Flex Mentallo: Man of Muscle Mystery is comics icon Grant Morrison's lost classic. The comic, originally published as a four-issue miniseries in 1996, is the psychedelic story of a musclebound hero and a drug-addled rock star who team up to investigate the sinister dealings of the hero's former comrade, the Fact. The story, illustrated by Morrison's frequent collaborator Frank Quitely, picks apart the tropes of superhero comic books and subtly argues that the medium and its themes can offer a transformative experience for readers.
The character Flex Mentallo was created as a parody of an old Charles Atlas advertisement that ran in many comics from the Fifties and Sixties. That company sued DC Comics, which prevented the series from being collected in a single volume for nearly 15 years. A hardcover edition will hit stores this week, which will give many readers their first chance to read the story without having to pay through the nose for the original issues on eBay. Click through to read an excerpt from the book.