Comicsphere: Flex Mentallo By Grant Morrison
I don’t know what the hell Grant Morrison does with his comics but it feels like my head is being rewired every time I read one of them. This comic intersects with The Invisibles at important levels, intersects with Zenith, reflects The Filth — reflects ideas through the prism of its narrative.
Anyone else and you would think that the echoes of one story in another are just pure coincidence but then you would be discounting some of the huge architectural structures that Morrison has built within the pages of the stories he has told. Barbelith is here, Mason’s alien encounter is here, the Harlequinade’s self as folded through time is present, as is the superfluid that downloaded itself into reality.
All his works are at once a fiction, a blending of real life events from his own life, a reprogramming of both those realities and a road map for where we might take our consciousness. I know I sound like I am proselytising for the church of Grant or something but there aren’t many, if any people writing things like this. Morrison, when he is firing all cylinders, and when isn’t he? turns out things that turn you inside out, make you look at yourself contorted through several reinterpretations of what you really are. Or It’s just a comic and you buy into its insanity for a while.
I don’t know why I wasn’t expecting a trippy ride when I signed on for reading this comic; why I wasn’t expecting to be made to think. I think it might have been the title, which seems odd given that it pretty much tells you exactly what it is going to do. These tales reprogram the suit you are wearing so that you can lift up above fourspace and see everything mapped on its surface and you can navigate it as if you were looking down at points in time and reality on a flat surface. It’s a shift of perspective thing. They used to use pictographs to communicate, people used to read big long books on how to change their reality (the bible, the koran) so why is it unbelievable that a comic might be able to do the same? It doesn’t work the same as a book, it doesnt work the same as a film — it has properties of both and is uniquely its own beast.
Fuck, can you tell that I loved this? I think i might be able to ramble on for ever about the possibilities that thinking in the way this book makes you think will open up for you. How much can the ideas Morrison is exploring be condensed? Will they one day be mapped onto an intelligent fluid so we can just drink it and gain an instant understanding? Lets hope so. Barbelith is a green light.