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Dave Sim


Eric Hoffman

Publication Year: 2013

In 1977, Dave Sim (b. 1956) began to self-publish Cerebus, one of the earliest and most significant independent comics, which ran for 300 issues and ended, as Sim had planned from early on, in 2004. Over the run of the comic, Sim used it as a springboard to explore not only the potential of the comics medium but also many of the core assumptions of Western society. Through it he analyzed politics, the dynamics of love, religion, and, most controversially, the influence of feminism--which Sim believes has had a negative impact on society. Moreover, Sim inserted himself squarely into the comic as Cerebus's creator, thereby inviting criticism not only of the creation, but also of the creator.

What few interviews Sim gave often pushed the limits of what an interview might be in much the same way that Cerebus pushed the limits of what a comic might be. In interviews Sim is generous, expansive, provocative, and sometimes even antagonistic. Regardless of mood, he is always insightful and fascinating. His discursive style is not conducive to the sound bite or to easy summary. Many of these interviews have been out of print for years. And, while the interviews range from very general, career-spanning explorations of his complex work and ideas, to tightly focused discussions on specific details of Cerebus, all the interviews contained herein are engaging and revealing.

Published by: University Press of Mississippi

Series: Conversations with Comic Artists Series


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pp. 1-5


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pp. v-vi

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pp. vii-xx

Dave Sim. Chances are, if you’re reading this book, that you probably know who Dave Sim is, and you probably have strong opinions about him and his work. For better or worse, Sim’s outspoken opinions concerning publishing, comics, artists’ rights, the relationship between the sexes, and religion, among other things, have caused various flare-ups of controversy. Only a true origi-...


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pp. xxi-29

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A Talk with an Aardvark

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pp. 3-8

...They just crop up. You need a character for a specific function, and that’s where it comes from—“I need a character who’s like this.” The Regency Elf [a mystical being who resides in the Hotel Regency, where Cerebus spends much of his time during the High Society story arc] started off as the Regency Hermit, an old guy with a long beard that just hung around in the walls and would just come bursting...

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Dave Sim and Gerhard

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pp. 9-24

...Superman comics. Superman, Lois Lane, Jimmy Olsen, World’s Finest, all the Mort Weisinger [famed Superman editor at DC Comics] stuff. I wouldn’t read Marvel comics ’cos Mort told me not to. I was under strict Mort Weisinger control. I wouldn’t even look at a Marvel comic. Literally. I had friends who were fans of Marvel and when I was ten, eleven years old, they were holding one up trying...

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Cerebus: An Interview with Dave Sim

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pp. 25-47

...Sim, who was born in 1956, is a completely self-taught artist whose first comic-book experience was a local one-shot book called Oktoberfest Comics, which commemorated the 1976 Oktoberfest Festival in Kitchener, Ontario. He went on to draw the weekly comic strip The Beavers for Kitchener’s daily newspaper, and worked...

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Original Sim: The Dave Sim Interview

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pp. 48-59

The first issue of Cerebus came out in December 1977. The artist, writer, and publisher of that comic was Dave Sim. As I write this, it’s February 1992. Cerebus 154 is sitting on my kitchen table. The book is still penciled, written, and published by Sim, now with the assistance of Gerhard. Compare that record with the record of Spectacular Spider-Man, which premiered around the same time but which has had literally...

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An Interview with Dave Sim and Gerhard

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pp. 60-69

...Oh yeah, I mean Jules Feiffer’s cartoon work. Little Murders I still read quite often, and watch the film version . . . anything that’s got good structure to it. It doesn’t have to be particularly well thought of—if it’s appropriate to my creativity I know it right...

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Sim Speaks

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pp. 70-77

It is very gratifying to see this many people here . . . I really don’t know what to say. It’s been an interesting experiment doing a comic book for sixteen years with another ten years to go. It started [in] December ’77 and the last issue ships in March of 2004. I got one of those little calendars that you can turn around and find out what date is what day in any given year. The ...

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Dave Sim

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pp. 78-147

Dave Sim is an inescapable presence in the comics field: his monthly comic, Cerebus, recently celebrated its 200th issue. The massive collections, or “phonebooks” as they’re known to Cerebus fans, are steady sellers for both the reorder divisions of the major distributors and Aardvark-Vanaheim’s (Sim’s self publishing company name) own...

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Whatever It Is, I’m Against It

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pp. 148-168

No, no. The schedule of the book got screwed up around ’84–’85. It was one of those things where there was enough money coming in from selling the trade paperbacks of High Society directly that that was the first time that neither Ger nor I had a situation that we had to produce to have enough money coming in. All of a sudden......

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Dave Sim: 20 Years of Cerebus

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pp. 169-204

...It really didn’t seem that “soon” to me. I did two years worth of bimonthly issues. Even twenty years later getting thirteen or fourteen bimonthly issues out on schedule compares very favorably with other “track records.” To be honest, I was so hot and heavy about being “rich and famous” at the time, switching to a monthly schedule probably had as much (or more) to [do] with that as it has...

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Dave Sim

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pp. 205-215

In December 1977, independent Canadian writer-artist Dave Sim launched his comic-book series Cerebus. This month, he completed it with the death of his titular character, in the long-promised 300th and final issue. Over twenty-six years and fifteen hefty collected volumes, Cerebus, a foul-tempered anthropomorphic aardvark, has been...

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A Selection from the Yahoo Q&A Sessions

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pp. 216-235

Note from the Editors: Comprised of over 900 members at the time of this writing, the Cerebus Yahoo Group is an internet archive started by Mark Simpson in 1999. In March 2004, shortly after the publication of Cerebus’s final issue, its webmasters, Lenny Cooper, Margaret Liss, and Jeff Tundis, organized a somewhat informal Q&A session ...

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Selected Resources

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pp. 236-237

Bell, Blake. 2002. I Have to Live with This Guy! Raleigh, North Carolina: TwoMorrows Pub-Bell, John. 1986. Canuck Comics. Montreal, Quebec: Matrix Books.———. 2006. Invaders from the North: How Canada Conquered the Comic Book Universe. Blackmore, Tim. Spring 1993. “Cerebus: From Aardvark to Vanaheim, Reaching for Creative Heaven in Dave Sim’s Hellish World.” Canadian Children’s Literature 71: 57–78....


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pp. 239-244

E-ISBN-13: 9781621039457
E-ISBN-10: 1621039455
Print-ISBN-13: 9781617037818

Page Count: 256
Publication Year: 2013

Series Title: Conversations with Comic Artists Series

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Subject Headings

  • Sim, Dave, 1956- -- Interviews.
  • Cartoonists -- United States -- Interviews.
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