Afterlife With Archie, First Horror Title From Archie Comics

Posted by at 12:08 pm on October 8, 2013

Afterlife01The vibrant, cheerful and safe town of Riverdale is getting a ghoulish makeover. In “Afterlife With Archie,” a series debuting Wednesday, publisher Archie Comics is launching not just its first horror title, but also its first book carrying a rating for teens and older sold only in comic shops.

The series written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and illustrated by Francesco Francavilla sees Archie, Betty, Jughead, Veronica and others, including Sabrina the Teenage Witch, enveloped in a panoply of incantations, elder gods, zombies and the undead.

“It’s a hardcore horror book,” sys Aguirre-Sacasa, a Harvey Award-winning writer who melded his personal interests and horror obsessions into influences for the book. “This is why I was meant to do comics.”

Those are evidenced in descriptions and images. In one panel, for example, Sabrina the Teenage Witch is clutching the fabled but dreaded “Necronomicon.” In another, showing the gang at a party, Archie is dressed as Freddy Kreuger from the “Nightmare on Elm Street” films.

Francavilla included his own nods to horror classics, too, like the “‘Rocky Horror Picture Show’ and ‘Nosferatu’ posters on Jughead’s bedroom wall.” But the book, despite its subject matter, he says, reflects the core characteristics of Archie and the other characters.

Publisher and co-CEO Jon Goldwater says the title is not your “traditional Archie Comic” given the subject matter. Instead, Goldwater calls the series a fresh opportunity to place Archie’s characters in a setting where there is no easy, happy ending with everyone feeling just fine.

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