Comicbook The Maxx Discussion

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01:15:55 AM Sep 25th 2013
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This is one of the most brilliant short series on MTV I have ever seen. Even superior to Daria and MTV's Downtown.When I found out it was based on a comic book, I immediately started collecting the comics... which is odd for me, as usually I'm not that into comics. I think The Maxx maybe even more brilliant and deconstructive than Watchmen in that regard, and has more irony. It's more surreal, disconnected from this world (especially if you read the comic version of "Mr. Gone's One Last Fairy Tale" and the comments of Julie's architect father that "they want me to design this crazy city full of gargoyles and weird thing" (not an exact quote, but I took it as a clue that the world of "The City" wasn't quite real).

All the characters are tragic figures. Maxx is stuck between his own reality and Julie's dream. Julie is imprisoned by her own insecurities and false memories. Sarah is stuck in a prison of her own low self esteem. But together, they make up a sort of protective family. They all know they're dysfunctional, but at least they have each other. Even the villain, Mr. Gone, is trapped by his own rage and sexual frustration, and his motives are much more complex than your typical villain.

I have been trying to locate an affordable copy of Volume 1 and 2 of the comics (although that's on hold as I'm super-poor right now), but as I understand the show is generally considered superior, and most of Vol. 1 and 2 are covered by its 13 episodes.

I think the ending, where we find out what Maxx's outback is like without Julie, is one of the most beautiful conclusions to a story I've ever seen. Sometimes all we really want are the simple things, but then we get caught up in the wishes and fears of other people. Julie and Maxx's relationship is a metaphor for this. As Julie's protector, Maxx is selfless but reckless, and appears crazy to most anyone else.

The meta-scenes where the neighborhood kids compare the Maxx to their favorite comic book superheroes and discuss the conflict between Mr. Gone and Maxx without knowing most of the details provide another perspective.

This isn't a superhero show. It's a show about tormented people trying to find a sliver of light in a dark, dark world. The Maxx is just a dysfunctional homeless man with mysterious claws and great strength, but the Outback where he rules is a fantasy, his fantasy of being Julie's protector, when in "reality" (which may be not be real at all) he is still just a poor bum with a conscience and an ass-kicking streak.

The show is absolutely worth the watch, and the comics worth a read. I personally have watched the entire series like a movie dozens of times. It never gets old. I notice something new every time.
02:52:20 AM Oct 18th 2010
Nothing is true. Everything is permitted. All of the actions are not real, only the relationships are real. How Maxx appears, what Mr. Gone does and everything else is a psychological projection of how people feel about each other. Mr. Gone says as much after the time skip. Sarah's disturbed adolescent projection of him was of a total monster who abused and destroyed. None of those things happened. There was no real world/outback dichotomy. All of it was fantasy. Like a David Lynch movie, where people will argue over which part was real and which part was a dream. The answer was that all parts were a dream. Only the emotions were real, and then, only for the audience.
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