Archie Comics just ended recently with comic #666. It was known as one of the longest running series, which began in 1939. Since then, Archie Andrews has been through several different universes and spinoffs. There was Afterlife with Archie, where Archie fought zombies, got married with two different parallels, he died at one point, and there’s even a crossover of Archie and Sharknado. Archie #1 gives the classic comic a twist with a new art style, modern clothing, and realistic dialogue.
The reboot was launched July 8 with writer Mark Waid and artist Fiona Staples giving Archie a new feel. According to an interview with CBC, Staples said the project began when Archie Comics president Mike Pellerito called her up and said there was a secret project coming up and they chose Staples to be the artist to redesign Archie.
Staples said, “My only sort of the direction from the company was to make Archie cute… Make him good looking, make him look like someone that girls might actually fight over.”
Aside from Andrews, the rest of the Riverdale characters look great too. Betty Cooper has more than one hairstyle, and while Jughead Jones still sports his iconic crown, he’s looking just as great as the other characters.
The story begins with Andrews having broken the fourth wall and addressing the audience, informing them on what’s recently happened. Andrews and Cooper, who have been friends since age five, have just recently broken up. Considered to be the power couple of Riverdale High, the split was a result of the mysterious “lipstick incident”. Veronica hasn’t been featured yet, but there are mentions of the Lodge family coming to Riverdale.
Archie #1 is getting positive reviews. Many of the people reviewing it have never read any of Andrew’s adventures in the past. Between the new look, the well written dialogue, and the new storyline, readers are enjoying the first issue.
There’s also a lot of praise for the new Jughead. Many people are happy that he’s no longer a gluttonous sloth who is always the butt of the joke. In one scene, people are trying to bribe Jones into revealing what the lipstick incident is with home-made baked goods, but he refuses and tells them to get out of other people’s’ business.
Some things will remain the same. In an interview with Hitfix, Waid said, “To be a real Archie story, Arch has to dig his own grave mighty deep–but be able to pull himself out of it because he’s a well-meaning kid with good and loyal friends.”
It’s nice to see Riverdale getting a makeover and becoming more relevant while still maintaining the basics of the Archie Comics and what it’s like to be a teenager. Hopefully there will be more of Kevin Keller, especially considering the LGBTQ community has had such a large step forward within the past couple of years. There hasn’t been a release date for the second installment yet, so there’s still a lot to come.