I've noticed that the villains Grant Morrison writes tend to be very one dimensional. They're just even for evils sake with little reason behind their actions. Sometimes there are exceptions like Red Mask from Animal Man or Death-Doll from Aztek. But a lot of the time his villains feel more out of place in a Saturday morning cartoon. I still like and respect Morrison's writing, but I noticed this problem in a lot of his work.
I've noticed that the villains Grant Morrison writes tend to be very one dimensional...
all of his writing is very one dimensional
>>117434617Morrison is notorious for not being able to write morally grey villains. Even when you think he's doing it they become Hitler at some point.
>>117435161>Morrison is notorious for not being able to write morally grey villains. Even when you think he's doing it they become Hitler at some point.Morrison literally wrote a morally grey hitler.
>>117434617He made Joker so fucking edgy
>>117434617 Any capeshit writer good at writing three-dimensional villains?
Ugh. I hate villainous villains.
>>117435061>>117435161I don't think the problem is that he can't write them, but more like that Super heroes need to be "heroes", with a clear white morality . I believe he feels this way, because he grew up with the Silver Age comics.Many heroes stop being heroes when they are thrown into contexts with such high stakes and gray morality. A lot of people like that , they want that, (and nothing wrong with that), but he prefers old school Super heroes.
>>117434617"morally grey" villains in cape comics are cancer.
>>117434617Two things:1. What defines being one-dimensional?2. Morrison's villains usually serve a singular purpose and don't seem much like characters themselves, outside of the established cape villains.
>>117434617What made him the way he is?
>>117436126All of them.
>>117435851he also made Joker the best he's been in a long time, before or since
>>117434617All of his shit is very metaphysical and psychological, his villains often representing the negative aspects of the main character which in turn represents the reader and/or author, think of them more as bad ideas or impulses one might have.
>>117434617I liked his U-men. Too bad they'll never make another appearance because they're basically super trannies
>>117436126Rorschach literally committed suicide because he could not live with a reality that was too gray.The in Hick Avengers saga we seen characters like Reed, Strange, Panther, Beast and Namor commit massacres to save the Earth. Destroy other planets. Strange practically killed the "JLA" in cold blood and the whole universe reset with Doom in power is a rout of black and white morality. Steve and Tony fight each other for personal reasons, grudges, while their world burns.Marvel univers has long been a place whose morality is no longer clear
>>117436162Doctor Hurt slipping on Jokers banana peel was great, but The Clown at Midnight Joker was awful.
>>117436296are you saying Ozymandias was a bad villain?
>>117436320it was m e t a
>>117436327Did I mention Ozy somewhere? Could you elaborate?What I wroteis that a character who has always wanted to live without compromise and an absolutely well-defined morality, gave up when his reality no longer allowed him to see things in black and white.
>>117436365you brought up Rorschach, and had earlier said all morally grey villains in cape comics are cancer. Is Ozymandias not a morally grey villain in a cape comic?
Is it true he once beat up a homeless guy for a cigarette?
>>117436392>Is Ozymandias not a morally grey villain in a cape comic?Yes, and that's why Rorschach "explodes" defeated. Ozy work great in Watchmen, but if every comics start to have such "terrifying" villans, no hero can win.
>>117434617So what?Not all villains deserve a 5 page backstory and motivation. Saturday morning cartoon villany is fine for where it is. If you want something more, go read it.
>>117436060He can't write them though
>>117436813Yeah OP is full of shit. Even his cartoonish villains have fleshed out backstories. For example, Sally Sonic from his Bulleteer mini only existed to beat the shit out of the main character but she was still created to have a motivation and backstory that made sense.
>>117436915Well, it's nothing serious. he's fully capable of writing good comics with classic evil villans.
>>117436933Yeah it's just typical "the only DEEP villains are tragic anti-heroes who get a redemption arc out of a year" bs that's an albatross around the industry's neck.
Lesse:Lex ultimately saw the light at the end of ASS and was rumored to be Leo Quintum all along.Talia was the daughter of a misanthropist and turned evil despite it all.Magneto had been committing atrocities and then went full Hitler.Darkseid was fucking Darkseid, that one shouldn’t count.And the Empty Hand was mostly blasting Editors. More 60/40 I would say.
>>117437670>Lex ultimately saw the light at the end of ASS and was rumored to be Leo Quintum all along.this theory was debunked by Morrison himself, although he admitted that the idea did not displease him.
7437670>Lex ultimately saw the light at the end of ASS He sure did.
If you want le epic morally grey villain with a tragic backstory then just watch the MCU you fucking faggot.If you want good villains then you read Morrison
>>117434617He does it with heroes a lot too, most notable example I can think of is his X-Men run, where it felt like most of the characters were boiled down to basic stereotypes to serve the plot. He did introduce Sublime and the U-Men though, who are villains with major potential that don't get used enough though.Come to think of it, it's not just the X-Men, his Superman also feels like a cipher rather than an actual character a lot of the time.
They are one-dimensional in the way a great deal of good medieval and renaissance literature is, as both frequently exist in a purely idealist space, and Morrison often expresses a sort of anxiety about breaking that format.While characters can have a very set list of attributes in a lot of Morrison's work, it's the interplay between them that causes the drama, as is the case in, say a Chaucerian "dream vision" story.Villains in particular are "one-dimensional" because they rarely represent a specific person, but rather some larger social system or train of thought, i.e. the gentry, and so having them act like fully-fleshed human beings can't work, as the things they do represent something on scale quite distant from one-on-one interpersonal relationships.Kirby's Darkseid for instance, could be seen as "unnuanced" because at the end of the day he's a big devil-looking alien out to conquer the world, and for the most part acts like a regular stock stoic villain. Where the nuance comes from is what the actual things he does are, particularly in how they turn they synchronize with the Nixon administration, turning examples of wielding soft power in the real world into something more openly horrific, and ultimately more in line with those actions ultimate outcomes and intent.
>>117438654>his Superman also feels like a cipher rather than an actual character a lot of the time.I would like you to elaborate this criticism with precise points. His Superman is perhaps one of the most characterized of all.There are a lot of awesome details about Superman's personality even just how he moves. I will give you an example since I asked you the same.Look at this page. The two assholes play a bad joke by putting the key in the robot's hand, which does not have the strength to hold it given its mass. Superman immediately goes to help it. A robot.It's so great how many things can be understood about this Superman even without dialogue and no... you will not see this level of detail in other stories.
>>117437670>Lex ultimately saw the light at the end of ASSThen why did Morrison stll have Superman punch him?
>>117438472>it's another "character depth is bad" episode
>>117439104>"character depth is badI think the point is deteriorating a bit now. It was all started with villand with a moral gray mind. We can have character depth even with fully evil villans.
>>117438472>If you want good villains then you read MorrisonWhat? >>117438964They often make for dull reads.
>>117439049Pretty much everything about the way Superman talks and acts, IMO, especially towards the end of All-Star Superman when he's having a last go-around with Lex. To put it another way, I think Morrison gets the "beats" of classic Superman which is that he's a nice guy, he hankers for Lois Lane, etc, but he can't elaborate beyond that. The "Superman helps a robot" scan that you showed is actually a good example of this - it's basic bitch characterization that pretty much everyone would write who has even the slightest clue about Superman.
>>117439262>but he can't elaborate beyond that.And exactly what do you want? Morrison's Superman is very similar to the silver age one.He's a scientist who conducts experiments in the fortress. He's a collector, he love doing model kit, even if in his case it is rebuilding the Titanic in 1:1. He never really got over his father's death and is terribly frustrated about Lex, whose recognizes his enormous potential.He's a nice guy, but you can tell his tastes, his hobbies, his cultural ideas, a lot of things of him. That's depth too.I have the impression that here for depth is intended something like "gray" and not how much you can tell about a character.
>>117437017He's not at all capable of writing good comics
>>117439049>>117439610his Superman sucked ass
>>117434617wtf why is no one talking about how he is straight up doing magic in the op pic
>>117434617Why would that surprise you? It's pretty consistent with Morrison's views on capes. Pretty much this >>117436060
>>117436162He was only good when he was Oberon because Bruce wasn’t around.
>>117434617Who did he ruin more? Talia or Jason?
>>117434617I can't think of a single Grant Morrison original villain.
I don't think all bad guys have to be morally complex. I don't think that's necessary for the story to be good.
Morison tends to have his heroes fighting things like entropy, or emanations of the archetypical Dukes of Hell.He likes to write about the mythic hero stories in his licensed work. In his creator-owned work things are more... complex. He still likes myth-cycles and his big bads are archetypes, but the lower-level baddies get a lot of characterization and motivation.I think the way Morison approaching his licensed superhero work is fundamentally different from the stuff he owns. When ti comes to Marvle or DC he is still fighting against the grim-and-gritty of the 80s and 90s which... never went away and kept ruining characters. People like Morison's writing in no small part because it represents an escape from that.But his own stuff is darker, grittier and grey. Or they're Seaguy.
>>117440017real non-answer there
>>117441703That's not even getting into the occult side of things. If you've ever engaged in the practice his writing and characterization choices make so much more sense. But it's hard to explain to outsiders.
>>117434617most of his villains aren't in the story as people but as embodiments of specific things he wants to villify, like conformity enforced by violence, and deconstruction done for destruction's sake, throwing out the gold with the haystack.humanizing them too much would muddy his messages
>>117441786He wrote an entire miniseries that ended with the hero shooting the mortgage crisis in the face with a gun that shot a string of consonants -- the form of a compressed spell in sigil magic.(The foreclosures did largely stop around the time the final issue came out.)
>>117439090Because rehabilitation and redemption are two different concepts
>>117434617This is the best Morrison villain He is no evil for lelols , he is just chaotic
>>117436124Growing up poor but getting into a good school Parents being political fringe weirdos Glasgow The punk scene Drugs Magic Deciding to be his own heroMore Drugs Meeting Aliens in Kathmandu Drag Queen Phase Met Superman (for real) Once
>>117441740>But it's hard to explain to outsiders.>>117442175>Meeting Aliens in Kathmandu>Drag Queen Phase>Met Superman (for real) OnceThis is why people despise Morrison and his comics, by the way.
>>117436365>Did I mention Ozy somewhere?Most Morrison threads on Holla Forums eventually drift over into talking about Alan Moore for some reason.
>>117442530>peopleyeah, all five of you
>>117442953I don't hate him, but understand people that do. I find his work generally enjoyable, and even a few of his comics are great.
>>117442530>>But it's hard to explain to outsiders.>This is why people despise Morrison and his comics, by the way.Do you want to have a discussion about how etheric entities above a certain power level tend towards the self-reinforcing archetypal behavior habits? Because it's a REAL boring discussion. It involves Boba Fett and the Gods of the Yucatan and that SOUNDS INTERESTING but I assure you that IT IS NOT. It is soul-suckingly boring.
Based Morrison was into traps before it was cool
>>117443083>etheric entities above a certain power level tend towards the self-reinforcing archetypal behavior habitsI don't think that's true even if we pretend that beings of higher power can be made to be comprehensible.>Boba Fett>SOUNDS INTERESTINGNo. Fuck Star Wars.
>>117442175isn't his wife a dominatrix too?
>>117435161"morally gray" is very easy to do, it's basic, everybody does it, Morrison can do it, he doesn't do it because he's not basic enough for your average reader,>>117435061How dumb are you?
>>117434617Reminder that he proved chaos magick is real
>>117443345>"morally gray" is very easy to do, it's basic, everybody does it, Morrison can do it, he doesn't do it because he's not basic enough for your average reader,Then he shouldn't deal with morally grey characters and completely change up their alignment. The problem is that Morrison writes a lot of characters OOC. They act differently from what they normally act like and sometimes their motivations completely contradict them in the past. If he wants to attach some meta label to someone and have them be the embodiment of something in the industry as some sort of jab at conventions then he'd be better off making a new character.
>>117434617Not true, Vyndktvx was fifth-dimensional
>>117442022He did seem to be one of those cult leader types.
>>117436124he was a virgin until his early 30s and didn't try drugs until then, he got into punk when it was a dead scene, he grovelled for Moore's affection to get repeatedly rejected and degraded, he begged to be accepted by Hollywood but got surpassed by his protege's successHe hasn't really read many comics and his knowledge of "obscure" Batman was literately the Panini reprint of greatest adventures also baldLoser all around
>>117443345Morrison can't even do basic because he's such a bad writer desu he doesn't understand emotions and relationships like normal people
>>117438964It's simpler than that. Morrison views superheroes as a form of modern moral mythology. Heroes have to be inspiring and good, villains have to be base and evil. One is an exemplar, the other an aberration; under that worldview villains have to be one-dimensional as otherwise it challenges the moral system underlying Morrison's premise. >>117439610ASS is not how Morrison typically writes Superman. The entire series is a love letter to a very specific part of Silver Age Superman comics. His actual conception of Superman falls much more in line with Bronze Age Superman - Maggin in particular. This is made pretty apparent in his AC run, especially the Maggin influence. >>117443083It's pretty basic metaphysics. Ostrander goes deeper than Morrison when he deals with theology and the supernatural (which might be considered cheating since Ostrander is an ex-seminarian). It really bothers me when people talk about Morrison like you need some extensive background in metaphysics and literature to understand what he's doing. It's almost always immediately accessible to anyone with a passing knowledge of what he's talking about. His works are often dense and referential, but they're rarely complicated.
>>117436327Not him, but he is extremely overrated.He's not even the best Moore villain.
>>117434617Honestly I find it to be the opposite of a problem. There's nothing lazier than "b-but the villain was right h-he just happened to also kill people."
>>117447070So are you OP slowly letting your hate boner show or just some retarded snyderfag?
>>117447484Neither, I hate Morrison and both Snyders
>>117443532LOL nah. I'd rather have a Morrison reimagining than "he's brown/black now" or "he's gay now". Not that Morrison isn't about that which is truly the only thing I've ever disliked about his work.
>>117447468Why can't we have a happy medium of "a tragic relatively complex villain who's also an irredeemable twisted monster with a body count in the hundreds" kind of villain? Worked for the fourth season of Dexter.
>>117447490Nobody is talking about movies faggot so I don't care if you dislike the other one. >>117447499No it didn't work for dexter that show had two good seasons and fell off a cliff. Beyond that you've said exactly what I just said "he's right but he kills people" is child's play. You probably think yourself above MCU flicks but that's literally why so many normies suck Black Panthers dick. Because "y-yknow he's right he's just crazy too." Go watch the joker and feel bad for terrorists.
>>117447523It worked because Trinity is easily the best villain the show ever had, even if the actual season he appeared in was kinda "eh". And he wasn't "right" in any way, if anything it was shown that his horrific past doesn't in any way justify the atrocities he did.
>>117447468You don’t seem to understand morally grey characters by labeling them all as misunderstood. The appeal is that you are not unsure whether you agree with them on any level or if it’s their beliefs influencing your opinion of them. Heroes that kill or villains with an honor code are just the two common and basic types. They challenge normal hero and villain stereotypes and archetypes by being a bit of both or at least not being pure evil or pure good. From there you can make truly complex characters who are created from past loves or traumas. They might be conflicted and aren’t even sure if they agree with their own actions. Or they absolutely hate what they’re doing, show remorse, but continue doing what they’re doing.
>>117447484Snyder is even worse about making villains as pure evil as they can possibly be. They even lack the charisma that Morrison gives them.
>>117447629>They even lack the charismaOh no, now Snyderfags will run into this thread and cry that the yelling retard Zod is extremely charismatic, like delusional retards they all are.
>>117434617hes is generally doing it on purpose because hes trying to write an optimistic story about someone who is clearly a hero overcoming someone who is clearly a villain.
>>117434617Fuck him for starting the batwank
>>117448067I don't think it started with him
>>117448730Not entirely, but he did play a major role in it coming about in JLA.
>>117448067wasn't that adams?
>>117436115falsehe really fucked up Magneto
>>117448822frank miller invented batwank
>>117449035I can't recall any well-known batwank stories prior to Dark Knight Returns when Batman beat Superman. One could argue the one-punch bit from JLI was batwank, but that was more a joke at Guy's expense since Batman otherwise never overshadowed the team. Morrison made it canon with JLA when he had Batman justify his presence on the team by being able to outdo all of them, then Waid reinforced that with Tower of Babel when his stolen plans beat all of them.
>one dimensional>she clearly had two huge dimensionsBelzebeth was a good, non-monodimensional village
>>117450391I still don’t understand the new preview of GL
>>117450266No, Magneto was fucked up the moment they tried to give him redemption, now he's forever stuck in a sycle of villain now hero now villain for the sake of clickbait.
>>117450424Well I don't read previews but is this anything that's harder to understand than "dead hal, overguardians and 90's style"?
>>117434617He wrote what is pretty infamously the worst take on Jason Todd, though I wonder if it was on purpose considering he seems to hate the fact Jason is alive at all.
>>117451289his take on Jason Todd was only like the third take on revived Jason Todd.and it wasn't nearly as bad as Countdown and Jasonfags think any take that isn't Lobdell's wanking is "the worst take"
>>117451357A take has to be coherent to count as a take, Lobdell is disqualified by default.
>>117451289I thought it was kind of a fun take on Jason that only plays so poorly because people usually want that character to be taken more seriously as either a legitimate threat or a tortured antihero. Making him a gimmicky punisher wannabe desperately attempting to market himself to the Gotham public is a fun idea as long as you don't take Jason seriously as a character to begin with. Personally I've never really liked Jason after Under the Hood anyway.
>>117447523They suck BP dick because of the black cast, that's it. Killmongoloid was neither complex nor any bit in the right.
>>117447070I've never understood this frequently cited critique of Morrison. It's like people get distracted by the big ideas in his comics and forget that most of them have very grounded human emotions throughout.
>>117450791It's like 20 years that Magneto is somehow a decent guy. He just returned to be a faggot in House of X , but not yet evil.
>>117447070>he doesn't understand emotions and relationships like normal peopleThat sounds more to me like Hickman.
>>117448067You mean Frank Miller?
A villian doesn't need to be complex as long as they chew the scenery
>>117448067You are making me remember the time that Batman revealed that he had a back-up personality which would take over, if the real Bruce Wayne ever gets drugged or brainwashed.
>>117451478I feel like a lot of people miss that, even some of his fans.>>117451955I agree that Hickman is closer to that description, but even he puts a little bit of human stuff into it, even if it's way less than Morrison's stuff does.
morrison writes at a high cognitive level (for comics) so obviously his villains and heroes are going to be more archetypal and tapped into the very real metaphysical forces they represent. like the Archons of the Outer Church, nerd's culture fascination with "gray" morality and tragic anime backstories belies its fear of contemplating real, positive Evil.
>>117436126Doom, Freeze, Harley, Magneto.
>>117452427But what about writing actual characters?
>>117451430I think it's pretty fucking telling that Morrison himself did a complete 180 on Jason's portrayal later in the series (not that the later portrayal was any good or interesting in and of itself).
>>117434617So, he writes bad guys as they are. "Morally gray" and "complex" villains are the most midwit and tryhard takes on characters. Irl Hitler, Stalin, Elliot Rogers, Dahmer, Ted Bundy, Osama Bin Laden had no ulterior motives. A redemption for Magneto is the most laughable thing ever. It's like Osama Bin Laden getting a redemption and serving for the US Government.
>>117453558Hitler, Stalin and Bin Laden did have ulterior motives for their actions though
>>117436327He was as much as a villain as Rorschach and Dr. M were heroes.
>>117453599So do comic book bad guys.
>>117452227>some rich toff slips some LSD in Bruce's drink at a party>five minutes later he runs screaming out of coat closet in a Batman costume made out of stapled together jackets and starts slamming people through tables while talking to himselfLet's see Bruce manage to live down suplexing a supermodel through a champagne tower while screaming about 5th dimensional imps, all caught on camera.
>>117436115compare Lex Luthor as written by Azzarello in his Man of Steel mini vs Lex as written by Morrison in ASS
>>117453558Dahmer killed people because he was lonely and was experimenting with trying to create some kind of zombie that would stick by his side
>>117447646we're not even talking about that snyder you dumb movie nigger
>>117448822wouldn't you blame giffen dematteus then? They already had Batman in a major role in a justice league comic, doing shit like knocking guy gardner out with 1 punch. And they did it a decade earlier.
>>117450266no the movies ensured Magneto would be made into a sympathetic character again.
>>117450385can you actually name a time Batman outdoes all of the JL in Morrison's run? Because it just doesn't happen.
>>117453518Such a noncritique. What the fuck do you even mean by this?