Sunday, December 8, 2013

ARCHIE #650: Bollywood Love!

I finally finished my copy of ARCHIE #650, a giant-sized anniversary special that launches a four-part storyline featuring the Archies' world tour. Not only are the Archies traveling to Mumbai, India, in this first issue, but so are the lesser-known bands, the Bingos and the Madhouse Glads! Veronica's cousin Marcy is also tagging along. She's the band's manager. (Incidentally, it's a good thing I've been playing "Archie: Riverdale Rescue." Otherwise, I'd have no clue who she is as I've missed all of her earlier comic book appearances!) My favorite newbie character Raj Patel manages to shoe-horn himself onto the tour during the first couple pages. He's going to produce a concert film of the world tour for Pinnacle Pictures. And Pinnacle Pictures insisted on page three that Josie and the Pussycats also need to join the world tour. Fortunately, the bands agree to this musical addition -- despite the fact that Archie and Valerie don't appear to be the lovebirds that they once were!

Does it seem like there's a lot of people in this book? You bet! Most of the characterization takes place with Archie and his harem of girlfriends. He and Valerie are carrying on a secret romance. They apparently got tired of the media following them around and ruining their relationship. So publicly they're on the skids and privately they're making smoochie-smoochie time. Meanwhile, both Betty and Veronica are still vying for Archie's affection and he's just eating it all up!

Once the bands arrive in Mumbai, the Archies meet up with their record label rep, who introduces the band to India super-star Amisha Mehta and insists that Archie -- and Archie alone -- star in a music video with the beautiful Amisha. Archie and Amisha hit it off together and now a fourth romantic rival has been introduced to Archie's love life!

It's unclear how much Archie really likes Amisha. He assures Valerie that she's his main gal, but he seems a little too into Amisha, if you get what I'm saying. The Bollywood trade magazines are all over this blossoming romance, which probably what initiates the final plot development...

That's right! Cheryl Blossom's family bought out Pinnacle Pictures and she (along with Pussycat gadfly Alexandra Cabot) is now around to micromanage Rag Patel's documentary! I'm anticipating that Archie's romantic rivalry has just increased by one more girl on the final page! What a player!

My biggest complaint about this story so far is that we don't get to see too much of the Pussycats or of the other bands. They're there, but you don't learn much about them. I personally know next to nothing about the Madhouse Glads and I've only read a few old stories featuring the Bingos. Their lack of substantive presence in "Bollywood Love" is made up for by a series of story reprints at the end of the book featuring each of the bands' first appearances! Additionally, ARCHIE #650 features fact-sheets for each of the bands.

"Bollywood Love!" is written and penciled by Dan Parent. The second issue of this "Rocking World Tour" storyline will take the bands to China -- where they will meet up with a certain Teenage Witch! Hopefully, she'll keep the necromancy to a minimum. After all, that's where the zombie outbreak in "World War Z" began!




I just finished reading this issue. Do I have a dirty mind, or did Archie and Valerie get their "nasty" on in the garage? Did Dan Parent really mean to imply a sexual encounter? Has Archiekins finally lost his virginity?

Anonymous said...

It's really a drag that after Archie pulled their Russia issue, India had to go and make homosexuality illegal again. Then again, I guess Archie is sold in red states, so what's the difference?