Saturday, November 26, 2011

Crisis in Riverdale

A while back I did a blog on JOSIE AND THE PUSSYCATS, which led to a flood of comments on THE CROSSOVERS FORUM, especially from James and Ivan, my Spock and Bones, on theories regarding Archie.  Not all the theories presented worked together, but I spent a long time taking everything into account and have hopefully come up with something that has taken the best elements of everyone's ideas.

Perhaps once I write this blog, I'll have the cartoon/comic writing out of my system for a while, and I can tackle another sitcom or cop drama.



52,000 B.C.--ARCHIE 1--Thousands of years before recorded history, the ancestors Archie and the gang live as cavemen, interacting with dinosaurs and other prehistoric beasts. The characters generally make discoveries that will not be considered significant for centuries later, and there is often irony in the characters denouncing as impractical wheelshouses, and so forth.

Approximately 1492 to 1974--U.S. OF ARCHIE--Ancestors of Archie and friends tend to show up at the most important points in U.S. History.  (I couldn't find a decent episode guide so I was unable to go into more detail.)

1862—Jughead’s Time Police #5
Jughead’s Time Police revealed that Jughead was, by some accident or mistake, the ace agent of the Time Police—and that his seeming lack of interest in girls was because he was secretly dating his partner, January McAndrews (Archie’s great-great-great granddaughter).

As for this issue, “Jughead has been studying the history of the American Civil War (1861 - 1865). He is particularly interested in the Battle of Riverdale. A Union force defending the city was about to fall to a Confederate invasion force. But a mysterious Colonel Pickens appeared from nowhere, led a successful counterattack, before dissappearing. Modern Riverdale honors him as a hero. Studying images of the man, Jughead realized why he looked familiar: Pickens was Jughead in disguise. Time to travel back towards the War and play his part in the battlefield. Or else the Confederates will capture a guest to Riverdale, Abraham Lincoln, and the War will take a different course.” Summary by Comic Vine

1934--LITTLE ARCHIE--All of the stories of Archie's younger years are compressed to occur at this time.  THE ARCHIES band would be formed at this time, but would really reach popularity in the 1960 and 1970s.  The band has recently had a come-back.

1941--Riverdale and the surrounding towns are caught in some sort of time stop.  Everyone stops aging, with only some local witches being aware of this.

May 31, 1943 to September 5, 1953--ARCHIE ANDREWS--Radio adaption of the popular comic.

1962--LIFE WITH ARCHIE--The first of two failed live action pilots.

1964--ARCHIE--Unaired pilot that brings some legitimacy to having Archie in a TV blog.

1968--ARCHIE'S PALS'N'GALS # 23--Josie's first appearance.

1968 to 1969--THE ARCHIE SHOW--A continuation of the comic.

1969--JOSIE--The series was renamed in 1965.  Note that beside it's own title, Josie also was featured in other MLJ/Archie Comics titles.

1969 to 1970--THE ARCHIE COMEDY HOUR--The same show as the previous year, but now an hour long with Sabrina segments added.  Note that Archie, Sabrina, and Josie live in different towns, but all go to Riverdale High.  This isn't any different than my high school, which was in my home town, but which was attended by students from four different towns.

1969--ARCHIE AND HIS NEW PALS--Animated special spun off of the animated series and is actually a crossover with characters that appear in the form of vitamins called PALS.  Apparently no longer sold.

1970--JOSIE # 42--Little known fact.  The idea to change Josie to Josie and the Pussycats was in pitching the idea of turning the comic into a cartoon.  This followed the success of making animated version of ARCHIE and SABRINA.  So in preparation, the comic started making the conversion to match the new upcoming cartoon.  In this issue, Josie meets Alan M.

1970 to 2009--JOSIE AND THE PUSSYCATS (COMICS)--The continuing series whether in their own title or in other titles, ran off and on from 1970 to 2009. Because Riverdale and the surrounding communities are in a time anomaly, the character don't age yet aren't aware that they don't age.  Note that even though the film says they are in Riverdale, actually, Josie lives in Midvale, while Sabrina lives in Greendale.  My thoughts is that Riverdale is the largest of the towns.  It's like how people in Cambridge say they are from Boston.  Archie, Josie, and Sabrina interacted from time to time, and they also interacted with MLJ super-heroes.  Interestingly, time passes for the MLJ super-heroes but not the humor characters. 

1970 to 1971--ARCHIE'S FUN HOUSE--The Archies are starting to make it as a band.

1971 to 1973--ARCHIE'S TV FUNNIES--Archie and the gang run a TV station that shows cartoons based on comic strips.  The cartoons they show are Dick Tracy, Nancy and Sluggo, Broom Hilda, and more, but there is no actual crossover here.

1977--THE NEW ARCHIE/SABRINA HOUR--It's new.  It's Archie.  It's Sabrina.  It's an hour.

1978--ABC SATURDAY COMEDY SPECIAL--"Archie"--Pilot for a new animated series.

1978--THE ARCHIE SITUATION COMEDY MUSICAL VARIETY SHOW--Was a pilot for another animated series which didn't' do to well.  Apparently the Archies' fame was fading.

1987--THE NEW ARCHIES--They are still the same Archies, just trending to new styles and lingo.  Which is interesting.  Everyone physically stopped aging, but trends from the outside world still affected Riverdale.

1989—Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Meets Archie
This one is only slightly more insane than Archie Meets the Punisher. Here, the Ninja Turtles are brought back to earth from a meeting with aliens to score some pizza—of course they land in Riverdale. And this being an Archie crossover, Josie and the Pussycats are stopping there on their tour.

Shortly after the turtles arrive in town, Veronica is kidnapped by kidnappers (who else?), and Archie, Betty, Jughead, and the Turtles team up to save her! 

NOTE: I place these two stories together because the Power Rangers in Space episodes send the TMNT to outer space, where the Archie comic begins with the Turtles being unceremoniously dropped, by aliens, on the outskirts of Riverdale. The tales fit together like a jigsaw puzzle.

1990--ADVENTURES OF FORD FAIRLANE--The case Fairlane is on involves rock bands, or somesuch, but one of the bands mentioned is The Pussycats, which has the lead singer Josie.

That would be interesting enough, but the movie drops a large number of other music based crossovers. Ellen Aim and the Attackers is from the Diane Lane flick Streets of Fire (1984); Nakatomi Boys Choir is a reference to the first Die Hard movie, which took place in the Nakatomi building in Nakatomi Plaza (perhaps Mr. Nakatomi was also a boy's choir bandleader--billionares have had stranger hobbies); The Nine Sisters is a band referenced in the film Xanadu.

Another band is named Alba Varden after the bad guy's ship in Lethal Weapon 2. Perhaps the bad was inspired by newspaper reports of Riggs and Murtaugh's adventures.

1994--ARCHIE MEETS THE PUNISHER--The Punisher comes to Riverdale.  Josie and the Pussycats perform at a dance.  Besides the title crossover, Dino Manelli (from Sgt. Fury's Howling Commandos) Josie and the Pussycats, and Gotham City all appear. 

Dino Manelli is an interesting one. As his name implies, he's based on Dean Martin; but instead of being a look-alike analogue for Martin, Manelli is literally Martin with a lawyer friendly name. Both had hit film careers, record deals and such. The final evidence is that when Martin had the hit Dean Martin Show, Manelli had The Dino Show. Since they are one and the same (at least for TVCU purposes), Archie Meets the Punisher would have to take place before Martin's death in 1995.

October 1994--SIMPSONS--"Sideshow Bob Roberts"--Archie, Reggie, Moose, and Jughead make a brief cameo; they pull up to the Simpson's house tossing Homer Simpson out of Archie's car as Moose warns Homer, 'Duh, stay out of Riverdale!'. Later in the episode, Homer is seen reading Archie Comics, plotting revenge on 'those Riverdale punks.'"

Of course, Homer is from a seperate universe.  However, there are various locations in the TVCU that have portals to the Looniverse.  Likely Riverdale, being in a time lock as is, is one of those portals.  Other crossovers:  
Millie the Model, Katy Keene, Patsy Walker (the Hellcat!), Hedy Wolfe, That Wilkin Boy (Jughead's cousin) and Sabrina the Teenaged Witch. At one point Sabrina apparently comments: "So I asked the Doctor if the Hosts of Hoggoth were really hoary," which means at least once she's consulted with Dr. Strange.

This link shows that Red was probably the one-time star of Freckles and His Friends--an Archie rip-off. Also it reveals that all of his thugs were one-time stars of Teen Humor comics. There are a number of other obsecure crossovers mentioned that I didn't catch when I read Archie Meets the Punisher.

2001--Archie's Weird Mysteries--"Scarlet Night" and "I Was a Teenaged Vampire,"--James Bojaciuk 
I have one final Archie crossover for you, Robert

In the two-parter episode of Archie's Weird Mysteries "Scarlet Night" and "I Was a Teenaged Vampire," the Riverdale Gang is attacked by a teenaged vampire named Scarlet Van Helsing. It seems in life she was a member of the famous vampire hunting clan. Perhaps a vampire turned her as a personal trophy.

The henchman vampires are visually identical to Morbius the Living Vampire. Since there are two seeming Morbiuses, it's strongly possible that these two bloodsuckers are the result of Morbius' failed experiment in the production of soul-clones.

That is enough of a crossover in and of itself. But if we peel back the layers of the story, there is enough evidence to make a case that the story connects to Buffy mythology. The "Big Bad" of the episode is Count Medlock, a master-vampire visually identical to The Master, arch-villain from the first few seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. He intends to fulfill a prophecy that will bring about eternal night (which, if I'm not hopelessly confused in my Buffy mythology, is what the Master was trying to do in the first season of Buffy). Interestingly, Veronica is revealed to be the latest in a long line of vampire-slaying young women.

Yes, you read that right, Veronica Lodge is a Slayer.

Both "Scarlet Night" and "I Was a Teenaged Vampire" can easily be found on Youtube.

2003--THE ARCHIES IN JUGMAN--The Jughead from ARCHIE 1 is unthawed in the present.

2004--HACK/SLASH # 6-- A much more conventional Archie story--with only a normal slasher attacking the gang--is told

October 31, 2004--HACK/SLASH # 28/ARCHIE MEETS KISS--James Bojaciuk
So...Since this comic has Riverdale covered with zombies, vampires, and such because of one of Sabrina's misfired spells; so this must happen at the same time as the Hack/Slash storyline where Riverdale was freed from the timelock spell.

Yep. That's another sentence I never expected to type.

After that--Hack/Slash Trailers #2--But...Hack/Slash Trailers #2 has a bizarre short story that opens with a normally drawn Archie trying to buy beer--and then being attacked by Great Old Ones. The rest of the story has Cassie and Vlad at a camp where girls keep being killed--but Cassie and Vlad don't seem to be too concerned. Perhaps the story was exaggerated for "comedic" effect.

On the plus side, that story does give some level of evidence that the timelock spell was restored.

February 2006--DRAWN TOGETHER--"Xandir and Tim, Sitting in a Tree"--
  • Captain Hero's secret identity, Tim Tommerson, has a relationship with Xandir, which Captain Hero does not approve of.
  • PLUTO holds GOOFY hostage because he wants to wear pants.  This takes place in Toon Town, apparently not demolished for a freeway after the events of WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT?
  • There is a crime scene at THE FAMILY CIRCUS home.
  • ELMER FUDD and Tantor from DISNEY'S TARZAN appear in a street scene in Toon Town.
  • ARCHIE ANDREWS is seen at an arcade.  Archie comes from the TVCU.  The town of Riverdale and surrounding communities caught in a time anomoly.  Perhaps this is how residents manage to visit the Looniverse.
  • DILBERT is seen at the ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY office.  Also at the office are EWOKS.
  • Foxxy is in possession of a Starfleet tricorder.  It seems that the events of Star Trek seems to take place in the Looniverse in the 20th to 21st centuries and the Enterprise is always visiting Earth.

May 2010--ARCHIE # 608--Archie begins dating Valerie of JOSIE AND THE PUSSYCATS when their two bands are touring together.

At some point in the future--The time stop is broken.  Archie and his gang graduate from high school.  Everyone in Riverdale begins to age normally.

15 years after the time stop ends--ARCHIE:  TO RIVERDALE AND BACK AGAIN--As the gang prepare for their 15th high school reunion, their teenage years are only memories. Archie is an attorney engaged to image-conscious Pam, while Jughead (Sam Whipple) is a neurotic psychiatrist with a troublemaking son (dubbed "Jughead Junior" by Archie). An elementary school teacher and aspiring novelist, Betty is engaged to Robert Miller, who is jealous of Archie. Living in France, Veronica charters a Concorde to attend the reunion. She remains in love with Archie, who still has divided feelings for Betty and Veronica.
Moose Mason (Jeff Hochendoner) and Midge Klump (Debi Derryberry) are married chiropractors, while Big Ethel (Cindy Ambuehl) is a beautiful model. Having worked for Mr. Lodge (James Noble), Reggie (Gary Kroeger) owns several businesses. Reggie plans to demolish Pop Tate's to gain extra space for his gym, which Archie contests in court. In the end, Archie breaks up with Pam, Jughead moves back to Riverdale to open a practice, and Betty plans to teach in Riverdale High. Veronica stays for a while before going back to Paris, and Reggie is forgiven. Panned by both fans and critics, this pilot film was not picked up for a series run.

About 17 years after the time stop ends--ARCHIE # 600 to 606--Archie marries Veronica, and ends up with twins, a boy and a girl.  Note the boy is named Archie, and looks like his dad, following the tradition of the Archies of the past and future.  In the mirror universe, Archie marries Betty.

About 19 years after the time stop ends--CRIME:  THE LAST OF THE INNOCENT--Archie decides he has to murder his wife, Veronica.

Late 22nd century?--ARCHIE'S FUTURE FUN--Originally known as Archie 2001, this mini-series is a partial opposite to Archie 1, in that it involves the gang's presumed descendants living in the 22nd century, with technology such as robots, "futuristic" clothes and domed buildings, yet it is not as advanced as Archie 3000. Some examples of stories include Archie and Jughead using a studying machine at school to "absorb knowledge" of non-school-subjects, Archie constantly scattering Mr. Lodge's grass seeds with his UFO vehicle, and robots taking over people's lives until Jughead programs them to behave like him. This series is not to be confused with Starship Rivda or Archie 3000.

3000--ARCHIE 3000--The complete opposite of Archie B.C. (A.K.A. Archie 1), Archie 3000 displays the (presumed) descendants of Archie and the gang living in the year 3000, which is realized as a 1950s-style art deco world of flying cars, moving sidewalks, domed houses, and gaudy "futuristic" hairstyles and clothes (similar to The Jetsons). Despite the many new breakthroughs in technology, life for Archie and the gang notably hasn't changed much.

32nd century--STARSHIP RIVDA--A spoof of Battlestar Galactica and other such programs, Starship Rivda involved Archie, Betty, Jughead and Veronica as explorers of uncharted galaxies in the titular Starship Rivda. Not to be confused with Archie 3000.


Well, that's it.  I'm gong to throw down some comments here that don't really fit into the timeline.  There is a Robot Chicken appearance which I haven't been able to find to see if it fits.  There is also a softcore porn (it was rated R) about Archie.  But I couldn't find it to verify if it fits.  

It should be noted that Archie regularly crosses with (and thus not worth noting above) SABRINA, JOSIE AND THE PUSSYCATS, THAT WILKIN BOY, KATY KEENE, and the MLJ super-heroes.  Additionally, Archie and his supporting cast have appeared in hundreds of different comic titles, which you can find anywhere.

A great resource for that sort of thing is MIKE'S AMAZING WORLD OF ARCHIE COMICS.  

I will be updating the Josie blog to adjust for the time stop theory, and will create a separate Sabrina blog.  The other Archie characters are not really worthy of their own blog as they don't have any real solo television presence.



  1. This is part of my project. Does it look good to you?

  2. Also, if I do my own thing and you say Simpsons is in the Bongo universe and Popeye is in the Looniverse, do I have to follow your rules?

  3. This is great stuff! I am a big Archie fan, and I gotta say it's really thorough. I love your explanation for the relationship between Riverdale, Midvale and Greendale.

    But I must say you did misplace the New Archies. The show wasn't just "the Archies in the latest fashions", it was actually based in the past, when the gang were in Junior High/Middle school. Sorta between Little Archie and Archie.

  4. Tomcil, it's your project. You can do whatever you want. ShadZ, thanks for the info. When I get around to updating this site, I will make the correction.