Jeez did you hear about this?! After about 7 decades Archie Andrews is finally going to get off his butt and propose to his girl. Um..er.. but we’ve been kept in a nearly a century of suspense about who his girl really is; the bubbly and sweet blond-next-door Betty Cooper or slightly vampish bratty brunette Veronica Lodge?
The issue was in fact put to debate. The publishers decided issue #600 will feature the long-time freckle-faced high-school klutz on bended knee with a ring in his hand. While Veronica screams out “Yes!” and Betty stands wiping away a tear. This relationship jolt leaves long-time readers of the checkout aisle comic a little lost. Wasn’t Veronica forever going hot and cold on poor Archie? And isn’t her dad a rich control freak? And wasn’t sweet all-American blond Betty Cooper always there to pick up the pieces?
“Why couldn’t you wait until I was dead before you finally had him pick between the two?” 46-year-old fan, Valerie, wrote on the publisher’s website.
The fact is, Archie isn’t 17 any more. He’s now a college grad looking to explore a world beyond Principal Weatherbee’s office and the last few miles his jalopy can manage before backfiring her last. But marriage? That’s big. Not to mention that it immediately eliminates about 90 per cent of the narrative twists that have launched thousands of Archie stories.
“So is this the end of Archie Comics?” wrote another fan, Ebony, likely on a tear-streaked keyboard.
For those who fear that the magic is now gone, along with the eternal youth of all the kids at Riverdale High, there is some hope.
The title of issue 600 is “Archie Marries Veronica, Part 1: The Proposal.” That doesn’t sound terribly definitive.
Could there be a Part II: Archie, left at the altar?
Or Part III: Betty’s back in the running?
How about Part VII: What Happens at Pop Tate’s stays at the Pop Tates?