Monday, July 09, 2007
The basic premise:
Superman = "pure" Grant Morrison -- the one who writes "art" comics
Zibarro (not to be confused with that excellent faux-Italian restaurant Sbarro) = "sell-out" Grant Morrison -- the one that needs ta pay da billz
Bizarros = mainstream fan culture/comics
So one day poor Superman is trapped on this square planet (square = Jimmy Olsen, Barry Allen, DC circa early 1990s, etc). This planet is filled with stupid creatures who do everything backwards and think crap is king -- except for one struggling soul gifted with the ability to be artistically sensitive.
"Must only Zibarro see the beauty in a sunset?" Zibarro sighs.
Just like Grant Morrison in a sea of lesser talents.
"I'm so alone here.
"There's no one to talk to.
No shred of intellect exists with which to communicate my thoughts and feelings!"
Zibarro keeps trying to pawn off to Supes a book with his poetry in it or something. Obviously old memories of starting out, trying to show harried editors his try-out scripts:
"I just wondered if maybe there was still time for you to take a look...at my work...it's not much...just thoughts really."
But Superman just wants to get off the square planet. These awful Bizarros are driving him crazy. They are stupid...and uncouth...and they worship garbage and fools like Le-Roj.
"His twisted behavior has made him king of all Bizarros..."
Of course, I need not have to tell you who Le-Roj is.
"He always encouraged me to be a great idiot..."
Why can't Superman fly off Bizarro world? Because of the red sun.
Get it? Red Sun? Red State?
It's devious, I tell you. A regular DaVinci Code of hidden social commentary.
Finally, Superman decides that if "am can beat them not join them."
So he talks in "Bizarro-ese" to communicate with the rabble.
Yes, friends -- this is how we got "52".
"Me am offer Bizarros chance to be lazy, good-for-nothing slobs!
"Me am no offer Bizarro civilization a chance to make monument to last all time!
"Chance to no make most useless, boring fireworks ever for unglory of Bizarros..."
The Bizarros clank their neanderthal clubs against their Liefeld comics and grunt for joy. Then they sing a tortured rendition of the "Star Spangled Banner," because in addition to being chalky-skinned morons they are also apparently patriotic:
"No say does am spar-spangled shroud hang limply! Under land of no free!"
Of course, Johnny Depp approves. Because he likes France.
Does Superman ever read Zibarro's story pitches?
"Your writing has...nnn...a unique quality..."
In other words: Zibarro, your writing sucks. And I lost most of your pitch on the train. No, actually there was a wet spot on the only available seat on the train and I used your pitch to absorb it so I could sit.
The pain never goes away, no matter how successful you become...
But at least Grant has reconciled his need to write the occasional "paycheck" comic book:
"I know you think of yourself as a flaw, an imperfection, but you're something more, Zibarro.
You're proof that Bizarro-home is getting smarter."
Yes, for every "Animal Man" and pseudo-Vertigo book about Klarion the Witch Boy there is...there is an "All Star Superman."
As Superman blasts off into space, the Bizarros are left behind to melt into the fetid muck they are too stupid to extricate themselves from. A wrecked Statue of Liberty (conspicuously absent from the new "7 Wonders Of the World" -- obvious anti-American sentiment to be sure) is prominent. Maybe it's just a Planet of the Apes rip. Or maybe it's something more.