Apr 4, 2013

Artists in Weird Places: John Byrne and Gene Colan's Archie

In Artists in Weird Places, we'll look at times when artists have stepped out of their comfort zone to do something different. Click here for the archive!

In 1990, NBC had a direct-to-TV movie called "To Riverdale and Back Again," featuring the Archie gang 15 years after graduation. It starred Christopher Rich as Archie, Sam Whipple as Jughead, Lauren Holly as Betty, Karen Kopins as Veronica, and Gary Kroeger as Reggie.

Archie, of course, put out a comic adaptation of the story. The cover was drawn by John Byrne!

And the interiors were drawn by Gene "The Dean" Colan (with flashbacks by Stan Goldberg). Although Colan was working for Archie at the time using the Archie house style, he went full-on Colan, with dark shadows and realistic figures. Here's his Archie.

Here's Jughead (who doesn't look a whit like Sam Whipple).

Here's Betty.

Here's Veronica.

And Reggie.

And here's the gang.

The one above Archie is Big Ethel. The little kid is Jordan Jones,
Jughead's son.

And here's a moment with Archie and Betty, done Colan-style.

Fun stuff. You can read the whole story here, and maybe view the movie here unless YouTube takes it down.

"To Riverdale and Back Again" is also known as "Return to Riverdale."

Do you have a suggestion for Artists in Weird Places? Email me at comicscube@gmail.com!

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