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Lookalike and actalike: Morrison (pictured with Frank Quitely) ended up in hospital after making King Mob (left) sick: ‘I enmeshed myself in the narrative’

as spelling. quite literally. It you create a micro world. things yotl do in it can have el‘l‘ects on the outside world. A voodoo miniature. .-\nd it you twist it a little. the twists appear in your ow n lil'e.‘

This is something Morrison believes in wholeheartedly with no sense oli irony. There‘s the al'orementioned masturlmtion ritual lwhich worked by the way). but it goes deeper than that: ‘I read people like Aleister ('rowley. and they say il‘ you do this. a demon will appear. So you go "bullshit". So I went and did it and a demon appeared. I tried the experiments and they work. I’ve seen astonishing things. including this gigantic musical head ol‘ .lohn Lennon. What I did was treat him like any of the classical gods. So ljust thought. "What is Lennon a god ol".’" So I got a Rickenbacker. put on a paisley shirt and Beatle boots and played

"Tomorrow Never Knows‘ on ‘E ' verythmg

a loop. and just thought.

over the world." he says laughing.

"There‘s always been that return of the repressed. (‘omics were an undercurrent. but every thing that was an undercurrent is now being sci/ed by the media. liverything that was weird when l was doing '/'/1(' lurisi/r/us has been made into Robbie Williams videos] he says referring to the gore l‘illed. skin peeling promo that accompanied ‘Rock l).l'.

'lt‘s a great thing to be into because you can roll it tip. pttt it in your pocket and read it on the bus. But you can still get your action and your philosophy and your weird shit. ()nly better and more undiluted than you would on TV. ll~ people realise it you read comics you will get what hits the big screens two years in advance. if it becomes the source ol' imagination just to be liltered down to T\' that's line with me.‘

He hints at more bi/arre .stul'l in the pipeline; his new original series The I’i/tlz and

“Lennon come on". and in the was welrd his forthcoming novel the II“.

magic circle appears the head when I was

ol‘John Lennon.‘

And all these ideas trickle into his output. which is no has

longer on the fringes of the

industry but right at its been made mainstream heart. This [nto Williams Scottish and 1K talent l‘uelled Vldeos.’

quintessentially American artl'orm is now awash with

by the training ground that is 2()()();ll). Morrison reckons it may be because American culture is collapsing. "They‘re ready to go ironic. so they are turning to Scottish stuff which seems to be lilled with black humour. Sort of (‘/()(‘/\'ll'()I'/\' ()mngc ultra-violence but always with a smirk on its lace. And suddenly they are understanding it.' And Morrison is optimistic about an industry that has had more knocks that Mike Tyson. (‘omics imagery and style is making it lirmly into everyday entertainment. It‘s all starting to merge: think of the popularity of [mn- 'l'lu' litmpin' Slayer and The illulrit‘. both ol‘ which borrow heavily from the medium. .-\s Morrison puts it. ‘people are hungry for what was once embarrassing geek imagery which has now become cool. (‘ulture was grinding to a halt but there was this thriving thing going on in the dark. comic culture. Raw insane ideas that actually look great on the screen. with added special effects. The anoraks are back and they‘re taking

12 THE LIST Q-i May-2‘ cllir‘o .K‘.“

llis evident excitement at doing something new is. however. countered by his l'ears that his ideas will be stolen. ‘Well I don't want to say too much about it as the harpies in the business are likely to nick it all.‘

But you can tell that he’s biting his tongue as it is obviously a project close to his heart. This is the lirst creator owned piece he has done since linishing 'Iiln' lnvisib/cs. ‘l’art ol' the reason l‘or doing the .Vt'u‘ .\'-.llm is to raise the prolile and sell some of the creator stuff on the back of it. You do a bit ol commercial work and it brings in the punters who don‘t Usually look at the weird stul'lI'

And then there‘s the masic and club nights . . . his tentacles are reaching further and further. You can only imagine what his big screen version ol~ Dun Dare. which he wrote for Ridley Scott. would have been like il‘ it had made it to your local picture house.

So this (ilaswcgian who got into comics just to ‘get oil the dole‘ is now selling twisted other- worldly \‘oodoo lo the rest oli the world. And they don‘t even know it.

Grant Morrison’s tenure on New X-Men begins with issue 114 out now.

Six defining moments in Grant Morrison’s rise to taking the helm at New X-Men.

Zenith His first real superhero creation. a cool guitar-wielding superhero. as concerned with his public image and record sales as he is with saving the world. From the pages of 2000 AD home of Judge Dredd and creative comics hothouse that also unleashed the talents of Alan Moore. Neil Gaiman. Peter Milligan and more.

Animal Man His first DC gig. taking a long forgotten hero lurking in the darkest regions of the DC universe, bringing him back to life and making him confront what it means to be a hero and comic book character.

Doom Patrol His first stab at superhero teams sowed the seeds for metaphysical villains. and heroes with more mental problems than the average loony bin.

Arkham Asylum The theme continued in one of Batman’s darkest adventures, where he is forced to face the insanity of his own actions (dressing up as a bat and fighting crime is hardly the sanest of hobbies). Also the highest grossing hardback comic ever.

The lnvisibles His

' ultra-hip tale of terrorist action, shadowy government agencies, black magic and aliens. BBC Scotland tried to tackle the project but eventually found it too bizarre for its humble tastes. A big screen version is, however. in development.

JLA The Justice League of America, a superhero team comprising comic book royalty: Superman. Wonder Woman. Batman, The Flash, Green Lantern and Aquaman among others. He transformed it from a bloated outdated title into one of the most sought after comics around.