Friday, November 9, 2012

Crisis on Infinite Archie-Earths: Life with Archie # 18

Well, here we are again with another post of the Archie: The Married Life series. I grew up reading Archie and Donald Duck comics when I was a kid instead of the Superman or Spider-Man comics. But then their stories became redundant. Plus, growing up made you crave for stories with some action, violence and mature themes. So I set aside my childhood fascination with Donald, Scrooge McDuck and Archie and replaced them with Combatron, Batman and Wolverine. 

Time passed by and I have learned that Archie and the gang moved "forward" with a storyline that involves Archie marrying Betty and Veronica while struggling with real-life problems. Having a soft spot for Archie and wanting to find out how the writer dealt with it, I bought the 2 trade paperbacks with 6 issues each. 
( you could check the review on the 2 volumes here and here ). The writer made 2 universes where Archie married Betty and another one where he married Veronica. Believe me, it can get confusing. 

Out of sheer luck I was able to buy a single issue of Life with Archie # 18 at a discount bookstore instead of waiting for the third volume due next year. I advanced on 5 issues and a lot has happened: someone got married, someone got divorced, someone is pregnant and so forth. From here we are treated to Betty-Archie and Veronica-Archie meeting face-to-face with each other. And Archie's childhood friend Ambrose Pipps reappearing and able to travel in between dimensions. 

So when you think that the previous volumes were confusing... hell, you ain't seen nothing yet. Click on image for a larger view. ( and all images copyright Archie comics 2012 ) 

Wait, wait, multiverses? Dimensions? Reggie from where Archie got marriedto Betty? And to think this was at just the 8th and 9th page of the comic that I wanted to just stop reading and save myself from a migraine. But I just went with it and even entertained myself with possible story elements. 

Like this homage that I did to Crisis on Infinite Earths # 7 cover. 
Or anyone remember Little Archie's bully Fangs Fogarty???
...And Crisis on Infinite Earth's ultimate villain the Anti-Monitor???
Hmmm.. what if?? 

Man, there are a lot of ideas here. But alas, there wasn't much dimension-hopping that occurred or an omnipresent being killing the other universes. We only get this bit on Ambrose explaining his "powers"

And again we are presented with another brain-busting moment. Even Archie from whatever Universe he came from commented on all the multiverse hoopla.
This was a great moment in the series. Seeing all those multiverse characters in one huge panel. Makes you think twice about those other fantasy Archie stories being actually "true".
Then we are shown the Archie-Marries-Betty story side of things (with a different artist doing the art chores) Believe me when it still gets confusing even when we are near the end.
This is one of great moments of the issue. Every single multiverse character that you could think of at that moment appearing in front of the "bad" Dilton.

This panel isn't much, but I just like seeing the 2 Archie Earths being sorta together. The art can be pretty awkward at times, where the anatomy is dis-proportioned.

In one issue, we are finally relieved of all the Multiverse hoopla and gone forward with a more suitable "soap-opera" story ( hopefully ). I had to read the issue twice to finally understand what's going on. All of the multiverse story bits is kind of unnecessary, but I'm guessing the writer just wants to spice things up. 

Although I would have welcomed this possible story element. Heck, who knows???

- "the king"