Steve’s letter, “So, my 50th birthday was in 2017. As you may recall, I share a birthday with Deni (and I've always wondered what significance you find in that fact, since you always find significance in any set of dates).” That’s a very good point. And yeah, this is the first time this year that I knew that, because Steve bought one of the Neal Adams birthday cards. So, definitely when I was writing out his birthday card to him and noticed that it was September 30th, I went, well, that maybe doesn’t explain a great deal, but it certainly fits as a jigsaw puzzle piece. I think one of the things that occurs to me out of that, is in breaking up with Deni, I think forward and backward in time, in puncture of time, which is how time operates on the upper level, everything happens simultaneously. I think Deni was definitely was a question mark to me not knowing that I was going to end up being a devout monotheist. At least, I hope I end up a devout monotheist, I have been one for almost 25 years now. Deni was definitely in the category of Steve Peters spirituality versus God. First of all, taking Steve’s name, the two sides of his name. Steve, on the one side, has always in North American society, Steven has always been associated with Stephen King, who is the sort of, definitely the Stephen King of… incorporating the infernal into the commonplace and fictionalizing that. Becoming the central figure in that, in our society. And that, I think has a larger resonance in our society, that you can’t really do that with impunity, you are participating in that, if you’re documenting that. Even if you think you’re fictionalizing that, you have no idea the extent to which you’re fictionalizing that and the extent to which you are actually over in the infernal. Which is part of the spirituality argument. If you believe in spirituality divorced of God, in other words, you’re not religious, you’re not a monotheist, but you believe a realm of spirit exists and you do believe in being a spiritual person, I am persuaded now and I certainly wasn’t persuaded at the time that I was with Deni and at the time after Deni, which is when I started hearing from Steve Peters. I definitely used to think that, yes, there is a spiritual component to life, but no, I don’t believe particularly in God, I don’t believe in scripture, I don’t believe in churches, blah blah blah, the whole “John Lennon - Imagine” kind of thing. I think that definitely Deni came from that sort of a background as well, when was posed as a question, per the great love of her life, at least before we met, was a guy named Steve who was a Zen-Buddhist in Palo Alto or the San Francisco area. And… one of the things that brought their relationship to an end was that they were filling out a questionnaire or having a discussion about their future plans and what their plans involved and Deni’s plan definitely revolved around being with Steve, and Steve’s plan didn’t have Deni in it, which came as a colossal shock to her, obviously. So that was one of those spirituality things where, is Zen-Buddhism God oriented or is it spirituality divorced from God? So that was another Steve, and then of course, in the comic book field around the time that I was corrupting myself with Judith, along comes “Swamp Thing” with Steve Bissette. So I was, if you get the logic of this, Steve beset. B-E-S-E-T. I was beset by Steve. And that became another element of, am I going to be beset by Steve and get swept into the infernal side of things, which Steve was very very fond of and doesn’t think there’s any kind of harm or self-destructiveness in it. Or am I going to beset Steve? Which, tended to be more of the way that things went, particularly when he was persuaded to self-publish and his pathological procrastination no longer worked because when you’re a self-publisher you don’t have somebody telling you what to do, you only have yourself telling you what to do. Which is why I always thought it was very amusing he came up with a comic book called “Tyrant”. So, that’s the long way around, coming back to Steve’s name, you’ve got the Steve side there which is potentially infernal, potentially spiritual, potentially spiritual/infernal, potentially anti-God, potentially Satantic, and then you’ve got the Peters side to Steve’s name, which is, of course, the name of… “upon this rock I will found my church”, Kepa-- Peter. Who… Peter is just a coined name focusing on that element of it, that the Synoptic Jesus said, “upon this rock I will found my church”. So it seemed to me like, okay, you can break up with Deni and no longer be married to her, no longer have any contact with her, but nature adores a vacuum and nature abhors a vacuum and I think that’s where Steve came into it. And it was a question of, if you have Steve and here’s all of these contexts that Dave Sim has for Steve and for the name Steve, who are the Peters in that Steve context? Who are the, as Peter is to Jesus, and Peter was both a significant figure to the Synoptic Jesus and the Johannine Jesus. Who are the Peters for the Steve in Dave Sim’s life? And that’s a very interesting question. And Steve Peters is definitely one of the Peters who I wouldn’t say we’re on the same page, I think Steve’s probably more of a monotheist now than when he started writing to me in 1990 and more of a monotheist than he has been all along, but relative to my own viewpoints of what is monotheistic about spirituality? I tend to be a far more of a purist than an absolutist that monotheism has to be directed towards God and it has to involve scripture, it can’t just be, here’s something that exists in the non-apparent world, consequently it’s the same thing as religion, or it’s the same thing as God. So, there ya go. Very very long-winded explanation why I think Steve Peters was born on September 30th and why he has had this place in my life pretty much from the Biblical seven years after I broke up with Deni, which was 1983. He didn’t show up in my life until 1990.
Matt: Okay.
Dave: Got any questions on that one, or?
Matt: [laughs] Well, I was just, when you said that, the question of, are you and Steve on the same page? I immediately thought, well if you’re not on the same page, you guys might be in the same book but you’re further along than he…

Dave: …in which case, I would be considered the retrograde person in that, I’m mistaking the suburb for the city, and that’s… well, that’s what makes horse races, but I definitely think… as a matter of fact, while I’m working on the “Strange Death of Alex Raymond” Volume Three right now where there’s a definite link between Ward Greene, who wrote “Rip Kirby” and was the general manager at King Features Syndicate, and Willie Seabrook, who worked at King Features and was fictionalized by Ward Green as Jack Perry in “Ride the Nightmare”, are both linked in 1919 to Alistair Crowley, the wickedest man in the world, who, if you really stretch your definitions and you say, “well, Alistair Crowley was a very spiritual guy”, well, I suppose you could put it that way, but being at the point in the book where I’m documenting this link between Ward Greene, Willie Seabrook, and Alistair Crowley, no, I think it’s really really unhealthy stuff. Sincere apologies to Alan Moore and Steve Bissette and anybody else who doesn’t agree with that. I’m not really sure where, if you were gonna call it a book, where am I in the book and where is Steve Peters in the book. That might be an interesting question for Steve.
Matt: ‘Kay. I will, I will definitely send him a message and let him know, hey, watch the videos Saturday and if you’ve got somethin’… if he’s got an answer and he sends it to me, I’ll send it up to you.
Dave: Alright, okay. And share it with all the A Moment of Cerebus people.
Matt: Oh, definitely.
Dave: Okay, then we’ve got Dion Turner. “A question for next time... which may have been asked in the past, if so put the ka-bosh on it and send me on my way to a link. Were there any other authors that you considered having counterparts adapted for Cerebus? In my mind there is an untold tale of Cerebus the Barbarian where he meets Lovecraft and they are trapped in a town of fish-people monsters.... or a Dunwich Horror scenario, giving Lovecraft a twin.” Yeah that would be interesting. Lovecraft is one of those ones that I think is way over there, if we’re in the same book, I hope I’m at the opposite end of the book from HP Lovecraft. Just, again, really unhealthy kind of stuff to be making up. I think my core concern about it and the thing that I would caution anybody about on going the HP Lovecraft direction or the Stephen King direction, any of those guys, my caveat would be, how comfortable are you with the fact that you’re actually making this stuff up and that this isn’t being fed to you and that whoever is feeding this to you, you don’t have screens against who is feeding this to you? You could be doing things that are not only extremely detrimental to human society in the long term, but detrimental to yourself, because, I think you’re culpable for anything that you create. Which is one of the reasons that the more praying I did and the more fasting I did and the more scriptures that I read aloud, as just part of my day to day life, the more aware I was of… there’s a lot of dead fall traps out here. But you don’t really notice until you start doing that and you go, this is really a scary thing to contemplate how many people don’t protect themselves at all. I mean they don’t fast, they don’t read scripture aloud, they don’t pray, and they gotta be walkin’ around in the same landmine field I’m walking around in and very likely, it seems to me, getting themselves into all kinds of trouble that, if they were aware of what they were actually doing, they wouldn’t go anywhere near it. But it would be interesting, Dion, to have done that. I would have been, I think, even hesitant at the time of… taking that kind of chance with somebody like HP Lovecraft, who was so overtly, pedal to the metal, into the whole infernal thing that even studying HP Lovecraft to the extent that I studied Ernest Hemingway and F Scott Fitzgerald and Oscar Wilde, I would have been worried about my own soul that understanding an individual that early, where you read all of their works, all of their fictional work and then you read all of their published letters that are available, and then you read as many of the commentaries as you can. That’s far more waiting around in the Lake of Fire than I would ever be inclined to do myself on my worst day. Although, I did read Lovecraft at the time and boy, he was really good at that stuff. It’s, no, just reading somebody’s work and immersing yourself in their work so that you can do a good fictional version of them, those are two entirely different things. I guess Mark Twain as well, Mark Twain would’ve been an interesting character to fictionalize. I’m not sure that Mark Twain in toto is something that I would’ve been interested in reading all of his works and then fictionalizing him. I think “Huckleberry Finn” because that’s really the enduring Mark Twain work, I probably would’ve been inclined to find a Mark Twain character in “Huckleberry Finn” and then read and reread “Huckleberry Finn”, and then read and reread all of whatever Mark Twain had to say about “Huckleberry Finn” at the time that he wrote it and however many years after he wrote it, that he was still talking about it. That would’ve been interesting. Edgar Allen Poe? It’s like, nope, no, now we’re goin’ back the other way again. It’s like [laughs] I don’t think you could study Edgar Allen Poe and all of Edgar Allen Poe’s works and read all of Edgar Allen Poe’s letters without doing serious damage to yourself and to your soul, although there’s Edgar Allen Poe material that I like. I’m as big a fan of “The Raven” as anybody and definitely “The Black Cat” by William Bernie Wrightson. A lot of that stuff, it was my affection for Bernie Wrightson, and my love of Bernie Wrightson’s artwork that dragged me over into territories where angels fear to tread. "Cerebus unstuck in his own timeline like Billy Pilgrim in ‘Slaughterhouse Five’, set primarily during Later Days (but including everything - especially ‘something fell’)..... this might be playing in with my wish to see Cerebus abducted by aliens.” Uh yeah, I’m a big fan of “Slaughterhouse Five”. Particularly the microcosm, macrocosm of him getting the diamond ring that was in a prison camp or in a context where Jewish prisoners were enslaved and just finding the diamond ring and when he was is abducted by the aliens he’s inserted into a giant diamond with the young girl that they want him to mate with. And I think that ties in with F Scott Fitzgerald’s “diamond as big as your wrist”, and in the comic book world, we’ve got Diamond Comic Distributors, which is the context that we all inhabit, to whatever extent we’re happy or unhappy about that, we’ve got about the same say in that that Billy Pilgrim did. No, we’re all inside Diamond in that aspect. So, there ya go!
Matt: As you’re going through the list of authors, I’m goin’, I could see a Young Cerebus / Huckleberry Finn parody with Young Cerebus and Bear on a raft goin’ down the river, and I’m like, a great Cerebus Jam strip that got lost to the ages, but I could totally see that, and I could also see an “Epic Illustrated” story with Cerebus dealin’ with Edgar Allen Poe pastiche that, ya know, it’s this depressed guy and Cerebus is just like, “leave me alone.”
Dave: Right, right. Yeah, it’s… by the time I had done doing Oscar Wilde and realizing what that immersion effect is like, it was definitely a matter of, I think F Scott Fitzgerald is either safe or relatively safe and I’m hoping Hemingway is safe or relatively safe. I think that was the case, I don’t think it was safe for them, I would not want to be carrying Scott Fitzgerald’s baggage before God on Judgement Day and I wouldn’t want to be carrying Ernest Hemingway’s baggage in front of God on Judgement Day. If I had to pick between the two, I’d probably pick Scott, but I’m not really comfortable with what I’m dragging before God on Judgement Day and I’m still workin’ on that one. So, there ya go.
Matt: And the other thing is, you immersed yourself in Wilde enough that Wilde came back for the next book, where you dealt with his death because there was that much Wilde baggage that you picked up. I can’t imagine you doing Fitzgerald or Hemingway when you were still drinkin’, I think you woulda died.
Dave: [laughs] Well, I was still drinking when I was doing Scott.
Matt: Oh, I thought you had quit before then.
Dave: No, no, I actually hadn’t. Because I was a binge drinker, I would drink Friday nights excessively. I wanted to have the experience of, okay, what’s it like to write hungover? So the parts of “Beautiful and Damned” that I did I was parodying that I wrote on Saturday mornings hungover from the night before, because I figured well, I better know what this was like. Because obviously Scott Fitzgerald wrote a good chunk of his oeuvre when he was hungover. But yeah, it was also a matter of, I couldn’t leave Oscar Wilde just as the Oscar Wilde character in “Jaka’s Story”, and then what was definitely compelled to do “Melmoth” and there are elements of Oscar Wilde through the rest of Cerebus, that was one of the benefits of doing Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway in the last five years of the book that I will be able to just keep it at this. Even though it was definitely the impulse to revisit the characters, I didn’t say everything that I needed to say about them, but if, ya know, you’re not God, you’re never going to be able to say all that you need to say about another human being. You don’t even understand yourself well enough to be able to examine yourself exhaustively. How can you think that these people that you never actually met or knew, that you could document in that way? So, uhh, yeah, it’s an interest…

Dave: Yeah, it’s an interesting effect. It’s certainly an engaging process to try and understand somebody else through their written work. But it is very limited. I think… my current thinking is, you’re always better trying to improve yourself. First of all, because you don’t know how to improve yourself except in the most cursory way, so anything that you can think of that you think, yeah, I think this would be a better Dave Sim than the Dave Sim that I am right now and the Dave Sim that I’ve been. I’m always trying to do that and that’s really where most human effort is, I think, most fruitful. What can I think of that I think would make me better, and do that and work at perpetuating that. Don’t just visit it, try to live there. But as a writer trying to understand other writers through their writing, is definitely an addicting process. Probably a good thing that Cerebus wasn’t 500 or I would’ve done a Cerebus “Huckleberry Finn” riff. I would’ve become very obsessed with about, “how do you make a raft?” and “what were rafts like in Missouri at that time?”
Matt: Yeah, then you’d be having me go visit my Dad, cause he lives in Missouri, and then go to Hannibal and get all the reference you can… ya know, it’d be “Strange Death of Alex Raymond” with Mark Twin.
Dave: There you go. It would be, just if you want to Matt, you don’t have to do it. And then that’s sharing my addiction so that not only am I addicted to doing this, now I’ve got you addicted to doing it.
Matt: But that’s how you got Eddie! Eddie started with…
Dave: Well yeah, Eddie was the tallest poppy. “You’re the only one who writes to me about ‘Glamourpuss’ and the only one who writes to me about this Alex Raymond stuff so” that seemed kind of ordained The same as I had no idea that Carson Grubagh was reading “Glamourpuss”, as far as I knew, everybody was just buying “Glamourpuss” and putting it in a stack and nobody was reading their copy. So, you never know in those situations that, yeah, you have a much bigger addiction to this than you’re aware of and you’ve generated a much bigger addiction in somebody else than he’s aware of, and we’re still slogging through that one.
Matt: [laughs]
Dave: The.. this is yours here, where you’re writing, “if I remember right, an iffy prospect, ‘Days of Future Past’ the third story in ‘Future Day’ was drawn by Gene the same time as Dave drew ‘Cerebus’ #1.” Is that you writing that, or is that Dion Turner?
Matt: No, that’s me. That’s me.
Dave: That’s you. Okay. Alright. “If I remember the story correctly, Dave was visiting Gene and they both had head colds and they had their backs to each other while they were at their drawing boards with a thirty gallon garbage can between them, and they just kept blowing their noses and throwing the Kleenex over their shoulders.” It was actually worse than that. We ran through all of the Kleenex in the house, and Gene & I both being poor as church mice, then we switched to toilet paper? Yes, I think it was toilet paper after that, so we both had toilet paper rolls that we were blowing our noses on and then we ran out of toilet paper, or we got down to the point where it’s like, [laughs] “no, we actually need toilet paper that we use as toilet paper, too. We can’t use up all the toilet paper.” So then we were using up the paper towels that they had in the house. And if you’ve ever blown your nose every 40 seconds of every minute and a half with paper towels you know at some point you have to go and get Kleenex. This is just out of control now.
Matt: Okay, I remember readin’ it in an old issue of “Wizard” and then years ago, I’m like, I don’t need any of these! And as soon as they were gone, I’m like, ahh crap, I should’ve gone through and… ya know, there’s certain pages I know I’m gonna want out of this issue or that issue, and that was one of ‘em. And I’ve looked, and I can’t even find what issue of “Wizard” it was cause, for a while, the last page was, “this month in comics history” and it was a December issue was, looking back on “Cerebus” #1 and whoever had written it called you and you told the story and I’m like, that’s amazing.
Dave: It was interesting. I mean, the fact that it stuck in my head for that long. It was one of those, if this didn’t happen, if we weren’t both sick as dogs for the whole week that I was up there and working on “Cerebus” #1 I don’t think I would have remembered that as vividly as I did. And I mean there’s some real comic-art metaphysics aspect to that. I mean, look at the name of the story Gene’s working on. “Days! Of! Future! Past!” That’s a real puncture of time thing. I think it was, whatever, again, over in the direction of Steve Bissette and Edgar Allen Poe and all of those guys, whatever malignancy Gene Day had inside of him and whatever malignancy I had inside of me, and we were both far more horror/science-fiction/comic book fans than anybody’s idea of a monotheist. I’m wondering if part of the sickness that we were experiencing was that whatever was inside of Gene was contemplating whether to move over to me or not. Having looked at this “Cerebus” #1, and again, in puncture of time, forward and backwards in time, this seems to have a lot of temporal depth to it. At the very least, I would think watching me draw the cover to “Cerebus” #1, it would’ve been, ahh, I’m picking up something about 26 years here, and it seems to be glowing in the dark, and this Gene Day guy, even looking at the days of the past, with the background that Gene comes from and the future days, I’m not seeing the same thing that I’m seeing in this Cerebus thing. So, maybe it’s time to jump ship from Gene Day and inhabit Dave Sim instead.
Matt: Could be, could be.
Dave: It’s all speculative. I forget who I was writing to recently, and talking about… we know nothing more about the human soul than we did 6000 years ago when we first got introduced to the concept in scripture. We don’t know what a soul is, we don’t know where it is, we don’t know what it’s physical properties are, if it even has physical properties. How it moves around, if it moves around, what connection it has to us. Can it disconnect from us and reconnect to others? So that’s, to me, another persuasive argument in favor of, well, if I’m gonna be on a team, I want to be on God’s team and I think reading the Koran aloud and reading the Torah aloud and reading John’s Gospel aloud and reading Revelations aloud is… just, tells me, as more nourishment for my soul than reading other stuff. So, as much as possible, I try to do that, although I do have a lot of reading that I have to do for “Strange Death of Alex Raymond” that is research material. Apart from that, it… no, whatever time that I think I can spare in my life, I want to read John’s Gospel aloud cause I think that’s what links us to God, that’s what links us to the beneficent side of the universe and as entertaining as I find Edgar Allen Poe and HP Lovecraft, and part of me would definitely like to re-read them, I would like to re-read Stephen King’s “It”, no, if I have to weigh in the balance of which one’s gonna help me on Judgement Day, no competition as far as I’m concerned.
Matt: That’s, I mean, I have a collected Lovecraft book I bought, I’m like, I’m gonna finally read Lovecraft! And I got like a third of the way through it and I’m like, yeah, it’s good, but it’s like… there was one story where as I’m reading I’m falling asleep every single night when I’m readin’, I’m like, ya know what, I’m gonna put it away and I’ll pick it up when I’m ready. And it’s been like a year now, and no, I’m just not ready.
Dave: Right. Yeah, I would [laughs] Not to make you completely paranoid, but if you’re reading HP Lovecraft and you’re falling asleep to the same part every time, that’s arguably one of those, here’s how we get him, kinds of things. It’s like, here, HP, write this, and this and this and this and this and this, and here, whoever ends up reading HP Lovecraft and they get to this story, it’s going to hypnotically put them to sleep, and that’s when all of the stuff that they’ve just been reading actually gets to invade their soul and inhabit them. I’m not saying that I know that for a fact, but I’m saying, ahh, I would worry about that. Given the subject matter, given the effect, that’s one of those things that you’re playing with that you maybe don’t want to be playing with.
Matt: That was, back in high school my buddy and I got Lovecraft from the library and we’re readin’ “The Testimony of” I forget the name, it’s a short little story. And we read it our loud, and it was hilarious. I mean, spooky, but hilarious. And then we started reading “Into the Mountains of Madness” and we got about 3 pages in and we looked at each other and went, yep we’re done, we’re not gonna read this to each other anymore.
Dave: [laughs] I wanna get a good night’s sleep tonight, I’m not gonna get to sleep reading this stuff.
Matt: It wasn’t even that, it was just… the description of the creatures and it was so pedestrian, and ya know, it was about the size of a barrel, and this and this, and I’m like, ya know, the actual words are very pedestrian, there’s nothin’ creepy, there’s nothin’ spooky, but ya know, both of us, our hackles are raised, this is just the scariest thing in the world. And neither one of us can put it, can figure out what was freakin’ us out about it, we’re just like, nope, we’re done. Take it back to the library, let’s read somethin’ else.
Dave: Yeah. I think you kind of have to go by that, because it is… that ties in with the question that we’ve explored here before, of, “where do you get your ideas?” It’s like, if you don’t know where you get your ideas from, you don’t know where that idea came from, and you don’t know exactly how maligned that idea is, that ideas do not in and of themselves just as ideas, have your best interests at heart. I don’t think! If you’re one of those people that goes, “ahh it’s just a story. Ahh it’s just something this one guy wrote.” Well, okay, if you’re 100% confident of that, you go ahead and adopt that as your viewpoint, and pursue that in whatever direction you want. Personally, I don’t think that that’s the case. As the longer I’ve been alive, and particularly since I’ve read the Bible, which definitely always seemed like a bad idea when I was reading Stephen King and Edgar Allen Poe and HP Lovecraft. “Ya know, I don’t really want to read the Bible, it’s just a bunch of fairy tales and it’s just this complete scam” and it’s like, well, why don’t you read it first before you decide that that’s what it is? You’re reading all of this stuff and that’s what’s convincing you that the Bible’s just a bunch of fairy tales. You might be on somebody’s video game and inside the video game and just not registering just exactly how this is playing out. But, you know, God gave you free will the same that he did me, so read what you want to read, consume what you want to consume, and as the old saying goes, let the Devil take the hi…

Matt: [laughs] Right.
Dave: Okay, now we’re… oh! Wait a minute, this is Eddie Khanna’s one, this is actually picking up on what we talked about last time. I was gonna grab this week’s Cerebus numbers from Diamond and I forgot to. Hang… uhh, stay on the line!
Matt: Okay.
Dave: And you’ll just have to edit this part out.
Matt: Alright, will do.
[proceeds to leave the dead air in the video. Naughty, naughty]
Dave: Okay, I’m back. So Eddie picked up on what we had talked about on the last “Please Hold” about Diamond numbers and sent an email to Matt Demory who’s my Diamond rep. “Questions come up about trying to promote and move any remaining ‘Cerebus in Hell?’ titles Diamond still has in stock. We’ve been advertising which issues are sold and which are still in stock, but we’re wondering if there would be any concerns if we were to mention the exact numbers of the remaining issues Diamond has left. I.e.” and then he cites the number of “Canadian Vark”, and then the number of “Iron Manticore”… “or is that information considered private and proprietary, only to be shared between Diamond and the publisher?” And Eddie says, “I wouldn’t be surprised if this was the first time this question has been asked. You can’t say we do things the usual way around here. Thanks, and best as always, Eddie.” And what he got back from Matt Demory was, “Hi, Eddie, attached is the current inventory for Cerebus single issues. We would prefer that exact quantities not be mentioned. We do not make our exact inventory quantities available to retailers. That said, we could say something like, ‘low stock’ or ‘almost sold out’.” So, bearing that in mind, just going down the list, I would say if we’re talking about almost sold out, almost sold out the “Sim City: That Issue After” the one that’s got the Teenage Money-Nabbing Cerebi in the back, that I would describe as almost sold out and the “Iron Manticore” one-shot is almost sold out. Those would be the only ones in that category. Low stock? Low stock “Fornicators Inc” I would describe as low. “Canadian Vark” I would describe as low. So, if you haven’t got those and you’re one of those people who want to have a complete set of “Cerebus in Hell?” #1s, those are the ones that, if you can go to your store and say, “can you order me one of these?” I would say “Iron Manticore” first, in the almost sold out, and then “Sim City: That Issue After” with Teenage Money-Nabbing Cerebi in the back, that would be in that category and “Fornicators Inc”. There’s always a bit of a delay getting the order to Diamond and then getting the books back, so if you start now, I think I can say that if you did this week, you’d probably get one. Week after that, less of a sure thing.
Matt: Okay. The numbers for the “Vark Wars” #1 come in yet on how many Diamond’s orderin’?
Dave: No! No, we’ve got… is this the latest one that I got in? Yes! Yes, these are interim numbers, we get… because the numbers come in every week, we’ll get one set of numbers when the retailers are starting to order, and then another set of numbers when the final numbers are coming in.
Matt: Okay.
Dave: So, I can say that the numbers on “Vark Wars” are up from “Colour Your Own”. I would say significantly up from the comparable numbers from “Colour Your Own”? That is, when the first numbers were coming in for “Colour Your Own” they were definitely the lowest that we’ve ever seen for the first batch coming in, and then they had a bigger jump from there to the subsequent numbers. “Vark Wars” is back actually up above what the numbers would be for the first batch of numbers, so it’ll be interesting to see what the numbers do next Sunday if they go up less the second time around, or if they still go up substantially. And I think that’s all that I’m allowed to say.
Matt: Okay. I was just hopin’ that the numbers were up cause, that’s the issue where okay, let’s try a gimmick of tying the issue into when the issue’s released and the general pop culture, and see if we can, ya know, ride that wave.
Dave: Yeah, yeah. We’ll see if that happened. I think “Cerebus in Hell?” is in its own category of, I think the store owners have “Cerebus in Hell?” buyers who don’t buy every one, which is one of the drawbacks of not doing a continued story, but I wanted to trade that to the plus side of, actually I’d like to have that for casual readers, that you don’t have to buy every “Cerebus in Hell?” #1. If you miss one, it’s not as is you can’t read the ones that you’ve bought after that because you’re missing part of the continuity. Apart from the two issue Iron Manticore, yeah, you’d probably want to read “Tales of Sophistication” before you read “Iron Manticore” #1 and the same thing coming up with “Vark Thing” and “House of Cerebus”. I try not to let it go beyond that. So if you just see the cover and you go, “oh that’s a funny parody of that cover”, pick it up, read it. You’ll probably get a few laughs out of it. It might refer back to another “Cerebus in Hell?” #1, but not in any appreciable way that you’re not gonna get it otherwise. Not in the way virtually all other comic books are, and certainly the way “Cerbeus” itself was. If you don’t get issue 179, you don’t want to be reading issues 180 and 181 until you do have your 179.
Matt: I’d buy “Amazing Spider-Man” and there was an issue where Mary Jane’s leavin’, Peter’s gonna meet her at the airport to say goodbye, but Spider-Man’s needed type thing. Ya know, the stereotypical Stan Lee story. And the reason he’s needed is, Peter’s sister showed up and needs help. And I’m like, Peter Parker has a sister? When in the hell did that happen?!
Dave: Right.
Matt: And I went online and looked and apparently they introduced that, yeah Peter had a heretofore, or previously unknown sister that was put up for adoption and now she’s back in his life. Knows he’s Spider-Man, she’s a spy, and I’m just like, there’s part of me that’s goin’, I need to go buy these comics and there’s part of me that’s goin’, do you really care, Matt? Do you really care that much?
Dave: [laughs] You’re getting old, Matt!
Matt: I mean, it’s..
Dave: You would’ve cared passionately 10 years ago. “Peter Parker has a sister?! Oh my gosh!”
Matt: It’s one of those, I’m goin’, okay, she’s got a sister, and they kind of draw her so she looks a little like Mary Jane, she’s got red hair. For a second, I thought it was Mary Jane showed up and then they’re like, oh no, this is, ya know. They stopped doing the “editor’s notes”, there’s no more little Stan saying, “you remember Peter’s sister from blah blah blah”, and I’m like…
Dave: Right.
Matt: Ya know, I understand, comics have changed, I’m gettin’ old, but… I really miss the little Stan captions that said, this is what’s going on, this is who that is, ya know. This is how it all ties together so that you feel like you’ve got your $4 worth when you’ve bought the comic. And invariably, that’s one of the things I like about “Cerebus in Hell?” ya know, I pay my $4, I’m entertained. I don’t have to worry about, oh hey, I missed “Giant-Sized Jingles”, is that gonna effect my ability to understand what’s goin’ in in the “Iron Manticore”? And no, no it’s not.
Dave: Right. Right. Well, I think you’ve got the Stan Lee caption for 2019, which is your cellphone and you just type into it “Peter Parker’s sister” and there you go. There’s as much as is humanly known about Peter Parker’s sister and you can immerse yourself in that if you want.
Matt: Yeah, I know, but that’s just a waste of my time.
Dave: Yep! Well, until Judgement Day we don’t know what’s a waste of our time. Maybe Peter Parker’s sister was the key to everything.
Matt: [laughs] I really hope at the end of days, when we’re all standin’ there in judgement, it’s, “you didn’t read that issue of ‘Spider-Man’. You’re goin’ to hell forever and ever and ever.”
Dave: That’s it. The whole build-up was towards Peter Parker’s sister and being put up for adoption and her being a spy. “What do you mean you don’t know her middle name?”
Matt: [laughs]
Dave: Yeah, I wouldn’t be betting the mortgage on that one. I do want to mention, cause I think that this is probably important for Cerebus fandom, Cerebus readership, “Form & Void” has been out of print for years and years, and I think a lot of that has to do with the fact that I did a big promotion with the Hemingway society in Illinois with free back issues that they could hand out at their convention. And that ate up all the supply of “Form & Void” and we haven’t been able to get “Form & Void” remastered because it’s more important to do the earlier books than the later books. But, and this is a huge but, the last couple of weeks, Diamond got “Form & Void” back in stock. Where they came form, I don’t know. As Eddie Khanna said, “Form & Void” is going for like $100 on eBay because all of the supply has been eaten up. Amazon’s supply has been eaten up, everybody who has or had “Form & Void” has sold it, anybody who’s got one isn’t letting it out of their grasp even for a minute, but for the last two weeks, Diamond is showing inventory for “Form & Void”. So, theoretically, Eddie’s already ordered a couple of copies of it just to verify that it actually exists. If you’re missing “Form & Void” and you’re trying to figure out how to get “Form & Void” without paying $100 for it, now would be the time to go to your comic store and go, “here’s the Diamond order code for ‘Form & Void’, can you order me one of these?” And hopefully you can get one before these either evaporate into the ether, which they have a tendency to do at the Star System warehouse. Or, they do actually exist and you can get one before anyone else gets one and they disappear that way.
Matt: Okay. So is “Form & Void” gonna get remastered if it sells out?

Matt: …If it sells out?
Dave: Uhh, well, yeah, it’s definitely been on the list of the next book to do, particularly when I know that all of Hemingway fandom is finding out about this thing. And actually, the guy I did the promotion with has done a book about Hemingway in the comics and as a chunk of the “Form & Void” in there, so it’s really becoming a cause celebre with Hemingway fandom, which is obviously much much bigger than Cerebus fandom which is why you’re seeing this kind of heat. I think some of them are contenting themselves with buying sets of Cerebus and just, as long as it’s got the Hemingway issues in it, they’ll just write off the other ones. But it’s definitely getting to be a growing concern, but the problem is Diamond… if it’s a choice between remastering Volume Three, ya know, “Church & State I” or Volume Four “Church & State II” which is being printed, that should be in stores later this month. We’re looking at a Diamond arrival date of October 9th. Those are the ones that have to be done. Now, “High Society” is getting low. “High Society” remastered. So I don’t have to phone Diamond and say, “would you rather have ‘High Society’ or ‘Form & Void’” it would be, “what is this, a trick question? No, we want ‘High Society’”. Then it’s, well, ya know, I can only keep the price of so many cars in the bank at one time. So it was, get “Jaka’s Story” back in print cause that was Volume Five, get “High Society” Volume Two remastered, in print that’s Volume Four. I was hoping that then we could get Sean started on “Form & Void” because it’s a particular favorite of mine, but, nope, it looks like “High Society” might have to be done after that and you can’t run too many 500 page books through Marquee Printing at the same time. So, hopefully after “High Society” and I’m just waiting for Diamond to pull the trigger on that one, and say, okay, this is the next one that we want. And the question is, okay, do you want 1000, 2000, or 3000 copies of “High Society” so you don’t have to worry about it for a few years. This is strictly inside Cerebus fandom thing, you can’t get any further inside Cerebus fandom than A Moment of Cerebus. So… [Cerebus voice] “Cerebus fans, you been lookin’ for “Form & Void”? We’ve got copies at Diamond theoretically. Now, order… now!”
Matt: Speaking of “High Society”, as of yesterday, it’s available on Comixology for $13.
Dave: Is it?
Matt: Just throwin’ that out there for everybody that… ya know, I put it on the blog yesterday, I’m gonna put it on again tomorrow and for the next few days, add it to the rigamaroll of what’s goin’ on, but, yeah, we got an email from Comixology that I got forwarded to me from, I think, Sean, lettin’ us know, “hey, you guys can start tellin’ everybody as of the 2nd, that ‘High Society” is available and…” it’s either $13 or $13.95? Somethin’ like that. I think it’s $13.
Dave: Well, that’s great, cause that’ll be… [indistinct]’s Comixology-friendly version of it, which works like all of the other stuff on Comixology, where you can actually drive around in there, instead of just queuing up pages and reading them one at a time. If you’re one of those people who just doesn’t like hauling 500 page books around, get “High Society” on your phone and then it’s there every time you’ve got five minutes in the middle of the day to… dip in and pick up right where you left off in “Cerebus: High Society”.
Matt: Okay, everybody, buy two!
Dave: The last one that we’ve got here is… Margaret! Can’t forget Margaret. “Notebook #16 was just seen last month, in Drinking at Dinner Time. Covering Cerebus #122 through 125 it had 67 pages scanned.” I’ll take your word for it, Margaret.
Matt: [laughs]
Dave: “On page 11 of the notebook, it looks like Dave did an outline for Cerebus #123? Though this outline has mini-pages with nothing really in them, just pages numbers above them and a name of the character.” And then you sent me a fax of that page. I’m… in looking at it, anytime I did something like that, where, okay, this is all of issue 123, but tiny. Tiny little rectangles. Pages 1 through 20, and, as Margaret says, it just has the individual character’s name on the page and the characters match the page up through page 9, and then after that they don’t match it. I think that’s me sitting and trying to write issue 123 and I’m not getting whatever it is that I’m supposed to be getting on page 10, so let’s try doing real high altitude mapping of the whole issue simultaneously by drawing 20 little rectangles on the page and then writing the characters’ names underneath it. And let’s see if that helps. And just looking at it, I don’t think it did. I don’t think it helped at all if, no, why don’t you just sit down and focus on page 10 and when you’ve got a usable page 10, then you can start writing down what it is that’s gonna be on page 10. You’re not at the high altitude mapping stage here with the second half of the book. You’ve only got the first half of the book and now just becomes the hard slog of let’s come up with page 11, let’s come up with page 12… maybe somewhere up ahead, you’ll get the clearer picture of 16, 17, 18, 19, or something like that. Which is great when that happens, but if it doesn’t happen it’s just one. Page. At. A. Time. And Margaret had an interesting thought here, “Oh, and Wayne Gretzky, the great one, was traded from the Edmonton Oilers to the LA Kings in 1988 after the Oilers won the Stanley Cup. Issue #123 is dated June 1989. Still on Dave's mind many months later. Though to me don't know if Dave was more concerned with Gretzky's NHL future (he never won another cup, though he did set a ton of records that will probably never be broken).” And I agree with that one. “or with the similarity with Dave never selling out to one of the big two.” I don’t know if I’ve ever told this part of the Wayne Gretzky story that, in 1988 I was thinking, well, however big Cerebus and Dave Sim ever get, I don’t think, and ya know, you can extrapolate that as huge as you want in 1988, in Canadian terms, Dave Sim and Cerebus will never be as big as Wayne Gretzky in Canada. It’s just the ultimate absolute, carved in stone, Canada Canada Canada story that for this age will never never be superseded or added to or supplanted. And what was interesting was, right around the time that I was having this definitive thought in my mind, like get used to it, Wayne Gretzky is Canada, I was walking down Charles Street, just at the corner of King and Charles, and somebody came around the corner of Queen onto Charles ahead of me. And… sort of like cut me off, like it was one of those, wow, that’s a very un-Canadian thing to do. You don’t actively pick up your pace when you’re turning onto Charles Street if somebody’s coming across Queen, and sort of like jump ahead of them, and the guy was wearing a sports jacket, or a… what do you call those jackets that sports teams wear?
Matt: Uhh…
Dave: Anyway, one of those jackets that has a logo on the back of it, and it’s like, this was such an arresting figure walking in front of me, abruptly like this, that I went, well, he’s got something written on his jacket? What’s written on his jacket? And it was Brantford Parachute Club. And, of course, Wayne Gretzky is from Brantford, and I went, that’s really weird, I’ve just been thinking the last couple of days about Wayne Gretzky as the absolute Canadian story, and either when I went home, or wherever I was going, the hot news story on CNN and everyplace else was Wayne Gretzky getting sold to the LA Kings.
Matt: [laughs] Okay, that’s pretty weird.
Dave: That is weird! That was another one of those, when that happens, you go, file that away in your mind and it’s like, I don’t think I have to, I think that’s as deeply filed in my mind as I possibly could. One of the things… and relating to Margaret talking about similarity to Dave never selling out to one of the Big Two, one of the really interesting things in the Gretzky trade/sale that got lost, I don’t know how many people know this one, is the press conference was set up and nobody knew what the press conference was about. But Wayne Gretzky’s having a press conference. Just before Gretzky was going out for the press conference, Peter Pocklington, who owned the Edmonton Oilers said to him, “If you want to call this off right now, you can.”
Matt: [laughs]
Dave: And it’s like, Gretzky goes, “Ahh, well, you can’t really do that, like it’s set in motion.” Well, if Peter Pocklington tells you you can call this off right now, it’s your call to make, I’m not forcing you to do this, that was a “Dave Sim never selling out to the Big Two” kind of thing. I think Gretzky’s answer should have been, “well, great, let’s call it off.”
Matt: [laughs] We’re gonna have a press conference where we announce nothing new’s happening!
Dave: That’s right! That’s right, it’ll be the Seinfeld news conference about nothing!
Matt: Jay Leno, he did his first year as the host of “The Tonight Show” after Carson retired and there was talk that they were gonna replace him with Letterman, and then Letterman split off to CBS, and they had a press conference to announce that Leno was gonna continue hostin’ “The Tonight Show” and he came out and said, “we’re having a press conference to say I didn’t get fired.”
Dave: [laughs] Right, right. No, it would’ve been… it was an interesting moment, because I think if Wayne Gretzky would have done, would have said, “ah no, if I can stay in Edmonton, I’ll stay in Edmonton” I think the deciding issue was Janet Gretzky, because at that time she was still theoretically still an actress and still had an acting career and that would’ve been the big selling feature of going to LA., was, “I can play for the LA Kings and she can get her acting career back going instead of being Mrs Wayne Gretzky.” And of course the way it turned out, she just ended up being Mrs Wayne Gretzky and as Margaret points out, Wayne never won another cup with the LA Kings and I think that’s one of those, the right thing to do would’ve been to stay in Edmonton. To be who you were in Canada in 1988 that you can never be again after you’ve gone to LA.
Matt: Right.
Dave: Okay, we’re way past…
Matt: [laughs] Yeah, I was gonna say, we’re probably getting’ close to prayer time, huh?
Dave: I’d forgotten how much I had to say about that one, and I can’t not say what I have to say if Margaret asked the question. So, there ya go.
Matt: [laughs]
Dave: Say hello to Paula, and Janis Pearl, and Natasha/Bullwinkle for me and we’ll do this again next month, God willing.

Heritage, they got a bunch of neat Cerebus stuff. Including three pages of original art...
My good friend Steve Swenson
He ALWAYS gets the thumbs up!
sent me:

Hiya Matt -

In case you hadn't seen them, 7 pages and one cover of original art on eBay:

Is all too rich for my blood, but happy bidding! (And if you win
Oliver's Cerebus movie: The Absurd, Surreal, Metaphysical, and Fractured Destiny of Cerebus the Aardvark is currently available "Plex", "Xumo", "Vimeo On Demand", "Tubi".
Up to 35% off site-wide:
March 27
Tell your fans! Remind them that everything will be up to 35% off -- that means $13 tees, $20 phone cases, $30 hoodies, and way more!

And as long as I still laugh at them, I'm still gonna make 'em:
Cerebus in Hell?:

Next Time: And I still gotta do a post for Monday!?!