Archie & Friends And The Shield # 1 (2002)
Writer: Paul Castiglia
Penciller: Fernando Ruiz
Inker: Ric Koslowski
Letterer: Vickie Williams
Colorist: Mike Pelllerito
This week, I’m taking a look at a forgotten gem, Archie & Friends And The Shield, that came out in 2002. I always like how Archie Comics would always show love to the Red Circle characters so this is an issue that will definitely bring Archie fans and Red Circle fanatics together in harmony.
Archie, along with Betty, Veronica, Jughead, Reggie, and Moose are in line to see The Shield movie but an owner of a local comic book shop tells everyone that if they bring their ticket stubs they will get a free Shield comic. Things start to get interesting when a fan dressed up as Red Hearts notices that Archie dropped his stub. Hence, she makes it a mission to return the stub to him (She also ends up spending most of her money on the cab fare to the store so she can’t buy a comic book); To be quite honest, I was expecting a lot more out of this particular issue but it just felt like an Archie story right down to the cutesy ending (**NO SPOILERS**); The Shield as, in my opinion, always been the heart and soul of the Red Circle imprint and he should have made a bigger presence than being relegated to a fictional character making his big-screen debut, and yes, I do feel like this particular issue was made to capitalize on the popularity of the first “Spider-Man” movie that came out in the summer of ’02.
This special did have some promise and there are times that it was a disappointment that Archie Comics would barely scratch the surface of making the Red Circle characters more visible to where they could be well-known alternatives to both Marvel and DC but for fans who love old-school Archie, then this is a special that will be loved no matter how predictable the premise is.
Well, that’s it for me this week. Thanks for sticking around, I will be back next week with another review, and I may look at another Red Circle character. Until next time…