How have the fans of the red-haired, freckled teenager reacted to the news of his death? Apoorva Sripathi and Susanna Myrtle Lazarus find out.
For kids of each generation, there are always certain events, things and people that define them. For those of the late 1980s and 1990s growing up in India, it was Cartoon Network, Maruti 800s, Super Mario and long train journeys. And the last wasn’t complete without Archie Comics.
Fans of Archie Comics are today a sad lot; for, the red-haired, freckled-face love interest of Betty and Veronica (and many others at different instances) will meet his bloody end this July. Although we’re not yet sure why Riverdale’s beloved teen is being bumped off, the creators say that he dies saving the life of a friend. But this has caused a series of heartbreaks among pop culture enthusiasts.
However, Archie’s fans (mostly women) need not lose hope yet; his character is being killed in only the final issue of the Life with Archie series. Archie will live on in the other series. Yet, many feel that the series will not be the same.
Vaishnavi Prasad, Assistant Manager, Brand Marketing, Sterling Holidays, says, “It’s unfair to him. I’m half Betty and half Veronica, and I will cry.”
“Why must they kill Archie?” asks architect Nikhat Jahan. “They could have ended it with a happily ever after! Archie and his friends being perpetually in high school remind me of my school days. That’s why I love the series. I stopped buying the books after a point because they got a bit stale, but now, I will definitely pick up a copy to know what’s going to happen.”
Abhishek Balaji, an engineering student, says he was shocked when he first heard the news. “It’s like killing off Superman. The series is named after him; he can’t die,” he says.
Aparna Jain, a writer, is not impressed by this strategy. “It’s like how Archie got married; the comics that came after that were not about married life. It just creates a buzz,” she says.
Sanjana, who is now into game design and development and was a fan at the age of 13, says “It might be interesting to see how the world will pan out without him.”
In the last few years, the franchise has seen a lot of value additions in the form of social networking, Riverdale’s first gay character, an Indian-American character, a crossover with the musical drama, Glee and an Archie mini-series penned by Lena Dunham, the creator of Girls.
However, some are not so put out by the whole thing. Sree Kumar, a pharmaceutical product development scientist from Bangalore, said on Twitter, “As long as Ronnie and Betty are around, I’m fine. Archie had too much fun!”