Was Dave Sim right?

Adam Wright
Adam Wright

He went from widely loved self-publishing goldenboy to hated wrong-think wretch back in the 90's.

But looking back, was he right?

In the course of writing Cerebus, Sim expressed opposition to feminism and liberalism. Sim expressed his views on gender in issue #186 of Cerebus, in a text piece as part of the story arc "Reads" (one of four books in the larger "Mothers & Daughters" arc), using the pseudonym Viktor Davis. Among the various theories expounded upon in the piece, Sim's alter-ego Viktor Davis categorizes humanity into metaphorical lights, which tended to reside in biological men, and voids, which tended to be in biological women. He characterized Voids as "without a glimmer of understanding of intellectual processes" and declared that "Light does not Breed".

In 1995, The Comics Journal #174 featured a Bill Willingham caricature of Sim on one of the covers, bearing the title "Dave Sim: Misogynist Guru of Self-Publishers". Inside was a lengthy article written by Jonathan Hagey and Kim Thompson that published responses from comics creators such as Alan Moore, Seth, Rick Veitch, Steve Bissette, and Sim's friend and fellow Canadian Chester Brown. The responses ranged from anger to a belief that Sim was joking. Others would later speculate that Sim was suffering from a mental illness related to his heavy drug use in late 1970s. The article also included a short interview with Sim's ex-wife, wherein she described the essay as evidence of Sim being "very scared". Accompanying the article was an illustration of Sim as a Nazi German concentration camp warden, standing before a gate with the name of his publishing company, with emaciated camp prisoners behind the fence. In the essay in Cerebus #186, Sim characterized fellow self-publishing cartoonist Jeff Smith as an example of a man dominated by his wife. When Smith contested this, Sim accused Smith of lying and challenged Smith to a boxing match, which Smith declined.

In 2001, Sim published another essay, "Tangent", in Cerebus #265 (April 2001). In it, Sim furthered the themes from "Reads", describing the tangent he contends western society has taken due to the widespread acceptance and proliferation of feminism, beginning in 1970. The Comics Journal posted the full essay on its website, although a short introduction by staff distanced the Journal from the ideas therein, calling them "nutty and loathsome". It reprinted a 2001 essay by Renee Stephen, "Masculinity's Last Hope, or Creepily Paranoid Misogynist?: An Open Letter to Dave Sim"

In 2008, Sim sent out a self-written form letter to individuals who had sent him mail, detailing his disagreement with being called a misogynist and disenchantment with what he perceived as a dearth of support in refuting those claims to his character. Contending that society perceived misogynists as the "lowest, subhuman form of life in our society", he mentioned that few, if any, people had defended him, allowing him to be called "the lowest, subhuman form of life in our society with impunity."

Jackson Howard
Jackson Howard

Never heard of him.

Oliver Hill
Oliver Hill

Storytime a few of his comics, please.

Wyatt Price
Wyatt Price

WOMEN ARE THE DARK VOID
FROM WHICH NO LIGHT ESCAPES

Nicholas Lee
Nicholas Lee

He's mostly known for Cerebus, a comic he self published from 1977 to 2004. (over 6000 pages primarily written and drawn by himself and his collaborator Gerhard who did a lot of the background drawings) Initially he was beloved by the comic world for being a successful self publisher who often poked fun at the comics industry darlings, but after he started to show doubts about towing the liberal feminist line most of the industry turned on him.

Not exactly an easy thing to storytime since Cerebus is over 6000pages, but I'll see if i can find some choice moments

Caleb Morales
Caleb Morales

So he's a comics creator who was essentially memory holed?

Joshua Lee
Joshua Lee

Being this new
You need to lurk more, faggots. He comes up in many discussions, just like other significant comic creators do.

Evan Sanders
Evan Sanders

Memory holed maybe isn't the right term, most of the older guys in the industry still know and begrudgingly look up to him and he was able to complete his "life's work" of the Cerebus opus nearly single handedly.
He just never got the acclaim he deserved due to stepping on some very sensitive toes. The big give away that he's persona non grata is that almost every talentless hack in Canada has heaps and heaps of praise and awards foisted on them and yet Sim never comes up. He did more for independents than most people care to acknowledge:

During the 1980s and early 1990s, Sim used his sales leverage from Cerebus to act as a major proponent and advocate of creator's rights and self-publishing. After the Puma Blues distribution incident, he helped write the Creators' Bill of Rights along with Scott McCloud, and Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, creators of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. In addition to speaking on these topics at comic book conventions (as in his 1993 PRO/con speech), Sim also published the seminal The Cerebus Guide to Self-Publishing in 1997, which instructed readers on the practical matters of how to successfully self-publish their own comics. Sim often promoted other creators' fledgling work in the back pages of Cerebus.

Wyatt Reed
Wyatt Reed

Sounds like a good guy.

Michael Anderson
Michael Anderson

was he right?
I can't really say without reading the actual essays, but from a cursory glance his opinions do seem vindicated by today's political climate where everybody is so eager please everybody that they'll shit on anybody who doesn't tow the party line.

Evan King
Evan King

He's not talked about much, actually.
I've probably seen him mentioned 5 times in all of 8/co/, and I lurk in almost every thread.

Sebastian Rivera
Sebastian Rivera

i lurk in almost every capeshit and imagedump thread
ftfy

Joshua Cooper
Joshua Cooper

Guy in the late 90's and 2000's predicted the mainstreaming of radical feminism would lead to disaster
We live in 2017
Do we really need to ASK if he was right?

David Brooks
David Brooks

The actual essay that set it off is quite long (like 14 pages long) but here's some of it for your consideration.

Isaiah Russell
Isaiah Russell

But looking back, was he right?

He's "right" in the sense that Frank Miller and Steve Ditko are "right".

Namely, while he might say things we can agree with, he's also a crazy person.

Adam Edwards
Adam Edwards

he might say things we can agree with, he's also a crazy person.

This is probably pretty accurate. He's always come across as a bit unhinged, I think you would have to be to envision a 6000 page comic back in the 1970's and actually stick to making the whole thing.

Yet a lot of the things he says are so on point it's clearly a shame he had to be blackballed for saying them. Likewise lumping him in with Miller and Ditko does him a bit of a disservice. Cerebus' run takes a much more open minded and nuanced look at both the sexes as well as having good deal of literary merit in it's own right.
Crazy does not cancel out creativity and talent. He's an independent comics success story who would be much better known had he not engaged in wrong-think and been unfairly maligned for it.

Zachary Garcia
Zachary Garcia

Just like our President, lets face it, no sane person is going to talk shit against the Lisa Simpsons of the world, the system is rigged so you can get destroyed as a person if you dare to speak against landwhales or BIG BLACK.

Jacob Kelly
Jacob Kelly

I remember when I first heard about Sim in the early 90's, he was still viewed as folk hero. I was young and not interested at the time. I never kept up with him and now I know why creators stopped gushing over him. I just looked on his website, he says feel free to pirate his stuff if you can't afford it.

Nicholas Allen
Nicholas Allen

In that spirit, I've uploaded his "Judenhass" to our Volafile page. Alt-right butthurt incoming.

Carson Gray
Carson Gray

memory holed
His work is still widely available

Juan Torres
Juan Torres

I wonder what Sim would say about the state of comics today.

Yeah he does sound crazy here. Though I doubt it'd have been warmly received even with coherent arguments.

Luis Thomas
Luis Thomas

Pretty accurate even if it is overly melodramatic. Women are by and large useless outside of reproduction. Their unconscious realization of this makes them spiteful.

Christopher Torres
Christopher Torres

Most recently he was mentioned in Frazetta thread. He usually comes up in discussions regarding crazy writers/artists, blacklisting, SJWs/feminists, copyright, and indie publishing.

It is interesting how many of the best comic creators crazy. It is present in other fields too, but it's on another level in the American comic book industry.

Easton Edwards
Easton Edwards

But in the 90's, among the kind of comic counter-cultural intelligentsia who hate comics, he was one of the handful of approved creators that would not get you stoned to death for mentioning.
It was basically Jeff Smith, Daniel Clowes, the Hernandez Brothers, Eddie Campbell, and Dave Sim. Anything else was apostasy, and would buy you a short trip to the strangling-post.

But since evidence of his heresy came to light, Dave Sim is a Un-Person, and has been erased from the history books, photographs have been carefully touched up to remove his likeness, and all extant copies of the Cerebus "phone books" have been gathered and lovingly incinerated by the enforcement arm of the Comics Code Authority.

I mean, sure, we all shout and spit at his face on the screen during the daily Four Minute Hate, but the kids these days aren't old enough to know who he is, and the old ones have been ordered to forget.

Elijah Nguyen
Elijah Nguyen

Exactly. Just look at . However, person like that would definitely know about person like Stan Lee or Alan Moore - established creators with golden seal of approval. They have likely heard of Bendis, Kirkman, or Millar. They might have also heard of people like Eisner, Ditko, and Kirby because they are greats. But if greats were problematic enough, they are ignored and over time nearly forgotten - like Wally Wood.

Easton Perry
Easton Perry

like Wally Wood.
What was so problematic about Wood? That he ate a bullet after years of poor health? Or that most of his later work was pretty raunchy?

Jace Cooper
Jace Cooper

Or that most of his later work was pretty raunchy?
This one. Stuff like Sally Forth would not sit well with SJWs and Disney Orgy likely doesn't help matters either.
Wood reinvented Daredevil and made him a popular character, saving book from cancellation after only six issues. Daredevil's redesign also influenced costume design in future decades. And yet he is pretty much ignored by Marvel.

Asher Russell
Asher Russell

…that entire thing. Yes.

Samuel Powell
Samuel Powell

Wood was a genius of cartooning, but he gets deleted from history because he genuinely hated women. There's one cartoon of his I really wish I could find for you, of a beautiful woman in a bridal dress, lying back, her legs spread, in a giant bear trap, lol.
It's a pity, because modern cartoonists, especially web cartoonists, and I'm looking at YOU, HANDSTAB, could afford to take a few cues from his "twenty two panels that always work".
Marvel seem to have lost their basic level of aptitude about the time they filed a Chapter Eleven and auctioned off the original of the twenty two panels.

And you know another guy who never gets talked about? Another guy who has been memory holed? Vaughn Bode. Guy was an influence on everyone from Eastman and Laird to James O'Barr to Ralph Bakshi to an entire generation of graffiti artists, and nobody ever talks about him. I guess his useless son continuing his characters has diluted the brand, but still. That guy ripped his own heart out and showed it to us, and he and his work have been buried while sly little poseurs like Fred Gallagher are lionised.

Robert Crumb would be memory holed if the SJWs had their way, and I've got the feeling he'll be next. Already every time someone brings him up, someone says, "Oh, he's a pervert", like that invalidates his entire life and body of work. His brutal honesty about his own sexuality should distinguish his work from today's furtive masturbators trying to hide their fetishes. If he wanted to draw amputee porn he'd just DO it.

Robert Collins
Robert Collins

I doubt anybody who isn't into comic history would know about Wood's lewd output for American G.I. newspapers or the Disney orgy without stumbling across something like Fantagraphics' recent compilations of Cannon and Shattuck, plus that new book about The Realist (which does have the infamous Disney picture). Even then, who'd be salty enough to bitch about the work of someone who's been dead for 36 years?

he is pretty much ignored by Marvel
Probably because outside of DD, his work for them is scattered. Aside from some Doctor Doom stories for Astonishing Tales, most of it is either inking work or stuff unlikely to be reprinted comprehensively like his EC stuff.

Joseph Wood
Joseph Wood

Hey old people. Tell me more stories

Ryder Phillips
Ryder Phillips

i have no idea who this guy is, but he's wrong.

feminism didn't start its cancerous spread in the 1970s, it was in the 1800's.

Anthony Turner
Anthony Turner

it was in the 1800's.
Nah, fuck you mate. That wasnt cancer. That was necessary.

1800s Feminism was the most reasonable shit, especially with the labor laws and negotiations. And the whole not enjoying getting beaten to death every other Saturday. Or seeing their children suffer the same, in an era where grabbing a gun and shooting the fucker would just make orphans.

Nolan Cooper
Nolan Cooper

feminism
good ever
feminism was the biggest mistake of humanity. letting it exist in the 1800's was a mistake that lead to the modern cucked world where women do whatever they want with zero repercussions.

Aiden Diaz
Aiden Diaz

Implying anything good came of that

Hudson Watson
Hudson Watson

Women getting the vote was the worst thing imaginable for Western Civilization.

Nicholas Kelly
Nicholas Kelly

True. But the other tards are retarded

Robert Anderson
Robert Anderson

brutal honesty about his own sexuality
I don't know if he's a fag or what have you but in general I don't care to learn somebody else's fap fuel

Noah Lee
Noah Lee

First day on the job, officer?

Jacob Evans
Jacob Evans

He was completely right, and the comics industry slandered him viciously.
I remember reading The Comics Journal in the 90s and 2000s, long before I ever read Cerebus for myself, and they painted him as flat-out crazy, a guy suffering an extended mental breakdown. Now I go back and look at what he was writing, and who was objecting to it, and it's clear that he was clear-eyed and sane.

Gabriel Morris
Gabriel Morris

1800s Feminism was the most reasonable shit
No it wasn't. One of their earliest projects was to sway English king to ban Coffe Shops.

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