Archie’s Message: We Stay the Same

Every month, Archie sends out its solicits. They usually try to come up with some theme to highlight some of the books. What is it for this month? The comfortable status quo. Here’s the press release, clearly targeting the older reader:

Archie Comics have always inspired a sense of nostalgia in their readers. That’s because the company has always strived to keep the stories faithful to the fads and fashions of each decade in which they were published.

It’s also because the stories traded in Americana. By setting the tales in the fabled town of Riverdale, an “every town” mirror vision of suburbia where everyone knows each other by name, the company cemented Archie Comics as a safe haven for cherished memories. Such memories were made of skinned knees and bee stings, followed by sock hops and drive-ins, and ultimately protests and progress.

Where Archie comics really resonate for readers is in the notion that “the more things change, the more they stay the same.”

This February, a trio of stories examines this notion as only Archie Comics can, with its trademark humor coupled with heartwarming poignancy. You won’t want to miss these hysterical trips down memory lane!

This sounds like a pitch for a class reunion, not comics theoretically aimed at pre-teens. Perhaps they know that those readers aren’t coming through the comic shops, who are the ones who’ll see this information.

12 Responses to “Archie’s Message: We Stay the Same”

  1. Charles RB Says:

    I’d have figured these sort of releases would be aimed at parents who used to read Archie, in the hope they’ll buy it for their kids.

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  3. Agustin Mojica Says:

    Are these comics really sold much in comic shops in the first place? I’m of the impression that these books are sold to grandmothers picking up an unwanted gift from the checkout lane.

  4. Johanna Says:

    There are some comic stores that do quite well with Archies. It depends on whether the shop wants the kid customers, of course.

  5. Colonel Sartoris Says:

    I buy everything Archie publishes each month from online retailers in the direct market. I am the target audience of this PR and it worked on me!

  6. Agustin Mojica Says:

    I was about to say something about, “would Archie really bring in kid customers? Who reads Archie, anyways” until I realized that I read Archie as a kid, alongside their Sonic the Hedgehog comics. As a kid of the nineties, I was pretty far from Archie’s heyday, too.

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  8. joecab Says:

    I’m still too pissed about how they dealt with Dan DeCarlo just before he died to buy Archie Comics regularly anymore.

  9. Oliver Says:

    What happened to Dan DeCarlo, what did they do? I can’t buy Archies regularly either, but I do find some discounted ones at my used book store (although Archie doesn’t get my money that way). I wonder if they’ll eventually fold because it’s even harder these days to keep an ailing publishing house going.

  10. Johanna Says:

    Dan DeCarlo sued for ownership of characters he’d created (like Josie, who was based on his wife), and Archie’s response was to fire him and refuse him any credits, even though their current character looks are based on his work.

    I don’t think Archie Comics, as a publishing company, is in any danger.

  11. Oliver Says:

    Thank-you for the information about Dan DeCarlo. So they did that because they didn’t want to pay him royalties on the Josie comics? But he cemented the way all the characters are drawn? That’s pretty low.

    So they aren’t in danger even when it’s obvious they try so many different methods of generating more money (manga, new logos on the comics & digests, the “New Look” series, etc.)? Well, that’s good to hear, but why are they trying all this stuff? Archies, and especially comic books, are not doing the same as they used to (and Manga sales are down, too). Do you know if Archie gets any grants from any New York arts organizations?

  12. Johanna Says:

    Well, in comics, there’s a traditional drop-off of readership over time, so people use stunts to keep buyers’ attention to compensate.

    Plus, the last of the founders passed away earlier, so they may feel like it’s a good time to try some new things with new leaders.




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