Summary: It’s another classic trope, Battle of the Bands! Will Veronica be able to get Archie to out-play his former girlfriend Betty? This story has it all, heart, beats, and art!
I am an Archie fan, and I really loved Mark Waid’s writing on Archie back in the day which always followed the classic Archie tropes, but he always had an updated twist with it. With this new relaunch of the Archie series, they have allowed Waid to go all out modern on America’s oldest teenager – which is why I have been on board with this series from the start.
What is great about this month’s issue is that Waid really is able to show off the depth of the Riverdale gang, as the long awaited confrontation between Betty and Veronica take up a unique twist – a Battle of the Band-style fight! It is refreshing to see Betty being impulsive and having to be talked down from her anger perch and to see Veronica just trying to fit in and not be the rich shrew that most people quickly characterize her as (my favorite Veronica stories have always been showing her kindness).
This is all compounded with Veronica Fish’s art, which has this really great energy that flows well with teens. I can imagine them being hot-headed, stressed, afraid, over all the events that take place over this issue (and man can Mark Waid really pack an issue, he puts in a two-page recap, a practice sequence, the event, and even a last-page cliffhanger) and the reason he is able to do this is because Fish is able to really sell the story and pack her panels with emotions that help to sell the story and transition from moment to moment.
Fantastic issue, though for those who are not invested in the Archie/Betty/Veronica triangle, it won’t mean much – 4.5/5