Date: 2012-09-16 02:42 am (UTC)
randyripoff: (splash brannigan)
From: [personal profile] randyripoff
Gotta love Sim for bringing the crack.

Date: 2012-09-16 04:26 am (UTC)
akodo_rokku: (Default)
From: [personal profile] akodo_rokku
I dunno, crack is amusing insanity. This just feels like reading a mental patient's personal journal.

Date: 2012-09-16 04:24 pm (UTC)
halloweenjack: (Default)
From: [personal profile] halloweenjack
Right. Without knowing about TANGENTS and the latter years of Cerebus, this would come off as a very talented, very sheltered commercial artist who'd gone to his first SDCC and became over-the-top obsessed with the cosplayers, particularly the Zatannas.

Date: 2012-09-17 08:05 am (UTC)
eyz: (Default)
From: [personal profile] eyz
Ha :P
Good point.

Date: 2012-09-16 05:40 am (UTC)
michael_ellis_day: (Default)
From: [personal profile] michael_ellis_day
There's something I've wanted to ask for a really long time. It may have been covered to death elsewhere and I simply haven't seen it; if so, my apologies.

The hostility towards women and gay men and the references to women as all-consuming psychic voids who want to control him, contrasted with the sensitive depiction of female characters in CEREBUS and the meticulous, obsessively detailed focus on women's fashion and clothing and shoes and hairstyles here...is it just me, or is it really really obvious what's actually going on?

I'm asking this out of compassion and pity, not mockery. He seems to have a sharp, logical mind and be very clever -- and those are the ones who fuck themselves up the worst. If he's repressing what he really wants this completely, life must be pretty miserable for him.

Date: 2012-09-16 01:45 pm (UTC)
whitesycamore: (Default)
From: [personal profile] whitesycamore
Are you trying to imply that he might be gay? I doubt it. Gay men typically don't obsess over women to this extent, or in this *way.* Complaining of women being creativity-sucking succubuses is a peculiarly heterosexual phenomenon. At it's core, it's really to do with resenting the sexual power that women have over them. They don't *want* to be distracted by women, but they are. This simply isn't true of gay men.

His homophobia seems like a typical straight man's disgust at something he just doesn't understand.

the meticulous, obsessively detailed focus on women's fashion and clothing and shoes and hairstyles here...is it just me, or is it really really obvious what's actually going on?

A lot of heterosexual men are very fascinated by female clothing. Just look at shoe, and stocking, and lingerie fetishists. They have a very, very clear idea of exactly what they like. That said, I think the care Sim puts into female clothing is probably more to do with the fact that he is an artist and very visually oriented.

Who knows what the root of Sim's misogyny is? All we do know is that 1. he is legitimately mentally ill (he has mentioned his schizophrenia diagnosis in the past), and 2. His misogyny seemed to get worse when his wife Deni Loubert left him.

Date: 2012-09-16 06:37 pm (UTC)
michael_ellis_day: (Default)
From: [personal profile] michael_ellis_day
No, I wasn't implying that he's gay, and I'm not entirely sure how you got that from what I wrote. I've never known a gay man who was a misogynist -- that's an ugly stereotype perpetuated by movies and television.

On the other hand, we constantly hear of men who are so frightened by their own repressed desire for other men that they become homophobes and gay-bashers, lashing out at the hated thing in a desperate attempt to make it just go away and prove to themselves they're real men. How many anti-gay activists and preachers and politicians are caught with male prostitutes or trying to sexually harass their male employees? My suspicion is no one becomes a homophobe out of "disgust" -- you don't think obsessively about something that disgusts you, you try to put it out of your mind. (I'm disgusted by liver, but never once started an anti-liver website.) I suspect the root cause of homophobia is a cycle of fascination and fear: it terrifies you that you can't stop thinking about the bad thing, so you try to punish it.

What I'm saying is, I don't think Dave Sim is a proper misogynist but is trying to punish something he fears in himself. I think he's utterly terrified by his own feminine side and cannot stop thinking about it, and this has become obsessive fascination and a need to find some outlet in his art for his constant thinking about women's clothing. Please tell me I don't have to keep spelling it out?

Date: 2012-09-16 09:05 pm (UTC)
whitesycamore: (Default)
From: [personal profile] whitesycamore
No, I wasn't implying that he's gay, and I'm not entirely sure how you got that from what I wrote.

Because what you wrote was vague and incredibly coy about what you really meant? Which is apparently that Sim is secretly a fetishistic transvestite or something, I still don't really know.

How many anti-gay activists and preachers and politicians are caught with male prostitutes or trying to sexually harass their male employees?

Probably a similar proportion to those men who aren't anti-gay activists I expect, only that's less newsworthy. I think the explanation that all 'true' homophobia is perpetrated by closeted gay men is just a little too pat, not to mention just a little too comforting to the casually homophobic straight guys who'd rather not be introspective about their own part in perpetrating bigotry.

Date: 2012-09-17 12:52 am (UTC)
kamino_neko: Kamino Neko's default icon... (Default)
From: [personal profile] kamino_neko
No, I wasn't implying that he's gay, and I'm not entirely sure how you got that from what I wrote.

Because of:

If he's repressing what he really wants this completely, life must be pretty miserable for him.

and

we constantly hear of men who are so frightened by their own repressed desire for other men that they become homophobes and gay-bashers, lashing out at the hated thing in a desperate attempt to make it just go away and prove to themselves they're real men. How many anti-gay activists and preachers and politicians are caught with male prostitutes or trying to sexually harass their male employees?

'He's homophobic because he's repressing something about himself' -> 'He's homophobic because he's gay and in denial'.

Date: 2012-09-17 03:30 am (UTC)
michael_ellis_day: (Default)
From: [personal profile] michael_ellis_day
I'm talking about him being transgender, not gay. Jesus. Done here.

Date: 2012-09-17 02:11 pm (UTC)
wizardru: Hellboy (Default)
From: [personal profile] wizardru
I have to agree with whitey and kamino_neko...to me your vague statements sounded like you were wondering if perhaps he was closeted, in denial and thus vitriolic because of it. I didn't take it to mean you thought that he was being misogynistic because of that, but that you weren't aware of the full scope of his bizarre behaviors.

Date: 2012-09-16 08:50 am (UTC)
mrstatham: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mrstatham
I feel like all I've ever learnt from looking at the posts for this series is that A - Sim really likes taunting those copyright people with the way he dresses his characters up, B - He's really, really fucking GOOD at drawing and dressing his female characters up, and C - He could draw the shit out of a Final Fantasy mini starring Lulu if he wanted to.

Otherwise, this just feels like some kind of well-drawn comic-book car wreck and I'm the one rubbernecking.

Date: 2012-09-16 12:16 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
Indeed, there's obviously so much artistic talent in this that the sheer "essence of WTF" in it's narrative is more than somewhat disconcerting.

Date: 2012-09-16 06:14 pm (UTC)
cainofdreaming: cain's mark (pic#364829)
From: [personal profile] cainofdreaming
You know, I think I'll just look at the pretty pictures on the top part and read the 'funny animal' section. Better for my mental well being in the long run.

Date: 2012-09-16 10:20 pm (UTC)
chocochuy: An Unliving Legend (Gentleman Ghost)
From: [personal profile] chocochuy
You know, even when he has written stuff that it is very offensive to women, I gotta admit Sim really knows how to draw pretty girls.

Date: 2012-09-17 05:30 am (UTC)
jlroberson: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jlroberson
And paradoxically wrote some of the best female characters in the history of comics: Jaka and Astoria being the ones to leap to mind.

Date: 2012-09-16 11:11 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] nemryn
Winner: Zootanapuss!

Date: 2012-09-17 05:29 am (UTC)
jlroberson: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jlroberson
I really wish Dave Sim wasn't quitting comics because stuff like this wasn't succeeding. Stuff like this wasn't going to. And Dave(as his piece that's been running hidden in the back of GLAMOURPUSS--a piece he claims will be his last work in comics--on the death of Alex Raymond demonstrates) still can make great comics. This and GP were not good comics--in fact, barely comics at all. But this stuff fails and he decides that means he can no longer survive in the comics market.

Oh, you hadn't heard? Dave announced this at the end of the last GP. He barely has any money left, and GP basically bankrupted him. Worse, the Kickstarter-funded digitization of HIGH SOCIETY was harmed by the destruction of the negatives for HS in a massive fire at the home of the guy who was doing it(said guy himself barely getting out alive and losing everything he had)--which also may mean HS itself can never be reprinted in its proper form again, a massive loss for comics. Yes, there's all sorts of bad things that can be argued to have happened to Dave's head for a long time now. It doesn't mean his achievement was any less. Comics still owes him a great deal. So it's tragic.

Some links if you don't know about all this. On the negatives:
http://jlroberson.blogspot.com/2012/08/high-society-negatives-by-dave-sim.html
http://momentofcerebus.blogspot.com/2012/08/bad-news.html

On his quitting:
http://momentofcerebus.blogspot.com/2012/09/the-end.html

Date: 2012-09-17 03:03 pm (UTC)
wizardru: Hellboy (Default)
From: [personal profile] wizardru
I'd heard. And I feel sorry for him, since once upon a time he was doing the indie publisher thing and thriving. I'm not trying to rain on him, but I think he's at a point where he spent a few decades doggedly pursuing his goal, even to the point past when it was a good idea or made financial sense. When you're getting $700 in profits/royalties from a self-published work? Maybe you needed to analyze whether or not this was the best used of your funds.

I think Sim was still working like a self-publisher in the 1980s...and the market has changed far too dramatically in the intervening years. What was wildly successful in 1990 for an individual is not the same in 2012. It's worth noting that Cerberus was never a big seller as a comic, but did steady numbers in the 'phone books'. Some of the best issues only sold about 30,000 issues...in the 1980s. The final issue had double sales from 299, and still only sold about 16,000 copies. It's often been said that "the first Velvet Underground album only sold 10,000 copies, but everyone who bought it formed a band." I like to think Cerberus is the same way. It was never a big seller, but it was MASSIVELY influential in the industry.

I'm not engaging in schadenfreude, here. While I'm not a fan of Sim as a person, I think his body of work is impressive and noteworthy. He stands alongside the Kirbys, Spiegelmans, Kurtmans, Eisners, Moores and others of the comics legendaries. He has put his money where his mouth was more than once and he has doggedly pursued his goal unlike anyone in the industry can ever claim, managing to see his creative vision to its fruition in a way that eluded some of the greatest creators of the form.

But I also think that many of his wounds are self-inflicted. I think it was noble to donate his fees from Spawn to a non-profit...but I think he should have invested that in a retirement account, instead. I think he could marketed himself much more successfully, particularly if he had not decide the internet was a thing for other people. I don't know if he's changed it, but as recently as last year, he still didn't have a personal internet connection. That would mark him as something of hermit under normal circumstances....given how the market is going now, it's a poor business move, especially for someone who had a podcast and kickstarter campaign going. I was under the impression that Sim has long rejected technology until he was absolutely forced to...and that's harmed him. I'm not saying he should have sold out; I just think his stubbornness to avoid certain things and some bad luck have led him here. Not having insurance is understandable if you don't have a lot of money, but if your livelihood depends on it, it's tragic not to have it (as we see here).

I hope it works out for him. I hope he can get a good profit off of the electronic scans and resale of his work. I'd buy HS if I could put it on my nook. Heck, if it wasn't unbelievably expensive, I'd buy ALL of Cerberus. I think Sim can turn this around: too many people like his work to allow him to die penniless and alone. But maybe he needs to rethink his approach to his work.

One Nitpick But Otherwise Agreement

Date: 2012-09-18 08:26 am (UTC)
jlroberson: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jlroberson
Apart from that it's spelled Cerebus,;) I can't say I disagree with a single word of that. Add to this though that a lot of what his output since the seroes ended has been going to is paying Gerhard for his share in A-V, so a lot of whatever he could have been making from all this got swallowed up in that. His response to Kim Thompson's offer to repackage the phone books is partly nuanced, and partly silly: against all sense he thinks the most viable would be FORM & VOID and another around that time, and not even JAKA'S STORY, CHURCH & STATE, or MELMOTH(the last of which is almost Fantagraphics-ready, frankly)--in fact he seems to disdain those and feel that his real zenith began in the WOMEN READS MINDS GUYS period, a period that to me saw his work becoming meaner, colder, less approachable and creepier. Actually it was in the very style itself of FLIGHT where I began to get an inkling of something not quite right anymore, the kind of feeling only having been immersed in the book as long as I as a serious fan was would get; there seemed something hard and mean emerging in it, not helped by the fact that the book was full of a lot of overt violence for the first time, and mostly against women; it seemed a blast of rage and it surprised me that it was only with READS thius started being noticed.

And I say this as someone who has no problem saying, repeatedly, that I owe Dave Sim the very fact I do comics. But that's why I take his fate fairly personally. It seems now a bit of a warning in some ways. And his refusal to grow beyond self-publishing--which he could easily do; Fanta or Dark Horse or Image, just to name three, I'm sure would do VERY well by him with just CEREBUS, and without any loss in rights on his part; I've been published by Fanta; they take NO rights at all and their contracts are possibly the loosest and most creator-favoring possible, the only requirement they ever had being first look at new work, something they do not even enforce--seems foolish now.

PS

Date: 2012-09-18 08:28 am (UTC)
jlroberson: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jlroberson
Excuse all the typos and grammar errors; it's late and I be tired.

Re: One Nitpick But Otherwise Agreement

Date: 2012-09-18 12:02 pm (UTC)
wizardru: Hellboy (Default)
From: [personal profile] wizardru
Heh. You're not the only one who can make typos. LOL.

I agree with everything you've said. It's interesting that he thinks that his zenith was at that point, not prior...but then, I guess that's the nature of the artist, perhaps. I think most people would generally agree that High Society and Church and State was the true zenith of the comic from a story/art standpoint.

What _I_ would do, if I were Sim, would be to do what George Lucas should be legally prevented from doing: revisit his early Cerebus work and redo it. Not only with his mastery of the visual form, but to correct and clean-up the work in reference to how he changed the story later. I can't believe that there aren't people who wouldn't pay to read a 'remastered' early Cerebus. I don't think it would be compromising his vision: I think it would be like an author doing a second-draft or a rewrite. If JRR Tolkien, writer of what most living brits voted as the best story of the 20th century, felt comfortable going back and changing his masterworks so that the Hobbit and LotR fit together better, I don't see why Sim couldn't go back with his improved talent, better art tools and greater storytelling skills and update his earliest work.

It makes me very sad that so many great comic creators of the past simply were unable to make a long-term living doing comics (or solely doing comics). It makes me equally unhappy to see so many of them end up virtually penniless, especially when much of their influential work has gone on to fund massive multi-million dollar blockbusters. Sim, I think, should be Eastman and Laird, comfortable for the rest of their lives barring a disaster...not where he is now, scratching pennies together just to pay off his collaborator.

Re: One Nitpick But Otherwise Agreement

Date: 2012-09-24 04:17 am (UTC)
jlroberson: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jlroberson
It's a medium that has a tendency to eat its creators. When the rewards are high, that's usually in the short term, and in the long term in those cases you're left with nothing of your own to sustain you when old. And when you GET the rights, the rewards are so low that it doesn't matter anyway.

Meanwhile comics fans are more than happy to support the exploitation and mock creators who actually try to make a stand. Sometimes I think comics doesn't deserve to live, and I speak as a creator--one on the fringes only occasionally published by companies other than my own, and the reason is not that I've been rejected(I haven't been since I began my actual "career" in the medium, I just rarely submit), but because I don't even want to bother with the shitheels.

Date: 2012-09-18 08:35 am (UTC)
jlroberson: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jlroberson
And an additional thought: a special weirdness and a sense of lost opportunity arises when you realize that Cerebus has--without Dave's participation--always has had, pro and con, from early on, a massive cult on the web. I know because when I first even started using the web one of the first things I searched for was Cerebus, and there have always been a LOT of Cerebus-focused forums and sites, both loving him and hating him. He could have been huge there had he only dipped in himself, but till very recently he avoided it. Yet there was the audience, waiting for him.

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