Subway Shorts – Archie 30

With all the drama in Riverdale over the last few issues, what could possibly be better than everyone being in the same building for the prom?

Archie 30
Written by Mark Waid and Ian Flynn
Art by Audey Mok, Kelly Fitzpatrick and Jack Morelli

There’s been a significant tonal shift in this book since it debuted in July 2015. It started as a modern, less childish take on Archie, Jughead, Betty and Veronica, rebooting the lives of the Riverdale kids for a new era. The stories Mark Waid told in the early goings could be heartbreaking or they could be humorous, but it was clear he was going for something new. The art looked nothing like a typical Archie comic and the whole package was an impressive upgrade over the brief comedic situations Archie and the gang went through.

As Waid, and now with co-writer Flynn, keep trying to top what’s come before, we’ve slowly returned to over-the-top scenarios like Betty being temporarily paralyzed, Reggie being thrown in jail and everyone in Riverdale generally being pretty miserable.

With the latest issue, the teens are preparing to go to the prom. Archie, now single, is only going to play music. Betty and Veronica are bonding and going together and Reggie is looking to blow everything up by revealing that the Blossom twins’ father is really an ex-con. That last one may come out without Reggie’s help, since the issue closes on their father (presumably) outside the prom, in his car, brandishing a gun. 

Do not be surprised if, next issue, a classic klutzy Archie moment saves everyone.