Wednesday, June 5, 2013

"Archie Meets Glee" Part 4: The Conclusion

I finally finished ARCHE #644 (AKA "Archie Meets Glee" Part 4) last night, which wraps up this unique comic book/television crossover storyline. I've written blog entries about the first three issues of the crossover, which you read here, here, and here.

Here's the skinny: Archie Comics' Dilton and Glee's Brittany hook up across the dimensional divide and accidentally transport half of the Riverdale kids to Lima and half of the Lima kids to Riverdale. Now Dilton has to re-invent his "portal-porter" ASAP before one of the transplanted kids does something bad like making out or stealing Jughead's crown. Those types of intimate actions risk a butterfly effect that likely will destroy both universes. Sadly, Betty and Puck kissed towards the end of ARCHIE #643, which initiated that universe-destroying butterfly effect. Fortunately for the people of Riverdale and Lima, this is apparently a very slow universe-destroying butterfly effect, which gives the Gang plenty of time to hatch a scheme to save Archie Comics and Glee!

All this time, everyone has been waiting for Dilton to re-invent the wheel when they should have turned towards Riverdale's resident comic book jock, Chuck Clayton, to determine the source of the problem and work out an actual solution! Chuck's comic book know-how and Rachel Berry's hypnotic singing voice -- pair with Dilton's crazy portal-portal machine -- end up saving the day. The toe-tapping tunes of the Archies, New Directions, the Pussycats, and the Warblers end up vibrating the kids back to their respective universes by the end of the day, which wraps up the storyline.

The wrap-up to "Archie Meets Glee" was probably my least favorite of the four parts. Many of the things that I enjoyed about the first three parts -- Blaine joining the Pussycats, Puck chasing Betty, Cheryl Blossom chasing Puck, Kevin grooving on Blaine, Veronica crushing on Sam, Brittany being Brittany -- were pretty much dropped so that we could get to the final concert that saves the worlds. It's understandable, but disappointing at the same time.

My biggest problem with the larger "Archie Meets Glee" storyline is that there are so many characters in both Archie Comics and Glee that it was easy for too many people to fade into the background. Look at that image immediately below. There are so many fun characters. It's inevitable that most of them will have bit part -- such as Ginger and Reggie and Kurt and Sam and Jughead.

The biggest disappointment in this area was Sue Sylvester's minor role in this storyline. I've said it before (because it's true!), but Sue Sylvester is the most cartoony character on Glee. Sue had a tangential connection to the larger plot. Some contrived objection to Jughead and his crown. I'll concede that this is a very "Sue" thing to do. I just wish we could have seen it play out much more.

Another major challenge with this story is that Glee is a television about music. It's really hard to translate song and dance routines into a comic book. One thing that might have been cool is if they had those little digital reading symbols embedded onto the comic book pages (much like what Marvel Comics has in most of its comics these days) that could link readers' smart phones or tablets to YouTube clips from Glee or old Archie songs:

Not all of the songs translated well to the comic book and some of them -- such as this adapted version of "Suddenly Seymour" from Little Shop of Horrors -- probably sound better aurally than in print:

I was recently asked if I liked the "Archie Meets Glee" storyline. Short answer? I did. I really did.

It was a fun story with a few built-in glitches that I'm willing to overlook. I thought most of the Glee characterizations translated well to an Archie Comics comic book. I like that Betty got a lot of face time and inadvertently caused the big bad dilemma within the story. I liked that Kevin was portrayed as a horn-dog towards Blaine -- of course, it's Blaine so that goes without saying. And there were a lot of bits that got me laughing, which amused my other half, which always translates to goodness.

Before I go: It would be a terrible thing if I ended this blog article without including one of the more disturbing things that I've seen in an Archie Comics comic book in a very long time: Bertronica! Check out the image below. That is what Archie dreams of when he dreams of Betty & Veronica. I'm just sayin'...

1 comment:

Anthony said...

So the day's saved thanks to bad comic-book physics... and the Flash's particular brand of physics ("vibrating his molecules" = does everything: dimensional travel, time travel, generate counter-frequencies, etc.). :-p

Interesting to see a grim film like "The Dark Knight" referenced like that. Though guess says something if the first thought is "like in that Batman movie" versus "like in that Batman *comic*" (or "like in Batman" generically).