Paul Pluta is better known to most watch lovers on the internet as Archie Luxury. His prolific YouTube channel currently has almost 8,000 videos, and for years now, dedicated fans have enjoyed the strongly worded and uncommonly intimate vlogging style of this Australian luxury pundit. In the embedded podcast-style video interview, I invite you to listen to an hour-long chat I had with Paul Pluta himself.
I recall with relative clarity my initial reaction when learning about Archie Luxury some years ago. "Wow, I am really glad someone is doing this," is what I remember thinking. While I don't always agree with Paul in all of his opinions (or methods) I must eagerly applaud the passion and openness with which Paul channels his thoughts, desires, and reactions to the world of watches through his character Archie Luxury.
To most people Archie Luxury is entertainment. They enjoy hearing him rant about popular watch brands and models that we all know about, and are keen to hear if Archie approves or not. The most interesting moments in Archie's video career are when he doesn't like something. Never one to hold back from profanity or extreme polarization, Archie Luxury tells it like it is, given his particular subjective view of brand marketing, design, quality, and popularity with collectors.
My goal behind interviewing Paul was to help internet watch lovers who have viewed his work to better understand "the man behind the luxury." In our interview Paul jests that Paul Pluta is the character that Archie Luxury made up (when of course it is the opposite). Paul is a warm, congenial man whose friendly nature is of course sometimes the exact opposite of Archie's outspoken and sometimes abrasive take on life. Even Archie Luxury's opinion and feelings on brands (especially the negative ones) are often exaggerations or drama devices cleverly created in order to create entertainment value.
Among the less common things that Archie Luxury does in the space of social media watch enthusiast personalities is accept money from his audience members to review their own watches. At times they even send him their watches. People do this for the entertainment value of Archie speaking about their watches, as well as the knowledge that no matter what, he will be honest and not hold back.
Unfiltered and undiluted emotion is something that the luxury world (watches or otherwise) needs a lot more of. For that reason alone I personally celebrate the fact that the watch community is lucky to have someone like Archie Luxury - who makes being interested in watches, as well as being part of a watch enthusiast community all the more interesting and diverse.
Archie's biggest success is one that he perhaps doesn't even realize. The growing world of luxury watch "opinion leaders, bloggers, sales people, consults, etc." is full of traps for unwary consumers. In other words, it is hard to get an honest opinion out there. Like what I've tried to do with aBlogtoWatch, Archie Luxury gives his unadulterated opinion and then asks his audience to make up their own mind. Archie is about sharing his thoughts, not dictating behavior to his audience. While his particular style isn't for everyone, I feel that Archie Luxury serves as a natural hedge against the forces of online personality statement disingenuity that so often plagues social media channels these days (especially in the watch space).
If you haven't already, I invite you to listen to my interview (above) of the one, the only, Archie Luxury.