#340 “Cerebus”: It’s great! Should you read it?

Dave Sim’s massive “Cerebus” series creates a dilemma for a comics reviewer. It contains some fantastic cartooning, hilarious scenes, and spot-on dialog. And yet… other parts feature highly misogynistic views and out-of-whack text-to-pictures ratios, both of which make it “hard to read” in different ways. Dana and Kumar re-read the second arc, “High Society,” and consider the good and the bad of the entire series, the mixing of satire and parody, and more.

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Resident of Japan since 1989, creator of "The Crazing Spider-Hag"

2 thoughts on “#340 “Cerebus”: It’s great! Should you read it?”

  1. This episode is going to help me quite a bit in my Cerebus journey – first off, it has convinced me to finally order TCJ #301, and you’ve also let me know that I’m probably not doing the work justice in my current buying and reading habits in regards to the series.

    I bought my first issue of Cerebus in the 80’s and the silly reason was because I was taken with Wolveroach (issue 54 to be exact – I was a kid enamored with Marvel at the time and that cover called to me)- I had no clue what was happening in the story but the art and concepts intrigued me. Over the last 25+ years I’ve purchased random issues and have only recently settled on arcs – I bought and read “Ascension’s End” this year, skipped “Jaka’s Story” and am now in the middle of “Minds” – I can only assume you two would disapprove of this method.

    However, “Minds” is something else – the art is mind-blowing – no other comic has ever looked like this or ever will – and what Sim (God/Tarim?) is putting Cerebus thru is fascinating, especially within the context of the whole “female void” insanity that surrounded the author during this period. I take it Sim was struggling with his emotional/spiritual state at the time (why he decided to take out his frustration on all women I still don’t get – if he was living in relationships with men he’d most likely have experienced the same feelings – it’s just hard sometimes living with people in general regardless of their gender (I realize that I’m oversimplifying his stance but I do think that he was just emotionally bruised from break-ups and he turned it into a philosophical war as a defense mechanism. His comic “The Girl Next Door” from Epic Illustrated I think shows what he’s really about: he’s a hurt little kid with misguided anger.)

    Anyhow, these are just random thoughts – really wanted to say thanks for setting me straight on how I should probably be approaching this book.

  2. Hi, Matthew,

    Thanks for your comments!

    There may not be a “wrong” way to read Cerebus — I certainly wouldn’t disapprove of your approach. The fact that I still haven’t finished it myself indicates that my approach might not be the right one either!

    As for your other points, I agree. We’ve had some comments poppong up on the Facebook page as well, and even when they contradict each other, I agree with all of them!


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