Friday, July 4, 2014

Betty & Veronica Model Friendship in BETTY & VERONICA #271!

Have you read BETTY & VERONICA #271 yet? You really should!

This story reunites Hermione Lodge with her childhood best friend Beatrice Witterstone (AKA Batty). Batty and Hermy were frequent rival back in their teen years, ostensibly over a boy. They lost track of each other since Veronica has never heard of her before this issue. But Batty is hosting a fashion show and has invited her old chum Hermy to watch. Apparently hoping to model childhood grudge-keeping, Hermione dragged along Ronnie and Betty to enjoy the fireworks!

That said, there is a completely different set of fireworks going off at Batty's fashion show. The show seems to be jinxed! Water pipes are exploding. The runway has collapsed. Wardrobes are malfunctioning. It's a mess! It's a big enough mess that all of the models except Katy Keene have abandoned the show due to safety concerns!

Batty is on the verge of ruin unless she receives a lot of recruiting help from Betty & Veronica -- not to mention some secret jinx-busting by Sabrina the Teenage Witch (sans zombies)! What follows is a delightful binge-fest of familiar and not-so-familiar Archie Comics/MLJ girls, including Josie & the Pussycats, Midge, Cricket O'Dell, Ginger Lopez, Nancy, Tomoko, Shrill & the other New Kids, Ginger Snapp, Suzie, Marcy, Samantha Smythe from "That Wilkin Boy," Laurie & Linda from "Wilbur," and many, many more -- though surprisingly no Toni Topaz!

I will leave it up to you to determine if the fashion show -- as well as Hermy & Batty's friendship -- survived this issue!

Here are a couple highlights from BETTY & VERONICA #271:

Check out these flashback outfits from Hermy & Batty's teen years. I guess they inspired the wardrobes from The New Archies!

Alexandra Cabot and her cat Sebastian play significant roles in this issue. It isn't often that we fans are reminded of their magical heritage and powers. Fortunately, Sabrina didn't forget!

"Fashion Fantabulous!" is easily the most fun issue that I have read since I began regularly reading BETTY & VERONICA two years ago. The story is both engaging and vibrant and the artwork is wonderful. It was written by Tom DeFalco, penciled by Fernando Ruiz, and inked by Bob Smith.


Anonymous said...

Hey great review Jon
The way Veronica's mom looked as teen reminds of Carrie from Sex and the City. She was cute.
I still have not gotten the issue yet. I can't wait.
Yours truly

Donny Jacobs said...

I'm glad Alexandra and Sebastian are back doing their witchcraft; I always liked that aspect of the comic books (which, unfortunately, was never seen on the cartoon show). I also noticed Toni Topaz's absence, but I think she is depicted on the cover!

Another interesting thing about this issue was how Fernando Ruiz went back to the original likenesses of Josie, Sabrina, Alexandra and Valerie. He did not draw Dan Parent's updated versions.

Anthony said...

Not that Archie continuity's the strongest, but I recall the "Night at the comic shop" story from a few years ago that implied Suzie, Ginger, Wilbur, and some others were just fictional comic characters to Archie and Chuck. Guess with those stories getting a lot of reprints recently they're ignoring that comic shop story (since no real reason to declare them fictional even in Archie's world, I guess).

Similarly, I assumed Veronica's parents would be teenagers during the 70s, not 80s, given how old the Lodges look/behave. (Veronica's 200th issue a few years ago had some time-travel trip to the day Veronica was born, with her parents noting how long it'd taken to finally have a kid...). Yeah, comic book time, but even with that, 80s sounds a bit youngish to be teens... :-p

Jon said...

Yeah, "Night at the Comics Shop" is one of my favorite trades. It's where I learned about so many different old Archie and MLJ characters! My stand-by notion is that canon is important within Archie Comics except when it's not!

Personally, I like the idea of Suzie and Ginger and Wilbur and Super Duck and the rest coexisting alongside Archie & the Riverdale Gang. I just wish they'd stopped characterizing Super Duck as a Mighty Mouse wannabe!

I agree that the Lodges seem awful young for the outfits that Hermione was wearing in that flashback. Either that or I look really young for my age, given that I'm now a contemporary with the Lodges!!

Donny Jacobs said...


One thing bugs me. Hermione and Hiram are names straight out of the 1910s! Even my mother, who was born in 1923, would find them outdated. And no way would the Lodges not have nicknames for each other! They would not be calling each other by the full name at home.

Mrs. Lodge would logically be "Maya." My maternal grandfather was nicknamed "Butchie", and I think "Butch" or "Butchie" would be an ideal monicker for Mr. Lodge.

Anthony said...

Think it's the nature of being non-aging fictional characters that we're stuck with the odd scenario that the entire cast has dated-sounding names. (See: DC's JLA members---Clark? Bruce? Diana? Hal? Barry?)

In Archie's case, Archie *himself* has a rather dated name IMO (I can't recall ever meeting anyone named Archie), and Betty/Veronica don't seem particularly popular either these days. The supporting cast might be worse (Dilton? Moose and Jughead's real names of "Marmaduke" and "Forsythe"? Ethel?)... :-p