The Archie Andrews saga

Archie Andrews is a mystery for the ages.

Archie Andrews is a mystery for the ages.

I hadn’t really thought about the guy for many years but, now that he is headed for the altar, it is probably time to unravel the dark enigma that is Archie Andrews.

First of all, the guy spent over 60 years in high school and I would guess that is some sort of record. The disturbing part is that he wasn’t alone because Riverdale High was locked into six decades of zero high school graduation. This was either a system that failed catastrophically, or these people were barely smart enough to breathe.

So, if you rule out scholastic achievement, other questions begin to surface about Archie Andrews.

How did he manage to avoid the draft and Viet Nam? This guy was a perfect candidate for an all expense paid vacation to Southeast Asia and at least that would have gotten this slug out of a long and pointless high school academic pursuit.

I get very confused at this point because Archie, the 60-year high-school wonder, somehow manages to complete a university degree in just four years, despite the amped-up academic challenge of a university program.

Archie is a popular guy but I would have to wonder about his closest friend, Jughead Jones, as a wing man. Let’s face it, this guy is one giant cry for help.

He is either drug skinny or a bulimic anorexic who hates what he sees in the mirror.

Somebody beat the hell out of this guy’s self-image and I sincerely hope that it wasn’t Archie.

I guess the biggest question mark for me has always been Archie’s inexplicable popularity with women. Betty and Veronica are clearly the front-runners in Riverdale who could easily buy and sell the souls of every male in town, yet they have competed for Archie’s affection for 60 years.

That has barely made sense to me since my first Archie comic as a kid, but I was not then, nor am I now, an expert in female behaviour. However, I do know one thing; two women in heated competition for one guy is always a great thing for the guy.

Later this summer, a freshly-minted university graduate named Archie Andrews will propose to Veronica and finally end a six decade competition between the two women.

The biggest news flash for either Betty or Veronica would be that 60 years is more than enough time to make a bold romantic move on the guy and end the competition immediately.

All of these people have passed through several recent decades of a relaxed code of moral conduct and I don’t see a lot of little Riverdalers in the mix, red-headed or otherwise.

Maybe sexual frustration is the reason that Archie has decided to jump the broom with Veronica — that plus her father’s recession-proof investment portfolio makes matrimony with her a pretty solid career move for Archie.

Personally I would have picked Betty about 59 years ago if I was in Archie’s shoes, but I would have worked the room a bit harder in the pre-marital romance department with both of them.

Jim Sutherland can be reached at

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