I got a copy expecting it to be firmly in the ‘so bad it’s good’ category. Instead, it’s actually good. The people of Riverdale can’t conceive of the Punisher or the criminals he kills as more than gunslingers in a western serial. Frank Castle sees Riverdale as the embodiment of his lost happiness and innocence. For once, he sees that he can protect the innocent as well as punish the guilty. NonSpoiler-Frank writes in his war journal that he has not been able to find any crime, or any evidence of crime in all of Riverdale. He updates this while walking through the high school. ‘Finally found crime in Riverdale-vandalism’ What he sees is a heart containing two sets of initials, carved into one of the walls. Frank smiles at how pure and wonderful Riverdale is, and the continues on.
Re Riverdale Heroes
Archie comics tried serious hero comics decades ago. Every now and then, they try to bring them back under another imprint. In the eighties, the Web, Jaguar, Black Hood, Shield, Fly, Steel Stirling, Comet etc all came back as the Red Circle comics line. In the nineties, the characters were redone (sometimes only the name stayed the same) as !mpact Comics. After that failed, the heroes next appearance was a crossover in Archie’s Weird Mysteries. Superteen and the gang fought alongside the Shield and the other serious heroes as the evil Brain Emperor tried to possess Moose.
There are probably other details I got wrong as well. Although I’ve enjoyed the Archie heroes since I first bought a copy of The Fly with crumpled pages and a cover price of 12 cents, I’ve never bothered to really research them. I know they’ve been around for decades due to that 12 center and other issues from the same era. I know about Red Circle because I have some of those issues. I believe that the action figures were made in the eighties, though I could be wrong. The figures were notable primarily due to the short arms and legs. !mpact came during the chrome holofoil age of comic books. It was announced in Previews. I have every issue of the !mpact fly. Sadly, they did try to do one or two ‘very special’ issues. Other than that, the Fly was just one heck of a fun comic.
Re Archie’s Weird Mysteries
With the return of Scooby Doo (2 live action films, numerous direct to video animated movies, and a new series) AWM had a cartoon for a while. I still get bits of the theme song stuck in my head. One day, while playing with my niece, I kept saying “Archie’s blisteries” over and over without realizing it. Later my sister wondered exactly why her daughter kept singing “Uncunc blistorries”.
What happened to Fenris? Even after all these decades of study, I’m only a journeyman comicbook geek. We need a master geek.
I liked the Archie characters as “adventurers” Explorers of the Unknown in the early 90s.
And the tv show of Archie’s Mysteries might have grade D animation but it not bad in the story department. Its the closest we’ll ever get to a Buffy cartoon.