Friday, February 12, 2016

Jughead is an Asexual Pirate in JUGHEAD #4! Check It Out!!

JUGHEAD's first story arc is quickly coming to a close. I just love this book. It's probably my favorite Archie Comics comic book series out there right now. Offbeat humor and cartoony drawings. What more is there to life?

JUGHEAD #4 got published this week and it continues to feature quality storytelling by Chip Zdarsky, art by Erica Henderson, and lettering by Jack Morelli!

The story so far. Mr. Weatherbee has been replaced by a new principal, Mr. Stanger. Mr. Stanger is tough as nails and has replaced most of the staff with teachers who are also tough as nails. They have replaced the food with high-nutritious gruel. They have begun teaching classes such as Drone Operations and they seem to be washing out students who don't quite make the cut. Plus, Mr. Stanger has targeted Riverdale High's number one counter-cultural student, Jughead Jones, for eventual expulsion.

Only Jughead understands what's really going on here: Riverdale High is training its students to become secret agents and spies!!

Nobody believes him, so it's up to Jughead to gather evidence and take down his nemesis!

Of course, the story meanders before the end...

1. A Is For Asexual: JUGHEAD #4 has been all over the Internet this week because of this interaction between Jughead and Kevin. Basically, they finally put it out there that Jughead is asexual.

There's always been speculation about why Jughead doesn't chase after girls like most of the other Riverdale guys. Is he a woman-hater? Is he gay? Is he a late-bloomer? Is he just weird? Does it matter?

Kevin puts it out there that Jughead is asexual and Juggy doesn't dispute it. In fact, he pretty much verifies it.

I've seen people get all excited about this revelation. I've seen people get upset by this revelation. I find it interesting and note-worthy.

It's now canon. Jughead is asexual.

Just keep in mind that continuity is important to Archie Comics. Until it isn't. So if you are a Jughead fan who hates that he's been revealed as asexual, just wait until somebody new comes along. He'll eventually begin dating Big Ethel or Toni Topaz or January Andrews before you know it!

2. Slackbeard the Pirate! I'm not sure if we've ever seen Jughead as Slackbeard the Pirate before. I did a quick google-search and nothing historic immediately jumped out at me. JUGHEAD the series has established a pattern. Storyline followed by inspired fantasy daydream followed by revelation followed by conclusion. JUGHEAD #4 sends Jughead to his mental happy-place in the middle of a dodgeball game.

Jughead imagines himself as Slackbeard the Pirate. Slackbeard's mission is to discover "Pop's Treasure" and to defeat Captain Principal! He ends up recruiting Captain Principal's cartographer Dilton Doiley to track down the treasure -- but not quite managing to outwit the Captain!

As always, Jughead's daydreams subtly unpack the stresses of real life and help him come up with to problem solve. "The Legend of Slackbeard" is no different!

3. January Andrews?? Slackbeard's duel to the death with Captain Principal ends unexpectedly with the help of a familiar face: January Andrews from the Time Police!!! (Last seen in JUGHEAD #2's daydream adventure!!)

As mentioned earlier, Jughead's daydreams have a tendency to hint at the future. I can't help wondering if January Andrews -- or someone very similar -- will end up saving the day when Jughead has his final confrontation with Principal Stanger in JUGHEAD #5?

4. Dilton Recruited: Jughead needs proof in order to expose Principal Stanger. So he recruits Riverdale High's resident genius to tap into his computer to dig up the dirt. (See what I mean about foreshadowing??) Can something this direct yield dirt?

5. Proof? Jughead and Dilton manage to tap into the computer, much to the baffled amazement of his other friends. Here's the big question: Does Jughead manage to find evidence of Principal Stanger's nefarious intentions -- or is he just making a fool of himself?

I actually know what shows up on the screen, but I don't want to ruin everything for you readers!! You need to run out to your local comic book shop and pick up your copy of JUGHEAD #4 to see where this book is heading!!

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