Archie is one of those timeless characters because he’s constantly dealing with girl problems. What adolescent isn’t, am I right? On top of that he’s a good guy and gets inspired to do good things; a positive person in a very negative world. I take a look at the latest issue from Archie Comics and ponder: Is it good?
Archie #6 (Archie Comics)
The first few issues dealt with Archie and then girlfriend Betty Cooper breaking up and the new rich girl Veronica Lodge showing up at school. Now that the dynamic between the three is set up the drama can get even more emotional.
Why does this book matter?
Writer Mark Waid has made this character relevant again by weaving in social media and the younger generation’s behaviors. It’s not a huge change, but they feel modern again — which is a crucial component to the title’s revitalization. On top of that the love triangle is fleshing out nicely and each issue is now all about the push and pull of these three characters.
I don’t think he’s okay!
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
The main thread of this issue is focused on Reggie Mantle as he tries to move in on Veronica. Unfortunately for Archie, Betty hits an awesome home run which bonks him on the head. From there Reggie is able to drive Veronica home and develop a relationship with her and more importantly her dad. Waid does a good job setting up this character’s nefarious motivation to get Veronica to like him. He’s a rich kid who wants what he can’t have and is willing to sell out his father to get it. That said Waid subtly drops info on how his parents are absent which helps flesh him out.
Meanwhile Archie’s pie in the sky personality continues to make for an endearing character. Later in the issue when he wakes in a hospital he’s so positive and excited about just living life you can’t help but have some of that sentiment rub off on you. Meanwhile Veronica’s love for Archie is obviously due to his innocent and good natured way. That and he helped screw over her dad! Overall this issue is a good one due to the likeable characters.
Love the little heart!
The art by Veronica Fish and coloring by Andre Szymanowicz and Jen Vaughndo does well to make these characters feel modernized and fun. Little flourishes like butterflies floating around Archie’s head when he has a concussion, or a heart over Betty’s head when a boy gives her attention go a long way to make everything feel animated and alive. At times I almost think Fish is mimicking Fiona Staple’s style, but overall there’s a more cartoony nature that makes this feel more comedic than anything else.
The most important aspect that Fish and company nail is the facial expressions. From the protective butler and his dropping his tough guy shade on Reggie to Betty’s honest care and love for Archie — it’s all right there on their faces and there’s never any doubt these characters are feeling real emotions.
It can’t be perfect can it?
At times this felt a bit long and dragged a bit. This might be due to the lack of humor (or jokes I just didn’t find funny) so scenes went on to progress the plot but didn’t do much as far as entertainment value.
Is It Good?
A good issue that progresses the plot well. The emotional resonance is strong for all the dynamic relationships due to solid dialogue and well drawn characters.