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[personal profile] avram

On the same day that BoingBoing announces that it’s publishing the newest Elquest story online, I read that Dave Sim seems to be quitting comics.

This is great news for the Pinis, but it’s unfortunate that the creator of the other big indie comic of that same generation can’t seem to figure out how keep his career afloat.

Granted, many of Sim’s problems are of his own making. Not only did his wife divorce him, but I’ve recently learned that Gerhard no longer associates with Sim either professionally or personally, and that Sim is estranged from his family. I don’t know the stories behind those latter two things (and only a bit about the first), but someone who wrecks all of his close relationships probably isn’t doing a great job with business relationships either.

(Also, if you’re building your career on a single massive comic-book project, you might want to think twice about inserting into it a crazy rant describing half the human race as parasitic leeches.)

Still, Sim’s failure makes me melancholy.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-09-06 10:13 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lyonesse.livejournal.com
sim presents like he's got untreated paranoid schizophrenia. his life isn't particularly atypical for that disorder, aside from his fame.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-09-06 04:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kip-w.livejournal.com
LJ keeps eating this comment.

Colleen Doran used to tell us, on Friday evenings, how Pini was trying to take ownership of the comic she created away from her. Plus, I never was into the elf stuff.

Sim told a compelling story. Even at the end, it still showed the flashes of genius, even after his increasingly eccentric views had permeated the editorial pages and seeped into the stories. Many of his critics are people he helped by featuring their work in his back pages. I know they didn't choose to disagree with him — it's a sign of how extreme his editorial stances had become that they had to disown him, to stand away.

In person, he was always a charming character. Roguish, looking younger than he was. He was an early member of the New Pals Club (#6), and after I saw him again st Sci-Con, he put me on the back page of an issue of Cerebus (#111?) and mentioned the NPC.

Damn, mental illness is a bitch (if that's what it is, and I have no standing to even guess about it). I also heard his complete set of Cerebus negatives got destroyed while they were out to have a new set of scans made. I winced for him, and I winced for comics as an art.

And this time, I'm saving a copy of the comment aside. LJ isn't taking it.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-09-06 08:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agrumer.livejournal.com
Not the complete set, just "High Society". Still, a horrible stroke of bad luck for Sim, Cerebus fans, and comics history, though most of all for Sandeep Atwal and other residents of those three buildings that burned down.

I think I saw a follow-up from Atwal saying that some of the scanned data files were safe (offsite backups, maybe?), so at least they only had to track down artwork for part of the story arc, rather than all of it.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-09-06 05:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] catlinye-maker.livejournal.com
All these years later, I can still recall that rant quite clearly. That was the day I stopped buying Cerebus. Used to love the series, and now what I remember best about it is the c-word screed.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-09-06 08:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agrumer.livejournal.com
If you mean issue #186, yeah, I nearly gave up with that issue. One more issue of rant and I'd have dropped it. Fortunately he went back to the story with #187, and I held out till #282.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-09-06 08:49 pm (UTC)
jl8e: (d7)
From: [personal profile] jl8e
That was my reaction to that issue, too, though I only kept buying it into the 230s, when circumstances broke my momentum-buying.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-09-06 10:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] catlinye-maker.livejournal.com
I didn't make it nearly that far. Went and looked things up on cerebusfangirl.com and I actually bailed in the early '90's after a misogynistic series of "Notes from the President" following Jaka's Story.

Having now seen the rant from issue #186 (we live in a wondrous world) I'd say I got out early and got off lightly.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-09-07 12:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kent-allard-jr.livejournal.com
I'm surprised you quit that close to the end, considering you recommended The Last Day to me (while telling me to skip everything else after Guys, which I'm sure was wise).

I guess we could compare him to Charles Crumb and say Sim got to spend a lifetime publishing comics, even if he spent many of those years in poverty, while Crumb lived with his mother and hung himself, even though Sim's late work wasn't much more entertaining than Crumb's notebooks of looney writing.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-09-07 02:12 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agrumer.livejournal.com
"Latter Days" had some good material in it, particularly the Three Stooges parts. But the long, tedious, biblical stuff was, well, long, tedious, and biblical.

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