Luke Halsall: Today we have a very special moment for this blog. Today we have an interview with Val Phillips aka The Edge. The Edge was the first British masked heroine who has fought all across the world. So Val, first of all thank you for taking part in this interview
Val Phillips: A pleasure
LH: What did it feel like to finally finish the book?
VP: Well Luke what can I say. It was definitely a journey. Through my career as The Edge I had always kept journals and diary entries on my experiences, how I felt at the time all that kind of thing. When it came to writing it down, it was a difficult task. A lot of emotions came flooding back, both good and bad.
LH: I can imagine. Your career is littered with highs and lows.
VP [laughs]: That’s one way of putting it but yes you are right.
LH: What was the most thrilling thing to reminiscence about?
VP: It is a tricky one but I would have to say it would be the first time I put the mask on. Never has there been a thrill like that before or after. But to be honest the most thrilling moment is yet to come.
LH: What is that?
VP: It is when all my fans and anyone else that picks this book up reads it. I want to see their faces. I want them to cry. Laugh and joke with me. I hope I succeed in making them do this.
LH: You definitely do. Did you worry about revealing your identity?
VP: Not at all. at the end of the day I am retired. I am picking up my pension every week. I really do not think that any criminal is going to hunt me down now. I have nothing to give and I am in no fit state to fight you.
LH: Interesting you say about fitness. In the book you discuss how difficult it was to stay in shape. Is it anything like the comic books show it to be?
VP [laughs]: Not at all. They make it look so easy. Do you know the amount of hours I had to put in the gym just to get into the right shape! That was before I had kids, before I hit my forties and everything did not bounce back like it once did! It was hard let me tell you!
LH: Do you ever miss it?
VP [thinking]: I miss the people I met along the way. Do I miss the job? No not at all. This gig has caused me more heart ache then anything else in my life.
LH: I am quite shocked by that. Are you saying that you would change things if you could go back in time?
VP: Not at all. being a mask was both the best and worst experience of my life. Jarring is the right word to describe being a mask.
LH: How was it juggling everything you did? I mean you tried to be a mum, a worker, a friend and a mask.
VP: It was impossible. It killed you and it killed your spirit. No sane person would do this job. Seriously!
LH:You grew up reading about your favourite heroes, now you are in print and the next generation can do the same. You have come full circle. How does it feel?
VP: I know right. It is very strange. Very strange. To think that history could repeat itself would be ironic but I don’t know, if the new generation think it is a good thing that is all well and good.
LH: How is that so?
VP: Well the heroes I read about inspired me, helped me build a moral code that I may never have had. My whole worldview was altered due to comic books so I think that it could be a really good thing for kids. I mean if I had not had comics, I would have been so different. But as I have said as long as the kids stay careful I will be happy.
LH: Finally Val, what would you say to kids that want to get into your business.
VP: Don’t [laughs]. Seriously though, if you decide to go down this route stay safe and realise it is not as easy as it looks!
LH: Thanks for your time. You can buy Living With The Edge: The Autobiography of the First British Masked Heroine Val Phillips here