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Dec
05

Archie Comics: Which Character Are You?

By

In the right hands, comics are an excellent medium for revealing character with a few concise words and lines.   Michael Berry

Much is said against the educational properties of the colourful comic book that children and many adults like to read. Although I am a voracious book worm, I think it is time to speak in defence of that much  maligned, much loved medium of entertainment and instruction, and the ways in which it has inspired, educated and influenced my thinking, formed my character and moulded my life.

There is a time to immerse oneself in serious , elevated reading material and a time for light hearted, undemanding , quick reads that launches us into the crazy adventures of  familar characters in a fictional world that feels like home. Archie comic books had that magical effect on me (among a ton of other comic book characters) after a long day at school spent learning modern math and science.

What was most fun was identifying all my school and playground friends with the different characters.

For a young mind that has not yet experienced the wisdom of discernment, Archie comics provide an instant primer on what is good and bad behavior, who we want most to be like, and whether we understand and appreciate the value of everyday people that live around us or whether we  discount their individuality by pegging them into stereotypes.

Let’s take a look at some of the well known Archie comic book characters that we meet in everyday life.

1. Archie Andrews – the main protagonist of Archie comics is your very average , freckled boy next door. He is neither movie star good looking, nor downright ugly. Nor is he the brightest student in the class. Yet , with nothing spectacular going for him, he is popular with both the boys and with the girls!

In fact his very absence of ego, undemanding friendship, well mannered though slightly distracted and muddling ways that lead him into one predicament after the other especially in his romantic life, he is the epitome of the middle class everyman stability that everyone really seeks to find or to be.

2. Betty Cooper – Pretty, blonde girl next door. She represents the average teen who finds it difficult to accept their  own endearing wholesomeness in the quest of trying to be like their favourite fashion icon or movie star. Yet, like Archie, she represents  good strong middle class values and is the typical, often overlooked sweet girl next door.

This is seen in her conscientious hard work at school resulting in consistent good grades,  her careful frugality on her shopping expeditions and self made clothes without compromising her fashion sense. She bakes, cleans and is very kind and helpful to all her friends.

3. Jughead – the epitome of unselfconscious individual, who is unaffected by other peoples opinions of him. This was the character I admired the most in my growing years.  He lives his life following his own values, lives to eat anything but specially burgers and pizzas, loves his dog HotDog , and  is normal but not girl crazy, prefering to lead an uncomplicated life.

Yet, don’t mistake his laid back attitude for an uncaring one. Because he is a true blue loyal friend always trying to help Archie out of many difficult situations, and ever ready to lend a comforting shoulder to Bettys tears.

He may wear an eccentric trademark hat, but in my humble opinion he is Prince of Riverdale High!

4. Veronica Lodge – the beautiful, perfect 10, rich and stylish brunette diva that all the boys are crazy about, and all the girls envy. She is often portrayed as a self absorbed, selfish girl who only wants what she wants and is quite capable of using many schemes to deviously get what she wants.

 Ron definitely does not play fair , yet she is also  a generous friend who often shares her wealth and good fortune with her less well favoured friends.

5. Reginald – Also well to do like Ron, but with not a single good streak in him. He is arrogant, boastful, and a show off cavorting around in  sleek cars and a fashionable wardrobe. Yet no one envies his riches, or his naturally unsuccessful love life… because everyone seems to see through the sham of the facade he represents.

Secretly he seems to envy Archie’s likeability and everyday charm and popularity that makes him so attractive because Archie does not try too hard to be someone he is not!

6. Moose Mason – big, tall, bumbling, not too bright – his only strength seems to be his strength! Yet he is also very protective of his girlfriend (just one monogamous relationship which is commendable) and is not afraid to confront anyone who may make a move on her or upset her- He speaks mainly with his fists.

He may be clumsy and big, and not good with words, but has a solid, faithful heart.

7. Dilton Doiley – the Brainy, nerdy, scientific sort- he is often at the top of the class,  only mildly interested in girls and would rather spend hours in his laboratory inventing stuff and experimenting with solutions.

With his glasses and serious manner, he is the go-to guy for all things academic, and he also often stops to help his schoolmates with their homework assignments.

We have all met them. We have characteristics of some or all . We love them or hate them, we identify with them or not – yet we unanimously love them and reach for another comic book even in our adult life without losing the connection with the characters we first met as children.

Who do you know that most closely matches any of these characters? Which of the characters from Archies comics do you identify with?  What does that reveal about you? What have you learnt from comic books?

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Categories : Natural Genius

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