C: Good morning, Mister Vile. Would I be correct in assuming that 'Curt A: Good evening, Mr. Stachelski. Yes of course Curt Vile is a pseudonym, C: Now it's a well-known fact that there are a hell of a lot of super-hero A: There's a couple of reasons really, the least important being that the C: In the last issue of Cerebro it was pointed out by a member of the club A: Yeah, I picked up the issue of Cerebro with Phil Martindale's letter in C: I know you're writing Star Wars stories for Marvel UK. If the
Vile' is a pseudonym?
you jerk. What kind of mother would name her firstborn Curt Vile? My
real name is Elrod Sanilav. On occasion I have also posed as Alan Moore,
Jill de Ray, and Translucia Baboon. And as a scintillating tidbit of
information for all you fans of the adorable Bauhaus pop group I can
reveal that the sleeve notes on the second album 'Mask' were also by me in
the guise of avant garde poet Brilburn Logue. My one abiding fear is that
one day I'll wake up and find that I'm really a pseudonym for John Wagner
or T.B. Grover. Incidentally, is Stachelski your real name, or did you
arrive at it by throwing darts at a Scrabble board?
teams around, so why of all of these did you pick the X-Men as the subject
of your parody in 'The Stars My Degradation'?
X-Men fitted best into the sci-fi format of 'The Stars My Degradation."
Of course, there's a lot of sheer unadulterated spite in there too. You
see, I don't really like the X-Men an awful lot just at the moment,
although that obviously isn't the whole answer. I mean, there are plenty
of inferior super groups that I could have picked on. Obviously, The
X-Men isn't the worst comic on the market. I think what irritated me
enough to devote considerable time and energy to a vicious lampoon was the
general air of complacency about the current X-Men along with a faint
feeling of betrayal. I really used to enjoy The X-Men. They were a
breath of fresh air amongst the other Marvel mags of that period and Chris
Claremont's writing was obviously a dominant factor in that. And it's
because the X-Men were once such an exemplary comic that the present slump
is all the more noticeable. Sure, The Defenders is bad, but then The
Defenders has always been bad. With The X-Men I had come to expect
something a little classier. At the moment I'm afraid that I find the
storylines dull and the writing in general lacking in any inspiration.
It's as if the whole thing has been boiled down to a sort of formula. The
characterization is predictable and overdone, we get lots of little
episodes which seem to be attempts to shock the audience in attempt to
recreate the drama of the final Dark Phoenix episodes. I'm talking about
Colossus' recent impalement and the 'We Did It Once, Dare We Do It Again'
Rogue Storm episodes. To me it looks painfully like a bad example of
going through the motions. And yet judging from the state of the Eagle
Awards and the level of comment in Cerebro, everybody loves the X-Men, so
maybe it's just me. I suppose what I was trying to do in my own pathetic
and puny way was to sting people into re-evaluating the X-Men rather than
just coasting along out of loyalty to the creative team or the characters.
Who knows? Maybe if the book didn't sweep the boards of next year's Eagle
Awards it might prove incentive for someone concerned to -try- a little
that in one of your stories for Dr. Who Monthly you introduced the Special
Executive - a team of 'parahumans' - which itself seems somewhat
reminiscent of the X-Men. As it is unlikely that we'll see anymore of the
'4D War' can you give us any details on them?
and was gratified to find that someone had noticed what I was doing in Dr.
Who with the Special Executive. Perhaps I should point out that the group
weren't meant to be X-Men clones by any means, although it's fair to say
that I did receive a certain amount of inspiration from those early Byrne
X-Men. The differences between the two groups would have become clearer
if I'd had a little longer to develop the idea. Basically, the Special
Executive were developed as a sort of mercenary 'dirty tricks' department
who just happened to be working for the Gallifreyans at the time of the 4D
War cycle of stories. There were going to be -lots- of them, not just the
four or five actually mentioned by name, and whatever they were they
definitely weren't mutants. Again this is something which would have
become clearer in later episodes, but the original idea was that they were
all characters who had their abilities modified by the ability to
manipulate time. It just struck me that the control of time travel has a
lot of implications beyond those which are normally explored. Cobweb, the
telepath, for example, was in constant mental contact with a web of past
and future versions of herself. Zeitgeist didn't walk -through- walls he
walked -round- them, in a temporal sense by phasing his physical body to a
point in time when the wall no longer existed or hadn't been built yet.
As you may know by now, I've recently taken over the scriptwriting chores
of 'Captain Britain,' and there is a fair possibility that the Special
Executive will be turning up there at some point in the future in a plot
involving Saturnyne, the alternate-world witch-queen of the Dimensional
Development Court. Of course, this might never happen. But if Bernie
Jaye were to receive 500 letter next week demanding the return of the
Special executive it might at least become a strong possibility.
(Incidentally, did anyone notice that the Order of the Black Sun in hose
4D War stories were an Earth-5 version of the Green Lantern Corps? No?
just wondered.) And while I'm on the subject of supergroups its perhaps
worth mentioning that us people at Warrior have a supergroup in the works.
For gentle hints check out the 'Marvelman' story in this year's soon-come
Warrior Summer Special.
opportunity arose would you like to perform a similar function for the
X-Men? If so, what direction would you take? i) the Claremont/Byrne
tack, ii) the current Claremont/Cockrum slant or iii) follow the same
lines as your Star Wars tales and just do continuity implants with no
C: Good morning, Mister Vile. Would I be correct in assuming that 'Curt
A: Good evening, Mr. Stachelski. Yes of course Curt Vile is a pseudonym,
C: Now it's a well-known fact that there are a hell of a lot of super-hero
A: There's a couple of reasons really, the least important being that the
C: In the last issue of Cerebro it was pointed out by a member of the club
A: Yeah, I picked up the issue of Cerebro with Phil Martindale's letter in
C: I know you're writing Star Wars stories for Marvel UK. If the
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