Friday, February 06, 2009
This Week's Suspended Animation - Two Archie Comics Reviews
Betty & Veronica #234/23 pgs. & $2.25/Jeff Shultz, artist; George Gladir and Kathleen Webb, writers/sold in lots of places and at www.archiecomics.com.
Well, the girls are at it again. In this issue, Betty and Veronica bicker about boys and fashion, make up, and resume bickering about boys and fashion. Their’s has to be the longest running love/hate relationship in comic books. But it’s all done in well-drawn and well-written light-hearted fun, and these two girls are destined to remain friends long after the Human Torch and The Thing hug each other, Lois Lane and Superman tie the knot (for real and for ever), and Blondie divorces Dagwood and runs away with his boss.
The yin and yang of Betty & Veronica is recommended for young girls.
Jughead #186/23 pgs. & $2.25 from Archie Comics/pencils: Rex Lindsey, words: Craig Boldman/ sold in the same places as Betty & Veronica.
I never imagined that the last comic book I’d ever review would be Jughead, but it somehow seems appropriate. After all, old Juggie never grew up, and neither have I.
Jug is a lazy, hungry, directionless, geeky little kid in a teenaged body. In this issue, only pizza can get that body out of bed during a snow-day break from school, he goes to the beach during the winter to get away from crowds, and loses out on a prize because of his aversion to cold.
Jug is also incurably likable. This juxtaposition of poor human qualities with human virtue is what makes all of the Archie cast believable because there is something of Jug in each of us. As is true with all of the Archie titles, stories are simple and whimsical, and dialog is believable. Each story is well-drawn, visually easy to follow, and focused on simple, clean lines and backgrounds.
Check out Dark Corridor #1 for two Michael Vance short stories at www.mainenterprises.ecrater.com.