In an almost perfect scheduling move, this issue of Kevin Keller almost hit stands while the Olympics were still going on. Alas, it is a tad too late for reading between events but the Olympic-themed issue is still a treat for fans even if it does not quite hit the landing after a great display.
As luck would have it Kevin’s father has been selected to be a torchbearer and to run with the Olympic torch before the start of the games even though he is not a British citizen or even lives in the country for that matter. Well, it is explained that his father was stationed there for four years while in the army and wound up with dual citizenship but that does not make any sense. In any case, it turns out a full British citizen can nominate someone and Kevin’s father is awarded the opportunity of a lifetime.
Soon Kevin, his family, and Veronica are flying across the pond to watch the running in person and take in the sights and the typical Archie brand of hijinks take place.
For my money, Dan Parent is the best active Archie Comics storyteller in the business and his work here is top-notch, full of vibrant action and pleasant characterizations. His Jughead scenes at the start of the issue in particular had me smiling broadly as I read. Perhaps the only thing lacking in the issue was an infusion of British scenery in the background of the panels. Except one town center scene and the occasional Union Jack flag in the background, there was very little to give the reader the sense that the story was taking place in an area rarely used in Archie stories. I could not help feeling that it was a missed opportunity and let down an otherwise delightful issue.