“I guess the idiot lunatic fringe does some bitching and moaning about it. But the reaction that I’ve seen has been positive. It’s been ‘This is great—thank you! It’s about time! These are the kind of stories we want to see.’ And if people can’t deal with it, well, go away, don’t read it. That’s okay. I don’t care what you think. [...] When the story broke a month or two ago, there was a comment left on some Fox News site, and they didn’t cite me by name, but it was essentially ‘Whoever would write and draw and publish such a story should get AIDS and die.’ And you know … I thought that was great. [Laughs] I have so much power that I can write a simple comic-book story and that can cause you to wish me death! I am mighty. [Laughs]”
– writer Paul Kupperberg, discussing response to the introduction of Riverdale’s first gay resident Kevin Keller, and the marriage of the character to Clay Walker in Life With Archie #16
Warren and Gary Pleece have always been brothers, but at one time, they were also creative collaborators–back in the 1980s and 1990s with Velocity. This past Friday marked a resumption of their collaboration to a certain extent, when Warren launched the new webcomic, Montague Terrace, at ACT-I-VATE. The new project (which Gary will be involved in as his schedule permits) is summed up as “Unsuccessful megalomaniacs, brain frazzled ex-pop stars, Special Ops pensioners, haunted children, writers, fighters, nervous magicians and magic bunnies. 1930s detectives, fake pet psychics, hounded inventors, randy postmen, landlocked seamen, diabolical architects and secret societies. And all under one roof…” Warren and Gary made me feel like a pop culture idiot–considering the wealth of topics they referenced in this email interview. But I was overjoyed to enter territory I knew, when Gary mentioned the Monkees’ 1968 film, Head. Tears nearly welled up in my eyes when he mentioned it (for the love of God, this film [with the likes of "Jack Nicholson, Dennis Hopper, Teri Garr ... Annette Funicello, Frank Zappa and Sonny Liston"] cries out either for the Criterion folks or the gang at Cinematic Titanic…). My thanks to Warren and Gary for a fine time.
Tim O’Shea: The last time the two of you collaborated was in the late 1980s/early 1990s–what sparked the decision for you two to collaborate again?
Warren Pleece: Montague Terrace actually showcased in the last edition of Velocity, no. 6 way back in ’96 as a place we could develop countless characters, stories and interlink them into some grand scheme. As was usually the case, the ideas were there, but the means and time to carry it off was another matter. I got more work for DC, Gary did his thing, we both started families etc. and like so many other ideas the whole thing became relegated to the cardboard boxes of our minds and Velocity 6 became the last edition we did.