Tuesday, 1 July 2008

Dirty Thoughts From Other People's Comments Sections

Here's a little ramble I had in Sean Witzke's comments section. Sean compared Grant Morrison's inversion of the rules of his own JLA run in Final Crisis with the contrast between two other Morrison comics, The Invisibles and The Filth. Here's what I had to say in response:

I kinda love the fact that The Filth is turning out to be such a big influence on Morrison’s DC work…

I mean, check it: You’ve got the reality-breaking, darkcore madness of Final Crisis and Batman RIP which are totally Filthy in their themes and tone, and then you’ve got All Star Superman, which seems like the shiny happy opposite of all that stuff but which has the same hall of mirrors plot structure as The Filth.

Seriously: I mean, (1) It’s called ASS! Come on, you know that’s Filthy, and (2) It’s a series of discrete 1-2 issue stories that reflect the main plot while only advancing it marginally.

The massive difference in tone is, really, only as notable as the difference between Quitely’s artwork (relaxed, graceful, full of humour and melancholy) and Weston’s (cramped, frantic, bursting with ugly details).

Or at least that’s what I’m claiming today. Speak to me tomorrow and I’ll probably tell you that it’s bullshit, but… yes… where was I?

Oh, yeah: I love that this totally bizarre, much-bitched about and hated miniseries (The Filth — which I do love, by the way!) has ended up being the touchstone for Morrison’s recent heavy bout of corporate work.

Actually, thinking about it, you could argue that The Filth occupies the same position in Morrison’s recent work that Flex Mentallo did in the mid-to-late nineties and Arkham Asylum did in the late eighties. I’m just riffing wild here, but if you wanted to chart Morrison’s progression from literary wideboy to psychedelic poptimist to fractured, carnage-addled supporter of low-key kindness then you could definitely use those three works as exemplars. Except… I don’t really like Arkham Asylum, but I do love most of Morrison’s work from that era. Ah, fuck it!

I later decided that Morrison's controversial The New Adventures of Hitler was a better representative of Morrison's early work, because (1) It's actually good, and (2) Its iconoclastic approach to real people and events ties it in with some of Morrison's early prose and dramatic writing.

Plus, I somehow ended up challenging the totally-absent Tim Callahan to a wrestling match in a paddling pool full of robotic eels. Why? I think it was for the right to finish his series of books on Morrison's work or something. I dunno, can I claim it was my attempt to imitate a Filth-style breakdown?

No?

Oh well, how about I just blame it on this:



Thought not, but it was worth a try all the same.

1 comment:

sean witzke said...

COMBININ' ELEMENTS OF THE PAST AND THE FUTURE TO CREATE SOMETHING NOT QUITE AS GOOD AS EITHER... GIVE IT UP NOW!