Tuesday, September 15, 2009

It's Showtime!

Cerebus arrives back at his suite, a stunned look on his face, still numbly holding the sword. A furious Astoria immediately begins to harangue him about not even being able to complete his dinner with the Prime Minister. She then proceeds to berate Cerebus about how this could damage his chances of remaining as the ranking diplomatic representative. Cerebus places the sword on a bench behind a curtain, his medallions can be glimpsed hanging on the wall, turns and growls “Cerebus is the ranking diplomatic representative and Cerebus will be the ranking diplomatic representative until Cerebus decides otherwise.” That’s the old Cerebus, not the one who plays political games and simply talks, this is the Cerebus that does things, the one that takes action.

The following morning; the opening day of Petuniacon, Astoria walks Cerebus through the convention's great hall where people are signing up, registering, trying to work out appearance orders and posting up flyers advertising appearances. Dave’s intention was to lampoon the comic book conventions, where by this stage he was probably a regular attendee. It comes across rather like a cross between a comic book convention and a political rally.

Astoria has booked Cerebus into the Oak Room, one of the event’s larger venues, and tells him if it gets too crowded to alert security. The room is empty. Cerebus takes the opportunity to needle Astoria, she departs and Cerebus begins to laboriously compose a letter to Jaka. He is interrupted by Bran, who as usual is spouting prophecy, the one sensible thing that Cerebus does manage to get out of the Pigt is that Cerebus is too important to concern himself with being the ranking diplomatic representative, he should instead be aiming at the position of Prime Minister. Astoria returns, demands to know who Bran was, and before she can find out, or Cerebus can explain, gets some news about the polls which causes her to become extremely agitated and hurry out of the room.

Cerebus goes back to his letter, and is again interrupted by a rough voice asking him where he got the potato salad as it’s great. This individual, who to me looked like a larger, rougher Chico Marx, introduces himself as the representative for ‘dadocks’. Cerebus eventually interprets this as meaning ‘the docks’, described by his guest as ‘where da boats come in.’ Cerebus somehow managed to offend the man and he stormed from the room. However the aardvark proved a hit with everyone else who entered the room and it was soon filled with people hanging on his every word and asking for autographs. One of these people asks him what it’s like living with Lord Julius’ ex-wife (Astoria). As Cerebus was, as due to his incredible self interest, so often is, unaware of the woman’s background, this startled him, causing him to break the quill he was writing with, and make an ink blot on the page. Someone believes this is a sketch of a tree and soon Cerebus is madly sketching trees and autographing them for the conventioneers.

He receives a message from Astoria telling him to meet her at The Regency when the delegates all leave to vote. As the room is now empty Cerebus hops down from his lectern and heads to The Regency. On his way he encounters the mad artist from issue #25. He was hired by Lord Julius to paint all manner of things with the message 'vote for Elrod' down the bottom and was promised 5,500 crowns for it, but when Lord Julius found out that the candidates could sketch their own drawings and sign them and he didn’t even have to pay for them he ended the contract with the artist. Cerebus does trees, apparently Elrod does bunnies.

The convention continues.

A lot of this issue reminded me of the very first issue of High Society. With Cerebus being the centre of events, but not truly understanding what's going on around him.

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