The Associated Press reports that Pepe the Frog, like all good comic book characters, is returning from the grave.
Pepe’s redemption will come via Kickstarter, where creator Matt Furie and his brother Jason are attempting to raise money “to positively resurrect Pepe through the creation of a brand new comic in the spirit of the original Boy’s Club.” Per the AP story, Matt’s attorney, Kimberly Motley, is exploring possible litigation against those profiting off Pepe’s image without Furie’s permission.
Pepe the Frog debuted in 2006 as part of the Boy’s Club ensemble, appearing on MySpace and in comics published by Buenaventura Press. Later his chill nature became the subject of many memes. In 2015, the white supremacists in the far right “alt.right” movement co-opted Pepe for their own white nationalism campaigns, leading to the Anti-Defamation League branding him as a hate symbol in 2016. Furie killed Pepe off on Free Comic Book Day earlier this year. Since then, the ADL has worked with Matt Furie to help #SavePepe.
“Before Pepe the Frog was a meme designated a hate symbol by the Anti-Defamation League, he began his life as a blissfully stoned frog in my comic book Boy’s Club where he enjoyed a simple life of snacks, soda and pulling his pants all the way down to go pee. Boy’s Club debuted in 2006, Pepe became a meme around 2010, then stuck around the internet long enough to become an institutionally recognized hate mascot. Needless to say it’s a nightmare so I killed him off. But now I’d like to bring him back, and I’d like to ask your help in funding a new zine celebrating a resurrected Pepe, one that shall shine a light in all this darkness and feel good again,” Matt Furie wrote on Kickstarter.
For a $15 donation you can get a digital copy of the comic, while $20 gets you the print edition as well. For $10,000 — which would fund the whole comic — you can become a character in the zine and receive a “special care package.” Head over to Kickstarter to learn more.