Comic Book Review: Afterlife with Archie, vol. 1: Escape from Riverdale by Roberto Auirre-Sacasa and Francesco Francovilla

Afterlife with Archie volume 1: Escape from Riverdale by Roberto Auirre-Sacasa and Francesco Francovilla

Archie Comics, 2014

ISBN: 9781619889088

Available: New, used & digital

Oh, Riverdale. The iconic small town USA, perpetually stuck in the 1950s, where a boy struggles with such heady things
as which girl to invite to a movie Friday night. Archie-with-zombies could have been a silly, campy adventure and still have been a fun read.

Instead, we have the comic book that spawned a Lovecraft-themed version of Sabrina the Teenage Witch. The authors go all out with a dark, moody story of a teen who loves his dog enough to court dark magics to bring him back, for which thewhole town will pay.

Zombies aren’t the only thematic element here. The writers also address substance abuse, some of the darker aspects of Riverdale relationships (like Reggie’s obsession with the taken Midge, Midge and Moose’s mismatch, and the more realistic angst of Archie being caught between Betty and Veronica), and even the struggles of being gay/lesbian in Riverdale. Highly recommended for horror fans and especially public library collections. It’s easy to dismiss this one, but Afterlife with Archie is
wonderful: self-aware, inclusive, and innovative.

Contains: gore, violence, animal abuse

About Michele Lee

Michele is hard to define probably because the only dictionary nearby is English to Latin. Bibliothecam edot. A former stable hand, PTA president and bookseller, now she's a reviewer, writer, and editor. Her stories have appeared in Dark Futures and Horror Library, among others, and she recently sold her first novel, Wolf Heart. Her son and husband are very proud of her, her dog, cat and fish don't really care and her daughter has taken this as proof she, too, can be a writer. She pretends to keep a web presence at michelelee.net
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