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Jughead #2

    Ian Jane

  • Jughead #2

    Jughead #2
    Released by: Archie Comics
    Released on: November 17th, 2015.
    Writer : Chip Zdarsky
    Art : Erica Henderson
    Purchase From Amazon

    In the last issue of this latest take on Riverdale's favorite teenage glutton, the new principal, Mr. Stanger, outlawed burgers in the school cafeteria. Jughead, being Jughead, took that bull by the horns and got around Stanger's ruling, but now? That nasty new principal seems to have it out for poor Juggie…

    This issue starts off at Pops' where Jughead talks rich boy Kevin Keller into paying for his milkshake. Archie, Betty and Reggie show up… noticeably late. Seems that they were tossed into detention when class ended. As Archie gripes, everything is punished! But somehow Jughead has evaded any and all detentions for the last month.

    The next day at gym class the guys come face to face with new recruit Coach Eng, who insists that nothing will be easy and that the boys, who are not boys anymore but now men, call him sir. Jughead mouths off and Eng makes them run laps - the last five who cross the finish line get detention. Looks like Jughead's lucky streak is over but then, in detention, he's approached by one January McAndrews, a descendent of Archie Andrews visiting him from the 29th century! She's a member of the Time Police and she needs his help finding the rest of her team. It seems a man named Rex Mantlor, a.k.a. Nickelfinger, has set into motion a nefarious plan to raid the future world's nickel reserves. Mantlor is a descendent of Reggie's so Jughead figures they can just take Reggie out and solve the problem, but no, that would be against the rules.

    This leaves Jughead in a bit of a predicament, but being Jughead, he figures out a way to bend the rules to his advantage and before you know it he's time traveling into a future full of dinosaurs, Vikings, rocket launchers and killer robots. But back in the real world, the Jughead of the present has to figure out how to avoid detention again…

    Like the first issue, this is a fun read. Zdarsky's got a knack for writing Jughead, or so it would seem, so we get plenty of witty dialogue and the preposterous situations somehow seem entirely appropriate for our hero. We're only two issues in but so far Zdarsky has proven he can bring Jughead into a modern setting while still retaining the 'vintage' Jughead qualities that make him such a fun character to read about pretty gosh darned effectively. Everything plays at a G-rated level, no need to take it into raunchier or darker territory, this is just good old fashioned character based comedy done right. Erica Henderson's artwork gives things a more modern look, there's an anime influence here but it's not overpowering, instead it just lets her put her own stamp on the characters. The Archie house style is great and it's nice to see it retained in some of the new books, but there's room for other styles in Riverdale and hers fits in nicely as a fresh alternative. Her use of color throughout the issue is top notch as well.

    In addition to the main story we also get a classic Jughead story called Mistaken Identity from 1950, complete with an introduction from Zdarsky, in which Jughead is forced to box against Reggie in gym class. It gets complicated when a gorilla escapes from the zoo and Jughead's nefarious Uncle Herman shows up for an unscheduled visit. It seems he's invented a new substitute for toothpaste but more importantly he's invented a 'Jekyll & Hyde Potion' and he wants to experiment on Jughead!

    There's a cool cover gallery in here too that shows off all the variants available for this second issue.

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