Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997)
Cerebus the Aardvark

Stubby-legged, short-tempered star of an epic series of very popular satirical Comic books independently published by his creator, Canadian writer/artist Dave Sim (1958-    ) under the Aardvark-Vanaheim imprint and elsewhere. Originally intended as a pastiche of Marvel Comics's Conan, as drawn by Barry Windsor-Smith, the series began publication in 1977 as Cerebus the Barbarian (1977-1979), later just Cerebus, and is projected to run to 6000 pages.

The numerous stories have been published in Cerebus (1988-current), with minor sidelights and guest appearances of Cerebus characters in Epic Illustrated (various issues 1984 and 1985), Cerebus Jam (1985), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1986), Spawn (1993) and Aargh! (1988; > Alan Moore). The series has lampooned many established characters from the worlds of High Fantasy and elsewhere, with characters like Elrod the Albino, Red Sophia, Jaka, The Cockroach, Oscar the Poet, Pud the Tavern-Owner, Squinteye the Sailor and Margaret Thatcher.

The stories are available in collections entitled Cerebus (graph coll 1987), High Society (graph coll 1986), Church and State Vol I (graph coll 1987) and Vol II (graph coll 1988), Jaka's Story (graph coll 1990), Melmoth (graph coll 1991), Flight (graph coll 1993), Women (graph coll 1994) and Reads (graph coll 1995). Sim's collaborator Gerhard (1959-    ) is credited as co-creator of Church & State II and all subsequent collections. Cerebus Number Zero (graph coll 1993) assembles 3 transitional/marginal episodes dropped from the main series of collections. [RT]

This entry is taken from the Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997) edited by John Clute and John Grant. It is provided as a reference and resource for users of the SF Encyclopedia, but apart from possible small corrections has not been updated.