Thursday, May 8, 2014

Top Five Weirdest Grant Morrison Creations

Grant Morrison. Oh, Grant Morrison.

And his brilliant, shiny head.
Love him or hate him, he’s certainly had his share of memorable comics. He’s managed to blend his love of the Silver Age with his (occasionally drugged-up) imagination, culminating in some memorable moments, leaving his unique mark on Superman, Batman, DC, Marvel, and pretty much everything else. But sometimes, in his quest to reimagine the old, and revitalize the new… he comes up with some weird stuff.

You need to know right now that some of these things will not make sense without context. They won’t make much sense with context either. If you get confused, don’t worry. So did the people who actually read the comics. I’ll supply as much context as I can… but I can’t work miracles.

Let’s look at what are, in my opinion, the top five weirdest things to come out of his bald head.

Honorable Mention: Bat Cow
It’s a cow with a bat-shaped mark on its face that was adopted by Robin. And this is canon.

I get that this is Grant Morrison’s response to the idea of Super Pets, like Krypto… but this is just weird to me. Awesome, but weird.

5- Marvel Boy
Oh, Marvel Boy. An alien soldier with insect DNA, triple-jointed agility, and more. His ship got shot down by a Doctor Midas, before eventually going on to fight a sentient corporation. This reimagining of the classic Marvel character was pretty much his take on… well, everything comic-related. Even the very look of the comic was weird.

“We've only started to experiment but already MARVEL BOY looks like nothing else around. Some of the stuff J. G. is doing is like an update of the whole Steranko Pop Art approach to the comics page. Instead of Orson Welles, op art and spy movies, J.G.'s using digital editing effects, percussive rhythms, cutting the action closer and harder, illuminated by the frantic glow of the image-crazed hallucination of 21st century media culture and all that. Comics do not need to be like films. They do not need to look like storyboards. ... I wanted to go back and explore some of the possibilities of comics as music.”
-Grant Morrison

You odd, odd man.

4- Every New Batman Villain He’s Created
Let’s see, there’s…

Mr. Toad: A toad-man who drives a classic jalopy and speaks in circus slang.
Professor Pyg: The most effed-up mind in all of comics, obsessed with his twisted view of “beauty”; inspired by the song “Pygmalism”, Pygmalion, and My Fair Lady. much less kid friendly than his animated portrayal would have you believe.
Simon Hurt: An unnamed doctor from a 1960’s Batman issue, reimagined into an insane devil worshipper
Flamingo: A face-eating cannibal assassin who dresses like Prince.

I may or may not have just peed my pants.
And that’s just the beginning. Grant manages to make a homicidal clown look tame.

3- Flex Mentallo
This one’s going to be tough to explain. Charles Atlas was a body builder, with famous “In just seven days, I can make you a man” ads in comics. Grant Morrison reimagined the protagonist of one of those ads (“Mac”) as the pinnacle of human perfection, able to flew his muscles so hard that it rearranges reality, while the words “HERO of the BEACH” glow above him. Gamble a stamp, indeed.

The inspiration.
The weirdness.
Spun off into his own mini-series, which got weirder in ways that would take too much time to explain here. I’ll probably spotlight the comic separately at some point. But that’s not the weirdest thing that Grant came up with during his Doom Patrol run.

2- The Brotherhood of Dada
“Dada” was a real life anti-art movement, determined to prove that art was inherently meaningless. So Grant…. You know what? Context won’t help here. It’s an evil team of weirdoes. Such as…

Love Glove: an armless guy who controlled various gloves with a variety of effects (the Love Glove, the Shove Glove, etc.)
Agent "!": His torso’s a birdcage, and his name is pronounced exactly the way it’s spelled.
Number None: Every splinter you’ve had? Every time you tripped for no reason? Every time you dropped something? That was Number None. He exists as misfortune.
The Quiz: She has every superpower you haven’t thought of.
Mister Nobody: A man completely made out of concepts; the post-modern man.

And more. Does your head hurt yet?

1- The Invisibles
Just… The Invisibles.
It seems like it was written on drugs, and indeed it was.
Smarter people than I have attempted and failed to understand it.

Here’s a link. Good luck.

As for me, I need to take a headache pill. Too much Grant Morrison hurts my brain after a bit.

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