Big praise to Ryan Cady and Thomas Pitilli for giving me a story about Big Moose that actually made me relate to the guy for the first time!
It’s part of the three-story Big Moose one-shot. Most anyone familiar with Archie Comics knows the character as a big, strong, football player whose single motivation is his girlfriend Midge and the jealousy he has for anyone else trying to date her.
“Have It All” by Cady and Pitilli shows much more depth to the character, though, as we follow Moose through “the busiest week of his life” (the part I was particularly sympathetic to). He’s got a term paper due, he needs to do something special for his anniversary with Midge, and there’s a big football game on Friday.
This story is great because it captures his essential optimism and really shows us what his life might be like, including his family and his motivations. He helps his friends where he can, and in return, they help him out. This is the kind of story that sums up the character essentials for any reader.
Unfortunately, the other two stories weren’t nearly as good. “Moose vs. the Vending Machine” by Sean Ryan and Cory Smith plays up the stupidity (which isn’t character accurate) and smears Jughead at the same time by having him trick Moose, who just wants a candy bar. He comes across as being selfish and having no self-control, which makes this pointless.
“The Big Difference” by Gorf and Ryan Jampole shows Moose interacting with Colin, a new kid on crutches. It’s got a good message but is otherwise forgettable, and Moose is almost a supporting character in it.
There’s a preview of the first story, the vending machine one, at the Archie Comics website.