Archie Andrews has been America’s sweetheart for 80 years now and he’s never looked better. As Archie Comics heads into its eighth decade of comic book stories starring Archie, Jughead, Betty, and Veronica, some of the Archieverse’s most famous writers, editors, and illustrators got together for a virtual panel at New York Comic Con (NYCC) to discuss the future of the Riverdale squad.
Archie Comics’ Director of Publicity and Social Media Ron Cacace hosted the panel, in which he was joined by Senior Director of Editorial Jamie L. Rotante, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina artist Robert Hack, modern master and writer/artist Dan Parent, writer Amy Chu, Madam Satan writer Eliot Rahal, and Webtoon Entertainment Associate Producer Sarah Wang.
The CW’s Riverdale series just wrapped up its fifth season on Wednesday, with season six to follow just a few weeks, debuting on Nov. 16. The new season will premiere with a spooky, five-episode “event” before going on a hiatus until next year. Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (CAOS) actress Kiernan Shipka will also join the Riverdale cast in a crossover event next year. The Riverdale graphic novels are set in the world of the TV series, offering fans a more in-depth dive into the characters, stories, and mysteries.
CAOS will also live on in graphic novel form following last year’s conclusion of the Netflix series after four seasons. Artist Robert Hack worked on both the Netflix series (designing most of the storyboards for the intro) and the graphic novel, with a new issue debuting on Oct. 13. “It is stunningly weird. Stunningly messed up. Everything you love about Sabrina is back,” Hack said at the panel. “It’s a bit like describing a Robitussin dream.”
Another comic series, The Occult World of Sabrina, is a direct continuation of the Netflix series written by CAOS and Riverdale showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa. The new series will launch next year, picking up right where the Netflix series left off, in the afterlife.
Similarly, Chilling Adventures in Sorcery is another anthology horror comic book series coming out soon, reviving a classic Archie title from years ago. Fans will see new stories featuring Madam Satan from CAOS and other familiar Archie characters. “It’s creepy, unsettling stories with characters you know and love,” said Senior Director of Editorial Jamie L. Rotante. “Every story has a distinct style and a distinct genre within horror that it appeals to.” For example, one story is based on The Twilight Zone, while another is reminiscent of Five Nights at Freddy’s.
The classic Archie comic book line is launching some new stories, including Betty and Veronica Friends Forever Halloween Spooktacular and Archie & Friends Christmas Calamity. Archie’s Holiday Magic Special will launch in December as a new anthology comic book series dedicated to the holidays. The Archie Milestones series is returning with a new approach, highlighting a different decade in each issue. Fans can also celebrate the 80th anniversary of Archie Comics with The Best of Archie Comics: Eighty Years, Eighty Stories, featuring an Archie Comics story from every year, and Archie 80 Years of Christmas, featuring different Christmas stories from every year of Archie Comics. Bite Sized Archie Volume 1 is also available to preorder, launching in the spring.
Writer and artist Dan Parent is also working on a project called Kevin Keller Celebration Omnibus, a collection of more than 700 pages that include every Kevin Keller story since the character’s inception in 2010. Fans can contribute to the Kickstarter project to receive original artwork, bookmarks, buttons, prints, T-shirts, and more.
If you remember Ethel Muggs from the comics and the Riverdale series, the character is making a comeback in a Webtoon series, Big Ethel Energy. Webtoon is a digital comics platform, in which users can scroll through comics in a vertical format as they read on a phone. The Ethel spin-off will feature the character in her twenties. After she graduated from Riverdale High, she moved to New York City, but is now returning to Riverdale for a job as an adult. She gets to see the old squad again as an older and more confident woman, forming new relationships with people from her past.
Visit your local comic book shop or archiecomics.com to check out all of these new projects!