Imagining a Better Future by Re-imagining the Past

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Dieselpunk Archie

Archie Comics was born in the Diesel Era. The initial Archie characters were created in 1941 by publisher John L. Goldwater and artist Bob Montana, in collaboration with writer Vic Bloom. They first appeared in Pep Comics #22 (cover-dated Dec. 1941). Starting with issue #114, the title was shortened to simply Archie.

In the last few years, Archie has started to take on several dieselpunk themes. One is found in the horror theme variant Afterlife with Archie and the other is Archie 1941.

Afterlife with Archie was published by Archie Comics beginning in 2013, depicting a zombie apocalypse that begins in the town of Riverdale in an alternative reality. The series takes a distinct dieselpunk theme when a Lovecraft element is introduced in Issue #8.

Archie 1941 is a five-issue miniseries that imagines how life in a United States on the verge of wartime would impact Archie’s pals and gals. The series was co-written by Mark Waid — writer on the regular Archie series, which goes on hiatus with July’s No. 32 — and Brian Augustyn, with art by Peter Krause. (Special thanks to John Pyka at The Dieselpunk Podcast Facebook page for bringing this to my attention.)

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