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Topics - PTF
« on: July 22, 2015, 09:40:17 AM »
Panel one: The setting is the interior of the Andrews home as Vegas is barking at the front door as a note has been placed under the door. Archie turns his head to notice the letter and stops just before he’s about to walk into a skate with a banana peel over it. Sitting on the couch is Fred Andrews as he sips a small cup of coffee as he reads The Riverdale Gazette. On the front page is a picture of a clown with the headline reading: ANNOYING CLOWN ON THE LOOSE!!
Vegas: Yarf bark!
Archie: A note?
Panel two: Archie begins pick up the note as Vegas decides it’s a good idea to get rid of the skate with the banana over it as he uses his nose to push it along. Outside of the house, the clown from the newspaper is looking inside of the Riverdale House through a window as he waves hello with a rubber chicken.
Archie: I wonder who it’s from and why couldn’t they have just texted me?
Panel three: Archie looks down at the letter as it reads: MEET ME AT THE CHOCKLIT SHOPPE AS FAST AS YOU CAN!
Panel four: Archie looks at the note with one hand and scratches his head in confusion as he studies the page.
Archie: Oh. It’d be less ominous.
Panel one: Archie examines the letter as his nose is literally touching it.
Archie: Weird. The handwriting looks familiar, but I can’t sniff out whose it is.
Panel two: Archie begins to turn the letter over to see the back.
Archie: Looks like there’s something on the back too.
Panel three: Archie looks over at the back to see it has the following:
An equation (AmB +AmV)-A =0
The words: THE BIG CRUNCH
Various 9s scribbled around the page with half of them marked over with an X
Several diagrams of circles and lines connecting them.
A’s with the infinity symbol next to them.
The phrase: there should only be one oF hiM
Panel three: Archie dismisses it nonchalantly as he shoves the note into his pocket.
Archie: Eh, just jibberish with a dash of jabber.
Panel four: Archie shoves the note into his pocket as he walks out the door.
Archie: But my curiosity is piqued. And it won’t kill me to stretch my legs. And it could really be important.
Panel one: Archie is walking along a sidewalk as he has his head up and is thinking. Following him is the clown on a unicycle.
Archie: And it gives me time to try and think who wrote the note.
Panel two: Archie has a thought balloon of Reggie over his head sneering at him.
Archie: Could be Reggie.
Panel three: A panel of Archie’s thought as Archie is walking into the Chocklit Shoppe and a bucket of water placed above the door frame is about to fall right on his head as Reggie points and laughs from inside.
Archie: Hmph. Maybe I’ll just go back home!
Panel four: Archie is startled when he hears a voice to
Moose off-panel: Duh, you get back here, ya sneak!
Panel five: Reggie is running past Archie as Moose is chasing him with both fists raised in the air. The Annoying Clown is making a giant octopus out of several multi-colored balloons as he looks up and laughs.
Moose: You can’t run forever!
Reggie: With the right motivation I bet I can!!
Panel six: Archie continues along nonchalantly as this is just a typical occurrence. The balloon octopus looks like it is attacking the annoying clown.
Archie: Can’t be Reggie. He was too busy filling out his death certificate.
Panel one: Archie is walking along the sidewalk as he has a thought balloon of Veronica over his head as he smiles and has hearts for eyes.
Archie: Maybe it was from (sigh) Veronica!
Panel two: Archie’s thought as Archie is meeting Veronica in the Chocklit Shoppe as Archie is wearing a suit, tie, and his hair slicked back and is thinking of himself as overly cool.
Archie: What is it, beloved?
Veronica; Oh, love of my life, father plans on moving away! We’ll never see each other ever again!
Panel three: Still Archie’s imagination as Veronica is holding super suave Archie hand hand in desperation.
Veronica: But I won’t let him! That’s why I’ve bought an island far away! I’ve hired an independent pilot to take us there! Tell me you’ll come! I can’t bear to be without my Archiekins!
Panel four: Still Archie’s imagination as he (with twice as many muscles) and Veronica are in bathing suits and lying on the beach as Veronica has Archie’s head in her lap and he is smiling ear to ear.
Archie: Best decision I ever made!
Panel five: Archie is walking along with a goofy grin as he continues to the main district of Riverdale. Several people move out of Archie’s way and even more people have to move out of the way of the annoying clown who is on a pogo stick and using both hands to play paddle ball and is hitting various people on their heads with the ball and string.
Archie: Best dream I ever had!
Panel one: Archie has a thought balloon of Betty over his head as he looks up and smiles.
Archie: Could be Betty. Putting notes under a guy’s door is something cute she would do!
Panel two: Archie’s imagination as he is strolling inside of the Chocklit Shoppe as Betty is rushing towards him.
Betty: Oh, Archie! My parents are moving!
Panel three: Archie is talking as Betty shakes her head.
Archie: So you have a private island we can go to and live the rest of our lives in peace, right?
Panel four: Betty suddenly puts handcuffs on her and Archie as Archie reacts in alarm.
Betty: But I do have these!!
Panel five: Betty raises her handcuffed fist into the air and strikes a victory pose as Archie is nearly jerked off his feet.
Betty: Now you have to go with me! We’ll be together forever!
Panel six: Back to reality as Archie shakes his head. The annoying clown is spraying business man in a three piece suit with a giant seltzer bottle.
Archie: Wait. I live next door. I’d know if she was moving.
Archie: …And where would she get the handcuffs?
« on: July 18, 2015, 06:44:27 PM »
Red Fever, a druglord on the run, has plans on setting up shop in Riverdale. The problem, the feds have called in The Punisher to bring him in to obtain all his connections. But hitmen also have their sights on Red and Riverdale. Who can help out The Punisher—Archie Andrews of course. Dopplegangers, a kidnapped heiress, and the most unlikely partnership ever await!
1. The art. You have one of the most recognized Punisher artists in Jon Buscema and one of the most recognized Archie artists in Stan Goldberg drawing for each of their own characters—and it works really well! It helps that both are on the top of their games. Every character each artist draws in wonderful and when the styles mix it works because both are that great. But I think what really helps is Tom Palmer who does an excellent job as the inker. He has two different styles and two different type story elements separate and meshing and his inks really enhance the art. The Punisher is more gritty while Archie is more light and whimsical and when the character interact, you completely ignore that a panel has two artists because and are from two different universes because it still finds a way to seem natural. This is wonderful work from all three.
2. Barry Grossman. He’s simply one of the best colorists ever. The colors on this are amazing and again, he’s balancing two different type stories that are coming together. You have Punisher coloring being dark, the Archie coloring you would expect, and when the characters meet and share the page—It reminds me of his work on TMNT Adventures.
3. Batton Lash. I’ve never read any other work from Lash, which is a shame because he does an extremely good job with making this story work. You can’t have The Punisher killing people because it would clash with the Archie environment. So…The Feds want Red Fever alive and The Punisher agrees because then he can get information from him too. A rival gang is in his sight but Microchip convinces him to tail them to find the rest of them. And the Punisher is still violent as he punches, kicks, and shoots at the bad guys. Heck, he even beats up a few cops who get in his way. And I can buy into this because the story and the characters make sense of it; The Punisher isn’t killing anyone but you get “Yeah, he could if he wanted.” Lash handles The Archie verse equally well and has a great understanding of the characters. Archie is a hamfisted clutz who finds himself in this mess because of his resemblance to Red Fever, Veronica is Veronica and takes Red Fever to the dance to make Archie jealous and shows she’s not some helpless damsel in distress, Betty is caring, Jughead is hungry and sticks with Archie, and Reggie is arrogant. And the logic for the story is there too. Archie goes to the police to tell them what is going on, but they don’t believe him because…well, he’s the boy who cried wolf and they decide to take him to the dance to get him out of their hair. There isn’t a single character that is written wrong and the story flows wonderfully. And I love the Erik Larsen approach where set up something, you turn the page, BANG there it is. And you have to love Punisher’s war journals entries and the Archie characters following suit with Archie giving it a go and Betty writing in her diary. This is all just brilliant work.
4. The Punisher. I’m going to be honest. I never really liked The Punisher. I always thought he was boring. I mean during this time period he had helpers like Microchip (What Marvel did to you is unforgivable) to give him kind of a angel on his shoulder, but mostly he’s just a boring thug. But when he gets to Riverdale you have this wonderful scene where he gets out and Microchip comments on a family and sees the life that Frank Castle could have had. It was fun seeing the character development of The Punisher going from “Riverdale is going to be bad” to wanting to make sure it stays pure and even forgo his usual methods. There’s even a page where he’s going through Riverdale High and looks moved at a poster on the wall reading: It’s up to you to keep Riverdale Clean! The Punisher started the story one way and ended up different at the end. That’s right. One of the most one dimensional characters—had actual character development!
5. Red Fever. The Archie lookalike druglord hoping to rebuild in Riverdale. He’s a very good villain. What helps is that he’s shown to be competent. Heck, he managed to elude the Punisher and everyone else on his tail. Microchip explains that Red Fever is someone who rises and falls; when something goes bad he builds himself back up. And we’re shown that when The Punisher and the rival druglords come for him at the school dance. Riverdale is pretty much a wash and his business plans with Mr. Lodge are dead in the water—so he kidnaps Veronica and holds her for ransom to keep The Punisher away from him and try and get something out of this mess. He’s only undone because he hadn’t familiarized himself with Riverdale and didn’t piece Veronica’s clue to the gang together until it was too late. Plus, he hates Leroy so that makes him relateable to the rest of the world. And I love how he looks like old school Archie with those teeth and how creepy he is around Veronica.
6. The extras. The cover is great as it has The Punisher aiming his gun, the sight is cut out to a picture of Archie, turn the page…there’s Archie smiling with the Punisher skull mixed with his own face and freckles. Before the story you have Gorelick and then Marvel Editor and Chief Tom DeFalco going over the story. Gorelick goes over the initial idea which is extremely hardcore with Archie’s family being killed and him bringing in the Punisher. Whoa. Then he talked with Batton Lash who came up with what we got while he was eating spareribs. Then the next page is where Tom Defalco doesn’t really think too much of it (laughing at the covers sent) but he loves the synopsis by Lash. Next is just pictures and two captions each explaining who Archie and The Punisher are. And finally at the end we get to see one of the covers and another drawing of Archie standing with the Punisher. So yeah, fun stuff. Oh, and don’t forget in the stories all the cameos not just of Archie characters but Archie inspired Marvel comics like Patsy Walker. The school dance is just fun to look through over and over to see all the characters interact.
1. Why the kids with us again? I already talked about how they made logical decisions on why The Punisher hasn’t killed anyone and mistakes Archie for Red Fever, but there is one element in the story that could have been worked on a bit. Why are Archie’s friends with Archie and the Punisher after the 50’s Hop incident. The Punisher decided to keep Archie with him to keep him out of trouble but why are Betty and Jughead there…”lapse in judgment.” I think it would have been better if The Punisher just decided that anyone who is friends with Archie is just as troublesome and could get in the way.
2. Reggie. I really liked Reggie and how egotistical and annoying he was. So when he left the story, he was missed. I mean, yeah, it made sense since he’s kind of a coward, but it would have been nice to have had more of him.
What I learned
1. Everyone has a doppelganger out there in the world.
2. Union Station is the real nexus of the multiverses.
3. The Punisher looks good in Riverdale gold and blue
4. Everyone hates Leroy.
5. Coach Kleats went to Notre Dame
6. Hiding under the bleachers might work with Moose, but not with gunfire
7. Josie and the Pussycats need to do better background checks.
8. Pigeons. Feared by every druglord.
9. The Riverdale Police are lacking.
10. I’m all in Grundisher.
It’s kind of fun how time works with a story. You have Archie vs. Predator (I’ll wait until the fourth issue to get them all and possibly review them) where you have The Predator killing Archie characters—but there is no way I could see a school shoot out going on like what happened in Punisher meets Archie even when it was still “tame”. This is a really great story. Everything is perfect and everyone involved deserves high praise for their work and how they made this story work. This is an A+. Go out and find this story.
And next review….put on the black and white face paint, stick out your tongue, and rock Sugar, Sugar! It’s Archie Meets Kiss!
« on: July 16, 2015, 10:13:59 PM »
Hm...reviewing a...new comic of some sort. Didn't I used to do this more often...?
Dede’s back! Tania Delllllll Rrrrrrrioooo and Fernando Ruiz are back with another story featuring new character Dede. For those of you who don’t know, she’s the daughter of the local comic shop owner and has a crush on Jughead, while Archie has a crush on her. “Triple Date” is a nice fun story. One of my favorite moments involve everyone but Archie receiving a gift and Jughead’s, “Was I supposed to get you something?” remark to break the awkward silence was hilarious. And just love this love triangle. Archie likes Dede who likes Jughead who likes…popcorn. It’s a super fun dynamic. The story is great and the art is the usual awesome Fernando Ruiz work.
Sam Schwartz: Seriously, with these Jughead related reviews I’m just going to type: He did art, his art good. That should be enough for all of you at this point. The stories range from virtual reality to teaching how friendship had better come before business to beach stories and how a simple fan can cause chaos. And there is something I appreciate from Schwartz: background. And not just the gags. Take “The Fan” a guy is suffering the heat and he’s walking behind Archie then the next panel Archie stops to talk with Jughead the man passes him. I’m always frustrated when you see a background character in a panel and the next—someone new or he’s gone. Schwartz doing this makes you feel the time and pacing of the story.
Frank Doyle: I’m sad to say I normally don’t give Doyle the focus he deserves, but a good portion of the stories have him as the writer and he knocks them out of the park for the most part. Yeah, he has Lucey and Sam on art, but his story and dialogue are great. He really never gets the credit he rightfully deserves.
Jughead vs. Reggie: If you like this classic one sided feud then you have to buy this digest because it is jammed pack these two at it. From car alarms in the stomach, to food, to talking dogs these two go at it with the usual outcome of course…but it’s fun every time!
Lucey: We get three fun Lucey stories involving Archie as a vacuum salesman, Hot Dog talking and Reggie going insane trying to find how Jughead is pulling the trick, and finally a story showing us the only way Jughead will go into a pool. Everything is fun and the body language for each character is wonderful.
Craig Boldman and Lindsey: Quite possibly the most underrated pairing in all comics. Seriously, if Archie Comics pulled the new digital Kevin Keller series for one with Trula Twyst or Segarini by Boldman and Lindsey—YES! In “All Fall Down” Jughead’s bowling ball goes on a rampage. “What’s the Scoop or Spoon Goons” has Jughead being annoying while he plays with spoons. And “Pop’s is Tops” The Chocklit Shoppe is doing poorly so Jughead appoints himself public relations manager as he tries to boost up business. All are fun stories, well written and drawn.
Summer stories: You like Christmas in July? It’s here. Baseball. It’s here. Smoldering heat where the cast suffers? Yep. Bowling. Yeppers. To sum up any type of Summer story you can think of is represented in this issue. If you’re favorite seasonal stories are summer based then you need to pick up this digest.
Stan Goldberg: Okay, Stan Goldberg is a legend and you can make the argument that he is the top Archie artist, and I wouldn’t disagree with you…but with “The Sound and The Fury” its obviously some of his much later work and, it’s not good. It’s really rough and—I honestly thought Reggie was Midge in one panel! Heck, the wall outside of Lodge Mansion is either a foot high or Reggie is a giant. And I have to give Rich Koslowski credit as he really tries to make this art look good, and a few pages it does, but—there is only so much he could do. And Craig Boldman’s story is really fun with Jughead swallowing an alarm and Reggie using a key chain (I think that’s what that’s supposed to be) for shenanigans, and it’s my favorite writing in the digest—but the art is just too bad for this one.
“When You’re Hot” by Cosby. It’s not that it’s bad, it’s just longer than it needed to be for what it was going for at the end. The story is about Archie complaining about the heat and his parents going on about how people in the ‘olden days stayed cool. It’d be fine if it was a few pages shorter.
“A Hot Lunch”: Normally, I think DeCarlo Jr. gets a bum rap because he’s the son of one of the best artists, but this story is not one of his best. The art isn’t up to his usual very good standards. Just look at Gaston. Wow. I don’t know if it’s the art or the inker (Another DeCarlo…it’s a dynasty!) who’s to blame. And I didn’t like the end. I just don’t think it was as funny as other options.
A small problem with “Naughty or Nice”. In one panel the word balloons for the two elves checking up on Archie and Jughead are wrong. I mean, yeah, the story’s still great, but it’s still something I’d point out to someone who gets irritated by that.
Things I’ve learned.
1. To paraphrase from Pete & Pete (yeah, I’m old!) “Silly heroes. Nobody can defeat the bowling ball!”
2. What a Bouncing Betty is.
3. Santa gives up watching to see if you’re bad or good by July.
4. SPOONS ARE AWESOME!!!
5. Young or old, Jughead ends up in a chicken costume
6. Smithers gets an hour of pool time all to himself.
7. Dreams do come true. Kinda
8. Archie Andrews, Cat Judge
9. Never let your mortal enemy have the control to the alarm in your stomach
10. Comic shop owners get PAID FOR READING COMICS!!?? I’m not getting anything for reading this issue!!!! I had to buy this digest!!!
…Barring that last little lesson, I liked this digest. It’s not the most perfect of digests as I didn’t like a few stories and, honestly, this is a more seasonal comic and I’m not as big a fan of Summer time Archie stories. But you have a lot of great classic work and a great new story buy Delllll Rrrrrriooooo and Ruiz that you really need to read. I give this digest a B.
« on: July 11, 2015, 09:39:37 AM »
Panel one: Two security guards are walking down a high tech hallway as they sip coffee and talk with one another. Over head is several cameras, high tech scanners along the walls, and motion detectors on the floor. Each door along the hallway is a high tech door that requires a password and a card for clearance.
Security guard one/Manny: I told you I heard something!
Security guard two/ Frank: And I told you it was your imagination!
Panel two: Frank begins to push a button on a sealed door as he tries to prove his point to Manny. With his other hand he swipes an ID card into a mechanical lock on the other side of the door. Along the wall several cameras begin to shut down as Manny notices.
Frank: No one can get in here. This is the top o’ the line security package. Security seals, motion detectors, cameras ever other step you take…
Frank: But if it shuts ya up, a quick lookzie.
Panel three: Frank looks back at Manny with a smirk while Manny looks on wide-eyed.
Manny: DO I!!
Panel four: A red energy beam strikes both security guards cover their eyes as both are blinded by the beam and lose their equilibrium.
Voice in the vault: No. You don’t. Boys if you will.
Frank AH! My eyes! My ears! Feels like my skin is melting! What in the blazes--!?
Manny: Frank! Frank! Where are you?! I can’t see—
Panel five: A red fingerless glove punches Frank and a man wearing a brown ski-mask, red goggles and high tech pack leap out and kicks Manny in the face.
Mud Flap member: Good. You wouldn’t want to see this!
Panel one: One Mud Flap member holds up Manny by his shirt as he looks at him with disdain. The Mud Flap Member has the dazzler (small weapon cylinder shaped). The other kicks at Frank’s head to see he’s unconscious.
Mud Flap member near Frank: They don’t pay these Force rejects enough.
Mud Flap member holding Manny: We should have gotten real weapons for these jobs. Not fancy tasers.
Panel two: Both members turn to the vault as a voice addresses them.
In the vault: Fancy dazzler would be more accurate…
Panel three: The leader of the Mud Flaps as he is much taller and wearing a black vest and dark blue goggles. Behind him four more members, two males and two females, are putting various micro-chips into satchel bags. The leader of the Mud Flaps is holding up a motherboard to the light.
Mud Flap Leader: …And with what information our benefactor provided, the prime location, and schematics, he didn’t need to give us any arsenal for these jobs.
Panel four: A close up on the Mud Flap as he smiles wickedly as a gleam of light gives him an almost supernatural sinister look in his goggles.
Mud Flap Leader: I sure as skid won’t complain when the last few weeks’ work finally comes to fruition, either.
Panel five: A shot outside as it is dark as three red and black supped up sports cars drive away as they begin to race away from Riverdale Tech University.
Caption: In Riverdale City if you want turf, you need the numbers or the better weapons.
Caption: When we hit the streets with our new toys and make some noise, no one can stop us. Not The Force. No one.
Panel one: A shot of Ace Andrews, the Road Racer, as he looks up at the bright blue sky as clouds begin to float over head as the wind blows and causing the tree branches over head to shake their leaves and gives off various shadows. Road Racer looks like Archie only older, wearing a leather jacket over a white shirt and regular jeans.
Caption: My name is Ace Andrews, The Road Racer. I’ve driven down many roads, and I’ve taken the detours life has forced upon me as best I can…
Caption: …But as the world blurs by me, I can’t help looking out my rear view mirror at where I’ve been and stopping to take a few moments to reflect on it all.
Panel two: A blue and white flashback shot of Ace Andrews and Captain Keller (Kevin Keller) as they are both wearing a blue and red police uniform with a large blue F at the right of their chest as they do a salute in front of their commanding officer during their graduation into The Force.
Caption: Me and my best friend Captain Keller accomplished our dream of joining The Force…
Panel three: A flashback of Ace Andrews and Veronica Lodge as they are kissing during a dinner. Sitting next to them at their table is Captain (Kevin) Keller and Clay Walker.
Caption: …And I fell in love with a wonderful woman.
Caption: For awhile I thought of easing off the gas and let the world pass me by for a change—set my life on cruise control.
Panel four: A shot of The Road Racer looking down at the grave of Veronica Lodge as it is decorated with various flowers on the gravesite and multicolored saddles on the tombstone. The epitaph reads: A golden heart has stopped beating; Through gates of pearl a soul at rest. Various other graves ranging from head stones to statues can be seen, each decorated differently.
Caption: But like I said, life hits you with a detour, and you have to deal with it as best you can.
Caption: It just isn’t easy.
Panel one: Ace has both pockets in his leather jacket as he looks down at the grave as he continues to think. In the background, close we can see his Turbo Ride, Ace’s car, parked nearby with the driver side door still open.
Caption: Ron was taken from me, and I found the justice I was a part of was just for those who could write a big enough check. Everyone else slipped under the radar.
Panel two: Ace walks away from the grave as he walks towards his Turbo Ride.
Caption: I walked away from my old life…
Panel three: Ace is inside of the Turbo Ride as he pressed the ignition buttons as the car lights up with various buttons along the dash, steering wheel, and roof of the car.
Caption: …And I decided I’d follow the path of my choosing. Even if I have to pave that road myself; I’ll gladly take on that burden as it will lead me to where I need to be.
Panel four: The Turbo Ride is zooming down a road.
Caption: My name is Ace Andrews, The Road Racer.
Caption: With the pedal to the metal, the open road, and thirst for adventure fueling my unconquerable spirit--
Caption:--I will speed ahead when the innocent need me!
Panel one: Ace hits a monitor as Wheels (Chuck wearing a dark purple leather jacket and blue shirt) is on the monitor as Ace keeps his eyes on the road ahead.
Wheels: Yo, Ace! You missed your last schedule communiqué!
Ace: Sorry, 4ZT4—had to stretch my legs for a bit and lost track of time.
Panel two: Ace smiles as he and Wheels talk.
Wheels: Man, what do I have to do to get you to call me “Wheels” now? Make a bumper sticker and put it on your fender?
Ace: Sure. Put it right next to my “I brake for the elderly” one.
Panel three: The monitor as Wheels explains why he’s contacting Ace.
Wheels: Anyway, melt your wheels and get that heap of yours back to the HQ! Just patched into the Force database and found something you’d like to set your peepers on!
Panel four: A shot as Ace turns his car around on the road as it leaves skid marks as he makes his U-Turn.
Panel five: Ace is driving down the road as Riverdale City is in the distance as skyscrapers of glass and steel and freeways seem to make up most of the city in contrast to the regular Riverdale.
Road Racer: Over and there before you blink twice!
Panel one: Ace is driving along as the lighting in the car turns red as he focuses ahead. The landscape has changed to a more barren dirt field with very vegetation or plants along the road or in the panel.
Caption: That’s 4—er, Wheels. He was my partner on The Force. We were a good team.
Panel two: Ace is pulling off the dirt road as he approaches a run down gas station.
Caption: Guess he thought so too because, when I left my badge at the commissioner’s desk, he was right behind me and we walked out the door together.
Panel three: Ace punches a button on his dash as the gas pumps slide to the left as an opening tunnel is revealed for Ace to drive down.
Caption: We weren’t on The Force any longer, but we were not out of the race!
Panel four: Ace is going down the tunnel as it closes behind him. His headlights light the path as he speeds along.
Caption: We salvaged for parts, got oil and rust under our fingernails, and put blood, sweat, and tears into our base and our rides.
Caption: Then a funny thing happened. We went from a duo…
Panel five: In the background, Road Racer is pulling his Turbo Ride along a similar pink and red car with purple trim (The Femme Fatale), and a green and black muscle car (The Wham). In the foreground, Gears (Betty Cooper wearing a blue denim jacket) Wheels (Chuck), Cat (Sheila Wu wearing a brown jacket over a purple top and has goggles over her hat), and Tiny (Vic wearing a white shirt and blue jeans as his normal clothing. For the moment he has an apron and oven mitts on since he was cooking) are at a computer system. Tiny has a tray of bakery treats that Cat and Gears happily take as Wheels motions for Road Racer to join them.
Caption: To a team!
Wheels: Just got done halfway blinking!
Tiny: So what do you girls think?
Gears: I think instead of being a vigilante, you should have been a pastry chef like your aunt!
Cat: Mmh. Chocolate. A way to steal a woman’s heart.
« on: July 05, 2015, 08:24:22 PM »
Sorry for being late.
This is it. The dreaded story. I’ve heard many harsh, cruel things spoken of this story. That, as a Jughead fan, it would fill me with an uncontrollable sadness. It will tear out my heart and vomit upon my dreams.
Why do I listen to other people?
1 What they got right about Jughead. I felt that this story got Jughead half right. Maybe even a little more than that. For one thing, they nailed that he’s a glutton who will eat anything. He’s drawn with pure delight as he eats his double anchovies pizza. They also got that Jughead is smart. He figures out what the rest of the gang is doing, trying to set him up, and decides to turn the table on them with a pretty good gag. And in the first few pages, he shows that Jughead wit and banter. Too bad that doesn’t last.
2. Sandy Sanchez. Remember the last review where I had a problem with characters who no personality and just existed? They are there for the story for a certain plot function and that’s that. Not Sandy. We actually get to know her. She’s a star pupil, she wants to go to an Ivy League college, and she’s very athletic. She gets plenty of dialogue. Now I don’t like the very very end, but I do like the character. She’s a fun. She’s up their with Sharry on—why is this character not used more?
3. Joe Staton. I was expecting something a little more realistic like the previous new series reviews—and Joe Staton is a good artist—but he seemed to have decided to adopt his art style with the Archie style. At first I didn’t like it because I felt it went against the idea of the New Series, but it does allow for better movement from the characters. In the previous stories, the characters looked stiff, here they are much more energetic. Take for example the Big Bounce Along Relay. Each a character is still their own height, weight, and body language. Because a good portion of the story involves sports and lots of movement, this turns out to be the right decision.
4. Finally, we got the main Archie Teen (sans Jughead) characters right. I’ve had problems with the last two New Series because we had Betty being boring, Veronica being pushed aside, Archie occasionally being Archie, and Reggie sometimes showing up to be Reggie. Here we got them. Betty is nice, sweet and naïve. Veronica is in your face, arrogant, and would prefer not to sweat. Archie is his usual clumsy self (The Big Bounce Rally) and Reggie is a sneaky jerk. Dilton gets a moment to show how smart he is. Even Nancy gets a pretty funny moment with the egg toss contest. And you have some great character moments. Archie doesn’t like the changes to his best friend when the plan appears to be working, Betty starts having doubts and worrying if they were right, and Veronica is the more steadfast and confident in what they are doing. And this is the most of the supporting cast we’ve seen in a New Series book I’ve reviewed.
1. What they got wrong about Jughead. Like I said, they got about half right and half wrong. Jughead does not get nervous around girls. I HATE stories where he gets nervous around girls. Jughead is easy going and just follows his own path, if a female intersects her path with his he either tolerates her or showcases his wit. And I can be okay with him being somewhat good at sports…but not to the level MatchMakers made him out to be a great athlete. And I said he was witty in the first few pages, but after that, he’s just boring. His quick wit is one of his trademarks. You take that away and you have a flat character.
2. Dated clothing. Yeah, even back in the day this stuff was decades from the time. I mean, you had the gang talking the next war and western movies. Um, yeah, we those are not prevalent in today or a decade or even two decades ago. And the clothing on some of the characters look maybe late 70s. In the south going by Betty’s imitation Hee Haw Girl attire in the beginning. And some of the events at the Couple’s Competition…horse shoes. Yeeeeahhh.
3. Some of the character designs. I had trouble recognizing Coach Kleats and Prof. Flutesnoot. Ms. Grundy looked like Aunt May and in a few panels, others like a witch. And Mrs. Jones was drawn with a long nose. I HATE IT WHEN THEY DRAW MRS. JONES WITH A LONG NOSE!!!!!!!
4. That last page. Jughead and Sandy sneaking off to date. I HATE THAT. Jughead doesn’t date. Why? Because Jughead can’t be Jughead when he dates. Because you have to tone him down and take away all his wit and quips or he sounds like a jerk. Heck, check out Life With Archie—I’m okay with nearly everything but Jughead. He was either a whiner or a loser, or just boring. It’s not Jughead. That last page was not Jughead. But…it was just a page. Not the usual story where someone decides to write “Jughead likes this girl” story, so at least it has that going for it.
What I learned from this story.
1. Riverdale High has a relaxed dress code because Midge was just wearing overalls
2. Double Anchovies Pizza is the weirdest, disgusting pizza you can eat.
3. Egg yolk makes Nancy sick.
4. Whoever thought of the Big Bounce Along Relay is both a genius and a sadist
5. That egg toss resulted in the loss of many chicks and one traumatized eye witness bird.
6. At least if Jughead wears a baseball cap he doesn’t wear it backwards like a twit
7. Win if you can, lose if you must but—nah, forget that! Just stop playing.
8. Jughead owns a scooter.
9. G-g-girls…m-aa-ake…Jughead Nervous!!!
10. Horseshoes…it’s the next Let’s Play Series, mark my words
Seriously, this was the big bad story? You want a bad story? The World Tour story or the current Betty and Veronica storyline—those are bad stories. This? This is an okay story. Jughead loves a girl stories always stink. But this isn’t bad. Most of it is a plot to teach Archie and the gang a lesson until…that last page. So most you can say is an act. The other characters are done right, the art suits a Jughead story, and most of all—I wasn’t bored. But when you’re doing the main character wrong then you still have issues. Plus how dated it is even from when it was first published.
It’s a B. I have read way worst portrayals of Jughead “when he’s in love”. And for its fault, it’s still a fun story. I’d take a chance on it if you have an open mind.
Next week will be Archie Meets the Punisher. Because who wouldn't put these two together?
« on: July 04, 2015, 02:20:34 PM »
Panel one: The setting is a forest clearing where a cabin and small fire surrounded by stones is. Fred Mirth wearing clothing similar to Indiana Jones, only his is a mix of black and gray, is holding a laser gun on a ten year old native American girl (Annie Crane) as a native American man (Samuel Crane)—in his sixties-- walks ahead pointing towards a totem pole consisting, bottom to top, a swan, an otter, a toad, a muskrat, and finally a turtle.
Caption: Oklahoma. The edge of the Wyandot Indian Reservation.
Samuel Crane: There is what you seek. Now release my granddaughter, Mirth.
Fred Mirth: Of course. I’m a man of my word if not anything else…
Panel two: Fred Mirth throws the girl to the ground as Samuel Crane lunges at Fred Mirth. Fred Mirth sneers at the futile efforts of Samuel Crane to stop him.
Fred Mirth: Oh, we’re doing this?
Panel three: Fred Mirth uses the back of his laser gun to knock Samuel Crane unconscious as his granddaughter looks on helplessly.
Fred Mirth: And here I was thinking you were an intelligent man, Samuel Crane.
Annie Crane: Grandfather!
Panel four: Annie Crane is checking on her grandfather as tears roll down her cheeks. Fred Mirth is two steps away as he focuses on the matter at hand. Fred Mirth is blasting the turtle off the totem as it cracks open on the ground. The turtle totem breaks to reveal a diamond turtle shell hidden inside.
Fred Mirth: Well, well, looks like the old legend might be true.
Panel five: Fred Mirth is bending down to pick up the diamond turtle shell.
Fred Mirth: The diamond turtle shell. With you I’ll finally get what I deserve.
Panel six: A close up on Fred Mirth as he holds the diamond turtle shell right up to his face as his eyes flash deviously. Inside of the turtle shell is an image of the world.
Fred Mirth: And who can stop me?
Page 2 + 3
Panel one: The setting is inside Explorer Mountain as the security has gone haywire as the Explorers are dealing with it to showcase their own unique skill set. The security weapons are the following: several mechanical tendrils are coming from the walls and floor. Various turrets shooting electrical blasts from the ceiling and the floor. energy fields condensing energy activate at random and various sections of the roof crashing down to flatten anyone beneath. Buzzing around are miniature robots with rotor blades extended from their chests. Red Andrews is leaping through several mechanical tendrils as he breaks away. Wheels is dodging an energy blast as she scolds Nitro who is using exploding discs (destructo-discs) to destroy a turret on the wall with far too many explosives than needed. F/X is using his cloak to form several illusions of himself as two mechanical arms grab at the wrong F/X. Angel is karate chopping one mechanical grappling arm, breaking it at the point of impact, and back kicking a mini-security bot to clear a path forRed. Spike is using his super strength to stop a slab of the high tech ceiling from crushing him as he forces it back upwards. Squint is leaping in the air to cause two security bots to destroy each other as he uses a mechanical arm as a pole vault to help him avoid the energy blasts of a nearby wall turret.
Angel: There’s an opening, Red! Get to the control room and find out what Gizmo’s malfunction is!
Red: On it, Angel!
Wheels: Careful, Nitro! Don’t bring down the entire mountain on us!
Nitro: Wheels, in case you hadn't noticed--the mountain started it!
F/X: Sorry, but no kewpie doll for you!
Squint: I don’t know about anyone else—but I’m working up an appetite.
Spike: Nah. Just a sweat for me.
Panel one: Down a high tech corridor, Red Andrews is making his way to the control room. Red Andrews leaps over several swirling laser beams, ducks various wall saw blades, sliding across the floor before regaining his footing and leaping over an opening leading to a fire pit as he makes his way to the control room.
Red at the lasers: After I straighten this mess out…
Red at the saw blades: …I’m going to have a discussion with Gizmo about the defense system…
Red leaping over the fire pit: …Because this is way too easy!
Panel two: Red looks inside the control room as Gizmo is using a laser gun to blast several mechanical grappling arms that are trying to grab him. He has a photon shield extending from his Explorer wristband to block the attack of another as he turns his head to talk with Red. Over head is the hologram of an AI that has a distorted face to show that the AI is malfunctioning.
Red: Gizmo, problem?
Gizmo: Yes! And the solution is that blue button on the control panel!
AI: --I’ll hit you like a wrrreeeccckiing balll…!!
Panel three: Gizmo uses his laser gun to blast several grappling arms that were trying for Red as Red slams his fist down on the blue button as the AI begins to disperse.
Red: Problem solved!
AI: ..I’m a teapot…hit a rock…look at my thoughts…weird ink bloooottttssss
Panel one: Gizmo is apologizing to Red in the foreground as the other explorers enter the control room in the background.
Gizmo: I’m sorry, Red, everyone. The AI had passed all my test phases, but there seems to be issues with the terminal’s interface modules to its infofracture diagnostics.
Panel two: Nitro is in between F/X and Squint as he quips on the situation. As he talks Nitro folds up his destructo-discs with the press of a button and begins to put them back in his inside jacket pocket.
Nitro: What’s it say about this team when the big brain makes the stupidest mistakes?
Panel three: Red puts a reassuring hand on Gizmo’s shoulder. Wheels and Angel walk towards them. In the background F/X and Squint smack Nitro on the back of his head as Spike looks on approvingly.
Red: Gizmo, we all make mistakes. Ever think maybe taking a break? You’ve been at this nonstop; you could use a chance to rest up a bit.
Gizmo: Red…I know your advice is sound—but I’m so close! And once I have the AI perfected, Explorer Mountain will run 1000 times more efficiently!
Panel four: Wheels smiles at Gizmo as Gizmo blushes and stutters as he tries to compose himself as he blushes. Angel stands beside Red and looks on with a smile.
Wheels: Gizmo, I’m going to Indianapolis over the weekend to test my dad’s race cars. Come along. We’ll have fun!
Gizmo: Well-um,er…that’s a w-won-er, I mean, gracious offer--
Panel five: Wheels turns to Red and extends him an invitation. Gizmo immediately hangs his head down in disappointment. Red is nervous as he can feel the harsh eyes of Angel staring a hole at him.
Wheels: You should come too. Red! The more the merrier!
Red: Well, thank you, Wheels—but, um…
Angel: He values his life.
Panel one: Spike talks with Gizmo as Gizmo composes himself. Angel steps in between Wheels and Red as she cracks her knuckles as she looks at Wheels. Wheels feigns innocence with a smile and shrug of her shoulders. Looking on Nitro motions with his arms like an explosion is about to happen while F/X uses his hands like a camera as he pretends to be recording what is happening. Squint is yawning as he could careless.
Spike: Gizmo, you think an AI would improve everything? Does that include security?
Gizmo: Of course.
Panel two: Spike nervously looks up as he continues to talk as Gizmo begins to adjusts his glasses.
Spike: So it’d be able to stop magical stuff like ghosts and phantoms, right?
Gizmo: Spike, magic is fiction and most paranormal experiences are figments of the imagination or parlor tricks. But why do you ask?
Panel three: All of The Explorers look up in alarm as the astral projection of Samuel Crane hovers over their heads.
« on: July 01, 2015, 03:55:31 PM »
Panel one: In the Riverdale Mall, Archie, Reggie, Chuck, and Moose are standing just behind a pet shop as they are talking with one another. Reggie is flashing a smile and winking to various people walking by while Archie is jumping on one foot as he tries to tie his other foot’s shoe. Chuck is looking at his watch as Moose just smiles and shrugs his shoulders as he seems content.
Archie: What are you doing, Reg?
Reggie: Profiling. What are you doing the hokey pokey, carrot top?
Chuck: Where are the girls? They were supposed to meet us fifteen minutes ago!
Moose: Duh, they’ll be here when they get here.
Panel two: Archie nearly falls over as Moose reach past Chuck to keep him from falling with one hand as Reggie begins to comb his hair. Chuck is thinking out loud. The panel looks like a viewing monitor as a hand wearing a red suit sleeve motions towards it with an open palm.
Archie: Say, isn’t it kind of weird that we’re all meeting our dates at the same—whooah.
Moose: I got yah, Arch.
Chuck: If this were a horror movie, I’d be apprehensive, I’ll say that much….
Man off panel: Oh Chucky baby this isn’t a horror movie! Oh no no no! This is something much, much better!
Panel three: Inside of a TV truck as Sly Flynn, a man in his late thirties with dark hair slicked back, wearing purple shades, a red suit, with a giant green bowtie, and matching pants and holding a microphone as he talks into a camera one cameraman is holding. Next to him are Betty, Veronica, Nancy, and Midge. Betty is and is nervously playing with her ponytail, Veronica is frowning as she looks over at Betty, Midge is looking around at all the TV monitors inside of the TV truck, Nancy looks over at Sly Flynn and doesn’t like his sense of style. Thought the TV truck are monitors showing various images of Archie, Reggie, Moose, and Chuck.
Sly Flynn: This is the game show for playas and steadies!
Sly Flynn: I’m Sly Flynn (as in flying) and I am your humble host of—STICK TO YOUR SPOT!
Sly Flynn: --Where girlfriends challenge their boyfriends to prove their love by simply cementing their feet to the ground!
Panel one: A close-up on Betty as she bites her ponytail as the camera catches her by surprised and not ready.
Caption: This sweet little thing is Betty Cooper. Friend to all animals and has never uttered a cuss word!
Betty: Wait—What? The camera’s on me?
Panel two: A close up on Veronica as Veronica frowns and pouts. Betty sticks her hand out with a penny in her palm to show to everyone.
Caption: And this is Veronica Lodge! Heir to the abundant Lodge fortune! This raven hair beauty is used to getting what she wants, boys!
Veronica: If that were true, Archie would be my boyfriend instead of Reggie for this!
Betty off-panel: I won the coin flip fair and square!
Panel three: Midge is smiling and making a joke as she waves at the viewers.
Caption: This is Midge Klump. Her career choice: stuntwoman!
Midge: But that doesn’t mean I don’t buckle up when I drive!
Caption: --Hey, I do the funnies here!
Panel four: A close-up on Nancy who corrects Sly.
Caption: And this is Nancy Woods! She likes to doodle on paper!
Nancy: I like art! Watercolors specifically!
Caption: Like cartoons!
Panel five: The cameraman is focused on all of them as they all react differently. Betty is still shy and blushing while Veronica leans in front of her to strike a pose. Midge is waving both hands now and smiling as hard as she can while Nancy is blowing kisses into the camera. Sly has a devilish grin on his face as he strokes his hands like he were a mad scientist awaiting for his experiment to begin.
Sly Flynn: The rules are simple. Each young lady has a boyfriend they have kept waiting and if one can manage to stay the allotted time of forty five minutes, that couple will win an all expense paid trip to Hawaii for themselves and their families!
Sly Flynn: And just to make it a challenge—and more fun for me--we’ll be throwing a few tests along the way.
Panel one: Cut back to the boys as Reggie is already missing while Archie, Moose, and Chuck patiently wait on. Behind them a small puppy at the window has a camera strapped to his head that no one notices.
Caption: And our hidden cameras are right here ready to—
Caption: Hey, where’s that dark haired kid go?
Panel two: Reggie is walking away from the pet shop with a group of teenage girls accompanying him. Reggie is flashing his smile and showcasing his muscles as the girls swoon over him.
Caption: Wow! One second! That’s the record for shortest time ever! What a hound dog!
Panel three: Sly Flynn is motioning at Veronica as Betty, Midge, and Nancy have to hold her back as she tries to tear Sly Flynn in two after his comments towards her. Sly just ignores it as he goads her on.
Sly Flynn: Guess even rich brats can’t buy themselves a win, huh? The exit’s right over there, loser.
Veronica: How about I pay for your trip to the ICU, you slimy smart mouth—!!
Nancy: Whoa, girl! Way too many witnesses!
Panel four: Betty is trying to calm Veronica down as Veronica is snarling and has a vein popping on her forehead.
Veronica: --Call me a loser..!
Betty: Ronnie, c’mon! Don’t let him get to you!
Panel one: Sly jumps in front of the girls startling them as he snaps his finger to get the camera man to focus on him.
Sly Flynn: Hey! Hey! Hey!
Sly Flynn: I’m the star! Not them! The camera is on moi!
Panel two: Sly adjusts his green bowtie as he motions at a monitor with Archie on it. Behind him the other girls are obviously getting sick of Sly’s primadonna bad attitude. Veronica has her arms folded as she stares daggers at Sly.
Sly Flynn: Now let’s see how blondie’s freckled face beau reacts to our first little test of loyalty, shall we?
Panel three: Back to Archie, Chuck, and Moose as they notice a mob of Josie and the Pussycats fans running past them as Archie stops one teenage boy wearing a Pussycat hat and wearing a Melody T-shirt.
Archie: Hey, where’s the fire?
Teenage boy: Guy, Josie and the Pussycats are setting up in the east section! It’ll be the bomb, yo.
Caption with Sly’s face: I wrote his dialogue! How great am I!?
Panel four: Archie has a thought balloon of Valerie over his head that is surrounded by hearts as he looks up at the thought balloon in a love gaze.
Panel five: Chuck and Moose look on as Archie runs after the Pussycat mob of fans.
Moose: Duh, Archie, what about Betty?
Archie: I’ll just tell her a celebrity was here! She’ll understand!
Panel one: A shot of Betty as she is grabbing the camera man and shaking him violently as she has gone off the deep end. Sly looks over and finds it amusing as he seems to enjoy the misery he caused. Veronica shakes a fist a monitor with Archie’s face. Midge and Nancy try to calm Betty down.
Betty: What that no good little sneak! He’ll just leave me like that! When I get my hands on him, I’m gonna—
Sly: Cooper, save the details and get to the action! This will be great for a web exclusive!
Panel two: Betty and Veronica storm out of the truck as Sly points up at the sky with both hands as he celebrates. Nancy and Midge are helping the camera man get his bearings as he is still loopy from Betty shaking him.
Veronica: Come on, Betty, let’s find those miserable two-timers!
Betty: Seek and destroy.
Panel three: Midge and Nancy are talking to one another as they try to get their bearings. Sly Flynn is peeking from the right of the panel as he does not like the focus not being on him.
Midge: I guess it pays to have steady boyfriends.
Nancy: Yeah, maybe we can both win.
Panel four: Sly Flynn jumps in front of the girls as he spreads out his arms and legs to block them from view as both Midge and Nancy glare at him.
Sly Flynn: ERK! Not gonna happen!
Panel one: Back to Chuck and Moose standing outside of the pet shop as Chuck is looking at his watch as he paces back and forth. Moose has turned to the pet shop window and making cute faces at the puppy and somehow doesn’t notice that one puppy has a small camera strapped to its head.
Chuck: Wow! They’re really late! Never known Nancy to keep me waiting this long!
Moose: Duh, I’m sure they’ll be along. Just gotta be a little patient, that’s all.
Panel two: Chuck is turning to talk to Moose as someone screams off panel to get his attention.
Chuck: Maybe. But they could be stuck in traffic or have car trouble. Maybe I should just—
Voice off-panel: Thank you, faithful followers!!
Panel three: Chuck turns around to see Stanley Mann (an homage of Stan Lee) wearing a suit of various Marvel Comic replica characters. Around him are various little children and teenage nerds all wanting an autograph. Lagging behind the main group is a bunch of out of shape fifty year old men. Chuck is looking on in the background with his knuckles at his mouth and his body bent over as he is overcome with joy.
Stanley Mann: Excelsior! It’s me Stanley Mann! And I’ll be signing autographs for my fans at the book shop for the next hour or so!
Chuck: Wow! I can’t believe it! He’s a living comic legend! He created The Fine Five, The Rearrangers, and Spider-Guy!
Panel four: Chuck begins to follow after Stanley Mann and the mob of comic fans as he points ahead. The out of shape fifty year old man have fallen to their hands and knees as they attempt to catch their breath as everyone else continues on.
Moose: But what about Nancy?
Chuck: Hey! I’m about to meet a legend! An icon! I see her every day, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity!
Panel five: Back to the production truck as Sly Flynn points a finger right at Nancy’s face and twists his body as if kicking an imaginary ball. Nancy’s eyebrow twitches to show her irritation at what is happening.
Sly Flynn: Told ya so, Told ya so!
« on: June 26, 2015, 01:21:44 PM »
Panel one: Jughead and Betty are walking out of The Chocklit Shoppe as Jughead holds the door open with one hand and drinking from a cup with his other. Betty has her head turned to Jughead as she asks him a question.
Betty: So you haven’t seen Archie?
Jughead: And if he’s not with me, and he’s not with you, and Spain is due east of here—
Panel two: Betty pouts as Jughead walks beside her as they leave the Chocklit Shoppe and walk up the sidewalk.
Betty: Sigh. He’s with Veronica.
Betty: And I bet she has him wrapped around her little finger by now.
Archie off-panel: GANGWAY!
Panel three: Archie runs past them with Veronica chasing after Archie and taking a swing at him. Betty looks on like a kid who unwrapped the perfect Christmas present while Jughead moves his arms like a matador and tilts his head as he nearly gets clobbered by Veronica’s stray punch.
Veronica Lodge: Archie Andrews! I could just kill you for what you did!
Archie: I know! That’s why I’m running!!
Panel four: Betty and Jughead look on as Veronica continues to chase Archie as everyone leaps or jumps out of their way on the sidewalk. One man jumps climbs up a pole while another hides behind two children in a great act of cowardice. Betty is pumping her fist as she’s ecstatic at what is happening and Jughead is only mildly interested.
Jughead: Wonder what Arch did to upset her royal highness this time?
Betty: Who cares?!?
Panel one: Mr. Weatherbee and Miss Grundy are walking out of The Pickens Grocery store as Mr. Weatherbee is carrying a plastic bag and Ms. Grundy has a small paper bag to contain her purchase.
Ms. Grundy: It was nice wandering into you, Waldo. But you might think me crazy for saying this—
Mr. Weatherbee: You miss our students too.
Panel two: Ms. Grundy turns to Mr. Weatherbee as he reminisces.
Ms. Grundy: So I’m not alone, I take it.
Mr. Weatherbee. I know we have stannous occupations, but I do enjoy what we do thanks to the bright young minds we’ve been blessed with.
Panel three: Ms. Grundy and Mr. Weatherbee sadly lower their heads.
Mr. Weatherbee And they do make life interesting with their antics and shenanigans…
Mr. Weatherbee: …But they’re all off gallivanting or on vacation elsewhere, so we’ll have to wait until fall to see their bright eyes and hear their tender words.
Panel four: Veronica is chasing Archie as they run past Ms. Grundy and Mr. Weatherbee and accidentally knock Mr. Weatherbee’s bag out of his hands as toothpaste, shaving cream, wig shampoo, pens, and several small books are flung from the paper bag.
Archie: Please, forgive me, Ronnie!
Veronica: Never! Never! Never!
Panel five: Ms. Grundy and Mr. Weatherbee, both cheerful, bend over and begin to put Mr. Weatherbee’s items back in his paper bag. Ms. Grundy looks curiously at the wig shampoo.
Ms. Grundy: I can hardly wait.
Mr. Weatherbee: Me neither.
Panel one: Archie is running past a picnic table as Veronica leaps over it to make up ground on him. A bear hiding behind a tree looks on sadly as the picnic basket accidently gets kicked to the ground. The picnicers look on wide-eye while their little girl roots for Veronica.
Archie: Sheesh! How is she so fast in heels!?
Panel two: Veronica begins to catch up on Archie a little as she screams at him.
Veronica: Each drop of perspiration that escapes from my pores only makes it worse for you!
Archie: You’ll make it worse on me if you catch me!
Panel three: Veronica tackles Archie from behind as he falls to the ground.
Panel four: Veronica has Archie on his stomach and has her knees on his stomach as she has a fist raised above her head as Archie has his arms over his face to shield him. Three squirrels (a tall one, a skinny one, and a fat one) look on as they have body paint and holding acorns as if they were a professional wrestling audience.
Veronica: Now you’re going to pay for what you did! You cad! You wicked boy!
Panel five: Archie leans up and shrugs his shoulders as he can’t remember what he did as Veronica glares at him.
Archie: Um, what did I do?
Veronica: You don’t remember!?
Veronica: You besmirched me! You humiliated me! You—you—
Panel six: Veronica rolls her eyes upward as she tries to remember herself as
Veronica: What did you do exactly?
Panel one: Veronica has her fist grinding against Archie’s forehead as a frightened Archie looks on.
Veronica: All this running around might have made me forget, but I know how I feel—and that’s angry!
Panel two: Archie is sweating as he tries to reason with Veronica.
Archie: Yeah—but you don’t remember why and neither do I. So what good will losing your head over it do?
Panel three: Veronica raises an eyebrow as she thinks it over.
Panel four: Veronica allows Archie to sit up as she gives him a hug and he returns it. The squirrels begin giving each other a hug as they mimic the two teens. A penguin wearing a parachute pack ignores a disco duck who wants a hug.
Veronica: You’re right, Archiekins! It’s silly to be angry when you’ve forgotten why!
Panel one: A shot of the Riverdale Matinee in the fall as Archie and Veronica are walking to it. Veronica has stopped to give a homeless man some money. The homeless man has a sign reading: PLEASE HELP. I PROMISE TO MAKE GOOD.
Panel two: A shot in the winter as Archie and Veronica are in winter clothing as they walk past the same spot. The homeless man is now set up a booth where he is selling high tech tops called T-bobs as several people line up to purchase one. The homeless guy now has stubble and slightly better clothes.
Panel three: It is spring as the homeless man/ now successful businessman is shaking Veronica’s hand. The homeless man is wearing a business suit, clean shaven, and has his hair slicked back. Veronica feigns a smile as she obviously doesn’t remember who the homeless man is and that she helped him.
Panel four: Archie looks back at Veronica as Veronica shrugs her shoulders as she does not remember who the homeless man is. The homeless man is being helped into his limousine by his chauffer in the background.
Archie: Who was that? One of your father’s business partners?
Veronica: Nobody I’m familiar with.
Panel five: Veronica turns to watch the limo drive off as Archie wanders off with love glazed over eyes.
Veronica: Funny the people and things one can forget. Like last year, I was upset with you over something and for the life of me, I still can’t recall why!
Veronica: Archiekins? Archie…?
Panel one: Archie is looking at a movie poster and ignoring Veronica as she becomes irate. The movie poster has a starlet dressed as an adventurer and striking a pose.
Veronica: Hey! A Lodge is speaking to you! That rates just below Gabriel’s horn in importance of anything you could ever hear!
Panel two: Archie continues to focus on the movie as Veronica stomps towards him with her face turning bright red.
Panel three: Veronica smacks Archie across the head as Archie’s eyes nearly pop out of his head.
Veronica: PAY ATTENTION TO ME!
Panel four: Archie’s eyes are glazed over as he is on wobbly feet and can barely keep himself standing as his right leg is crossed over with his left. Veronica doesn’t notice as begins to recall what she was upset with Archie about a year ago.
Veronica: …This seems familiar somehow.
Panel five: Veronica’s face lights up as she is proud to remember what happened a year ago.
Veronica: That’s it!
Veronica: I was talking to you and you ignored me! That’s what I was upset about!
Panel six: Veronica hugs the concussed Archie as he is still not orbiting our planet.
Veronica: Oh, Archiekins, I’m sorry I got upset over such a silly thing. It won’t ever happen again. Can you ever forgive me?
Archie: Sure—but who are you and who am I again…?
« on: June 21, 2015, 12:21:47 PM »
Love is such a wonderful thing—until the woman you love betrays you for your best friend, ruining years of friendship, burning a bridge that can never be repaired. Man, I’m going to miss watching NFL Games on that 70 in HD TV come Fall…
A misunderstanding has lead to the break-up of Riverdale’s most true couple, Moose and Midge. Can Archie, Betty, and friends find a way to bring these two back together or will forever Break-up Blues
Moose and Midge: I really like when they get the focus of the story put on them without Betty going on and on about the message of the few pages. And the break-up is logical. Midge wanted to test her love while Moose didn’t see a need to; Midge wanted to hear the words steady, while Moose was of the mindset that he didn’t have to say the words. These two hardly ever get any focus in the Archieverse so it was fun to have a story that centered around them. Both are likeable and well written. You don’t really take a side because both had reasonable arguments and both are equally stubborn and prideful. You get backstory on how they fell in love and for how long. I understand they’re not Archie or in the main cast, but if they had gotten more page time this would have been a much better story for it.
Good character moments from Archie and the gang. Yeah, they’re normally boring and most of the fun characters (Veronica, Jughead, Reggie) don’t get much page time like they should but you do have some good moments. Jughead relating how missing out on food is like feeling like it’s a part of life you just missed, Veronica gets few pages, but she’s super fun in them. Reggie is a cowardly rogue, Archie is clumsy and it factors into the story. My favorite would be the end in the dance club with Betty becoming jealous of Veronica and frustrated by her antics. Too bad most of the story is just Betty being boring and Archie following along.
Tod Smith: I like his art for the most part. Again the characters look like teenagers. I like how he draws Reggie. And I like some of the over exaggerated poses of Betty because—it’s the few things I found interesting about her in this story. The body language for each character is spot on as Veronica just demands your attention while Jughead is slumped over. I really like how he draws Moose, almost like Frankenstein’s monster. There is one problem: His Archie is kind of weird at points. But luckily Archie is normally with Betty so it’s nice to be interested in something. Yes, Betty bores me this much in this story I’ll take what I can get to find interesting moments.
The messages. I don’t have a problem with stories giving a message. I think every story should have some lesson it was to convey. My problem is when you are beating the reader over and over and explaining it to them word by word without letting them put in the cognitive thought process on their own. And there are some good messages. Like sometimes you need to back off and let your friends work out their problems themselves. That’s a good message. It’s just that most messages in the New Look are teaching you a lesson instead of entertaining you. And, I got to be honest, I was used to Webb stories where Veronica is evil and Betty is super duper nice—it was nice where Veronica actually had the right idea compared to leave things be and let what happens happen. It was rare at the time.
Betty’s cussing and overreactions. Seriously, she cussed in this?! I mean, it’s censored but—at least it’s funny to think of. And Betty’s Home Alone pose when trouble happens or things backfire was funny. Seriously, if I was Tod Smith, and reading this script, I’d do stuff like this to have some fun when it comes to Betty in this story.
Betty: Exposition, exposition, tell the message, have no personalitttty…! That’s her purpose in the story. She gives information on backstory, how long something has happened, we get to see what she is thinking and her thoughts. And for most of the story—yeah, she’s as boring as you’d expect. And there’s so much unnecessary information like how she worries about here feelings, or thinking something—and then a character tells the information. An example would be Rocco and the South side kids with her thining who they are and then Dilton and Jughead telling. And again it’s the same problem of with Bad Boy Trouble—she’s not involved in the crisis of the story, Moose and Midge is. Where we could have more focus on those two, we have Betty telling us what’s going on and how we should feel.
The Writing. Just like Bad Boy Trouble you have really the same problem of this originally being a novel and it shows. It’s unnecessarily wordy and the pacing can be just plain slow. And again it just beats you over the head with their messages that you just want to scream at points. And some of the dialogue—wow. We got some groan worthy stuff. And there’s a point where Midge goes home, and the next page Midge’s mother lectures Archie and Betty—how did Midge go over everything so fast?! She had to be in the house only ten seconds top! I mean I don’t want to constantly harp on Melanie because she does some good things. Like Moose and Midge. When they get the focus or in the story it’s really good. But key elements of the story are just not focused on. And I don’t even know why Jughead was in this story at all. He serves no point and annoyed me all but once.
Characters that just exist. The Turner Twins are there to snitch about Midge’s date with Reggie and then at the end…actually they didn’t even need to be mentioned at all. Judy Johnson, whom Moose dates for a time, we don’t really get much from her other than the standard boring new girl who a character falls for like you would in Save by the Bell. I guess I appreciate that she seemed really nice, but she’s forgettable all the same.
Midge’s hair: Okay, she has black hair on the cover, kinda redish purple, and brown…c’mon, we can do better than that! Stick with a hair color. I mean the rest of the coloring is fine, but this kind of thing is just inexcusable.
What I learned from reading this:
1. The Turner Twins are snitches.
2. Rocco from the South Side, while a punk, has a pretty good memory as he remembers Archie from over a month ago.
3. You can beat up whomever you want how badly…as long as it’s in the boxing ring of the Riverdale Community Center
4. Betty knows a cuss word
5. Moose and Midge are the third best dancers in all of Riverdale with no practice together!
6. No empty seats, sit on a lap!
7. How to get your two friends back together? Fake a leg cramp and act like you need rescuing.
8. C’mon, Midge—you and Moose WERE ON A BREAK!!!
9. When a woman dates another guy not her boyfriend; she’s experimenting.
10. Detention Room Romance is the number one rom-com that all women subject their men to. Multiple times.
This is weird because when Moose and Midge are in the story, I really, really like it. It’s fun, energetic. But then you have the parts where they’re not and most of them are boring because Betty is the relation point for the reader to convey information…and she’s so boring for the most part. But again, I consider art more important than writing (Sorry, Stan Lee). I liked the last New Series story because of how bad it’s funny Nick St. Clair was but Moose and Midge were actually fun and relatable characters. I’ll go B-
So we’re at least improving when it comes to the New Look stories. So how bad can MatchMakers possibly be?
« on: June 17, 2015, 04:18:58 PM »
Panel one: Jughead is leaning against a wall as he is watching a penguin using a jet pack doing barrel rolls in the sky as a flock of butterflies are forming a giant question mark to show their own confusion. Jughead isn’t impressed at all as he looks ahead as Ethel approaches him with a withered old sheet of construction paper in her hand. Across the street Pop Tate and Segarini are having another fight where Pop Tate is throwing burgers and Segarini is throwing pizzas.
Ethel: Jughead! It’s time for you and me to settle up!
Jughead: Sure. I’ll settle in the western hemisphere and you take the eastern.
Panel two: Ethel is smiling ear to ear as Jughead puts his right hand at his chin as he feigns thinking.
Ethel: No, silly! You promised me that we’d go on a date today!
Jughead: Hmm. I don’t recall any brief periods of insanity where I would ramble such balderdash…
Panel three: Ethel show Jughead and the reader the construction paper as it is mostly just red and blue markings with the name Jughead + Ethel with Jughead’s name marked underneath it.
Ethel: Oh, you promised--
Ethel: --And I have the proof right here!
Panel one: Jughead takes the construction paper as he turns it sideways and his head to the left as he tries to figure out what it is.
Jughead: What’s this chickenscratch supposed to be?
Ethel: You wrote it back in kindergarten!
Panel two: A thought balloon begins to form over Jughead’s head as he squints his eyes as he reflects on the past.
Panel three: In the thought balloon: Lil’ Jughead is looking over at Lil’ Ethel as she has a small piece of cake she is preparing to eat. They are outside at recess as various other younger versions characters are about and playing. At Jughead’s feet is a discarded ice cream cone.
Lil’ Jughead: Ethel—I had ice cream and I would like some cake too.
Panel four: Lil’ Jughead takes the cake as he nods his head and sticks his tongue out as he looks at the delicious cake.
Ethel: But ya gotta promise to go on a date with me!
Jughead: Fine, fine—11 years from now!
Panel five: In the thought balloon Lil’ Jughead has cake all over his mouth and is using his T-shirt as a napkin as he begins to wipe his mouth. Lil’ Ethel is running with the construction paper contract as she it to Lil Betty and Lil Veronica; Lil Betty approves while Lil’ Veronica sticks a finger in her mouth. Jughead reacts in disappointment at the revelation.
Lil’ Jughead: Huh. Guess I’ll have to date a girl one day…
Panel six: Jughead looks up angrily at the thought balloon as Lil’ Jughead smiles as he licks his lips clean.
Lil’ Jughead: Eh, what do I care? That’s Teenage Jughead’s problem!
Panel one: Jughead with the thought balloon still over his head tries to act innocent and declare his ignorance of any promise.
Jughead: I have no idea what you’re talking about.
Panel two: Ethel grabs onto the thought balloon as Jughead looks on in disappointment.
Ethel: Ah-ah! You’re fibbing!
Panel three: Jughead is using the end of one of his pins to burst the thought balloon as he admits defeat.
Jughead: Sigh. That’s what I get for thinking out loud….
Panel four: Jughead is putting the pin back in his beanie as Ethel cups her hands and jumps in joy.
Jughead: Well, that’s my name on the paper, and a man’s name has to amount to something in this crazy little world of ours.
Panel five: Ethel hugs Jughead and rubs her face cheek against his as Jughead turns his head away in disgust.
Ethel: We’ll have fun! Just a quick bite at Pop’s and a simple little movie!
Ethel: That’s not so bad, is it, Juggie-wuggie?
Panel six: Ethel is skipping away happily as Jughead lowers his head in regret as the jetpack wearing penguin pats him on the back to give him some support.
Jughead: How the sins of youth tarnish a bright, happy future.
Panel one: Jughead, wearing a regular shirt and jeans, is ringing Ethel’s door bell as he impatiently waits for her. On a nearby birdhouse, an eagle is trying to figure out how to get inside.
SFX: Ding Ding-a Ding
Jughead: Okay! I’m here! Let’s get this over with!—
Panel two: Jughead looks behind him like he is about to leave as the door to the Muggs’ home opens.
Jughead: --Or we can just call this entire thing off here and now.
Ethel: Always the kidder.
Panel three: Jughead looks blankly as Ethel has fixed up her hair and is wearing some of her best clothing.
Ethel: How do I look, Juggie?
Jughead: Two eyes like most people. But I guess you dressed yourself in the dark.
Panel four: Ethel is looking Jughead over with a nod of approval as Jughead looks at his clothing.
Ethel: And look at you! You look fantastic, and is that new cologne!?
Jughead: No. I gave Hot Dog his bath in these clothes last week. Never got around to washing them.
Panel five: Ethel and Jughead leave arm and arm as both begin to scratch their heads with their free arm. In the birdhouse, the eagle is sticking its head out and waving goodbye to the teens. The eagle has put a small American flag on the roof of the birdhouse to show he claims it as his home.
Ethel: One of the qualities I look for in a man is a love for animals.
Jughead: I hate pandas
Ethel: Nobody hates pandas.
Panel one: Ethel and Jughead are walking along the street as they approach the Chocklit Shoppe. Jughead sadly looks to the road as an ice cream truck is passing by with the driver waving goodbye to Jughead.
Ethel: It sure is a nice, sunny afternoon, isn’t it?
Panel two: Jughead holds the door open for Ethel as he grumbles to himself and is thinking of himself sleeping in a hammock with nearly half of his body hanging out.
Ethel: Can you think of any other place you’d rather be?
Jughead: No comment.
Panel three: Jughead is following in after her as Ethel runs in to greet someone off-panel.
Ethel: Oh! C’mon, Juggie! I want to show how we look to my bestie!
Panel four: Jughead scratches his head as he looks ahead at who Ethel is motioning to come forward.
Jughead: “Bestie?” That’s girly talk for best friend, isn’t it?
Panel five: Ethel and Trula Twyst are walking up to Jughead as Jughead looks on in confusion. Trula tilts her head to the left and smiles.
Jughead: Then why are you doing with Trula Twyst? She eat your bestie?
Ethel: Juggie, Trula’s my BFF!
Panel one: Jughead is thinking to himself as Trula and Ethel joke with one another.
Trula: Look at you, Ethel. I really like what you’ve done with your hair.
Ethel: Thanks! I got the idea over at your house last week when we were watching…
Jughead thinking: Great! Lex Luthor and Bizarro are having sleepovers!
Panel two: Jughead is talking with Ethel as Trula listens in. Jughead motions with both arms swishing across his chest as he does not like the idea of these two being friends.
Jughead: Ethel, I do not approve of you socializing with Trula!
Trula: My, my. It looks like someone cares.
Panel three: Jughead points at Ethel and shrugs his shoulders as he describes her. Ethel responds as she doesn’t understand what Jughead is saying about her.
Jughead: Oh, don’t get me wrong, I consider you both a bane to my existence.
Jughead: It’s just that Ethel is more of a misguided evil—
Ethel: I have a good sense of direction.
Panel four: Jughead looks over at Trula who smirks at Jughead as she takes his insult as a compliment.
Jughead: --But you on the other hand, Trula Twyst, are true evil!!
Panel five: Ethel and Trula begin to talk and completely ignore Jughead’s comments much to his annoyance.
Ethel: Isn’t he just cute when he puts up that front of his?
Trula: Oh yes. And I’ve read studies that a man plays hard to get by setting up said front as a test to see how far the woman he loves will go to win him over…
Jughead: Hey! Hey! Stop trading notes!
« on: June 13, 2015, 09:42:13 PM »
Mission: To read Man From R.I.V.E.R.D.A.L.E.
1. Speak of the good
2. Speak of the bad
3. Try not to ham up the summary
Archie Andrews is your typical ham-fisted, clumsy teen—that is until his cousin Andy comes for a visit. Turns out Andy is an agent of P.O.P (Protect Our Planet) and is on a mission to stop C.R.U.S.H. (Criminal Recruits United to Spread Havoc) who has aligned with old foe Mad Doctor Doom. With P.O.P. neutralized and Riverdale dazed, can Archie becomes THE MAN FROM R.I.V.E.R.D.A.L.E. and save the day?
Two out of three isn’t bad.
The Writing. Tom DeFalco provides us with the script and he knocks it out of the park. Every character is distinguishable. Archie sounds like Archie and even though he’s the hero he still has his traditional moments of going gaga for girls and being clumsy. Jughead is Jughead. And I swear, Chuck is actually interesting and is part of one of the funniest moments near the end of the story. I could pick out a word balloon and you can guess pretty accurately who it came from. The story flows and is packed with little tidbits. This is a fun story that balances comedy and tension really world. The heroes were behind most of the time and had to work to overcome the villain in typical fun Archie fashion. And you can tell, DeFalco loves the old school stories and it really brought Mad Doctor Doom to life. I’ll be honest, I was never a fan of the spy stories, but I really enjoyed this story. It’s funny, it has a great story, and an imaginative end. I can’t do this justice, it’s great writing from Tom DeFalco.
The art: It’s Fernando Ruiz so, yeah, naturally this will be awesome. This story is just great to look at. Everything is well done: The characters, the settings, buildings. You can tell he was just having a blast with this story. And I love all the background events. And this story is packed with them! An alien hiding in a garbage bin and later trying to escape a few pages later to teenagers doing stupid stuff, everything you could want is there to make you go back and see what you missed. You see a good slew of Archie favorite characters…and Raj (tee-hee I kid, I kid). And it’s nice to see more Ruiz favorite characters get panel time because it’s usually Parent favored characters in most comics. You even get to see Raj’s dad. The Walking Dazed walk like zombies, characters have their own body language (like Chester and his fixation with his hair and looks). This story really competes with Cyrano Jones, which I considered his best work. Note the past tense because we have a new number one.
Archie: Have you ever heard of the term, “For every wall there is a door”? If you haven’t it means that if you wait, keep trying, and endure, you’ll eventually breakthrough. That’s Archie in the story. He’s told he can’t do this, he’s not ready, he’s not good enough, but he just won’t quit. When his friends are in trouble he picks himself off the ground and goes back for more. He’s outclassed by the villains who have the numbers, the plan, and everything else, but Archie wins through determination and a bit of luck. You still have the traditional going gaga over the girls and being a clutz, but when things get serious, it’s believable for Archie to step up to fight back. Even most people who don’t like Archie will find him likeable in this story. He’s just a great hero. And the growth is great, Andy keeps telling he can’t and near the end when Andy tells him to let the professionals handle it now, Archie’s response: “Yeah! They’ve been doing a great job so far!” If you like Archie’s Weird Mysteries or the older stories where Archie has to step up to foil a robbery or catch a thief this Archie is for you.
The Villains: A hero is only as good as his villains and the bad guys in this story are really good. Mad Doctor Doom is great. He has a great look, he poses an actual threat to the heroes, and he’s intelligent. I love when Chester comments how C.R.U.S.H. can take over the world with the daze formula and the next panel is Mad Doctor Doom shifts his eyes. He’s the perfect mix of goofy looking and scary.
Sharry the Spy Girl. I’ve seen Ruiz draw her in a few stories and I never got why he liked her so much. Well, now I do. She’s a fun character. Again, she’s intelligent and poses a threat, but she’s distinguished from Mad Doctor Doom in her playfulness (her trolling of Reggie must be seen, it’s so hilarious), she’s loyal to her fellow agents, and she does have enough grasp on morality when circumstances get out of hand that she’ll help the good guys.
The rest of the villains are fun. Crammer and Cranston are the typical goons, but they aren’t total idiots and Crammer has a fun accent. They’re not on the level of Mad Doctor Doom or Sharry, but they are at least capable and even when they blunder it benefits the villains. Chester is a good sidekick to Mad Doctor Doom…but man he kinda got creepy with the captured Betty and Veronica. I’m talking Archie Comics TMNT and MM Null level of ick. But it does help him stand out.
The inker, lettering, and coloring. Rich Koslowski is one of Archie’s better inkers and he really helps bring out Ruiz’s art and help give it an extra spring. Jack Morelli really steps up his game with his work especially when he colors and boldens the story. I hate when word balloons have colors around them, but here they make sense like with the security system for P.O.P. and Archie’s reaction and I like how words are enlarged and colored to show their importance like Mad Doctor Doom when his name is first mentioned and when he later goes over the name of his plan to take over the world. Tom Chu does a great job with the coloring, the colors are bright and fun, I like the tint of purple he gave the dazed characters. He made me not miss Barry Grossman and if you know me that’s an accomplishment.
Extras: We get an old timely story in traditional newspaper strip with Andy Andrews is a fun little story. Words from Tom DeFalco and Fernado Ruiz and art and sketches where Ruiz and what his ideas where and what changed and why.
A little explanation on Lil’ Archie and Mad Doctor Doom’s history would have helped: If you’re a new reader to Archie Comics or not familiar or a fan of Lil’ Archie you’ll probably wonder what’s up with Mad Doctor Doom not liking Archie and deeming him a threat to ruin his plan over everything else. I think a panel or two explaining and showing what has happened in the past would have benefited the readers.
Crammer’s accent comes and goes: Vat is up vith that? Okay, it was just two times…I gotta fill the section out somehow!!
Something bad about the art. Okay, to be fair, I should find something Ruiz did wrong… I don’t like how he made me feel about Beazley.
What I learned.
1. If you twirl round ‘n’ round like Wonder Woman you can disguise yourself as anyone
2. A teenager and his friends >>>> all our government’s agencies including their secret ones
3. Tough Teddy transferred to Riverdale High.
4. All bookstores are the cover for hidden secret organizations.
5. Never hire and fund an evil scientist for any project that involves easy means to take over the world
6. Spies get all the cool toys
7. Chicken soup cures everything
8. Bad girl spies are hot
9. So that’s who the Riverdale Bulldog Mascot is!
10. Honorary Agents of P.O.P. are color coded like any teenage group of heroes.
This is probably the best Archie story I’ve read. I can’t think of anything that can go against it. Everything just clicks from the writing to the art to the coloring to the lettering to the inking. It’s all great. I can’t really think of any Archie story that comes close to this one. And that’s not counting the great extras. This an A+ and you should buy this story. You won’t regret it.
You know reading this story makes me feel like I'm ready for anything. That nothing can bring me down. So next week I'll review Match--er, I mean, Moose and Midge Breakup Blues.
« on: June 09, 2015, 11:42:46 PM »
Panel one: Bingo Wilkin is walking past The Smythe home as Tough Teddy punches him in the arm unexpectedly. In the background, Mr. Smythe has his push yawn mower raised up and waving it at Bingo with one hand and pointing away with the other.
Tough Teddy: When you match five, you call Bingo. But when my five fingers hit Bingo, what does he call?
Tough Teddy: Aw, I was hoping you’d call, “Yahtzee!”
Panel two: Bingo Wilkin is holding his arm as Tough Teddy flexes a muscle and adjusts his shades as he gets in front of Bingo and walks backwards so he can continue to show off how great he is to Bingo.
Bingo Wilkin: How about I call a lawyer?
Tough Teddy: Heh. They all love me. Who do you think puts the people in the ambulances they chase?
Panel three: Bingo Wilkin has his hands at the back of his head as he walks with Teddy as Teddy cracks his knuckles as he walks side by side with Bingo now.
Bingo Wilkin: You really enjoy being the local tough guy, don’t you?
Tough Teddy: The top teen? The bad boy numero uno? The Midville Menace?
Tough Teddy: It’s the greatest!
Panel one: Tough Teddy throws punches at his shadow on a nearby fence as the shadow goes into the fetal position in response. Bingo looks up at the sky as the talks with Tough Teddy.
Bingo Wilkin: Well, you know what they say, there’s always someone else better.
Panel two: Tough Teddy walks in front of Bingo and sticks out his chest as he continues to boast. Running towards them is Buddy Drumhead who has his hat smashed in around his neck, his clothes tattered, his body is bruised up, and he is sadly holding his broken drumsticks in his right hand.
Tough Teddy: If there’s someone who can give me a walloping, I’d like to meet him!
Panel three: Buddy Drumhead sadly looks at his broken drumsticks as Bingo tries to get his hat from around his neck as Tough Teddy looks on offended.
Bingo Wilkin: Wow, Buddy Drumhead! Looks like you were in a tornado!
Tough Teddy: Hey! No one clobbers one of my friends—but me! Who did this to you? Point ‘em out!
Panel four: Buddy Drumhead points back at a teen (Frankie The Fist) about half the size of Bingo wearing a green shirt with a red fist on it, a black crew cut, and wearing black jeans with cowboy boots. Frankie has arms and fists resembling Popeye’s. Frankie the Fist has a teenage boy twice his size by the shirt collar and is flinging him to the ground effortlessly.
Franky The Fist: The nerve of ya to breath the same air as me!
Teen: I-I-I-I’ll hold my breathe from now on…I swear…!!
Panel five: Tough Teddy pushes Buddy aside as he strides over to confront Franky The Fist
Tough Teddy: You two girls stay here and watch as I punch a dwarf into a coma!
Panel six: Tough Teddy calls over to Frankie The Fist as Frankie the Fist lets the teen crawl away as the teen is holding his breath and his cheeks are puffed up to the max and his face has turned purple.
Tough Teddy: Hey, munchkin! Just who do you think you are poaching my victims?!
Frankie the Fist: I’m Frankie The Fist, and I’m takin’ over as the local tough guy in dis neighborhood!
Panel one: Tough Teddy bends down and points his index finger right at Frankie’s forehead as Frankie scowls and looks like he’s a few seconds from exploding. With his other arm, Teddy acts like he is ringing an imaginary bell to start a boxing match.
Tough Teddy: Yeah, well, I’m the reining champ, so if you want a fight…
Tough Teddy: Ding. That’s the bell, let’s rumble, Tiny Tim!
Panel two: Bingo is trying to console a brokenhearted Buddy as he continues to look at his broken drumsticks. Over his head is an image of a tombstone with his drumsticks engraved under the RIP.
Bingo: Sorry about your sticks, but you can always break in a new pair. And at least that bully is getting paid in kind.
Panel three: Bingo and Billy duck their head as a beaten unconscious Tough Teddy sails over their heads as if he was shot out of a rocket.
Panel four: Buddy Drumhead runs off as Frankie the Fist stomps over towards the two as Bingo looks on with hesitation as he's too scared to move.
Frankie The Fist: You pals with that daffodil?
Bingo: More or less.
Frankie The Fist: You tell’im, if he ever comes to, dis is my street and what I say goes!
Panel five: Frankie the Fist shoves Bingo out of his way as he marches ahead.
Frankie: What’s your name, dummy?
Bingo: Bingo Wilkin.
Panel six: Frankie the Fist is walking away in the background as he shakes a fist as a warning to Bingo as Bingo gives a worried aside glance to the reader.
Frankie: Well, now your name is Mud! And if I ever see dat blank, stupid face of yours again, I’m gonna pound ya ta pulp!
Panel one: Interior of a hospital room where Tough Teddy has been laid up in a hospital bed with his right arm and left leg hung up in slings as Bingo talks with him. Teddy is still braggadocios as ever despite the massive thrashing and aftermath. Bingo is standing right by his bed and we can’t see the lower part of his body and his arms are at his knees as he seems to be holding something with both hands.
Tough Teddy: The little squirt got lucky! Once I get out of this bed and my arm and leg heal up, I’m taking back my title as top teen!
Bingo: That’s the spirit!
Panel three: Teddy turns his head to talk with Bingo. We can see better that Bingo is holding an empty paper bag.
Tough Teddy: Heck, he threatened you and look at you! Out and about without a care! What’s it say when he can’t intimidate a wimp like you?
Bingo: Yeah, I refuse to be bullied or my life dictated by fear.
Bingo: Sorry I have to leave so soon…
Panel four: Bingo is walking out the hospital room with a paper bag over his head as Tough Teddy looks on in alarm. On the paper bag written in black marker is Hi, my name is Mud. Eye holes have been cut out for Bingo to see.
Bingo: … But I promised my mom I’d be back home early to help her set up her diner party.
Panel one: Out on the street near where Tough Teddy had gotten thrashed is where the panel takes place. Bingo Wilkin and Samantha are walking past Tough Teddy as he is sadly walking along on crutches with his right arm in a sling and his left leg in a cast as even Rebel, who is sitting on the sidewalk blowing bubbles, shakes his head at how pathetic Teddy looks.
Caption: The next day
Samantha: What happened to poor Teddy? Was he in an accident?
Bingo: No, Frankie did that on purpose.
Panel two: Samantha and Bingo are walking along as their upper body’s are only shown.
Samantha: That new kid who moved down the street? He seems harmless enough.
Bingo: Think of him like a bee hive where all the bees have a bad attitude and all have brass knucks.
Panel three: A startled Bingo and Samantha look at each other as a word balloon is pointed below them. Bingo has a worried expression on his face as he knows he’s in trouble. Samantha’s facial expression is more of confusion as she raises her left eyebrow.
Frankie the Fist below the panel: What did I tells ya ‘bout seeing your ugly mug, Mud?
Panel four: Frankie The Fist punches Bingo in his stomach with enough force to knock him inches off the ground and double him over as his fist looks like it could go through Bingo as Samantha looks on in horror.
Franky The Fist: Maybe this visual-need-first-aid will help ya ta remember!
« on: June 08, 2015, 01:17:45 AM »
Who is the most evil character in all of Archie Comics History, I ask you?
Reggie Mantle: A mere mischief maker
Zombies and Cthulhu? Meh
The Predator: Evil doesn’t use emoticons.
The Greendale Witches. Boring. Unimaginably boring.
What we will soon deal with is an evil unlike which we have ever experienced. A corrupter of souls, a dasher of dreams, he knows not love and is a plague upon the human condition. All sentient life is but toys for him to cruelly amuse himself.
NICK. ST. CLAIR!!!!!
There’s a new kid in town and he’s NICK ST CLAIR. He’s rude, causes trouble, has no respect for authority…and he’s dating your best friend. Can Betty and friends help Veronica see that she is in…Bad Boy Trouble?!
Nick St. Clair: Oh man is he hilarious. He’s so over the top bad you can’t help but laugh at what he does! The poses, his attitude, what he wears is so exaggerated you can’t help but laugh. Just how unnecessary bad he is funny? The guy decides to take his time in the hall, be late, and make horrible jokes or yell at teachers! The best has to be the boxing match with Archie (Yes, you read that right). He’s like an evil professional wrestler! From his lame jokes, threats, and constantly hitting on Betty with the worst lines ever he’s just so bad he’s good!
The art. Well, if you wanted the teens of Riverdale to look more like teens Steven Butler does that. And he does a good job differentiating the characters. Jughead is sporting whiskers, Dilton wearing two piece clothing. I like that you can look at a character and can guess about what age they are. The backgrounds are well done and detailed. And Butler draws an awesome bike. Heck, Betty and Veronica look different enough and each have their own style. Every character has their own body language, poses, and character tics. And inker Al Milgrom’s inks just helps bring out the art even more.
The Coloring: Well, no Grossman but Stephanie Vozzo does a great job all the same. The theater scenes are just great. To convey darkness everything is in black and white save for the movie screen that is in full color. That’s a great idea that works perfectly. Flashbacks are in blue and black. The colors are bright. I was bothered by Midge suddenly having brown hair…but then again, who does in Archie Comics? Bingo Wilkin? St. Clair? ...that one really annoying character?
The Nick St. Clair
The writing: Anyone ever seen a Captain Planet cartoon now combine that with a Saved by the Bell episode and you get about where the writing is. A lot of the story focuses on Betty and she’s in super goody mode so yeah, she’s kind of flat and boring. Nearly every character save for Nick. St. Clair is flat and boring. I mean, you have a few moments but they are few and far between. Veronica is a cardboard cut out of herself, and save for the first few pages, she has no personality except “He’s not bad! You just don’t understand him” that we’ve all seen or read a million times. No dialogue really stands out to help distinguish the characters. You have one moment where Archie is clumsy but after that…he pretty much could be anyone from that point on.
And there so much exposition and stating the moral of the situation that I actually groaned. And let me explain my current situation: My Air and Central Heat is out, it’s over eighty degrees…and Dilton going “Well, Nick St. Clair would be in better shape if he didn’t skip classes” caused me physical pain. And it just keeps going from there. We get it, Nick St. Clair is baaaad. You don’t need to go over and flat out tell us that for pages after the first gazillion times!
This comic was first a novel as you can tell because the pacing can be horrible at points. The story was really stretched out to make it four issues so a lot of scenes that should have had a few more panels of emphasis (like the boxing match or the very end) makes it feel flat. And that probably the origin of all the writing problems (Save one). In a novel, you do have to give detail, explain the emotions, give a history—but comics has a visual aspect where you don’t need to do that. Like I said Steven Butler did a great job on art, but the script does not use him to make the comic better.
Should have switched the girls: There was something else that bothered me about this but I couldn’t put my finger on it, then I realized something: Betty should have been the one dating St. Clair. Early on Betty was having self doubt about herself and how she stands in the triangle; even silently admitting that Veronica can be sweet as her, but might be more gorgeous. Wouldn’t it be more interesting to see this bad boy with Betty? Betty being chosen over Veronica would work in the narrative that was set up earlier. Veronica tries to warn her, but she would see it as jealousy and maybe ruined newly built up confidence. Betty is always put outside of the moral dilemma (Like covering for Veronica and Nick going out and staying late) but since she’s the main focus wouldn’t it have made more sense for her to be in the dilemma. Like the essay, Nick wants her to write it but Betty would struggle between what is right and wrong. In the story we mainly follow Betty and she’s the one who communicates the lessons and whose thoughts we see…but Veronica is dating Nick so the real interesting parts of the story are elsewhere away from the main character.
The art. I didn’t recognize Prof. Flutesnoot or Coach Clayton at first. ….Well, I don’t want come off like I’m JUST picking on the writing!
The end: Off panel. Nick is sent to military school and tells Reggie he’s sorry for the trouble he caused wants to be a better person. BOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!
Normally this would be where I talk about the 10 things I’ve learned from what I read, but for this…
THE TOP TEN EVIL NICK. ST. CLAIR MOMENTS!!!
1. Being from New Jersey.
2. Yelling at Ms. Grundy
3. His no regards for cafeteria and those in it (Cutting in line, swiping sandwiches without paying, and stealing Dilton’s dessert! THE FIEND)
4. Cheapshotting Archie after the bell had rung to end the boxing round
5. Constantly making moves on Betty while dating Veronica (Veronica’s rich, but he likes blonds)
6. Sneaking into the movies
7. Keeping Veronica out late at a club and forcing Betty to cover for them.
8. The goatee and leatherjacket
9. Having Veronica write his 2,000 word English Lit essay for him
10. The chicken liver joke
This is interesting little problem. I really like the art aspects of the story—but I detest the writing. It’s just not up to par. But you know what…I still kind of like this comic. Mainly because of how over the top Nick St. Clair is. I just couldn’t help but laugh at his antics. I see this trade like a bad movie almost. And like I said, I really like the art and coloring. I admit there are moments where you roll your eyes, but I think the good out ways the bad enough.
I’ll go C+
And next week up on the docket is Jughead: Match—forget that, I’ll review The Man from R.I.V.E.R.D.A.L.E instead.
« on: June 05, 2015, 04:31:38 PM »
Panel One: Cheryl Blossom is in the Riverdale Mall as she approaches another teenage boy who has his girlfriend right next to him as she begins to hit on him. The boyfriend has hearts over his eyes as the girlfriend drops her jaw in disbelief.
Cheryl Blossom: Tell me, cutie? Wouldn’t you rather have me as your girlfriend over what you have now?
Panel two: The boyfriend leans in for a kiss as Cheryl Blossom leans her face in close to his as she closes her eyes and puckers her lips.
Cheryl Blossom: Would you like a kiss?
Panel three: Cheryl Blossom jerks her head back as all the hearts around the boyfriend pop as he goes wide-eyed as if snapped out of a deep sleep.
Cheryl: Cheryl Blossom kiss you?
Cheryl: Only in your dreams!
Panel four: Cheryl walks away as the girlfriend begins to hit her now ex-boyfriend with her purse as he ducks his head and runs away with half his body bent over. Several people gather around to see what is happening. Several teenage boys watch Cheryl walk with hearts for eyes. Cheryl has a mischievous smile and flips her hair back as she walks away like nothing had happened.
Cheryl Blossom: Silly townies, thinking they have a chance with someone of my status.
Cheryl Blossom: Still, they can be entertaining in their own flawed little ways.
Panel one: Cheryl is walking by an Electronic store which has several TVs on display as they show various teen celebrities as Cheryl looks on enviously. Several small children are watching one TV that has Cosmo the Merry Martian on it.
Cheryl Blossom: Hmph. I don’t understand how someone like me hasn’t become famous yet.
Panel two: Cheryl Blossom sticks her tongue out at TV showing Josie and the Pussycats.
Cheryl Blossom: I’m drop dead gorgeous, eyes like pure emeralds…
Cheryl Blossom: And I’m personable.
Panel three: Cheryl walks away as she pushes aside two teen walking together as she makes her way past them.
Cheryl Blossom: Any producer with an iota of common sense would see me, scream “star”, and brand a franchise after me!
Cheryl Blossom: It’s so irritating when people don’t recognize greatness!
Panel four: Cheryl Blossom is nearing the food court as she sees an upset Veronica sitting with Betty in the distance. Cheryl has a sly smile on her face as she plans on running Veronica’s day.
Cheryl Blossom: Speaking of irritating, Veronica Lodge.
Cheryl Blossom: Why not go and remind her that she’s second best?
Panel one: Veronica has her right elbow on her table and her face cheek in her palm as she looks angrily away as Betty tries to cheer her up. Veronica has a salad and small bag of fries while Betty has a ham sandwich and a milkshake.
Veronica: Can you believe that Archie Andrews? I tell him we’re going on a date, and he says he has other plans tonight!
Betty: Yeah, I asked him if he wanted to see the new museum exhibit this morning.
Panel two: Veronica points a finger at Betty as Betty holds her hands up to shield her.
Veronica: And that’s another thing! You living right next door to Archiekins is an unfair advantage!
Betty: Hey, it’s easier for you to close a few bank accounts then it would be for me to move!
Panel three: Betty tries to calm Veronica down as Veronica pouts. Betty turns her head and rolls her eyes at Veronica’s over exaggerations.
Veronica: Sorry, Betty. But daddykins took away my favorite credit card and I’m two days behind in fashion. Not to mention both my hairstylist and manicurist are both sick…
Veronica: I’m an utter mess.
Betty: Well, you know what they say, when you hit rock bottom you’re on solid footing…
Panel four: Cheryl Blossom is behind Veronica as Veronica jerks her head up and her pupils shrink to show how upset she is becoming as Betty pushes her chair away from the table as she expects explosions to happen between the two rivals.
Cheryl Blossom: Well, well, the Princess of the Townies and wearing that outfit? What is it, yesterday?
Betty: …Of course someone could come along with a power drill…
Panel one: Cheryl Blossom begins to talk as Veronica bursts out of her chair as her face is all red. Cheryl has her eyes closed and a hand on her chest as she had prepared to brag about herself.
Cheryl Blossom: But what can one expect of Miss Second Best? I certainly must be hard not being as rich, talented or--
Veronica: OH WOULD YOU SHUT UP!?!
Panel two: Veronica gets right into Cheryl’s face and takes her by surprise as everyone at the food court and passing by looks on. One person takes out his phone and begins to record what is happening.
Veronica: Do you ever stop and listen to yourself to understand how stupid you sound?! But then again if I had that shrill voice I wouldn’t listen to myself either!
Panel three: Cheryl tries to respond but Veronica continues to rant on her as Cheryl
Cheryl: What do you think--?
Veronica: And how is it you’re richer than me? Let me explain this so even someone as dumb as you can understand, you ignorant red-haired bimbo!
Panel three: Veronica begins acting like she is climbing and imaginary ladder as Cheryl shifts her eyes as people sitting by a nearby table begin to laugh at her. More people are taking out their cells and taking pictures or recording what is happening.
Veronica: My daddy bought your daddy’s company! Your daddy works for my daddy now! That means you would need an actual ladder to reach my social ladder!
Veronica: The only thing more of a joke might be your grandiose dream of being an actress!
Panel four: Veronica points her finger at Cheryl’s nose as crowd gathers much to Cheryl’s dismay as Veronica continues to embarrass her.
Veronica: You an actress? HAH!
Veronica: You can’t even act like a human being for five seconds!
Panel five: Cheryl blushes as several more people gather around the two and they take their phones out to record what is happening by greater numbers as Veronica still continues her rant. Betty walks over to try and calm Veronica down to no avail.
Veronica: Let tell me how your life is going to go:
Veronica: You’re gong to be that idiot who goes to LA, thinking you’ll be a star just like that, but you’ll end up waiting tables instead!
Panel one: Veronica is nose to nose with an humiliated Cheryl as she continues on her talk.
Veronica: You are never going to accomplish anything because you are stupid, your breath smells like a fast food dumpster on a hot day, you have crow’s feet, and your hair looks like a red hairy fungus…
Veronica: …And you’re simply just not talented!
Panel two: Betty leads Veronica away as Veronica turns her head to yell at Cheryl some more as Cheryl looks like scould explode as the crowd gathers around her to record what is happening on their phones as Cheryl’s face has gone bright red and she has steam coming from her nose and ears.
Veronica: But don’t worry! Out of respect for your father, I’ll give you a job as my secretary!
Veronica: I’m sure even you can sit all day, take notes for me, and answer the phone! Your future previous occupation will give you great practice at it!
Panel three: Veronica is calmed down as letting all that out did her some good as Betty tries to lead her away.
Veronica: …I feel much better now.
Betty: Yeah—but I don’t think we can say the same for Cheryl.
Panel four: Cheryl grinds her teeth as the crowd begins to laugh at her as she listens to them. She shifts her glowing red with rage eyes towards them and has her fists balled as if she is going to lash out at someone.
Crowd: Did you hear that?!
Crowd: Serves her right!
Crowd: Anyone have some balm for those burns??
Panel five: A shot into out space as a large word balloon is over Earth as a flying by Cosmo and Orbi are flying by and look on in alarm.
Cheryl on earth: YYYAARRRRRRRGGHHHHHHH!!!
« on: June 02, 2015, 05:03:08 PM »
Normally this is where I make some witty joke or pun to open up the review, but something else needs to be addressed bef—TONI TOPAZ IS ON THE COVER AND ACTUALLY IN A STORY AND CONTRIBUTES TO THE PLOT?!!?
Funhouse Frolic: The newest story written by Tom DeFalco (MC2 FOREVER!) with art supplied by The Kennedys. First off—finally, a story that involves a funhouse in Archie’s FUNHOUSE! And the story goes that Archie and Betty are enjoying themselves at the Riverdale Riot Amusement Park, but Veronica’s early arrival home and Reggie’s interference looks to be trouble for our favorite freckled face teen, unless his best friend can help him out. The script is great and everything is well paced and just builds and builds in the twelve pages.
And like I said, Toni Topaz is in this story. She of many covers and many one panel story appearances. So if you’re a fan, you’re patience is finally rewarded. And it’s not just her as you get to see a good portion of the Archie Teen cast. It’s actually a very good mix of classic and new kids. The art is very good in places and little things like the teddy bear Betty carries’ various facial expressions to whatever madcap trouble is going on is funny. There are a few problems I had, but I’ll save that for later. You still have funny background events (my favorite being Veronica walking in and the attention she gets from the guys) and yeah, It’s uneven but when it’s good it looks good. And you’ll go back to see what all is going on through the panels.
The art. Okay, if you wanted a digest that had a good example of all the Archie artists throughout the years, this one will would do it. You have nearly everyone: Ruiz, Dan Parent, The Kennedys, DeCarlo, Holly G, Nate Butler…Howard Bender? That’s a new one on me. Heck even Randy Elliot (I really like his art and there’s so little of it) has a story.
Dilton, Reggie, and Moose: If you’re a fan of either of these three you’ll be happy with this. My favorite stories for Dilton and Reggie were both from Fernado Ruiz, working double duty as writer and artist, as Dilton has symbiote problems in “Denim” and Reggie trying out his new camera phone in “Snap Decision”. We even have a story that really explains the two sides of Moose in “Gentle M.” And those are just my favorites as they all get a good mix of stories and one shot gags. These three have stories throughout so if you’re a fan of all or one, you’ll be happy.
Old school stories: This might be my favorite collection of the olden stories collected. And if you’re a Harry Lucey fan you’ll want this issue as all of them but one have his art. The topics for these stories range from annoying songs in your head, to hula hoops gone amok and it’s not that the grass is greener on the otherside, but who’s shoes that you are in. These stories alone make the digest worth it.
The themes for this issue: History lessons, robots, and costumes! We get a pretty good history lesson on the gold rush that showed the positive (paved the way to the west) and the negative (people going broke, foreigners having to pay taxes to dig for gold, ect). Veronica gets a few robotic dogs: one programmed by Mr. Lodge to deal with a certain someone and another to deal with a thief. “Archie is History” as the Riverdale crew are reenactors in the Festival of Living History in Washington D.C. and Archie finds himself dealing with his dad a chaperone, keeping up his act throughout the day, telling Veronica and Betty apart, oh, a little brat stealing his wallet containing the bus tickets home. So if you like learning history, the gang dressed up in different periods of history and robots, this digest was for you.
Funhouse Frolics: I do like this story, but there are a few problems with the story. The art can be very uneven. You have things where it looks like Chuck is his dad because of a really bad receding hairline, Toni Topaz’ hat being the size of her head and characters can look really weird. It doesn’t really ruin the story, but I know some people are not fans of the Kennedys (Tim has two other good stories and Archie is History is done wonderfully by Pat). So just don’t complain to me and say I didn’t tell you. There’s much more good then bad but the bad can be noticeable.
Oh, and one more thing: Digikore Studios, Rebel is not SNOOPY!!!
No Rex Lindsey?!: You have nearly everyone with some art contribution…but not Rex Lindsey?! I
The Archies in New York: I’m reaching. This is probably my least favorite of all the stories. I’m not a fan of the Archies being world famous. I like them better as a garage band who has to struggle to get gigs. Here they’re famous and in New York and they meet proxies of various people and then do other things and meet other—it’s just too long of a story for what it is. I just thought it was boring for the most part. But even it had a few moments I liked, like Jughead explaining what role the drummer plays to a kid. I wish we could have had more of that then just them going place to place, being worshipped like Greek gods, and meeting a homage to a famous New Yorker. I just didn’t find anything funny in this one.
10 things I’ve learned.
1. Never test your gravity shoes yourself
2. Nothing good ever comes when you hit the SEND ALL button
3. Hula Hoops are dangerous
4. Never let Archie help you with any car problem.
5. Moose’s fedora is awesome and should be brought back!
6. If going by wrestling terminology, I’d have to classify Toni Topaz as a tweener
7. Toni Topaz can be on the cover and be involved in the story at the same time.
8. Bottled designer air is the next big thing
9. That someone named Howard Bender was employed by Archie Comics.
10. The higher the A.I. the more the robot knows doing chores is for saps!
So yeah, it’s a jumbo issue, so it’s going to be great. The new story is really good and fun, I like that you have themes that are played throughout the issue, a great example of the Archie art, and there’s some really fun Little Archie stories for the fans of those. This and easy pick up. I kind of hope all Jumbo digest have a few themes that run through the comic because of this issue. It’s an easy A so go pick it up and enjoy reading.
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