The Archie of Archie Comics gets around. He’s met both Kiss and the Ramones. He’s palled around with Batman. He’s teamed up with the Punisher, and even been chased by the Predator. But none of these comics crossovers — not a single one — holds a candle to Archie’s next comics crossover, in which the happy, peppy stars of Archie Comics meet the dark, tormented, and incredibly disturbed stars of Riverdale. Which is to say, themselves.
The cover of the upcoming one-shot comic reads “The Team-Up You Thought Would Never Happen!” and that’s true. It never even occurred to me that the publisher might pair the goofy hijinks of the comics with the frequently murderous shenanigans of Riverdale. In the comics, Archie’s biggest problem is usually his never-ending love triangle with Betty and Veronica. The most recent troubles TV’s Archie has faced include: 1) having his house blown up by Veronica’s vengeful father Hiram (and possibly him and Betty as well); 2) having been ritually sacrificed by the entire town, including his friends and family, in a parallel universe; 3) suffering crippling PSTD from his time as a soldier during some wholly unnamed war that was fought in trenches as per World War 1. Like I said, this is wild.
If you’re looking for an amuse-bouche of the madness to come, Archie Comics sent over a few of the early interior pages (sans dialogue) and they’re simply delightful:
How is the multi-Archie-verse colliding? Well, it appears like nerd/genius Dilton Doiley may have messed with the time-space continuum and brought him into the comics world. Please note that the TV Dilton was ritually sacrificed by the Gargoyle King in what was very much not a parallel Riverdale universe.
Assuming Dilton is the culprit, it appears that the Archie who looks like Kiwi heartthrob K.J. Apa has no problem captivating both Betty and Veronica simultaneously. Despite OG Archie’s fuming, this is immensely understandable.
Given that Jughead and Betty have no relationship in the comics (and because he’s canonically asexual), it must be equally terrifying for Riverdale Betty and comics Jughead to find themselves about to smooch.
Luckily, Sabrina the Teenage Witch is here to save the day! Or maybe she’s the problem! I don’t know! All I want to know is what happens when the melodramatic author, gang leader, ex-boyfriend of Betty, and ex-drug addict Jughead meets the Jughead whose only interest for the last 83 years has been eating hamburgers.
Archie Meets Riverdale #1 on May 11. Written by Loki and Lockjaw’s Daniel Kibblesmith, it will be drawn by longtime Archie Comics veterans Pat & Tim Kennedy.