I’ve been a big fan of comics for as long as I can remember. When I was little, I used to patiently wait for the weekend edition of the newspaper so I could start tearing through the special comic section. It was the combination of the humor and colourful illustration that got my attention amongst what seemed like never ending sea of black, white and admittedly boring text. I loved all the classis Peanuts, Pearls Before Swine, Garfield and of course Archie.
While that feels like eons ago and comics have certainly changed since then, maturing into their fairly new distinction as graphic novels; one thing remains the same. I still love comics, old favourites and new.
This is why my little mind was blown just a few weeks ago. I could hardly believe it, a new television series … based on … Archie comics!?
Yup, Archie, Betty, Veronica, Jughead… they’re all there, but with a distinctly different attitude than I remember. After binge watching the first 3 episodes of Riverdale the new CW show, seriously any Archie fan has to see this show, I started to wonder what Archie and the gang have been up to since I left them in the newspaper all those years ago.
The good news is that Archie is alive and well (in this universe anyway) , in a completely revamped series Archie volume one: The New Riverdale written by Mark Waid and illustrated by a hand full of budding artists like Fiona Staples, Annie Wu and Veronica Fish. This new series is the first update that the classic Archie characters have seen in the last 75 years and trust me, it’s worth the wait. Click here to see the availability or place a hold.
While it’s based on the original, there is a distinctly contemporary feel and oh yes a few new characters to spice things up! There is definitely more diversity with characters like Sheila Wu, the resident fashionista, or Trevor Smith the younger brother to Valerie from Josey and the Pussy Cats, who sets his sights on Betty Cooper. There has also been a major update to many of those finer details too. The Riverdale crew now proudly sport smart phones and much better, I mean updated, wardrobes. There is even an update in the language, when was the last time you heard an Archie character use a hash tag?
While there is a distinct difference between Archie: The New Riverdale and its predecessor, there are still many similar elements, Archie is still clumsy and Jughead still loves to eat, but what I like most about this new series is how relatable it felt. Many of us have experienced being the new kid, or breaking up with your first boyfriend or girlfriend. This new series brings to light some of the emotion that was glossed over in the original series and I liked it, I liked it a lot.
If you find yourself in the same boat as me, then you might also want to check out the companion series Jughead volume one. In the new Riverdale, there is room for more than one protagonist with writer Chip Zdarsky and artists Erica Henderson and Andre Szymanowicz bringing Jughead to the spot light. Plus it’s got a sneak peak of Archie volume two!!
The second volume of Archie will be hitting library shelves soon, click here to place a copy on hold. Don’t miss it!