Saturday, May 16, 2015

AFTERLIFE WITH ARCHIE #8: We've Lived All Our Lives... And We're Never Going to Come Back, Are We?

Archie Comics finally released AFTERLIFE WITH ARCHIE #8 a couple weeks ago. It's a Christmas story that came out just in time for Memorial Day. Delays for this best-selling title have been annoying, but we have been assured that this won't happen anymore. We shall see...

But before we get too far into this blog post...

This blog entry contains spoilers. If you don't want to know about what happens in AFTERLIFE WITH ARCHIE #8, then stop reading now. You have been warned.

Back to the show...

This was an interesting story. It paid homage to "The Shining," as well as "A Christmas Carol." Basically, Riverdale's known survivors: Archie, Betty, Veronica, Reggie, Mr. Lodge, Smithers, Mrs. Andrews, Kevin, Dilton, Nancy, Chuck, Ginger, and Blaze (FKA Cheryl Blossom) have locked themselves away in a spooky old hotel to celebrate Christmas.

Last issue ended with Blaze's confession that she killed her brother Jason with a machete. They had been in an incestuous relationship and she finally snapped. She told the others that he had been attacked by a zombie and she was forced to kill him, but nobody really believes her. They take a vote on whether or not to keep her with the group. The vote was close, but -- with Archie's vote -- Blaze got to stay with the group.

She later shared the nature of her relationship with Jason -- and presumably with her father -- to the other girls. They were understandably shocked, but I think that swayed most of them to take pity on her situation.

As you can see ahead, this hotel is haunted. Archie and Jughead's ghost spend much of this book chatting. We learned that Christmas is a special time of year. It allows the ghosts to have special access to the world of the living. Of course, that sucks for Reggie since he pretty much kicked off a series of events that spawned a hellish worldwide apocalypse. Let's just say that the ghosts of Riverdale keep pestering him...

Am I the only one who thought it would be funny if Reggie had plowed into Hot Dog's ghost with his skateboard. Or am I just an evil jerk?

Mrs. Andrews shared a 75-year-old story with Archie about Riverdale's past. The people are Riverdale were grief-stricken by the number of young men who lost their lives in the War. Agnes Cooper, Franklin Andrews, and Forsythe Jones decided to visit the Witches of Greendale and barter for protection for Riverdale's children.

They bartered three children over the course of three generations in exchange for Riverdale's protection. Eventually, two children died within these families from preceding generations. This generation's sacrifice? Poor Jellybean...

Anyway, there was a big relational development at the end of this story. Archie proposed to Betty at the end of the book. She agreed to the engagement -- but wants to wait until her 18th birthday. Which will be in three months. (In other words, it's already happened since it's currently May...) Of course, Veronica is furious. Which really sucks for Betty since this story arc is called "Betty: R.I.P."

Next issue promises to be a Reggie-centric issue. I don't think he will be killed off -- but I anticipate that he will be directly involved with someone else's gruesome death.

"A Ghost Story" is written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa with artwork by Francesco Francavilla. It's also lettered by Jack Morelli.

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