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Animal Man: Deus Ex Machina
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Animal Man: Deus Ex Machina (Animal Man #3)

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4.38 of 5 stars 4.38  ·  rating details  ·  1,706 ratings  ·  61 reviews
This long-awaited third trade paperback completes the collection of Grant Morrison's legendary re-imagination of Animal Man. Reprinting ANIMAL MAN #18-26, DEUS EX MACHINA follows Buddy Baker through an incredible odyssey of discovery and features a new cover by renowned cover artist Brian Bolland.)
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Published October 1st 2003 by Titan Books (UK)
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(showing 1-30 of 2,137)
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Sesana
If there's one thing, one plot element, that Morrison is famous for, it's here, in the on-the-page meeting of Animal Man and Grant Morrison. Everything, it seems, was working towards that moment, when the fourth wall abruptly ceased to exist entirely. It could have been gimmicky, but Morrison managed to pair that with a storyline about characters I actually cared about and were invested in. So when Buddy looks directly off the page and into the eyes of the reader? If you're invested enough, abso ...more
Zinz Vandermeer
Okay… So now we’ve hit the apex of weird for Morrison’s series. The man takes the concept of breaking the fourth wall and laughs at it. Writing himself right into the story and giving poor Buddy Baker some serious meta drama.

When I’m recommending Animal Man to other people, I tend to recommend the first two, and suggest they don’t pick up the third trade unless they really enjoy the first pair. It’s odd, full of surreal situations and a lot of egotistical artistic back-patting. That being said,
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Madeleine
I was sad when I finished the last page of this volume (the last Grant Morrison Animal Man volume). In three volumes, Grant Morrison crafted a story about an obscure DCU superhero I had never heard of and reinvented the character, giving him, the characters surrounding him, the universe he exists in such wonderful depth that once you fall in (to the deep hole....depth?), you won't be able to get out but you won't mind, who would want to leave?
I'm not a fan of Watchmen and I'm very open about it.
...more
Justin
This is the book where the Morrison-type stuff comes together. Not only is it smart, but it's fun, too -- as much a page-turner as anything. The metafiction peaks here, but it's not as stodgy as that might sound. Reading it this far after the fact lets us see not only the obvious take on Crisis on Infinite Earths, but also some of the early ideas that would get a much bigger working in Final Crisis (and, to some extent, the sort of multi-year structuring that worked so well in, say, his run on B ...more
M
Grant Morrison concludes his run on Animal Man with this final volume. A love letter of sorts to comics, characters, and their fans, Morrison pens a tale that causes one to rethink the world of comic books. Needing to understand his origin and powers, Buddy Baker enters into a vision quest which starts to unravel his perceptions of his universe. After a head trip that sets him face to face with his "original continuity" self, Buddy arrives home full of hope - only to be confronted with the bodie ...more
John Kirk
There are two main aspects to this story: the action/revenge, and the metafiction. They're both handled well, and it picks up on hints that were dropped in earlier issues, showing that Morrison had been planning this for a while.

(view spoiler)
...more
sixthreezy
I was absolutely blown away by this last volume of Animal Man by Grant Morrison. Everything that had been written up until this point, is utilized in such a special way. It's so hard to ignore the absolute talent of Grant Morrison. When his writing makes sense, it can really be of some of the best quality writing period, let alone in graphic novels themselves. This was of graphic novel classic quality, and I see now why so many hold this high on the list of comic classics. The fourth wall isn't ...more
Chadwick
Jan 02, 2008 Chadwick rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who enjoys comics
Shelves: comics
Ah, the days when metafiction and comics were just going on their first dates. I'm so glad this is finally collected in trade paperback. Animal Man was so much fun. The art is kind of lame early 90s bad DC house style, until the end of the book. I always cry at the end.
Adrian Alvarez
This final volume of Morrison's run on the Animal Man title culminates in balls out meta-fiction, which was interesting for all its implied, abstract elements of contemplation but as far as the text itself it worked as a kind of short hand for theoretical work a reader could do, you know, on his own time. Lack of intellectual rigor aside, this is a comic book, meaning it has certain responsibilities to entertainment as well as enlightenment and I thought Morrison balanced both wonderfully.

I am s
...more
Lloyd
HERE we go. Grant Morrison's third and final volume of Animal Man. "Deus ex Machina". "God in the Machine".

This volume, in short, turned the whole of Grant Morrison's run on this title into absolute genius. Gone is the ineffectual Buddy Baker, stumbling through being a superhero while the world and its events go on around him. Here is the iconic, mystic, reality-questioning Morrison work all his fans have grown to love.

In this final volume (collecting issues #18-26), Morrison has given us a comm
...more
Mabel
The first two chapters/issues of this volume, describing Animal Man and Highwater's peyote trip, is probably my favourite part of this series. I got really excited the more the presence of the 4th wall was teased out. Grant Morrison is admirably but also sadly honest about the fact that it ends with an anticlimax. It definitely peters out. The jabs at his own cop-outs with dialogue are funny, but reveal what's missing. As Grant Morrison the DC character says to Animal Man toward the end of the s ...more
Daniel Slagell
The Final Volume of Animal Man by Grant Morrison.
I have to say ties everything that has happened in the past two volumes together quite nicely, Each issue builds on what happened before and in this volume everything becomes full circle. I have to say when I first started reading Animal Man aka starting with Animal Man, Vol. 1 I have to say I didn't know what to expect but by the time I finished volume 1 and then read volume 2 Animal Man, Vol. 2: Origin of the Species and when I got to the final
...more
Nnedi
I felt like I was going mad when I was reading the last forth of the book. I wasn't sure if I loved it or hated it. Have you seen the film Adaptation? If not, you should, it is awesomeness. The screenwriter Spike Jonze was having trouble writing the film's script and he ended up writing HIMSELF into the film. That's what the final volume of Animal Man felt like. I loved the way he broke the fourth wall. When Animal Man steps out of the panels, that was cool. And when Morrison was doing his "than ...more
Julian
This is my second review of Animal Man. My first was written in the white heat of extreme irritation caused by the rather tedious animal rights rhetoric of Animal Man, Book 1: Animal Man, and this blinded me to the manifold excellence of this third volume of the sage and also Animal Man, Book 2: Origin of the Species. Hence this new review: on calm consideration, my view has changed and I can now see what a remarkable story Grant Morrison has told.

So, let me start with a word of advice. Most of
...more
Sophie
What a trippy and absolutely fantastic read! I was actually glad that my train was delayed (while I was sitting in it, mind you) so I got the chance to finish this tonight.

I'm changing my rating of the first book from 4 to 5 because you really have to see this series as a whole and I just love it when (tiny!) stuff that comes up in the first couple of issues turns out to be all part of the big picture. Add to that that this is a really engaging story with great characters plus some animal rights
...more
Robert Jazo
I consider Grant Morrison one of the "Mad Geniuses" of comics. I think his work helps stretch the boundaries of the medium. On the other hand, occasionally he stretches the medium to its breaking point and when he does his writing can border on incoherence. Still, I am willing to grant the occasional grand failure among grand successes.
Animal Man is an example of Morrison nearing the edge, but not going over. Morrison was brought on to revitalize Animal Man, a truly minor hero in DC's pantheon.
...more
Fizzgig76
Reprints Animal Man (1) #18-26 (December 1989-August 1990). Animal Man is finding out more about himself and his origins than he ever could believe. Contacted by James Highwater, Buddy learns that he might not truly be in control of the world he inhabits. When tragedy strikes Buddy and his family, Animal Man finds his whole perspective on life has changed…and despite being out of his control, someone is controlling his life!

Written by Grant Morrison and illustrated by Chas Truog and Paris Cullin
...more
James Schneider
Here it is. The Grant Morrison Prime Directive. These stories we tell are bigger than us, better than us, but of us. We have a contract. We shepherd these better beings for money and for adulation, but we trade away pieces of ourselves, and we still get the better end of the deal.

There is a common line of thought in the comics community, which in summation reads as "Alan Moore came along in the 1980s and deconstructed the super hero." I suppose this is literally true, but he didn't perform a li
...more
Brad
If you accept that all the story is there to build up to the last issue, the titular meeting with the god of Animal Man, then the messy plot is more palatable.
All the weird stuff--like the peyote fox, the critique of Crisis on Infinite Earth and breaking the fourth wall and the comic panel's four walls--is fine, though it alternates between great and incomprehensible. Buddy Baker's story arc, though, isn't enjoyable or gripping. I get that Morrison's putting him through hell because he can (and
...more
Korynn
In this volume Grant Morrison takes on terrain that Alan Moore covered so well in Supreme: the Return, the concept of a superhero. But whereas Alan Moore was dealing with the superman icon, Morrison delves into the conception of a superhero. In this case he looks at Animal Man, a character he had recreated for the modern age, and then introduces him to his counterpart the character the way it had originally been concieved in the golden age of comics. In a sense he tears the character down, liter ...more
Lee Eddy
Fantastic comic that expresses a love for meta-fictional mind-warping plot oddities and for classic comics in general (and the convoluted pre-Crisis DC continuity in specifics) I get a little weepy when I read the final ish, to be honest.
Don
All the seeds that Grant Morrison had begun planting in the first volume finally come to fruition in this concluding book of the trilogy. There's still the occasional narrative sidestep, with an issue devoted to smaller things not wholly necessary to the larger tale, but they don't feel as completely random as some of the similar chapters earlier on. The book does end somewhat abruptly, which is frustrating - the author essentially admits he'd just run out of ideas - but despite being one of Mor ...more
Alysha
It isn't perfect but I definitely had some goosebumpy moments of feeling weird. So I'd say it did exactly what I wanted it to do.
Matthew
Incredible, mind-blowing read. On par with Sandman, Watchmen, Preacher and such, but what's different this is that any old casual reader can not pick this up. A basic knowledge of the history of DC comics is absolutely necessary to comprehend this novel, and that's exactly what I love about it. I admit that an important twist had been spoiled for me by a review, but that spoiler is what made me want to read it, and I still loved it in spite. I highly recommend reading Crisis on Infinite Earths b ...more
Tim Sallinger
The whole Grant Morrison run on Animal Man is more than anything, an extremely worthwhile read for anyone. I suppose comic book readers will get an extra kick out of the existential "I'm just a character in someone's story" motif. Towards the end, this book goes completely off the edge and goes to a place that's rarely visited by comics. I'm still ambivalent to how I feel about the way the story finally winds up. Above all, I'll say this: it's a self-aggrandizing cop-out, but Morrison writes wel ...more
Cody
A CLASSIC!

This whole series really made me admire the work of Grant Morrison.

But this particular volume, and especially the later issues inside are the ones that solidified my beliefs in that of the Master Scribe of Scotland, Mr. Morrison.

He really outdid himself with this one, even at the cost of his hair I imagine, (It's funny that he still had hair at this point of his life, I just assumed he was always bald).

Anyways, this volume was incredible, incredibly incredible.
Anthony

I just blazed through Volumes 2 and three of these TPBs. I had to wait for whomever to return them to the library, and it ended up being months.

I don't want to give to much away. Morrison takes great liberty with the kindness of his readers in Volume 3, but I promise you it will pay off in the end.

As a father, this book was touching. As a writer, this book was profound. It may seem silly, and it certainly is narcissistic, but in the end Morrison does not disappoint.
Shannon Appelcline
Morrison's last volume of Animal Man is also the best. He very carefully built on themes and plots over two years, and they all finally come together here. The highlight of the volume is the play with ideas of creators and created that he both leads and ends the volume with, but in the middle you get dark-and-gritty Buddy. Morrison has fun: he both does an amazing idea of telling the dark-and-gritty story, and then derides it at the end.

Overall, an amazing end to a great run.
Steve
Before Volume 1 of this series I hadn't read anything by Grant Morrison.

People generally seem to think he is a bit too existential. This book is certainly that. But it is also brilliant. SO brilliant, that I am now going to have to revisit my reviews of the other two volumes because volume 3 pulls them together in such a well designed concept that my experience of them has been retrospectively elevated.

The artwork is pretty cool too.

Matt
REally bummed out by the metafictional ending, and even worse, that once that element is revealed, it just gets re-hashed to death. The vision quest of the beginning was fun, but the stories of the first two volumes were just so compelling that I didn't feel that Morrison needed this awkward closing to the story arcs, of justifying why he unearthed an obscure back character and brought him to the forefront.
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Scottish comic book author Grant Morrison is known for culture-jamming and the constant reinvention of his work. He is known for his nonlinear narratives and countercultural leanings in his runs on titles including DC Comics' Animal Man, Batman, JLA, The Invisibles, Action Comics, All-Star Superman, and Doom Patrol, and Marvel Comics' New X-Men and Fantastic Four. Many of these are controversial, ...more
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“It's stupid, I know, but I care. All the things that meant so much when we were young. Under the blankets late at night, listening to long-distance radio. All those things lost now or broken. Can you remember? Can you remember that feeling? Perhaps I ought to go to a doctor.” 7 likes
“Animal Man: 'Listen, just tell me one thing: am I REAL or what?'

Grant Morrison: 'Of COURSE you're real! We wouldn't be here talking if you weren't real.

'You existed long before I wrote about you and, if you're lucky, you'll still be young when I'm old or dead.

'You're more real than I am.”
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