Note From The President, Cerebus 74, May 1985Copyright 1985 Dave Sim
This issue qualifies as cruel and unusual punishment at best and assault and intent to injure at worst.
Why do you people keep doing this to yourselves? ďBring Jaka back! Bring Jaka back!Ē Oh well, theyíre your tear ducts.
Sincerest apologies to Bill Sienkiewicz whom I forgot to mention anywhere in Cerebus Jam #1.
My admiration for this manís work prompted me to render the cover of #39 in the Neal Adams style he was doing to perfection at that time in Moon Knight. I used a reverse Neal Adams signature parody on that cover.
The irony of doing a parody of Nealís signature as a tribute to Bill Sienkiewicz escaped me at the time. This issue I stole Billís own very distinctive signature for the cover as a tribute, not to his ability to do a faithful and spontaneous variation on a seminal influence (it makes sense, I think, read it again) but rather for his own role as a seminal influence for a new generation of comics professionals (and aspiring professionals). As probably the single greatest influence on my thinking at this juncture of our story-line (page fourteen of this issue is page 1500, by the way) such a tribute was long overdue. A brilliant, brilliant individual and my closest friend in the field (after Gerhard).
Speaking of whom, how about those backgrounds? How about that cover colour? Itís interesting that as Iíve been developing a more spontaneous line, Gerhard has been moving in the direction of more literal rendering of mass and shadow and light. His set design ability is quite evident in this issue, as well. Before he started each page, we ran through the ďchoreographyĒ --- where Cerebus and Jaka were at the end of the previous page and each implied point of view in itís turn. So well did this little exercise work that Ger followed a couple of my quirky touches to the letter. At the bottom of page ten, I had Cerebus walking off at an impossible angle. I wanted to have him, figuratively, push the background out of his way to show the tension he was creating in the room. Ger did it that way without even thinking about it. At the bottom of page seventeen, I reversed the light source on Cerebus to Show that what Jaka has just said to him was sinking in. She becomes his new light source. She illuminates his thinking. Hey, itís the way I think. I didnít say it was normal. Gerhard is adjusting to it quite nicely; which is good.
This one Iím really proud of; soís Ger. If you want the appropriate background music, may I suggest The Beatles Twist and Shout album (I think itís called something else in the States-- itís the one with Anna, Chains, Please Please Me, Do You Want to know a Secret.)
Oh and please watch this space for word on a comic book benefit for Ethiopian famine relief which should be out in the fall, organized by Martin Skidmore over Ďome. Judge Dredd, the Spirit, Cerebus and many other stories are being donated. If each of you buys about a dozen, weíll have sales of a quarter million (sic). Think about it.
Tears really arenít enough.
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