Thursday, November 18, 2010


In the space of one blogpost, can anyone do justice to the complicated cosmos of CEREBUS and/or philosophical outlook of its author Dave Sim?

Clearly not, so I won't try. I will say that the question of whether any girls, "super" or not, should be "on top" *is* a philosophical point that does get addressed in the CEREBUS world.

However, if one does know that world fairly well, as I think that I do, it is interesting to see Sim's character Cerebus-- a tough, sword-skilled aardvark in a sword-and-sorcerous setting-- encounter a female able to match him in battle-skill, even if he gets out of the encounter through comic means.

Prior to the introduction of "Geet-a" in 1980, CEREBUS had taken a couple of friendly-satirical pot-shots at the then-current success of Marvel's RED SONJA feature, then executed by old comics-pro Frank Thorne. Sim's satire of Sonja was "Red Sophia," who was fairly adept with a blade (she trashes a barful of rowdies when they "besmirch" her honor) but whom Cerebus could defeat without half trying.

Later, in issue #19, Cerebus encounters a near-lookalike for Sophia, who can only utter her name ("Geet-a") and who very nearly kills the aardvark with her sword-skills. Cerebus makes a timely escape. While hiding from Geet-a, Cerebus comes across Henrot (father of Sophia and anagram of "Thorne"), who explains that he created Geet-a magically as a substitute for his absent daughter. Cerebus manages to get out of the situation not by facing Geet-a's skill again but by turning loose a bunch of goofy magic creatures called "Gerbies" that enfold Geet-a and suck away all her negative energies-- and whether she lives or dies, that's the last one sees of Geet-a in the CEREBUS cosmos.

The name "Geet-a" was a pun on "Ghita," a character Thorne was doing for Warren's 1984 magazine, one best described as a racier version of Red Sonja.

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