Where Invisible Robots Rule

Diagnosed as autistic, Frank Quigley's comics combine the real and the imaginary.

By Mike Pritchard
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 3 | Posted Nov. 23, 2011

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In Frank Quigley's world, an Invisible robot protects us all.

His arch nemesis, Rock Man, is constantly threatening the world. It's what super villains do.

But the Invisible robot is always there to stop him in a series of meticulously drawn comic books that the 31-year-old Quigley has worked on since he was a teen.

On the surface, Quigley, an auditor at Harrah's Resort, having a hobby where he creates his own comic books may not seem unusual.

But there are two things you should know.

Quigley is diagnosed as autistic, though highly functional. And second, he's caught the eye of Atlantic City Weekly's own Andrew Miller, our resident cartoonist (Drew Toonz). Miller has championed Quigley's artwork and is working to animate the Invisible Robot into a short film.

“That would be interesting,” Quigley says cautiously “I have to see how that goes.”

Miller, however, has no doubt about Quigley's future stardom.

“I think he's art just rocks,” says Miller. “He's great.”

For Quigley's family, it would also be a chance to show the world what they've always known there brother can do.

“Nowadays there are a lot of other terms and specific diagnoses in autism,” says Quigley's sister Nicole Gaffney. “But when Frank was diagnosed, it was just as a highly functional autistic. He works, drives and has his own home. It's a testament to what can be accomplished.”

Gaffney, of course, knows the Invisible Robots world well. She's in it as the character Lady Roboto. In fact, many of Quigley's friends and family are in his books, including his late mother, who is the character Garden Bot as she was an avid gardener.

“I started because of the show Doug (an animated Nickelodeon series that premiered in 1991). I just thought I could do that.” Says Quigley. “When I started, I was at Egg Harbor Township High School. So a lot of people I knew from school are in there. I'm not sure how they'd feel about that,” he smiles.

With so many familiar characters, however, mostly drawn from his life, the power of love usually trumps violence in the Invisible robot.

“”I don't really like violence,” says Quigley.

Thankfully, the Invisible Robot protects us.

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Comments 1 - 3 of 3
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1. Anonymous said... on Nov 24, 2011 at 09:37AM


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2. marymarg said... on Nov 25, 2011 at 03:44PM

“I have seen these comics in person. What you might no realize looking at them is that each and every square of the comic is drawn and is filled in by hand with colored pencils on traditional "lined paper". It feels like a lithograph! Frankie adds to every story from real life. My favorite is the one that has Niagara Falls in the background. Awesome job Frank! can't wait for the next issue.”

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3. Anonymous said... on Aug 26, 2012 at 06:24PM

“It's "Lady Robotta", not Lady Roboto.”


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