Something that's been overlooked pretty often since the big Archie Reboot is that the company is still publishing stories featuring the classic, gag-centric versions of the characters. It's publishing a lot of them, actually --- every single Archie Digest features a new lead story about the gang, and in 2016, that amounted to over 300 pages of new material in that classic Archie style.
Now, it's all being collected in the Archie: Best of 2016 Digest Annual, a 348-page digital collection out next week. Check out a preview.
This week, Chris and Matt talk about how Robin Rises Omega #1 by Peter Tomasi and Andy Kubert should be great, but falls short, possibly because it's a victim of its own marketing. Then, we talk about how Life With Archie #36 by Paul Kupperberg and Pat & Tim Kennedy is really enjoyable despite some weird tics. Then, we discuss the cool new sci-fi anthology, 2299, edited by Dylan Todd.
It's been very interesting to watch Archie Comics transform from a company built on eternally unchanging teenage shenanigans in a peaceful, small town to the culturally progressive company that grabs headlines at every turn with how it's rebuilding Riverdale for the modern comics reader. But besides the stories that strike chords within contemporary political conversations, it's been fun seeing just how Archie tackles these "Big Event" elements that we've seen in other American comics. I mean, in the world of superheroes, a character's death (or "death") has been a rite of passage since the '70s, but for Archie, it's entirely new territory. In waiting so long to use these elements, the events not only feel fresh, they're also built in a much more interesting way than their cape-and-tights counterparts.
Or at least, that's the case with Archie's death at the hands of a gunman in the pages of this week's Life With Archie #36, which isn't just an evocative and moving story, it's also one of the most fascinatingly structured comics I've ever read.
We've known for a few months now that Archie Comics' Life With Archie series, about the possible adult lives of the Riverdale teens, will end with lead character Archie Andrews' death. Life With Archie #36 hits stands this week, and thanks to an interview with Archie publisher Jon Goldwater for the AP, we now know that this is where Archie meets his end -- and we know how it will happen.
Readers who don't want to know too many specifics before the issue goes on sale should avoid reading any further, and perhaps also avoid the comics sections of the internet entirely for a couple of days.
Archie Comics continues its impressive confrontation of relevant social and political topics in this month's new issue of Life With Archie, in which one of Riverdale's citizens goes through treatment for breast cancer...
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