Jul 4, 2015

The 40 Years of Comics Project - Day 129: Archie #287, December 1979

I've been cutting these close to the wire for the last couple of days. Summer is like that, though. There always seems to be another thing that needs to be done.

My supervisor at school wrote a book about Archie that was published this year, and in it he makes some solid claims for the 60s being the high point of Archie Comics' output. I'm not sure what the quality is that makes this so, but from the example of this comic, from 1979, it's true. The stories just seem to fall flat. It's not that I've ever laughed out loud at an Archie comic, but usually they produce a substantial chuckle. Not so with this issue. The punch lines seem forced, like the writers and artists have been asked to maintain the same style of story, but reign in the ridiculousness a little bit. Archie, I think, works best when it is taking place in a slightly cartoonier reality than our own. When the stories try to cleave too much to the real, the premises fall apart quite rapidly.

Okay. Bed time. See you tomorrow.

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