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Suicide Girls interview with Grant Morrison

SuicideGirls > Words > Grant Morrison

I'm going to come right out and say it: Grant Morrison is my favorite author. By far. By leaps and bounds. And he gives great interview.

Choice quotes from the interview after the jump.

Choice Quotes:

DRE: I read that sometimes you would write about stuff in The Invisibles then it would actually happen.

GM: I got so enmeshed in it that I was producing holographic voodoo effects and found that I could make stuff happen just by writing about it. At the conclusion of volume one, I put the King Mob character in a situation where he was being tortured and he gets told that his face is being eaten away by bacteria and within a few months my own face was being eaten away by infection. I still have the scar. It's a pretty cool scar to but at the time it was really distressing. Then I had the character dying and within a few months, there I was dying in the hospital of blood poisoning and staph aureus infection. As I lay dying, I wrote my character out of trouble and somehow survived. I used the text as medicine to get myself out of trouble. Writing became a way of keeping myself alive.

As soon as I was out of hospital I made sure my character had a good time and got a laid a lot and within months I was having the time of my life.

DRE: This may be old news but was the controversy over The Matrix films being like The Invisibles blown out of proportion?

GM: It's really simple. The truth of that one is that design staff on The Matrix were given Invisibles collections and told to make the movie look like my books. This is a reported fact. The Wachowskis are comic book creators and fans and were fans of my work, so it's hardly surprising. I was even contacted before the first Matrix movie was released and asked if I would contribute a story to the website.

It's not some baffling 'coincidence' that so much of The Matrix is plot by plot, detail by detail, image by image, lifted from Invisibles so there shouldn't be much controversy. The Wachowskis nicked The Invisibles and everyone in the know is well aware of this fact but of course they're unlikely to come out and say it.

It was just too bad they deviated so far from the Invisibles philosophical template in the second and third movies because they blundered helplessly into boring Catholic theology, proving that they hadn't HAD the 'contact' experience that drove The Invisibles, and they wrecked both
'Reloaded' and 'Revolutions' on the rocks of absolute incomprehension. They should have kept on stealing from me and maybe they would have wound up with something to really be proud of - a movie that could change minds and hearts and worlds.

I love the first Matrix movie which I think is a real work of cinematic genius and very timely but I've now heard from several people who worked on The Matrix and they've all confirmed that they were given Invisibles books as reference. That's how it is. I'm not angry about it anymore, although at one time I was because they made millions from what was basically a Xerox of my work and to be honest, I would be happy with just one million so I didn't have to work thirteen hours of every fucking day, including weekends.

In the end, I was glad they got the ideas out but very disappointed that they blew it so badly and distorted all the Gnostic transcendental aspects that made the first film so strong and potent. If they had any sense, they would have befriended me instead of pissing me off. They seem like nice boys.

DRE: You've spoken quite openly about the drugs you've done over the years. I had a teacher years ago that was also a priest and we had an argument over drugs. He said that the same feelings you can reach with drugs you can get to naturally with meditation.

GM: That's not true but I do understand what he's trying to say. Theoretically, you can recreate all states of consciousness just by thinking about them but having tried both meditation and drugs and often both at the same time I'm not sure about this one. It's a bit like saying you can recreate the feeling of a Thanksgiving Dinner using meditation. Maybe you could but why would you? Meditation can take you to some places that some drugs can also take you too but I don't believe meditation can reproduce a full-on acid experience or a high dose mushroom or DMT trip, nor would it be helpful if it did. It can reproduce something like an ecstasy experience. Meditators who claim they can recreate all of these drug states are probably either unfamiliar with the drugs or they're being slightly disingenuous about the whole issue.

DRE: You mentioned three drugs right there, when you did Animal Man was it from doing one drug and was The Invisibles with another drug and etc?

GM: The weird thing with me is that I'm into magic more than I am drugs and I started my psychedelic experiments very late, as an adjunct to my magical work. I ate a little bit of hash when I was 24 and I had some mushrooms when I was 28 but otherwise I was totally straight edge until I was 31. I was in a psychedelic punk band where we didn't drink, smoke or take drugs! I only got into drugs when I felt sorted emotionally enough to deal with the effects and I had good magical reasons for doing so. Then in 90's I joined the rave party and spent every single day of the decade getting totally wrecked on mind-altering substances which, I have to admit, I enjoyed immensely. I was never keen on stimulants like cocaine and speed because they did nothing useful or interesting for me but I loved the psychedelic drugs which could twist my head, erase my name and address, open up my subconscious and turn my brain into a super-conductor, so I dosed like a madman for ten years, studied the effects and wrote it all down in The Invisibles and Flex Mentallo in particular. Zenith, Animal Man and Arkham Asylum are pretty straight edge and Doom Patrol shows the influence of shrooms from around the time of those Insect Mesh issues but I was mostly doing it straight. The 90ís work emerged from the cockpit of a rocket-driven rollercoaster of LSD, cannabis, mushrooms, DMT, 2CB, ecstasy and champagne.