Tag Archives: Archie Comics

Super Comics: Sonic In Your Face!

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I guess with any comic book series, things can’t stay simple for long; not just in terms of plot and character depth which I am absolutely for, but in terms of spin-offs, specials, and the intermixing of continuity between them which I’m more or less totally against.  I’ve never gotten into super hero comic books for this reason as the amount of effort to understand any ONE book in its entirety is predicated on an absurd amount of disposable income so that all the issues of every connected series can be purchased.  Well I guess I have no choice with this series as we’re gonna be talking its very first Special today and it’s only going to get more unwieldy from here.  Strap in folks!  Things are gonna get bumpy!

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The special starts off with a continuation of the story line from issue 18; namely that Sally’s lifelong mentor who we’ve never heard of has just died and it turns out that she has left everything to her, including this spiffy vest!

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“SCORE!!”

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Super Comics: Sonic the Hedgehog 16-18

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We’re back with even MORE Sonic the Hedgehog to talk about because… well I’m on a Sonic the Hedgehog kick again and it’s gonna take a bit more time to burn itself out!  We’ll be looking at three issues today because this stretch of issues includes some TRULY fascinating changes for the series and is a turning point in a lot of ways.  I’m always fascinated by stuff like this where you can pinpoint an EXACT moment where things are different from what they were before, and while I’m not equipped with the knowledge as to WHY these changes happened in the series, it’s going to be a lot of fun to point them out!

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Issue 16 (November 1994)

So the first thing we need to acknowledge is the change in Sally’s design.  Based on accounts from Michael Gallagher (the first writer for the comic book including the four initial test issues that I have yet to cover in this recap series) we know that the SatAM series was being developed at the same time as the comic which is why the basic outline of the story is the same, but it seems that some early concepts made it into the comic book before they were finalized for the series.  We know this happened already when Boomer was renamed to his cartoon name Rotor in issue 9, and the very first episode of the SatAM series had a design for Sally that is SOMEWHAT close to her appearance in the comics up to this point.  The big question I’m still left with is why her design wasn’t changed earlier as the comic was only on its second official issue (not including the four test issues) when the SatAM series premiered.   It could have just been a scheduling conflict as I have no idea how far ahead the books were written and illustrated before release, or maybe no one was too concerned about it until much later when it became clear that Sonic was going to be A THING for the foreseeable future.  Interesting fact!  This is not the first know redesign of the character as one of the earliest known pieces of concept art for the SatAM show portrayed a blonde princess with a dress and crown, and the first issue of the test series had her blonde as well; though it was corrected by the second issue to the design we know now.

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REALLY hoping that this isn’t all leading to a Crisis on Infinite Earths scenario.

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Super Comics: Sonic the Hedgehog 12-15

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That’s right!  We’re doing another four issue recap!  Mostly because there’s little substance to any of the issues we’ll be covering today, but also because I’m kinda anxious to get the real meat of this series and for it to take itself a bit more seriously.  Not in the grim dark sort of way (we are SO far from running into Shadow and Tails Doll) but for them to cut back on the puns and for the stories to have the SEMBLANCE of an ongoing arc.  Issue sixteen isn’t quite there yet, but that’s certainly a turning point in a lot of ways so I want to get there as soon as possible damn it!  Anyway, let’s get started!!

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Issue 12 (July 1994)

So right off the bat we have one of the least interesting stories from the books so far; ALMOST as bad as when they tried to do A Christmas Carol.  You wouldn’t think it from the initial premise though!  Seems like a GREAT idea for a story, but its squandered on, what else?  Lame jokes and half-baked ideas!  Sonic does his usual Sonic thing of making Doctor Robotnik’s life a living hell, but this latest ass kicking seems to have jogged something in the robo bastard as he comes up with an ingenious plan!  He’ll send Sonic back in time!  OF COURSE!  IT’S SO OBVIOUS, RIGHT!?

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“I am INTERFACED… again!?”

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Super Comics: Sonic the Hedgehog 10-11

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Sonic the Hedgehog and all the images you see in this recap are owned by Archie Comics and Sega of America

We’re back with another look at the comic books that came out right around the time that Sonic Mania is so DESPERATELY trying to recreate! Now if the NEXT Sonic Mania introduced the Freedom Fighters, you might just hit MY nostalgic sweet spot as well, so get on that SEGA!!  Anyway, let’s go ahead and make this recent resurgence of Classic Sonic complete with a look at two more issues of the comic!!

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Issue 10 – (May 1994)

The issue begins with Sonic doing something that’s actually pretty awesome and is a very useful application of his speed; namely, detonating land mines placed by Robotnik’s robo-minions.

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“Batman’s got nothing on ME!”     “Sonic, I think that’s in pretty poor taste-”     “Death of Innocents? More like Death of Good Comics, am I right!?”

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Super Recaps: Riverdale Chapter 8 (The Outsiders)

Riverdale and all the images you see in this recap are owned Warner Bros Television Distribution and The CW

Episode directed by David Katzenberg

We’re back from the two week hiatus of Riverdale, and while I may be one of the more critical voices out there of the show, I’m honestly glad that it’s back.  The last few episodes have been a marked improvement and the show has been on an upward swing in general since SHE WHO SHALL NOT BE NAMED has packed her backs and skipped town, and even when the show is at its WORST… well at least it gives me something interesting to write about!  Has the show come back from its break rearing to go and ready to prove itself, or are we in for more of the same old same old?  Let’s find out!!

The episode begins with a rather helpful recap of what’s been going on for the last few weeks, and not just the PREVIOUSLY ON RIVERDALE one we get every episode.  Jughead is basically summarizing the Jason Blossom /Polly Cooper love affair with some brief snippets of the both of them together before they were ripped violently apart.  Of course, if you’re just reading this then you don’t GET to see the pretty pictures, but I’ll do my best to summarize as it HAS been a few weeks since we’ve last done this song and dance.  AHEM!  Jason Blossom disappeared on the Fourth of July and was found several weeks later with a bullet hole in his head.  He was trying to run away with his pregnant girlfriend Polly who was sent to a Girl’s Home for… I guess being pregnant, but the TRUE reason is that the Coopers and the Blossoms have a Hatfield/McCoy generations long pissing match going on and her parents wanted her out of sight and out of mind.  Jason’s plan was two-fold.  Number one, sneak Polly out of the facility, and number two, deliver some drugs (given to him by the local gang known as the Southside Serpents) to an address upstate so he can have a decent amount of cash to start their new life.  Well, as famed Prussian General Helmuth Karl Bernhard Graf von Moltke once said, “no plan survives contact with a bullet to the head” so now it’s up to the denizens of Riverdale (mostly Betty and Jughead) to figure out who pulled a Romeo and Juliet on these two.  Now I like the way they present these details in this opening bit, but there is a part of Jughead’s narration that’s throwing me off.  The series keeps pushing this point that the Coopers are some sort of ultra-controlling and outwardly perfect dynasty within the Riverdale community, and I just don’t see it.  I mean sure Betty and Polly’s mother (who I delightfully refer to as Lemon Mom) certainly ACTS like that’s the case, but there’s never been a demonstration of clout or even that much opulence (the same way the Blossoms have been portrayed) to have this make any sense.  Hell, I don’t even know what their dad’s JOB is, let alone if it’s anything important, and Lemon Mom is a journalist… for a local newspaper.  Oh, well SAY NO MORE!  DON’T CROSS THESE PEOPLE!

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It’s like the Reynolds Family before Frank lost all sense of decency.

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Super Recaps: Riverdale Chapter 7 (In a Lonely Place)

Riverdale and all the images you see in this recap are owned Warner Bros Television Distribution and The CW

Episode directed by Allison Anders

We’re back with another episode of The Incredible Jughead!  Just like Bruce Banner, our nominal hero of this show (Archie certainly isn’t the star of this) can’t stay in one place for too long as trouble follows wherever he goes.  That, and his last house got torn down, so we should probably get that resolved before too long as well as the whole POLLY WENT MISSING thing from last week.  Does this episode manage to tie up some of the loose ends that have been left dangling as we enter the second half of the season, or will this show double down on making things as needlessly complicated as possible (*cough* Lodge Industries *cough*)?  Let’s find out!!

The episode begins with… honestly, what looks to be a better show but I guess I’m supposed to find this hilariously dated instead.  It’s a dream that Jughead is having where he looks a bit closer to his comic counterparts and they’re playing Lambs in Clover by Jack Strachey; a song that you probably don’t know by name but you’ll recognize immediately when you look it up.  First, Ren and Stimpy were doing this kind of twisted domesticity set to Lambs in Clover over two decades ago and were doing it WAY better, so I’d hardly call this edgy or even that subversive.  Second, while I will grant them that Jughead has basically looked the same since the 1940s, it’s not like the series was hermetically sealed in the golden age of Boomer Americana!  The series grew over the decades and kept up with the times, and while there were places where it took longer than it should to catch up to society, taking a shot like this feels like mocking Batman for wearing purple gloves which he hasn’t worn since before World War 2.  Granted, I know more about the comics than most people, but then I always thought the public perception of the series was late sixties youth culture; not mid-fifties suburban paradise!!

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“This is not my beautiful house!  This is not my beautiful wife!”

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Super Recaps: Riverdale Chapter 6 (Faster, Pussycats! Kill! Kill!)

Riverdale and all the images you see in this recap are owned Warner Bros Television Distribution and The CW

Episode directed by Steven A. Adelson

We’re back with another episode of CSI: Riverdale!  When we last left our intrepid sleuths Betty and Jughead, they were getting one step closer to solving the mystery of Jason’s death, but now the evidence is point to Betty’s parents which makes things a lot more difficult to say the least!  Oh, and Archie was doing stuff too I guess, but JUGHEAD AND BETTY!  They’re next plan is to find out where Polly was sent and see if she has any clues that can lead them to the killer!  Will the dynamic duo manage to save Polly and find the truth that has been eluding them for so long?  What will Betty’s parents do once they find out what she’s been up to with that Jughead boy!?  And uh… is Archie gonna do something of mild interest?  Let’s find out!!

The episode begins with Betty and Jughead who are about to initiate their master plan to find out where Polly’s been locked up.  Step one, have breakfast with Betty’s mom!  Okay, that doesn’t SOUND too hard, but this is Lemon Mom we’re dealing with who has just gotten back from her Women in Journalism retreat and is ready to tear everyone at the kitchen table a new asshole for the indecency and bad taste of merely existing in her presence.

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“THIS BREAKFAST… IS UNACCEPTABBBBBLLLLEEEEE!!”     “WE GET IT!  You hate everything!  Would you PLEASE shut up about it!?”     “The funny thing is, this is still better than breakfast with MY dad.”

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