Like Watchmen author Alan Moore before him, Grant Morrison is a cultural theorist whose reach and brilliance far exceeds his comics. So far, I’ve only had the honor of interviewing Moore, but finally got my chance to pick Morrison’s brain for Wired. Be warned: This post is not for lightweight readers. Ideas are dissected, from Superman to Batman to brane cosmology to the sexual obsession with apocalypse and beyond. Enter at your own risk.
Grant Morrison Talks Brainy Comics, Sexy Apocalypse
[Scott Thill, Wired]
From mind-warping revisions of comic book heroes in All-Star Superman, Batman R.I.P. and Final Crisis, to pop-cultural and philosophical exegeses like The Invisibles, The Filth and We3, brainiac graphic novelist Grant Morrison is a master of the Gordian-knot narrative.
Armed with an intellect and curiosity rivaled in comics only by Watchmen author Alan Moore, Morrison tackles M-Theory and brane cosmology, psychedelia and fascism, continuity and catastrophe while churning out comics that push the envelope well past the point of breaking. In his books, reality and narrative collide and sometimes disappear into each other without a trace.
“I’ve been trying to make superhero comics which draw attention to that aspect of participation and collusion between character, creator and reader,” the 49-year-old virtuoso explained in an e-mail interview from his home in Scotland. “I’d love to see more comic book work which was aware of its real-world context.”
Mission accomplished. All-Star Superman Vol. 2, released last month in hardcover, concludes a spectacular series that takes the Man of Steel through the looking glass, humanizing and deifying him in equal measure. Final Crisis, due in hardcover in June, does the same for most of DC Comics’ timeless heroes, culminating in one of the most brutally catastrophic narratives ever written. By the time it was over, Morrison says he needed to lighten up.
“I spent months immersing myself in the thought processes of an evil, dying God who longed for nothing less than the degradation, destruction and enslavement of all of DC’s superheroes,” he confesses, “along with every other living thing in the universe and beyond!”
But he’s not taking a break; far from it. From cinematic adaptations of his cyborg animal series We3 to games, TV shows and a Batman and Robin series filtered through the iconography of David Lynch, Morrison’s plate is packed. Wired.com caught up with the prolific genius to chat about the aforementioned and much more, including continuity, deconstruction, M-Theory and humans’ obsession with the sexy apocalypse. MORE @ WIRED