This is the second half of our interview with Steve Bissette, but I suppose you gathered that from the title and the fact that the last one was called “Part 1″. Speaking of the last episode, if you haven’t listened to it yet, you should go back and listen to them in order.
As was stated before in the shownotes for the last episode, this interview was recorded before the untimely and shocking death of comic veteran Steve Perry. Perry and his work have been mentioned on this site, as well as in this interview itself. Stephen Bissette was Perry’s friend and a champion in the fight to get Perry back on his feet. So much of what has transpired is cheap and cruel. It’s touching to see so many people come forward and give there condolences, but it’s not surprising. So many were already looking out for Perry in life. They recently gave their support in the form of well wishes, financial support, and exposure. On top of all of the grief that Steve’s death brings, it also comes with the bitterness of knowing that all these people were fighting for him and he had come so far just for someone to waste all that effort.
This is a simple analogy, but I think it apt. Imaging coming across someone attempting to put a sand castle back together. It’s not an easy thing to do, but it is important to them and it is worth doing whether you succeed or not. So you help. The tide is coming in, but there are others arriving to help the effort. The castle begins to take shape; it can even stand up by itself. The waves come closer and closer, but that’s not so bad. If it cannot hold up forever, that’s not so bad. You come to terms with the idea that the ocean will come and eventually wash away the castle. Then imagine someone kicking the castle over.
Nevertheless, there is one thing I’ve learned from all of this and it’s that fan’s can make a major impact in improving the lives of creators. For the most part, the comics industry isn’t built to support its creators into retirement. That’s true now, but it was doubly so for those creators who cut their teeth back in “the day” and now find themselves without a safety net. Here’s a video courtesy of the Hero Initiative featuring Steve Perry himself talking about why you should give.
Show links are forthcoming. For now:
Myrant (SRB’s home on the web)
The Hero Initiative (A worthy cause)