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Archie #604

I have to say, I was not an Archie fan when I was growing up.  I never read any of their comic books and even though I watched their cartoon series, from time to time, I never really liked it.  In fact, I never understood the appeal of the characters from Riverdale.  Then one morning, I heard on the news that Archie was finally going to choose between Betty and Veronica and get married.  Even, I knew this was going to be a big event in the history of the series.  I mean, Archie’s been trying to make up his mind between those two for over sixty years, so I decided I would go ahead and read this storyline. 
SPOILER WARNING  I have to say, I really felt cheated, right from the beginning, since Archie really is not choosing between the girls and getting married.  Instead, the whole storyline is about Archie’s walk up Memory Lane where he and the reader get a look at his possible futures.  The whole storyline is really just one long what if.  END SPOILER WARNING  As for this particular issue, it is number five in a six part storyline and is much like the overall storyline.  The issue is very fast paced, a little to fast paced for my taste.  If the story was slowed down, just a bit, the writer could give the reader some more detail on each of the important events that are covered in the story.  Now, that means the whole storyline would have to run longer, but so be it.  If you need eight or ten issues to tell the story right, then take eight or ten issues, don’t try and force it into just six issues. 
Despite the overly fast pace of the story, I liked this issue and the storyline as a whole, at least so far.  Some of the characters maybe selfish or act like jerks at times but they always come through in the end and whined up being likable and classy.  This issue may have been a little more hooky then the rest in this story arc but that seems to suite the characters being spotlighted.  I, also, liked the fact that the characters face some real challenges and problems.  It’s not just some 50’s sitcom version of life.  The fact that each issue of the arc is completely readable and enjoyable on it own is a big plus for casual readers. 
Despite the overly fast pace of the story and the fact that this is not a truly historic storyline I still enjoyed it.  So, whether you’re new to Archie, a life long reader or an old fan coming back, this issue and the storyline overall are worth reading.
Keith Forney