A Tableau of Characters with Meta-Realistic Tendencies.

"A Tableau of Characters With Meta-Realistic Tendencies" ink, watercolor, and colored pencil on 11"x17" bristol board; 2014 by Bo McGee.

"A Tableau of Characters With Meta-Realistic Tendencies" ink, watercolor, and colored pencil on 11"x17" bristol board; 2014 by Bo McGee.

Meta-reality deals with the ways in which the artificial reality of a fictional narrative interacts with our own subjective reality. All 9 of the characters above traverse multiple realities in a variety of ways.

Left to right, top to bottom:

1. Flex Mentallo. Titular character of "Flex Mentallo, Man of Muscle Mystery", written by Grant Morrison and illustrated by Frank Quietly. Morrison's book "SuperGods" details the process by which Flex came into existence and how the reality which he inhabits blends with our own.

2. Lil' Erwin. Character created by Erwin Ledford. Lil' Erwin is an autobiographical representation of the creator. While this doesn't constitute meta-reality per se, inserting oneself into a stylized representation of our own reality does constitute "meta-realistic tendencies" in my opinion. See more of Lil' Erwin at www.plainestplane.com.

3. Kurt Sverring. One of the main characters of "Berlin" a phenomenal work of illustrated historical fiction by Jason Lutes. The Lutes character of Sverring doesn't cross any specific boundaries of reality, he was relevant to my process on this piece as I included a representation of him (in tribute) in the background of my debut comic "Tales of Intrigue from the Barbary Coast From the Case Files of Rock Stone" (available for purchase from the CTOB store).

4. Edward Hyde. Alan Moore lifted Mr. Hyde from Robert Louis Stevenson's classic novel "The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" and inserted him into a conglomerate reality composed of the realities of multiple unique works of Victorian era literature. Later in the series, Moore overtly engaged the concept of meta-reality as the central characters engaged with numerous mythologies and fictional worlds.

5. Abed Nadir. Played by Danny Pudi on the tv show "Community", Abed addresses meta-realistic issues perhaps more directly than any other character in main-stream television today.

6. Kim Jong Un. The late North Korean despot manipulated the perception of reality for an entire nation, essentially re-purposing our subjective, primary reality into a patchwork secondary reality within the real world.

7. Tiger Mask. Started out as a character on a cartoon show who would later cross over into the  world of professional wrestling, which itself is an alternate reality.

8. Miley Cyrus. Miley is a hyper-realistic child sex idol who reflects our own depravity back at us, similar to the trickster god's of a variety of world religions. You might need to listen to the podcast to work through this one.

9. Charlies Bukowski. Re-purposed his own identity into a fictional character in a semi-fictional world as Hank Chinaski.