Skip to main content

REVIEW: 'Archie' #2 by Mark Waid and Fiona Staples


★★★★★ (5/5)

Is it possible to fall in love with an old childhood comic book property like 'Archie' all over again? With Mark Waid writing a charming script and Fiona Staples designing diverse modernized characters 'Archie' #1 was a bonafide hit and love was reignited. Now with issue #2 we get to know these updated Riverdale kids a little better only to find the spirit and essense of what made them fun and endearing still remains true. 

The luxury of A-list talent like Waid and Staples on 'Archie' is the symbiotic relationship they immediately find in establishing breezy pacing, natural expository dialogue and charasmatic expressions. In classic fashion, Archie's beat-up ride needs work and he needs to get paid. He searches for work only to meet disastrous ends one job after another. His signature clumsiness is an important plot point that rings true to his character. 

Meanwhile, Betty is trying to move on after her break-up with Archie only to find a surprisingly creepy Trevor misunderstanding her intentions. Betty is in a funk and she's never been more relatable. Sheila is there for her trying to cheer her up and help move forward. It's wonderful to see such supportive friends from both sides. There's no manufactured drama between friends. They, as they've always had, have each other's back. 

There's plenty of moments of quick concise character development that informs you of each personality. Reg, Dilton, and especially Jughead. His backstory from rags to riches and back to rags is particularly funny and a little poignant. Waid's genuine care for these kids is evident in keeping to what made each personality so vital to the whole world of 'Archie.' There isn't a false moment and so accessible to new readers while embracing long-time readers back into the fold. 

We finally get a glimpse of Veronica and she is gorgeous. Duh! Archie catches a look as well after virtually destroying her dad's construction site. All the elements that made Archie an enjoyable read as a child are here albeit with a more mature but no less fun approach. The punny banter, the sight gags, the screwball comedy is there but the campiness is pulled back. 

What else is there to say about the award-winning pencil work of Fiona Staples that hasn't been said. She invigorates the pages with clever and varied action. She's a master of emoting so much with a smirk, a frown, the furrough of a brow from a character that her pictures truly tell a story all their own. The sequence of Betty getting ready for a party is a 
prime example of that. And Waid is smart enough to keep the word balloons at a minimum, letting Staples do her thing. It's all brought to life with such vibrancy by colorists Andre Szymanowics and Jen Vaughn.

It's a shame Staples' run ends with issue #3. That's no slight of Annie Wu who'll do the art for issue #4 or Veronica Fish who'll work on issues #5 and #6. Once you've been spoiled by Staples it's hard to let go. 

'Archie' #2 reinforces the magic that began in issue #1. It reminds you why you got into comics to begin with. Whether you're rediscovering old friends or finding them for the first time on this new run, Archie and the gang have never been more accessible and enchanting than right now.  


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

WONDER WOMAN OF THE DAY: Fitness Model Gia Macool Embodies the Amazon Princess

The closest we'll ever get, probably, to superheroes in real life is through the great work of cosplayers. You see them at every pop culture convention from the very basic to extremely elaborate costume design. However, you don't have to be a cosplayer to enjoy dressing up as your favorite superhero from time to time. Take fitness model and entrepreneur Gia Macool for example. An accomplished fitness competitor and model, Macool is also a big fan of DC Comics' Wonder Woman. She shows her love of the iconic Amazon Princess in her fitness wear, meal prep accessories and even a full blown photo shoot in a Wonder Woman costume. 

For decades comics have featured very muscular superheroes, male and female, epitomizing the human form at its strongest. So when bodybuilders and fitness pros decide to suit up as these costumed heroes, they are the embodiment of those fictional characters in the flesh. Macool looks like she stepped out of the pages of a Wonder Woman comic with a suit …

An Artist Will Get His Revenge in The Post-WWII Original Graphic Novel SIMON SAYS

Image Comics announces an all-new, original graphic novel Simon Says by Andre R. Frattino and Jesse Lee which will paint a post-World War II Europe in a scarlet shade of revenge this September.


Simon Says is a drama-filled, crime noir story that follows a former artist to the Führer who hunts down and seeks justice upon the Nazis he witnessed murder his friends and loved ones during the war. It is an original graphic novel inspired by true events and by a real-world Holocaust survivor, Simon Wiesenthal, an artist who lost his family and took justice into his own hands.
"Simon Says is about an innocent and gentleman, an artist, whose family and life are destroyed by a real-world event. Not something sci-fi or fanciful, but something that has happened and could happen again. In that way, it's the story of any of us, and how we would respond if who we were and what we had were lost,” said Frattino. "The real-life, famed Nazi hunter, Simon Wiesenthal, was quoted as once sayin…

Fitness Women in Superhero Body Paint by J.M. Manion

J.M. Manion has long been a successful photographer covering the fitness and bodybuilding industry. He has photographed some of the strongest, well-defined physiques on the planet. He's also had a love of super-heroes and comic books. So much so that Manion began publishing his own comic book, Iron Siren Comics, featuring some of the fitness competitors he's covered as superheroes themselves. It's no wonder he sometimes incorporates superhero cosplay and body paint into photo shoots. Here are just some examples of his work:

INTERVIEW: Spencer & Locke’s David Pepose and Jorge Santiago, Jr. Talk Sequel, Film Adaptation and More

Suspended by Internal Affairs, Detective Locke grapples with the demons of his past alongside his trusty partner, his childhood imaginary panther Spencer. But when Spencer and Locke face a scarred soldier named Roach Riley, will this unlikely pair finally meet their match?




When 'Spencer and Locke' first launched back in 2017, it was a curious novelty at first blush. The premise of "what if Calvin and Hobbes grew up in Sin City" was cute and ambitious but how could it possibly live up to the beloved comic strip with the hard edge of Frank Miller's classic? The result was a triumph that proved to be more thoughtful and impactful than expected. The combination of a hard-boiled detective story told through the lens of PTSD while paying homage to some revered properties proved to be masterful in both execution and style. David Pepose and Santiago, Jr., had found the heart and soul of the story in real emotion while being an entertaining crime drama.

With its success a…

Here's the Dickon Tarly You Didn't See on 'Games of Thrones'

Ever since Tom Hopper stepped in for Freddie Stroma on this season's Game of Thrones as Dickon Tarly, preferred son of Lord Randyll Tarly (James Faulkner), he's made quite the impression and not just for the character's funny phallic name.
*Possible spoilers ahead if you haven't seen 'Game of Thrones' Season 7, Episode 5, "Eastwatch"
We've barely gotten to know him only that's he the dutiful and loyal son to crusty old Randyll and he's got a name that makes Ser Bronn (Jerome Flynn) chuckle (and us too). The strapping neophyte on the battlefield seemed ready to break out on the show when this week his loyalty to his father led to some dire consequences. 
Conquered by Daenerys’s army and dragon, Dickon, Randyll and their fellow vanquished men stood before her. She gave them a simple choice join her or die. Too proud to bend the knee, Randyll chose to die instead of following Dany who he didn't consider his queen. So far so good. Then cli…