Posted by: Edward | September 7, 2009

The Maxx and Trauma Therapy

“The Maxx is an American comic book and animation character created by Sam Kieth and published by Image Comics. The comic book spawned an animated series that aired on the MTV network” (Wikipedia, The Maxx).
This piece is based on the MTV animation.
The Maxx is a fascinating fictional exploration of deep trauma therapy, about facing ourselves and having the courage to grow.
The Maxx himself is a projection of Julie’s defense, the mask, over her trauma, the rabbit.
Other therapeutically useful elements that The Maxx presents is The Outback, which is a person’s unconscious territory or dreamscape; a power animal, which guides a person towards growth; a heroic or mythic self, in Julie Winters’s case it is The Leopard Queen and finally, an inner child fixed before/at the moment of trauma.
Julie starts to heal when she makes contact with child-Julie it her sacred space. This is a space where The Maxx, her trauma and defense, can’t exist.
The Maxx also shows that the trauma doesn’t have to be some kind of abuse but rather is a situation that the person just can’t cope with  at their present level of development. That experience is then encoded in their defense and on a certain line of development they remain fixed, continually acting out the trauma in its encoded form.
By putting the parts of the trauma/defense system in communication with each other that system begins to break down and from that comes breakthrough.

The Maxx is an American comic book and animation character created by Sam Kieth and published by Image Comics. The comic book spawned an animated series that aired on the MTV network” (Wikipedia, The Maxx).

This piece is based on the MTV animation.

The Maxx is a fascinating fictional exploration of deep trauma therapy, about facing ourselves and having the courage to grow.

The Maxx himself is a projection of Julie’s defense, the mask, over her trauma, the rabbit.

Other therapeutically useful elements that The Maxx presents is The Outback, which is a person’s unconscious territory or dreamscape; a power animal, which guides a person towards growth; a heroic or mythic self, in Julie Winters’s case it is The Leopard Queen and finally, an inner child fixed before/at the moment of trauma.

Julie starts to heal when she makes contact with child-Julie it her sacred space. This is a space where The Maxx, her trauma and defense, can’t exist.

The Maxx also shows that the trauma doesn’t have to be some kind of abuse but rather is a situation that the person just can’t cope with  at their present level of development. That experience is then encoded in their defense and on a certain line of development they remain fixed, continually acting out the trauma in its encoded form.

By putting the parts of the trauma/defense system in communication with each other that system begins to break down and from that comes breakthrough.

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Responses

  1. max or massimo is the name of my personal ..mm god. he said that s the name..;) anyway, nice presence here

  2. Thank you.

    An interesting thing to do would be to compare The Maxx with Max from Where the Wild Things are (the film).

  3. Great article. I’ve always tried to apply The Maxx to a Freudian model of the mind. Figured Mr. Gone would be the Id, the leopard queen the super ego, specifically the ego ideal. The maxx working as the more defensive/ moralizing part of the mind. As the Maxx kills the Isz the same way the superego kills the urges from the Id.

    Thanks for your take on it as well!

    • Yeah, I’d say that would be a very good Freudian reading of the Maxx. I’m glad you appreciated my take :)


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