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The Invisibles Vol. 6: Kissing Mister Quimper
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on April 29, 2005
"Kissing Mister Quimper" is my favorite book in the Invisibles series, and in many ways I'd say it's the perfect introduction to creator/writer Grant Morrison's vision: it's chock-full of mysticism, fringe science, bizarre events, and Grade-A ultraviolence. Unfortunately, since it collects the final issues of Volume 2, most of it would be nonsensical to someone who hasn't read the preceding five trade paperback collections. So for that reason alone I can't recommend this book as a great starting place for those interested in jumping on the Invisibles train.

Events pick up directly after those in Book 5: our favorite Invisibles cell, having "rescued" Boy from the deprogramming methods of another Invisibles cell, is currently regrouping in New Orleans. While Lord Fanny, Jack, and Boy dance at a club and hook up with strangers and one another, King Mob and Ragged Robin head to Philadelphia. There King Mob wants to finally figure out what happened to John A'Dreams, a former member of the cell who disappeared in 1992. Mob last saw John in a Philadelphia church, where Archons had seemingly activated the Hand of Glory and corrupted the local timestream. Now King Mob is convinced John "went over" to the other side; soon after entering the dank bowels of the church, he's also convinced John is coming after them. What starts off as a horror/action scenario quickly takes a more paranoiac bent, as we learn that King Mob and Robin are really at the mercy of a "virtual assassin," an enemy device that preys on its target's nervous system.

"Black Science II" is the second arc, and it's one of my favorites. A sequel to Volume 2's opening storyline (collected in Book 4: "Bloody Hell in America"), it features King Mob's cell reunited with fan-favorites Jolly Roger and Jim Crow, as they once again take on the US Army. The first "Black Science" arc was a big-budget action film with an NC-17 rating; all technicolor blood, guts, and mayhem. The sequel starts off similarly, but veers into metaphysics; not only paralleling Morrison's storytelling in Volume 1, but also foreshadowing that of Volume 3. This arc also throws a huge spanner in the works: we've long known Ragged Robin's from the future, but here we also learn she's also apparently writing the story the Invisibles find themselves in. This metatextual conceit, though initially befuddling, is something Morrison plays out in Volume 3. But "Black Science II" isn't all metaphysics, as it features a healthy dose of action, violence, and reversals (i.e. Lord Fanny's surprise entrance in the military base).

The book concludes with two stories that wrap up Volume 2, leading the way into the more surreal Volume 3. The first story, "All Tomorrow's Parties," is one of the best in the series. A time-fractured tale in which Ragged Robin returns to the future, it's similar in many ways to Volume 1's incredible "Best Man Fall" (which is collected in Book 2: "Apocalipstick"). "All Tomorrow's Parties" takes the series into areas it's never gone before, as even King Mob begins to wonder how much of what he's experienced is reality, and how much is the product of Robin's imagination. The story ends with a haunting scene right out of "2001: A Space Odyssey." The final issue, "The Tower," concludes with the present-day Invisibles regrouping after losing two members: Robin's returned to 2012, and Boy decides to retire from the fray.

Previously I stated that Phil Jimenez was the closest this series ever got to a permanent artist, but Chris Weston could just as easily make that claim. He provides all the art for this book, and also penciled several fill-in issues in earlier books. Weston's art is similar to Jimenez's (or vice versa), only Weston's is a bit more skewed, a bit more surreal. This nicely complements Morrison's writing; whereas part of Jimenez's appeal was that he so realistically depicted Morrison's outrageous events, Weston gives us realism mixed with a dash of the bizarre. His artwork here is superb, especially in the "Black Science II" arc; it's no wonder Morrison later tapped him to provide artwork for his "The Filth" maxi-series.

Volume 2 of the series was (and still is) hotly debated by fans; some thought it was genius, others complained it was "watered down." I've always felt it was the best of the Invisibles. Not only did it have the most consistent artwork, but it was also the most thematically pleasing (one example: Volume 2 opens and ends with King Mob standing in millionaire Invisible Mason Lang's lawn, holding a gun). Ironically, Volume 3 is just as debated, though for different reasons - you won't find many people who claim Volume 3 was "watered down!" However, I heartily encourage anyone who has made it this far into Morrison's twisted vision to pick up Book 7: "The Invisible Kingdom," and hang onto this wild ride until the very end.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on March 12, 2003
Book 6: Kissing Mr. Quimper is a page turner, that's for sure. Grant Morrison has a real talent for ending his major story arcs, and this book, ending Volume two of the series, is no exception.
There are a lot of twists and turns and the story benefits greatly from it. A number of loose ends are tied up and really shows another talent of Morrison as a storyteller. The Invisibles, through most of the previous series, seemed to be messy and out of control, but he reigns it all in and begins to form the whole picture for us.
The last issue is a real testament to the creativity of Morrison. I admit, the added violence in Volume two was surprising, but in the end it all seems to be part of a much bigger plan.
This book has it all and the increased clarity makes the previous stories more enjoyable. There is a real sense of closure in the end.
Isn't it exciting to know there are 12 more issues to read?
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on November 25, 2003
The idea of the entire Invisibles series seems to be Chaos vs. Order. You would think order is better than chaos right? Well, according to this series, Order is the worst possible thing bar none next to the apocalypse. Why? Well, for instance, say you walk into a coffee shop, and when you get up to the counter the person hands you a cup of coffee and says: "that's $1.50" or whatever. Now, you didn't even ask for the coffee yet, and you like it a certain way, right? You want a half-caff latte, Or a black mocha, or just a regular, yes? Well, instead you get this unknown cup of coffee, that costs a certain amount and you dont get to know what's in there and you just drink it. You drink it not because the universe is chaotic, but because the universe is ORDERED. Everything is in the right place, but unfortunately, humanity and all its wonderful variation is not factored into the equation. This is a simplistic way of looking at the complexity of a series like Grant Morrison's Invisibles, but I hope I am on the right track.
The order that Quimper and his masters represent is a totalitarian order where your mind is literally controlled by another. Choice is non-existent. All is lost, and nothing can save you.
The chaos The Invisibles represent is that you have every choice imaginable before you (except sometimes you don't), All appears lost (but probably is not), and you get by with a little help from your friends (always a good thing).
I tried not to give too much away of this series while trying to convey the sense of boundless creativity contained in this volume (and all volumes) of the Invisibles. It is truly a masterwork of graphic storytelling and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
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on March 27, 2012
In the sixth installment the Invisibles penetrate another facility to acquire "The Magic Mirror' and I can't go into more detail or I'll give it away.. Boy and Jack Frost get more serious. Ragged Robin deals with Mister Quimper and then has to make a choice with time travel. It was a bit down from the previous volume but still a worthy read. Note that while it isn't required it helps to have some knowledge of the following for this particular volume: astral projection, time travel, H.P. Lovecraft, Gnosticism, mind control, shamanism, voodoo, conspiracy theories, cinema, pop culture references, transvestites, virtual reality, metaphysics, Christianity, James Bond stories, The Liberty Bell, White Supremacy, Death Cults (especially New Orleans style), chess analogies, alternate realities, aliens, alternative sexual expressions, authors and the characters they control, Tarot, UFOs, Dante's "Inferno", Punk Rock and I'm probably leaving a few other things out. This is considered one of the classics and was said to have shaken up a stagnant period for comics/graphic novels. BBC started a TV series but it never saw the light of day. This series may have very well influenced movies like THE MATRIX and other such types.

ARTWORK: B to B plus; STORY/PLOTTING: B; CHARACTERS/DIALOGUE: B plus; THEMES/INNOVATION: A plus; WHEN READ: end of March 2012 ; OVERALL GRADE: B plus A minus.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on March 28, 2000
Grant Morrison's latest TPB installment of his opus 'The Invisibles' offers the same demented mixture of pop-culture saviness, ultraviolence, multi-layered conspiracy theory, true life magik and general postmodern mayhem that it has from the start. Imagine a mix of McKenna, Robert Anton Wilson, Burroughs, PKD and Tarantino all rolled up into a tidy little package and you're still no where near the scope of 'The Invisibles'. All this and more fantasticaly illustrated in glorious 2d. If you want a regular mindf**k then this is just what you need...
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on September 8, 2001
This is the near-final and second-best segment of what is possibly the most brilliant, innovative and headache inducing comic book series ever. Grant Morrison's mind is a dark and sticky wonderland, and we should all buy this book and read it and thank him for splitting his head open to give it to us.
_The Invisibles_ rivals _From Hell_ as a work which capture magic in words and pictures. While the series finale, _Countdown to the Millennium_ (as yet unreleased) is the best --it's a drug in comic book form--the entire series should be read with reckless joy, and the continuing hope that Grant Morrison will soon abandon Marvel and start writing things that matter again.
That being anarchist agitprop, of course.
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on March 29, 2000
With the Invisibles, Grant Morrisson created an interesting, of-kilter variation of the super-hero comic. From shamanistic transsexuals to James Bond-wannabes, each character is individual, distinct, and interesting. The high point in the second series, Black Science, dealt with the long-running conspiracy theory that HIV was an engineered disease. At the height of this story, team leader Ragged Robin risks her soul to stop the most vile character Morrisson has ever created: the dwarven Mister Quimper.
This book represents the prelude to Black Science II, as well as a one-issue epilogue to the second series. Morrisson also commits arguably the greatest crime a writer can inflict upon his audience: he lies to them. Repeatedly. Characters question each other's trustworthiness, only to later prove that everyone really is trustworthy, after all. Worse, the climax to Black Science is undone by contrived time travel plots, the likes of which almost undo the otherwise superb characterization.
Ultimately, what kills this book isn't that it was bad (barring the end of Black Science II), but that it should have been much, much better.
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on August 22, 2000
This isn't just a comic book. If you buy it expecting a simple, mindless read, you're going to be disapointed. If, on the other hand, you buy it with the hope of opening your mind to possibilities you had never before considered, you're in for a hell of a read. When you finish, you'll probably be left with more questions than answers, but then, the Invisibles has never been about answering questions, it's been about encouraging people to start finding their own answers.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 14, 2014
came late to this series - probably the most challenging material i've read in the last year.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on October 26, 2001
What can I say? The man delivers. He mixes everything and does it with talent most of the time. Morrisson is good and getting better. He is still far from Moore... but then... everybody is. The Invisibles is one of the best series ever, up there with the Sandman, Cerebus and all the other good stuff!!!
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