Review: Archie #666
The importance of Archie Andrews to comics is often understated, even if it shouldn’t be. For a long while in the history of the medium, it was the romance genre which ruled, and although most of them have come and gone (or changed into something else) Archie is still here from a time and place that makes him almost an anachronism. Those that know of Archie most likely know of him from comics that they read when they were young, and while people look for edgier comics when they get older, the creative teams behind Archie have tried to keep the character modern and relevant. A lot of this has to do with updating the character, putting phones and computers into the somewhat similar formula from issue to issue. The next big change for Archie comes following this issue, as there will be no #667, but rather a new reboot into a new #1.
This is an interesting development in itself, as Archie has been published almost as long as some of the other greats of the genre, with other long running series like Detective Comics and Action Comics getting just past 700 issue before being rebooted. In this case it is a chance to reminisce as Archie is facing his 666th detention and Weatherbee debates whether or not to expel him (as a side note most high school students don’t have 600 days of class in high school, so when Weatherbee says it is a Guiness record, he might be right.) This allows his friends to commiserate and to figure out why Archie has been so important to them over the years, which is a bit of meta-writing to describe what the fans themselves might think.
While this issue does not have the same weight as other issues might which have ended a long run, it still manages to get right what it must. At the same time, this is still very much an Archie story, and those looking for something more will likely be disappointed here. All the same this represents a little piece of comic history and one that probably won’t get its due.
Story: Tom DeFalco Art: Dan Parent, Fernando Ruiz, Tim Kennedy, and Pat Kennedy
Story: 7.8 Art: 7.8 Overall: 7.8 Recommendation: Read
Archie Comics provided Graphic Policy with a free copy for review.