Archie vs. The World leaves us wanting more
Archie Comics has found success in recent years taking its beloved characters and throwing them into new and crazy situations. Horror has been a regular genre explored but superheroes and more have been a part of the fun. Now, with Archie vs. The World, we get Archie in an apocalyptic setting that’s a bit Mad Max and a bit Fist of the North Star.
Written by Aubrey Sitterson, Archie vs. The World is a love letter to the stories of the 80s where tires were shoulder pads and martial arts created elaborate displays and destructive paths. The comic doesn’t hide what it’s trying to be, a condensed riff on classic stories. It’s broken up into chapters focusing on the major events taking place. That’s both good and bad.
Archie vs. The World is a bit surface level. It’s a hell of a lot of fun, partially seeing how far Sitterson will take things. But, it’s a series of events as opposed to a really smooth narrative. It’s missing the details between the main event. And that’s part of what it’s supposed to be. The issue is it leaves the reader wanting more. This is the key sequences in the trailer that ruins the movie but I still want to see the whole movie to get everything going on. There’s a story but it’s those small details that could really make this series into something else. But, the details it does deliver are great, partially from the visuals.
The art by Jed Dougherty packs in all of the fun from those martial arts manga it riffs on. With color by Matt Herms and Doug Garbark and lettering by Jack Morelli it delivers the over the top visuals you’d expect. You don’t know why everything is going on, but the images tell you these are bad ass fighters. The team doesn’t try to do anything new, it doesn’t need to, the look of the comic is of a classic style mixed with Archie and it works really well. Small details give winks, nods, and laughs, to the world of Archie we know but the action is all Fist of the North Star and all of its imitators. It knows what it is and goes with it to solid results.
The criticism of Archie vs. The World isn’t necessarily the comic itself. It’s riff on Mad Max and Fist of the North Star is a lot of fan. The issue is, the comic is a series of shorts strung together as a narrative. There’s clearly a lot in between each chapter creating a choppy reading experience. Hopefully the comic is a success and we can get an “expanded” tale from this creative team taking us deeper into the story and world.
Story: Aubrey Sitterson Art: Jed Dougherty
Color: Matt Herms, Doug Garbark Letterer: Jack Morelli
Story: 7.5 Art: 8.2 Overall: 7.7 Recommendation: Read
Archie Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review