More than any other company, Archie Comics has done a pretty amazing job of keeping its back catalog in print for new readers. On top of the decades worth of digests that stocked grocery store shelves with a library of older stories, the past few years have seen a new wave of digital collections and massive tomes that hit the highlights of 75 years of Riverdale's favorite teens.
This week, The Best of Archie is getting a deluxe hardcover treatment, and what's really interesting about it is that it's going into some deep cuts of the wider Archie Universe.
When Archie #12 hits shelves today, it looks like everyone's relationship is falling apart just on the eve of the Blossoms sweeping in like a hurricane. In other words, it's a bad day to be a teenager in Riverdale, and you can see just how bad with a preview below!
All things considered, Archie Andrews has met an awful lot of famous people. Michael Strahan, Barack Obama, KISS, the Sharknado, they've all made a stop in Riverdale at one time or another. But with Archie Meets Ramones, there's a bit of a problem that's kind of hard to get past. I mean, I don't want to get too dark when I'm talking about a book that's ostensibly for kids --- albeit that small but amazing segment of kids that are into both Archie Comics and '70s punk rock --- but if you want the gang to hang out with the band's original lineup here in 2016, it's going to be a little difficult.
Unless, of course, you have a magic record from Sabrina the Teenage Witch's surprisingly vast vinyl archives. If that's that's the case, then it's as easy as dropping the needle. Check out a preview below!
Archie Comics is celebrating its three quarters of a century this week with the launch of Archie Jumbo Comics 75th Anniversary Celebration Digest, which includes a classic story and some more recent hits. Check out a preview below!
Archie and the gang have always had a pretty interesting relationship to music. I mean, "the kids form a band" is a pretty standard plot for virtually any story about teenage characters, but the Archies have the distinction of actually producing the real-life #1 single of 1969, coming in ahead of the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, Elvis Presley, and Johnny Cash. That kind of accomplishment, even almost 50 years later, is going to shape how those comics work.
So with that in mind, it's always a pretty big deal when Riverdale's favorite teens break out the instruments and start jamming, and in this week's Archie #11, Betty and Veronica are taking their rivalry to a whole new musical level. Check out the formation of the Ronnies and Betty and the Waves in a preview below!
When you get right down to it, it was inevitable. When the Archie comics rebooted, there was a sort of stripped-down approach to rebuilding the universe, an approach that went all the way back to reintroducing Veronica Lodge as an outsider to Riverdale's teens, and while there were a few modern characters who made their reappearances over the course of that first year --- like Kevin Keller, for instance --- there were a handful that were notable for their absence.
Now, though, as we move into the second year of the All New Archie, those missing pieces are starting to make their return. Sabrina's showing up in Jughead, and Josie and the Pussycats have a new series in the works.
And in Archie #13, Cheryl Blossom is finally back.
I love music, and I often find myself thinking about how it relates to comics; which characters would listen to which artists, and so forth. But what's the best way to get around the medium's limitations when it comes to stories about music and musicians? It's a question that's especially relevant to some of my favorite recent titles.
The classic way to visualize music in comics is just to put the lyrics in a word balloon with some musical notes scattered around to convey singing. I’m going to be honest; I hate this approach, and in this day and age, I’m sure I’m not the only one. I find it impossible to read the lyrics as a song instead of a tuneless poem. There are better ways, as seen in books like Jem And The Holograms and Black Canary.
Ever since Archie opened its updated relaunch with the news that Archie and Betty had broken up, tensions have been running high in the otherwise idyllic small town of Riverdale, and now, it seems like they're finally hitting a fever pitch. When Archie #10 hits on July 27, it's finally time... for the Riverdale Civil War.
Things are messed up right now, so let’s talk about comfort comics. Comics as escapism. There are a lot of current and recent comics that could work for this — All-Star Superman, Lumberjanes, and Squirrel Girl come to mind — but I want to go back a little farther.
Because here’s the cool thing about comics: They all used to be for kids. Which means that a lot of the classic comics, the influential ones that made the medium what it is, are also escapist fun. So when you want to read something that’s going to let you forget your problems and get lost in fantasy, you can also read something that will help you become well versed in comics canon. This is literally how I became who I am today.
If you were to ask me about my favorite Archie Comics characters, we'd probably spend about an hour where I talked non-stop about how great Jughead is, those amazing stories about Cricket O'Dell (the girl who can literally smell money), and I'd probably eventually get around to mentioning the short-lived breakdancers from the '90s, Claude and Raoul, who occasionally showed up to give Archie the wisdom they learned on the streets. Rest assured, however, that there would be plenty of discussion about Cheryl Blossom in there, too.
If, however, you asked me how to make Cheryl better, then I think I'd only have one suggestion: Give her a pet monkey. And now, in the classic-style stories still leading each installment of Archie's line of digests, that's actually happening. Check out a preview!
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