Good news for those who enjoy my work on the Jughead comic. ‘World of Archie Jumbo Comics #101,’ is a mini treasury of my past Jughead stories. In stores now!
I browsed this issue the way all of America does, while waiting in the grocery store checkout line.
The digest is billed as a ‘Special Jughead Issue.‘ It is heavily-weighted with fun summertime selections of my work from Jughead’s solo title.
Look for the SPECIAL JUGHEAD ISSUE Seal of Quality. Accept no other!
The collection contains nine stories written by me. Seven are pencilled by my longtime artistic partner on the title, Rex Lindsey, and one double-length story is pencilled by Jeff Schultz (Jeff and I currently collaborate on Jetta Raye Adventures.) My pal Rich Koslowski inked most of my stories in the digest. Jim Amish filled in for Rich on the one outlier.
My all-time favorite Jughead team, Frank Doyle and my hero, Samm Schwartz, are well-represented in the volume. Archie’s usual gang of writers and cartoonists fill out the remainder of the pages.
I haven’t researched to see where these originally appeared, but it’s great to have them all together in a handy digest. Included:
“The Appealing Appaling Jughead Jones:” Jughead resists his perpetual nemesis Ethel, as usual. But eventually he wonders why he bothers?
“That Sinking Feeling:” This story reveals another of Jughead’s endless series of surprising physical quirks.
“The Bad Old Days,” is a two-chapter saga once again pitting Jughead against Ethel. Jeff Schultz did the art chores on this one.
“The Milkweed Lament” shakes one of Jughead’s long-held assumptions about his status as Pop Tate’s favorite customer.
“To Have And to Hold” examines Jug’s relationship with his true love: hamburgers!
“Cute Galoot!” Jughead uses his adorable sister, Jellybean, as a shield to disarm detractors and deflect trouble.
“Choc Shock” is a plot of the type that Kurt Vonnegut describes as a “Man In Hole” story: Jug gets himself into a big mess and tries to dig his way out.
“Your Humble Serpent” is good summertime silliness of a tried and true tradition: Introduce a foreign element and watch the characters stir up trouble with it for five or six pages.
“How Low Can You Go?” I had a sudden mental image of Jughead dancing the hula. This story, not therapy, was the result.
One thing that I, as a writer, has always loved about the Archie Comics format is the variety of story lengths, which invites different types of storytelling. The beauty of a short story is that it allows me to latch onto a small idea and explore it in-depth for a few pages; something that I couldn’t sustain in a longer form. In a double-length story, ala “The Bad Old Days,” the plot becomes more important and allows me to include a few twists and turns; maybe even a subplot.
Daily strip format, Sunday page format and full-issue,full-length story have their attractions as well, but they don’t figure into this digest and I’ll talk about them another time. But it’s been great to have the full range available to me to accommodate every type of story that comes to mind.
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