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by TalkNerdy2Me on June 28, 2017

Writer: Mark Waid and Ian Flynn

Artist: Derek Charm

Publisher: Archie Comics


I had really been hoping that Mark Waid and Ian Flynn would run with some pretty meta humor in this issue, especially around the “slobbering hordes following Jughead” business that the previous issue closed with. I was absolutely not disappointed. Derek Charm’s artwork as early as the second page makes it clear where the creative team is headed - I particularly liked the image of Josie and the Pussycats onstage, with their faces in black and their eyes all aglow.


If you remember how the whole “Afterlife with Archie” business got started, it centered on poor Jughead as well as Sabrina’s tendency to cast spells first and ask questions later. And just like the creepy horror book, this issue is all about how Jughead is under a spell he didn’t want or even ask for. 


But hands-down the best thing about this book is that I haven’t laughed this hard at any comic in a dog’s age! Waid and Flynn seems to have left all the doom and gloom and death from the current Archie book behind, and decided to just have fun. They’re even breaking the fourth wall, which honestly makes the most sense coming from Sabrina. I’m actually kind of wondering exactly how much Derek Charm owes in royalties to Francesco Francavilla for aping his art so precisely. I also adored the little asides that Waid and Flynn threw in during the homage; it was almost like having Ryan North writing the book again.


The other thing I really appreciated in this issue was the focus on just four core characters - but not the “core four” we’ve all come to expect. Betty was pictured in a few of the crowd scenes, but had no dialogue, and Veronica was completely MIA. That said, I found that I really enjoyed the dynamic between Jug and Archie and Reggie and Sabrina. I even enjoy the fact that Jughead is the only one who calls Sabrina by a shortened version of her name. This book even managed to make me forget that I should be hating Reggie Mantle. 


I won’t spoil anything for my readers, but I’m really looking forward to next month, to see how poor Jughead solves his “hunger” problem. I’m not sure whether to hope (for his sake) that Sabrina helps him or not! Can’t wait!

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