Hands on: The Art of Archie - The Covers

Take a look at the history of Archie, Betty, Veronica and the gang.

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Spotlight on: The Art of Archie - The Covers

Check out this book showcasing some of the history of Archie Comics.

The great thing about comics is there's always something for everyone. Pretty much everyone knows who Archie, Betty and Veronica are but they might not realize just how long these characters have thrived. Archie first made his debut back in the early 40s. To this day, new comics are still being produced. This book contains a look at the characters with a focus on the covers.

Archie's look may have evolved slightly over the years but there's always been a certain Archie-style to the characters. Looking through this book makes you realize just how long the characters have been having crazy adventures.

Opening up the book, you get an immediate glimpse into some of the covers.

Let's make it clear, this isn't just a book containing images of covers. There is information on the history of the characters and publication. In case you're unaware, check out what Archie looked like in his first appearance.

Besides seeing the classic cover in a nice clean shot, you can see you also get a little behind-the-scenes. Seeing the original art for some of these images is amazing. It's like seeing secrets uncovered as you get the see the raw look of the art before it's been finished and colored.

There have also been some common themes over the years. It's always cool to see the homages, even when they refer back to themselves.

Along with the covers and bits of history, there are also some spotlights on some of the numerous creators that have worked on the books. In today's comics, Dan Parent is one of the most prolific Archie creators that immediately comes to mind.

There's a lot to see in this collection.

If you've watched the video at the top of the page, you have an idea what the presentation is like. The book is oversized with dimensions of 12" x 9.3" x 0.9" and contains 160 pages. It was released at the end of October so you should be able to still find it in book stores or online. It retails for $29.99 (Amazon has it for $20.48).

Here's a few more shots of the book:

Here's a comparison shot of the size of the book.

If you've ever read and enjoyed Archie comics or know someone that has or does, this makes a cool gift. Check it out. And maybe you can answer, who do you prefer, Betty or Veronica?

13 Comments
Posted by wundagoreborn

Betty.

I remember being a kid in the 70s and pestering my mom to buy me Archie digests in the cereal aisle whenever she took me grocery shopping. The images in this book really take me back.

Nowadays I wonder how Archie comics persist, when I see how low their monthly sales numbers are.

Edited by tupiaz

Not that interested in Archie. I have only seen the cartoon (probably the one from the 80's). However that this can be sold for 12 bucks reminds me how expensive some of the trades/hardcovers are. Especially from the big two and the quality doesn't seem too be any better. It is even more oblivious that the price from the big two is expensive when you compare it with Image comics. Their trades and hardcovers has a affordable price.

Posted by G-Man

@wundagoreborn: @tupiaz: The other great thing is the price of the digests. They may be smaller in size but they contain a lot of pages. And also the fact that they pretty much own that spot in the grocery store check out lanes means more kids' parents buying them. I'm pretty sure grocery stores don't get their comics from Diamond and the sales of the digest don't necessarily reflect in those numbers.

Staff
Edited by Vigorousjammer

Afterlife with Archie #1 & #2 both did fairly well for them, what with the whole Walking Dead zombie craze and whatnot. Also, Sonic the Hedgehog still tends to rank somewhere in the middle each month (Sonic Universe hasn't been doing quite as well, but it's still up there).

They have pretty decent subscription rates, so If I had to guess, that's probably where a lot of their business comes from, especially from the die-hard Sonic fanbase.

Oh, and I'm totally way more into Veronica.

Edited by wundagoreborn

@g_man said:

The other great thing is the price of the digests. They may be smaller in size but they contain a lot of pages.

Good value vs. awkward to store = the quandary of digests. They are fun to flip through, but I don't collect any.