Archie Comics 2018
Written by Ian Flynn, David Williams & Gary Martin
Illustrated by Kelsey Shannon, David Williams & Gary Martin
Lettered by Jack Morelli
There are a lot of things about this to love and it doesn’t have to be about the Archie’s though there is that. Okay so while yes I am a little disappointed that Reggie, Kevin and the others played no role in this story the fact that Archie’s superheroes were unearthed for it made up for that. I mean while the updating of many of them is nice and brings things to a more modern feel I would love to see a limited run, minimum six issues, of the originals with these fantastically outdated costumes.
Heck Mr. Justice, Captain Commando, Bob Phantom, Inferno, Black Jack and The Fox as a team yes please and thank you. This is a team resplendent in full costumed regalia that I would like to see in action more. This is what a good story is supposed to do, it takes the reader places that they weren’t expecting to go to and envisioning things that aren’t there. It is also an absolutely delightful reminder of the company’s long history and that once upon a time it did superheroes with the best of them. Actually considering the state of the world today I wouldn’t mind seeing old fashioned super heroics front and centre to remind us of happier times.
I like the way that this book is structured and how they manage to introduce such a large cast of characters. The whole ebb & flow of the story allowing for the Super Teens to actually save the day amidst such established heroes is extremely well done. The characterisation is at times a little over the top but then again that’s to be expected all things considered. By the time we get to the end of the issue all the little quirks that you might think were too much become crystal clear and understandable. That the whole thing makes complete sense made me laugh out loud.
That Zardox is able to so handily defeat the Mighty Crusaders and yet seems to be so tripped up over a bunch of teenagers is of course half the fun. The amount of humour that is infused into this is sensational to see. When the Eliminators were laughing I was right there laughing with them and it was kind of glorious. That the kind of humour that we see here can be one thing to the younger generation and something else to the more seasoned generations is what an all-ages book is supposed to contain and this certainly nails that on every level.
The interiors are equally as all-ages as the writing. I feel like a kid again seeing these costumes and how they look and excite the fan inside me, plus now I may have to have these characters drawn up like this for some tattoo work, I mean The Comet, The Web and Bob Phantom is a trio I'd love personally done for me, still overall what the art does is take characters that even I never heard of and so brightly and vividly that it makes us WANT to know more. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels shows off a superb eye for storytelling.
Archie continues to grow and evolve while putting out some of the best cutting edge stories on stands today. With such a storied past and with how long they’ve been around never being too far from the public’s eye is a testament to the men and women’s talent, drive and determination in creating something that will still be around 150 years from now.