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Riverdale Funko Pops by BettyReggie
[December 16, 2017, 08:00:34 PM]


Latest Hauls, what did you buy? by BettyReggie
[December 16, 2017, 07:58:34 PM]


Days we look foward to as Archie Fans. by BettyReggie
[December 16, 2017, 07:55:56 PM]


My thoughts on Dick tracy getting a reboot on Archie Comics by BettyReggie
[December 16, 2017, 07:46:53 PM]


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[December 16, 2017, 07:33:16 PM]


"Kindness Works!" A NEW Archie Story! by CAPalace
[December 14, 2017, 12:09:04 AM]


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[December 13, 2017, 10:24:45 PM]


Library Books That You All Read by BettyReggie
[December 12, 2017, 11:42:52 AM]


What comics have you been reading? by BettyReggie
[December 08, 2017, 03:34:33 PM]


Riverdale Reviewed by Tuxedo Mark
[December 06, 2017, 05:13:01 PM]

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    December 14, 2017, 08:57:45 AM
  • DeCarlo Rules: @TM - "They" is Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa. Just him. HE's the writer of both AWA and ChAoS. It's HIS story. He only writes an issue when his muse inspires him. Plus he's kinda busy being the showrunner and one of the head writers for RIVERDALE, which ACP probably considers a little more important. And from Sacasa's POV, I know television work must pay a helluvalot better than writing comic books. Especially if they're comic books published by ACP. Could someone else write those horror comics? Sure, if ACP's Chief Creative Officer decided to assign the books to someone else. At that point sales would probably just nosedive anyway, so what's the point? Better to let other writers make up their own horror stories using ACP characters.
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    December 01, 2017, 05:50:28 AM
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  • Vegan Jughead: Cool reviews, Mark!  I kind of agree with you on the Vixens art style.  Not digging it much.  I do kind of like the vintagey clothes on B&V in the school scenes, but I'm not into biker chicks.
    November 23, 2017, 01:15:45 PM
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    November 22, 2017, 09:11:30 PM
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    November 22, 2017, 04:08:46 PM
  • Tuxedo Mark: Cami did a photo shoot for Men's Health: [link]
    November 22, 2017, 09:02:23 AM


Author Topic: Some reviews.  (Read 23219 times)

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SAGG

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #75 on: May 21, 2017, 01:05:12 AM »
Couldn't remember! Did you know the "search" function no longer works? I was going to find the thread and mention the reprinted story there, but...  :(
Nah. I really never have used it...  :P

DeCarlo Rules

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #76 on: June 15, 2017, 06:49:27 AM »
JEM & THE HOLOGRAMS #24-26 – “Outragreous” – I really wanted to like this comic more than I actually did. This 3-part story was pretty slow-moving and really not much fun. I suspect that the problem here is that the author wants to treat the characters as “realistic” (one of the main problems I have with New Riverdale comics), not as just a fun, funny, or adventure-type story. It really felt like it dragged down the pace of the story because the author insists on cramming so much dialogue on every page. Things do happen, but very slowly, because the focus is not on what’s happening, it’s about the characters all talking about what’s happening – how they feel about everything that’s going on, which is way too angst-y for my taste. The characters really don’t seem like they’re having fun being in a band, instead it’s all about dealing with this problem and that. There are a couple of brief scenes where they actually perform where it looks like they might be having fun, but they’re so brief, it’s over in a page or three. I really don’t know much about the original JEM cartoon series, but I doubt it was anything like this. I’m going to guess that realism is not what people wanted in a JEM comic book, or it wouldn’t be cancelled. Unfortunately some nice art by Gisele can’t save the story from being kind of a drag. I’d like to see IDW just do a straight adaptation of the original cartoon – not updated (taking place in the ‘80s), not ‘realistic’, just a fun adventure with some comedy to it. Nothing to do with the problems of being in a band, just the fantasy of it, the glitz, the glamor, and the adventure, and crazy oddball happenings.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2017, 06:54:47 AM by DeCarlo Rules »

irishmoxie

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #77 on: June 15, 2017, 08:11:51 PM »
I’d like to see IDW just do a straight adaptation of the original cartoon – not updated (taking place in the ‘80s), not ‘realistic’, just a fun adventure with some comedy to it. Nothing to do with the problems of being in a band, just the fantasy of it, the glitz, the glamor, and the adventure, and crazy oddball happenings.


I'd like to see this too. I enjoyed the Jem comic series more for the gorgeous art. They're relaunching the comic series as a mini-series and making it more superhero-y without Gisele of course.

DeCarlo Rules

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #78 on: June 25, 2017, 12:23:25 AM »
SABRINA THE TEENAGE WITCH COMPLETE COLLECTION v1
(1962-1971) TP
  :smitten:

The short version is that it's the BEST trade paperback ACP has released yet, because it's exactly the sort of thing comic collectors want -- ALL Sabrina stories reprinted in chronological order of their original appearance. ALL the stories are credited, and the source of the original publication is noted in each case (there are a few errors that I caught). There's even a table of contents listing all the stories by title, and which page they're found on (something frustratingly lacking in most Archie Comics trade collections). The actual book design is very attractive as well. Here you get to see Sabrina's character develop over the early years in the same order readers of the time did, but in a highly focused and concentrated form. This collection is basically following the same blueprint as Marvel's Essential series, or DC Comics' Showcase Presents series: 500+ pages of comics on cheap paper, in black & white, at a bargain-basement price ($10), but the size is identical to that used for ACP's Best of Archie Comics or Archie's Favorite Comics collections.

How complete is it? ALL of Sabrina's stories (and a single cover appearance) from ARCHIE'S MADHOUSE/MADHOUSE MA-AD JOKES (before the title changed to THE MADHOUSE GLADS) are included, even the one-page and 1/2 page gags (plus you get a bonus 1/2 page gag featuring Fran the Fan and Bippy the Hippy). In a couple of those, Sabrina shared a story with other Madhouse regulars, like Ronald the Rubber Boy and Professor Transistor. ALL of Sabrina's early appearances from ARCHIE'S T.V. LAUGH-OUT (through issue #10), and issues #1 through 4 of SABRINA THE TEENAGE WITCH (all Archie Giant issues), plus the Sabrina stories from ARCHIE'S CHRISTMAS STOCKING and the very first Archie Giant Series SABRINA'S CHRISTMAS MAGIC issue (technically dated Jan. 1972). Many of those early stories have Sabrina interacting with Archie and the gang. ALL of the covers on which Sabrina appeared are also reproduced -- down to those on which Sabrina made only a cameo appearance as part of the crowd, including random issues of ARCHIE and JUGHEAD.

Don't let the black & white format put you off. It's even on cheaper, thinner paper (this applies to the cover stock as well) than previous books in the "Best of Archie Comics/Archie's Favorite Comics" series, which is a detraction, but the content of the book trumps all of those drawbacks. The fact of the matter is that once you begin reading the book, your awareness of "no color" quickly fades, because you become engrossed in the stories, and watching the evolution of Sabrina and her supporting cast unfold. I'm hoping that if people support this, it will someday get the same Deluxe Edition treatment as THE BEST OF ARCHIE COMICS - BOOK ONE. But the catch is, if no one supports this version of the book, that's never going to happen.

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #79 on: June 26, 2017, 02:51:09 AM »
OK. You've got me convinced. I had previously said that I would not buy the Sabrina book because it wasn't in color. I have just changed my mind. I will buy it.

DeCarlo Rules

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #80 on: July 04, 2017, 09:15:22 AM »
MILLENIUM: THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO #1 - This was a 62-page story for $5.99, and it was interesting. Quite involved, actually, and I was surprised to find despite the length that it's only the beginning of a longer story (how much longer, I have no idea). I haven't previously read any of TGWTDT stories, and while the story itself was good, it didn't seem like a very good introduction to the character. It seems whoever wrote the comic assumed any reader picking this up would already be familiar with the character. The story in this issue mainly follows another character -- a writer who's just been framed for defamation of character in trying to expose a grafting politician, as HE takes on the role of investigating a seemingly unrelated mystery involving a decade-old missing person case. He takes on the cold case as a means of obtaining some information on the man who's targeting him for revenge, trying to destroy his reputation as an investigative journalist. Lisbeth (TGWTDT) is involved with troubles of her own, seemingly unrelated to the writer's case. She'd just been involved in a privately-commissioned investigation into his character and background (she works for a security consulting firm, so she's sort of a modern private detective). It's a bit hard to relate to the punkish, pierced-&-inked Lisbeth, a character carrying around plenty of pent-up angst (possibly with good reason; we learn in the story that she'd been in and out of foster homes from age 13 through 18, but it's now 11 years later). Probably not coincidentally, the case that Mikhal (the writer) is investigating involves the disappearance (or possible murder, it hasn't been established) of a girl 11 years ago, whose uncle hires Mikhal to look for leads. The uncle is one of several relatives that are part of a rich and powerful business family with all sorts of internecine grudges, all of whom live on a private island (in Sweden, where the story takes place). Most of the story here in this issue focuses on Mikhal, not Lisbeth. While it seems likely that the two characters will eventually become reconnected, how exactly isn't clear. I sort of wish this first issue had filled in more of Lisbeth's basic details of how she got involved in the private investigation business, and what she'd done up to this point, rather than assume all the readers of this comic had read the previous novels by Steig Larson or seen the movie (which I haven't). Some of the covers seem to convey the idea that there's something more to Lisbeth's dragon tattoo than just a tattoo, but that may just be artistic license, or it may turn out to be something mystical (although the story seems very straightforwardly 'real-world' crime fiction up to this point). It's a little slow-moving in parts, but the plot seems well-constructed and easy to follow, so far.
« Last Edit: July 04, 2017, 09:21:11 AM by DeCarlo Rules »

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #81 on: July 19, 2017, 03:04:56 AM »
FANdemonium Network brings you the latest comic and book reviews and news online.  Visit us For the best comic reviews opinions and podcasts about comic...

DeCarlo Rules

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #82 on: July 19, 2017, 07:54:48 AM »
FANdemonium Network brings you the latest comic and book reviews and news online.  Visit us For the best comic reviews opinions and podcasts about comic...

From the same Networm that brought you "Pernicious Web-bots"!

DeCarlo Rules

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #83 on: July 21, 2017, 02:51:44 PM »
I’d like to see IDW just do a straight adaptation of the original cartoon – not updated (taking place in the ‘80s), not ‘realistic’, just a fun adventure with some comedy to it. Nothing to do with the problems of being in a band, just the fantasy of it, the glitz, the glamor, and the adventure, and crazy oddball happenings.


I'd like to see this too. I enjoyed the Jem comic series more for the gorgeous art. They're relaunching the comic series as a mini-series and making it more superhero-y without Gisele of course.

I'll admit to complete ignorance of how the "hologramic" (or superhero) aspects of JEM integrate with the band concept. I never did see the orignal cartoon. Only Jerrica/JEM has a dual/secret identity, and the rest of the band members seem to get along fine without any "holo"powered alter-egos. I got as much as Jerrica is sort of "non-glamorous" (still a cute girl, though) in her real identity, and JEM has sort of a fantasy image rockstar look, but couldn't she just wear makeup, a wig, and a costume? (Hey, it worked for KISS!) Or does she have some sort of crippling stage-fright phobia about performing in front of people that she can only overcome by "hiding" behind the JEM facade I.D.? It was never really clear to me. The only other possibility that occurred to me (which doesn't really seem to make sense for a lead character) is that transforming into her holographic JEM identity gives her some kind of singing or musical abilities that she doesn't have "in real life". I never saw any evidence of her sneaking off to "battle crime" or otherwise fight the evil forces of rotten music or anything.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2017, 03:14:47 PM by DeCarlo Rules »

DeCarlo Rules

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #84 on: August 11, 2017, 12:18:36 PM »
ARCHIE'S BIG BOOK: MAGIC, MUSIC & MISCHIEF is a full-sized (same page size as a standard comic book), 304-page collection of some of the best stories (all older ones) from Sabrina, Josie and Little Archie. I get the impression that they're putting this out to try to build familiarity with Archie readers for these, their next three biggest character franchises, and you really couldn't ask for a better introductory volume.

MAGIC: Most of the Sabrina stories here were just recently reprinted in the SABRINA THE TEENAGE WITCH COMPLETE COLLECTION v1, which I reviewed above, but there they were printed in black & white at the smaller page size used for the Best of Archie Comics trade collection. Here they're full-sized and in color. The editor selected all Dan DeCarlo-illustrated stories (with one exception, a short drawn by Stan Goldberg) for this collection, including all of his key earliest ones from Archie's Madhouse. The rest are choice early stories from Archie's TV Laugh-Out, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and one from Sabrina's Christmas Magic.

It was when I was counting the pages that I noticed there are just about 80 pages of Sabrina stories here, and that the cover illustration of Sabrina (which is also used in a larger image for the title page of the Sabrina section) is the same one that appeared as the cover of the formerly-solicited, then cancelled, SABRINA 80-PAGE GIANT, so I think if that comic had actually been published these are exactly the same stories you would have seen reprinted in that 80-Page Giant. While there are a few more than 80 pages in both the Josie and Little Archie section, I noted (again) that the images used on both the cover of this collection and the title pages of those characters' sections were the same as the ones that appeared on the covers for the respective 80-PAGE GIANT comics solicited, then cancelled, for JOSIE and LITTLE ARCHIE, so I'm guessing that 80 pages out of each of those sections would have made up those Giant comics.

MUSIC: Well, not all music. Three of the longer stories that begin this section ("A Gym Dandy", "Footlight Follies", and "Sweater Girls") are non-musical/non-Pussycats stories reprinted in their entirety (they were book-length stories) from early issues of She's Josie. Issues #1-3, in fact. I couldn't have been more delighted. I consider the longer early stories of She's Josie to be the very best stories Archie Comic Publications have ever produced, and these three showcase the talent of Frank Doyle and Dan DeCarlo at the height of their artistic powers. If ACP is ever wondering how to produce a new comic book that will actually be good, then they should dissect and analyze the way these stories are written and structured, and try to adapt that to stories about modern teenagers taking place today. I'm not saying they could do it, but they should at least attempt it. Josie was an interesting creation, because it involved the three main female characters taken from a proposed newspaper strip which Dan DeCarlo tried, and failed, to interest newspaper syndicate editors in. The male characters didn't come from those prototype strips though. They came from the last thing that Frank Doyle and Dan DeCarlo had worked on together, which was "The NEW" Wilbur. If you look carefully at Albert and Alexander, they're really just Wilbur and his rival Alec from the aforementioned series, with slightly different hairstyles and more stylish (for 1963) clothes. Albert even originally had the same flattop/brushcut hairstyle as Wilbur's, except that Wilbur was blond, and tended to dress more like the 1950s Archie, with letter sweatervests, saddle shoes, and checkered pants. The main difference here between Alec (from Wilbur) and Alexander Cabot is that instead of just being upper-middle class like Reggie Mantle, Alexander Cabot is filthy rich like the Lodges, and just as spoiled by it as Veronica. Otherwise the early Alexander looks and acts almost identically with Wilbur's rival Alec. Then there is Sock (short for Socrates, by the way, in case you didn't know), the big, dumb, (but good-natured) jock athlete who's absolutely bananas for Pepper and would do anything for her. He's an evolution of Tiny, who played a similar role (inspired by Moose, of course) in Wilbur's stories. Then there's Pepper, who had a namesake in the earlier Wilbur stories, but was nothing like Josie's Pepper, personality-wise. Although she may have taken some personality bits from a character in Wilber named Dodo. I have been fascinated by how "The NEW Wilbur" fits into the picture of characters' evolution in Archie Comics ever since I began noticing all the similarities. It's not so obvious, when you look at the characters of Alexander, who evolved considerably further in later stories of Josie and the Pussycats, and even Albert and Pepper evolved a little differently towards the end -- before being dropped altogether to make way for Alan M. Mayberry and Valerie Brown (later Smith). Did I mention that all the Josie stories (including the Pussycats ones) reprinted in this collection are also illustrated by Dan DeCarlo? All except one, just like in the previous Sabrina section. There's one final short drawn by Stan Goldberg, reprinted from years later than the original run of J&tP.

MISCHIEF: I'm not going to lie to you. I didn't actually read this section yet. But they all look to be early LA stories written and drawn by Bob Bolling. Bolling is an interesting writer to me, because he has very specific tastes, and includes very distinctive elements of fantasy, mystery, adventure and the supernatural in his stories (that goes for most of them, if he's allowed the page length to develop those ideas, regardless if it's a regular Archie story, a Betty story, or a Little Archie story). The shorter Little Archie stories rarely have those elements in them, and those are the ones mainly reprinted in the digests. This section contains at least two longer (both look to be book-length) stories containing those elements, that I plan on reading later. They are "Little Archie on Mars" and "The Strange Case of the Mystery Map". These both seem to contain complex plots, and other interesting incidental characters. I couldn't tell you what it is about stories featuring mainly a cast of primary-school children that disinterest me, but it is what it is.


Vegan Jughead

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #85 on: August 11, 2017, 02:02:14 PM »
ARCHIE'S BIG BOOK: MAGIC, MUSIC & MISCHIEF is a full-sized (same page size as a standard comic book), 304-page collection of some of the best stories (all older ones) from Sabrina, Josie and Little Archie. I get the impression that they're putting this out to try to build familiarity with Archie readers for these, their next three biggest character franchises, and you really couldn't ask for a better introductory volume.

MAGIC: Most of the Sabrina stories here were just recently reprinted in the SABRINA THE TEENAGE WITCH COMPLETE COLLECTION v1, which I reviewed above, but there they were printed in black & white at the smaller page size used for the Best of Archie Comics trade collection. Here they're full-sized and in color. The editor selected all Dan DeCarlo-illustrated stories (with one exception, a short drawn by Stan Goldberg) for this collection, including all of his key earliest ones from Archie's Madhouse. The rest are choice early stories from Archie's TV Laugh-Out, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and one from Sabrina's Christmas Magic.

It was when I was counting the pages that I noticed there are just about 80 pages of Sabrina stories here, and that the cover illustration of Sabrina (which is also used in a larger image for the title page of the Sabrina section) is the same one that appeared as the cover of the formerly-solicited, then cancelled, SABRINA 80-PAGE GIANT, so I think if that comic had actually been published these are exactly the same stories you would have seen reprinted in that 80-Page Giant. While there are a few more than 80 pages in both the Josie and Little Archie section, I noted (again) that the images used on both the cover of this collection and the title pages of those characters' sections were the same as the ones that appeared on the covers for the respective 80-PAGE GIANT comics solicited, then cancelled, for JOSIE and LITTLE ARCHIE, so I'm guessing that 80 pages out of each of those sections would have made up those Giant comics.

MUSIC: Well, not all music. Three of the longer stories that begin this section ("A Gym Dandy", "Footlight Follies", and "Sweater Girls") are non-musical/non-Pussycats stories reprinted in their entirety (they were book-length stories) from early issues of She's Josie. Issues #1-3, in fact. I couldn't have been more delighted. I consider the longer early stories of She's Josie to be the very best stories Archie Comic Publications have ever produced, and these three showcase the talent of Frank Doyle and Dan DeCarlo at the height of their artistic powers. If ACP is ever wondering how to produce a new comic book that will actually be good, then they should dissect and analyze the way these stories are written and structured, and try to adapt that to stories about modern teenagers taking place today. I'm not saying they could do it, but they should at least attempt it. Josie was an interesting creation, because it involved the three main female characters taken from a proposed newspaper strip which Dan DeCarlo tried, and failed, to interest newspaper syndicate editors in. The male characters didn't come from those prototype strips though. They came from the last thing that Frank Doyle and Dan DeCarlo had worked on together, which was "The NEW" Wilbur. If you look carefully at Albert and Alexander, they're really just Wilbur and his rival Alec from the aforementioned series, with slightly different hairstyles and more stylish (for 1963) clothes. Albert even originally had the same flattop/brushcut hairstyle as Wilbur's, except that Wilbur was blond, and tended to dress more like the 1950s Archie, with letter sweatervests, saddle shoes, and checkered pants. The main difference here between Alec (from Wilbur) and Alexander Cabot is that instead of just being upper-middle class like Reggie Mantle, Alexander Cabot is filthy rich like the Lodges, and just as spoiled by it as Veronica. Otherwise the early Alexander looks and acts almost identically with Wilbur's rival Alec. Then there is Sock (short for Socrates, by the way, in case you didn't know), the big, dumb, (but good-natured) jock athlete who's absolutely bananas for Pepper and would do anything for her. He's an evolution of Tiny, who played a similar role (inspired by Moose, of course) in Wilbur's stories. Then there's Pepper, who had a namesake in the earlier Wilbur stories, but was nothing like Josie's Pepper, personality-wise. Although she may have taken some personality bits from a character in Wilber named Dodo. I have been fascinated by how "The NEW Wilbur" fits into the picture of characters' evolution in Archie Comics ever since I began noticing all the similarities. It's not so obvious, when you look at the characters of Alexander, who evolved considerably further in later stories of Josie and the Pussycats, and even Albert and Pepper evolved a little differently towards the end -- before being dropped altogether to make way for Alan M. Mayberry and Valerie Brown (later Smith). Did I mention that all the Josie stories (including the Pussycats ones) reprinted in this collection are also illustrated by Dan DeCarlo? All except one, just like in the previous Sabrina section. There's one final short drawn by Stan Goldberg, reprinted from years later than the original run of J&tP.

MISCHIEF: I'm not going to lie to you. I didn't actually read this section yet. But they all look to be early LA stories written and drawn by Bob Bolling. Bolling is an interesting writer to me, because he has very specific tastes, and includes very distinctive elements of fantasy, mystery, adventure and the supernatural in his stories (that goes for most of them, if he's allowed the page length to develop those ideas, regardless if it's a regular Archie story, a Betty story, or a Little Archie story). The shorter Little Archie stories rarely have those elements in them, and those are the ones mainly reprinted in the digests. This section contains at least two longer (both look to be book-length) stories containing those elements, that I plan on reading later. They are "Little Archie on Mars" and "The Strange Case of the Mystery Map". These both seem to contain complex plots, and other interesting incidental characters. I couldn't tell you what it is about stories featuring mainly a cast of primary-school children that disinterest me, but it is what it is.


I was already going to get this but now I'm EXCITED to get it, thanks to you.  I agree with you that She's Josie is the best Archie Comics ever did!!  And I agree that they should try to do something like this now. 

irishmoxie

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #86 on: August 11, 2017, 02:06:00 PM »
ARCHIE'S BIG BOOK: MAGIC, MUSIC & MISCHIEF is a full-sized (same page size as a standard comic book), 304-page collection of some of the best stories (all older ones) from Sabrina, Josie and Little Archie. I get the impression that they're putting this out to try to build familiarity with Archie readers for these, their next three biggest character franchises, and you really couldn't ask for a better introductory volume.

MAGIC: Most of the Sabrina stories here were just recently reprinted in the SABRINA THE TEENAGE WITCH COMPLETE COLLECTION v1, which I reviewed above, but there they were printed in black & white at the smaller page size used for the Best of Archie Comics trade collection. Here they're full-sized and in color. The editor selected all Dan DeCarlo-illustrated stories (with one exception, a short drawn by Stan Goldberg) for this collection, including all of his key earliest ones from Archie's Madhouse. The rest are choice early stories from Archie's TV Laugh-Out, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and one from Sabrina's Christmas Magic.

It was when I was counting the pages that I noticed there are just about 80 pages of Sabrina stories here, and that the cover illustration of Sabrina (which is also used in a larger image for the title page of the Sabrina section) is the same one that appeared as the cover of the formerly-solicited, then cancelled, SABRINA 80-PAGE GIANT, so I think if that comic had actually been published these are exactly the same stories you would have seen reprinted in that 80-Page Giant. While there are a few more than 80 pages in both the Josie and Little Archie section, I noted (again) that the images used on both the cover of this collection and the title pages of those characters' sections were the same as the ones that appeared on the covers for the respective 80-PAGE GIANT comics solicited, then cancelled, for JOSIE and LITTLE ARCHIE, so I'm guessing that 80 pages out of each of those sections would have made up those Giant comics.

MUSIC: Well, not all music. Three of the longer stories that begin this section ("A Gym Dandy", "Footlight Follies", and "Sweater Girls") are non-musical/non-Pussycats stories reprinted in their entirety (they were book-length stories) from early issues of She's Josie. Issues #1-3, in fact. I couldn't have been more delighted. I consider the longer early stories of She's Josie to be the very best stories Archie Comic Publications have ever produced, and these three showcase the talent of Frank Doyle and Dan DeCarlo at the height of their artistic powers. If ACP is ever wondering how to produce a new comic book that will actually be good, then they should dissect and analyze the way these stories are written and structured, and try to adapt that to stories about modern teenagers taking place today. I'm not saying they could do it, but they should at least attempt it. Josie was an interesting creation, because it involved the three main female characters taken from a proposed newspaper strip which Dan DeCarlo tried, and failed, to interest newspaper syndicate editors in. The male characters didn't come from those prototype strips though. They came from the last thing that Frank Doyle and Dan DeCarlo had worked on together, which was "The NEW" Wilbur. If you look carefully at Albert and Alexander, they're really just Wilbur and his rival Alec from the aforementioned series, with slightly different hairstyles and more stylish (for 1963) clothes. Albert even originally had the same flattop/brushcut hairstyle as Wilbur's, except that Wilbur was blond, and tended to dress more like the 1950s Archie, with letter sweatervests, saddle shoes, and checkered pants. The main difference here between Alec (from Wilbur) and Alexander Cabot is that instead of just being upper-middle class like Reggie Mantle, Alexander Cabot is filthy rich like the Lodges, and just as spoiled by it as Veronica. Otherwise the early Alexander looks and acts almost identically with Wilbur's rival Alec. Then there is Sock (short for Socrates, by the way, in case you didn't know), the big, dumb, (but good-natured) jock athlete who's absolutely bananas for Pepper and would do anything for her. He's an evolution of Tiny, who played a similar role (inspired by Moose, of course) in Wilbur's stories. Then there's Pepper, who had a namesake in the earlier Wilbur stories, but was nothing like Josie's Pepper, personality-wise. Although she may have taken some personality bits from a character in Wilber named Dodo. I have been fascinated by how "The NEW Wilbur" fits into the picture of characters' evolution in Archie Comics ever since I began noticing all the similarities. It's not so obvious, when you look at the characters of Alexander, who evolved considerably further in later stories of Josie and the Pussycats, and even Albert and Pepper evolved a little differently towards the end -- before being dropped altogether to make way for Alan M. Mayberry and Valerie Brown (later Smith). Did I mention that all the Josie stories (including the Pussycats ones) reprinted in this collection are also illustrated by Dan DeCarlo? All except one, just like in the previous Sabrina section. There's one final short drawn by Stan Goldberg, reprinted from years later than the original run of J&tP.

MISCHIEF: I'm not going to lie to you. I didn't actually read this section yet. But they all look to be early LA stories written and drawn by Bob Bolling. Bolling is an interesting writer to me, because he has very specific tastes, and includes very distinctive elements of fantasy, mystery, adventure and the supernatural in his stories (that goes for most of them, if he's allowed the page length to develop those ideas, regardless if it's a regular Archie story, a Betty story, or a Little Archie story). The shorter Little Archie stories rarely have those elements in them, and those are the ones mainly reprinted in the digests. This section contains at least two longer (both look to be book-length) stories containing those elements, that I plan on reading later. They are "Little Archie on Mars" and "The Strange Case of the Mystery Map". These both seem to contain complex plots, and other interesting incidental characters. I couldn't tell you what it is about stories featuring mainly a cast of primary-school children that disinterest me, but it is what it is.


Sounds like a lot of reprinted stories for me but it would be nice to read them in color.

DeCarlo Rules

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #87 on: August 12, 2017, 12:18:38 AM »
A couple of other things I forgot to mention here about stories I found surprising. There's one Gladir/DeCarlo Sabrina story here where she's reminiscing about when she was a little girl (which also includes an appearance by Harvey), that I would bet dollars to donuts pre-dates any appearances of Little Sabrina in the Little Archie stories. Actually, if I'm not mistaken, I don't think Bolling ever used Little Sabrina in his original run on Little Archie, and she was first incorporated into the strip by Dexter Taylor after he had taken over the writing and art on Little Archie.

There's one Little Archie story here by Bolling that's quite recent because I saw it as the lead story in one of the digests within the past couple of years ("The New Kid"), and although it's a 5-page short, it does involve a fantasy angle, where an alien kid lands his UFO on earth and meets up with Little Archie, who's on his way to a costume party, and naturally both Little Archie and the kids at the party think the alien kid is just another friend in a weird costume, before Little Archie eventually learns the truth.

Also notable was a story in which Veronica appears in a Josie story when Alexander's car has trouble, and she stops to offer Josie and Alex a lift. Alex's bloated ego is profoundly insulted when Veronica asks him to wipe the mud off his feet before getting in the car. He refuses the ride, and determines to revenge himself for what he considers Veronica's insult. He knows not who he's dealing with...

DeCarlo Rules

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #88 on: August 12, 2017, 07:39:25 PM »
Some thoughts on those two longer Little Archie stories, now that I've read them. "On Mars" is 14 pages and semi-predictable in some of its elements, but I enjoyed it enough, I guess. Characters unique to the story included the Martians Abercrombie and Snitch, and a brief appearance by a purple Plutonian alien beatnik, who shared a cage with LA in the Martian Zoo.

The other story, "The Strange Case of the Mystery Map" was almost twice as long at 29 pages, and considerably more interesting to me. I'm guessing it must have first appeared in one of the 25c Little Archie Giant issues. LA is more of a minor character in this one, a straight action-adventure tale, whose main characters included Jimmy Lee, earnest young office boy of The Riverdale Register, also a photographer who aspires to make his mark as a cub reporter for the paper. Jimmy rides a motorcycle (he also has a motorboat, later in the story). LA happens to be talking with Jimmy when the two witness an attempted holdup in broad daylight at the pawn shop belonging to an elderly woman. Only the "elderly woman" uses judo to toss her two thuggish attackers out the door of the shop. Seeing a potential news story, Jimmy and LA question her, and she's suspiciously reticent to discuss her business and tries to avoid any publicity. She hurriedly disappears out the back, but Jimmy tracks her and witnesses her disappear into a clothing store's changing room, only to emerge later as a beautiful young girl whose name we later learn is Toni Greenwood. She notices their trailing of her and disappears into thin air at the river's edge, but it later turns out that she's the niece of Riverdale's most eccentric millionaire recluse, Caleb Wharton, who obsessively hates newspapers. Toni presents her uncle with information found hidden in the back room of the pawn shop that will lead to the location of Caleb's pirate ancestor's secret treasure map. There's a lot more to it, of course, but I don't want to spoil everything.

DeCarlo Rules

Re: Some reviews.
« Reply #89 on: October 23, 2017, 05:42:36 AM »


I meant to do this a month ago when I got the new deluxe hardcover edition of THE BEST OF ARCHIE COMICS: BOOK TWO, so here it finally is.

I'm going to keep this short and just list what's missing and what's been added, but I should probably also mention that there are a number of instances where the original text commentaries prefacing the stories have been replaced by newer comments by different people (for example, all of the comments on stories attributed to Fernando Ruiz have been replaced by comments by different people). The numbers in parentheses are the page numbers that the stories appear on in the original 2012 TP edition (MISSING) or the new deluxe hardcover edition (ADDED), which also includes pages on which any comments prefacing the stories appear.

MISSING stories from the original 2012 TP edition:
(146-156) LITTLE CAPTAIN PUREHEART in "Attack of the Molemen"
(234-238) JOSIE in "Hi-Style Hi Jinks"
(239-255) LITTLE ARCHIE in "Little Archie and the Secret City"
(265-269) JOSIE in "The Image"
(277-281) THE ARCHIES in "Rock 'n' Rassle"
(282-289) ARCHIE 3000 in "Wieners Over Riverdale!"
(391-392) JINX in "Fitting In" and "It's Complicated" (both 1-pagers)

ADDED stories in the new 2017 deluxe HC edition:
(361-382) REGGIE AND ME #1 (2016) no title
(383-404) YOUR PAL ARCHIE #1 (2017) "The Road Worrier" and "A Night at the Opera"
(405-416) RIVERDALE #1 (2017 one-shot) ARCHIE in "Sweetwater"

 


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