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Thursday, October 1, 2015

Archie Key Issues Part 2



This is Part 2 to the Archie key issues series, and the fact that I'm attempting this is just about as funny as some of the Archie stories. Hey, but I'll try my best with the little amount of information and resources I can dig up.

As I stated in Part 1, I don't guarantee the accuracy of the chronology presented here or which comics were released or hit the stands before the other. I'm basing quite a few on sale dates from the LoC registration that Mike over at Mike's Amazing World has dug up, or if I can find pics with arrival dates stamped or drawn on them.

It's an impressive site and I marvel at the work and research he put into it. Still, however, I truly don't know how accurate the LoC copyrights compared to exactly when an issue hit the stands are.

Furthermore, when Archie Publications began producing more spin-off Archie titles, they decided to print the first few issues of some titles without cover dates or to even mark the issue's month. They saw fit to just mark it with year and for several issues after the 1st one. That makes it even more confusing to gauge which issue came out before another different Archie title.

We'll definitely see some examples of those in later parts to this series. Anyways, if you missed Part 1, that link will bring you back. Here's Part 2 and more Archie key issues.





JACKPOT COMICS #5
1st definitive appearance of Mr. Weatherbee
1st brief appearance of Reggie

Archie's main rival and friend, Reggie Mantle, makes his very first and brief appearance in this issue. Overstreet says he is shown in one panel, but I see the character in three. Well, he is actually shown somewhat clearly in one panel.

Although Archie's main antagonist, he is a main supporting character and is even the bass player in Archie's band called the Archies. They are amicable towards each other and do consider each other friends.

He is very competitive in most everything, especially towards Archie. Both he and Archie compete for the affections of Veronica Lodge, and Reggie spends a lot of time trying to outwit Archie or make him look a fool. Reggie's main weakness is his ego.

Despite his affections for Veronica, Reggie is not vindictive towards Archie. If Veronica and Archie have a misunderstandings or are upset at each other, Reggie along with their other friends will try to help patch things up between them.

Definitely one of the more important Archie key issues, and if you're an Archie fan or looking for more rare and better comic investments out there during the Golden Age, this one should be in your sights.

The huskier version of Mr. Weatherbee also makes his debut in this issue, and this is the version and appearance that will be the version that fans know. He is also identified as Mr. Weatherbee or "the Bee" as Archie's gang often calls him.

Therefore the earlier first appearance of the character is considered a prototype. This issue is definitely a sought-after issue because of the first brief appearance of Reggie Mantle in it.

I wouldn't say it's over-looked or under-valued anymore since even low grade CGCs are going above the $2,000 mark. They are definitely on the radar, but these early Golden Age Archie's a pretty rare an no easy finds in the market either.

This comic is the Spring, 1942 issue of Jackpot Comics #5, and Mike's Amazing World has the on sale date of this issue around March 20, 1942.

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PEP COMICS #30
1st definitive appearance Miss Grundy

In this issue, we see the definitive version of Miss Grundy. No more tweaking or toiling with the character. This version is it and will remain so.

She is referred to as Mrs. Grundy and as a principal of Riverdale High School in Jackpot Comics #4. In this issue and throughout, she is Miss Grundy and the homeroom teacher to Archie and his gang.

Miss Grundy often pushes Archie and Moose to excel, but she as well as students of her are quite fond of each other. Since the Archie series revolves around a gang of teens in high-school, Miss Grundy or this "definitive" version of her appears quite often as a supporting character in the comics.

Pep Comics #30 is cover dated August, 1942 and has an LoC registration date of June 10, 1942.

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JACKPOT COMICS #6
1st full appearance of Reggie Mantle?

Well, if Overstreet is noting the difference between the first full appearance of Wolverine in Hulk #181 and the first brief appearance of the character as well as others (Gambit), I think it's fair to say that they should be making the difference between the first brief appearance of Reggie Mantle in Jackpot Comics #5 and his first full appearance. If not, then color me confused.

After his brief appearance in Jackpot Comics #5, Reggie is next shown in Pep Comics #28 (cover date June, 1942) with blonde hair in three panels. This here is the character's next appearance after Pep #28, and he is shown quite a bit in this story as the two compete in a car race and depicts their rivalry further. Reggie is shown in at least 14 panels.

This would be odd if industry decided to note this as a 2nd or 3rd appearance. They could, but it would start a whole debate if they did. 

Gambit and Wolverine have 1st cameo appearances and 1st full appearances, so since Reggie has a "1 panel" cameo first appearance in the prior issue (it's actually 3), I think he should have a full appearance notation in Jackpot Comics #6. Then again, that's just my opinion. This could be the 3rd appearance of Reggie Mantle also.

I think this one here is quite over-looked currently. This comic has the cover date of Summer, 1942 and was supposedly on sale around July 3, 1942. It may have first hit some stands in very late June also.

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PEP COMICS #31
1st appearance of Mr. Lodge

Veronica's pops makes his first appearance in Pep Comics #31. As stated before, Hiram Lodge is one of the richest men in Riverdale and is an antagonist of sorts to Archie Andrews. His wife is Hermione Lodge.

Mr. Lodge often has nightmares about Archie dating his daughter, and tries to avoid the lad as much as possible. Since Archie is clumsy, he often breaks something or ends up hurting Mr. Lodge whenever he visits Veronica at her mansion.

Although Mr. Lodge disapproves of Archie dating her daughter, he often lets the two go out because deep down he knows Archie treats her well. He knowingly spoils Veronica but also fears that wealthier, young suitors may also do the same.

Mr. Lodge's origins are often contradictory. Some stories state that his born into old money while others have stated that he built his fortune. Either way, Hiram Lodge's first appearance is in Pep Comics #31 and it's the September, 1942 issue. LoC copyright registration is July 10, 1942

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PEP COMICS #33
Pre-Moose Mason tryout

Not sure what this means by tryout. I suppose this early character wasn't really Moose Mason, but was like Moose Mason?

Hell if I know what this notation means or is suppose to mean, or why it's even worth noting for Overstreet. Since they do, I might as well also.

As I've said before, I'm definitely no expert when it comes to Archie comics. I'm sure someone out there knows what "Pre-Moose Mason tryout" means and how it applies to this issue.

If this means that blonde fellow standing next to Jughead in the first panel of this comic page is suppose to be a Moose Mason prototype or tryout, then I guess so. Not sure who discovered this or what brought them to that conclusion. 

However, those over at Overstreet notes this comic book as such, and those guys would definitely know more about this than I do for damn sure. You can click the images to see a bigger version if you'd like. I know that they are pretty small on this page here.

Anyways, this early Golden Age Pep Comics #33 has the cover date of November, 1942 and was on sale around September 15, 1942.

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ARCHIE COMICS #1
1st appearance of Mrs. Andrews
1st on-going self-titled series

Due to the popularity of Archie, it wouldn't take long for him to spin-off into his own headlining comic. This comic title lasted an incredibly long time, from the Golden Age to the present.

This key notation is a bit confusing. So Overstreet and CGC both note that Archie Comics has the 1st appearance of Mrs. Andrews who is Archie's mom. However, Archie's mom does show up in Pep Comics #22 as well as a few issues preceding this one.

I'm not entirely sure and just trying to make sense of this one, but maybe her earlier appearances were cameos and she was not identified as actually being Mrs. Andrews? I dunno, I don't own any of these comics, and this one along with issue #2 is supposedly really scarce.

Soooooo...for now, I suppose this issue has the 1st Mrs. Andrews or she is verified as such. Kinda seems strange since I'm pretty sure it's not that hard to figure out she was his mother in prior issues.

Anyways, don't feel like debating about it or even thinking too much about it. Archie's mother is obviously an important recurring character in the series.  

Archie Comics #1 is a Winter issue and has an LoC copyright registration date of November 15th 1942. CGC Census has 51 total submission for this comic so far and the highest is an 8.5 VF+ at the time of this writing. This 8.5 VF CGC copy also sold for $167,300 back in 2011 by Heritage.

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Definitely no easy finds for these Golden Age Archie key issues. They will definitely be a hunt if you're interested in them and probably already up there in value.

I don't see too many Golden Age Archie comics at cons, but then again, I don't really look out for them. So, Part 3 is ready to read with just click of that link below, and you missed Part 1, just click the PREVIOUS link below.




2 comments:

  1. Afterlife with Archie was the first time I had an encounter with that Archie guy. Cool series. I think I' m gonna stick with this one.

    Max Rebo

    ReplyDelete
  2. I second that. Afterlife with Archie totally exceed my expectations, I thoroughly have enjoyed that series to date. AGREED!! Wiebes

    ReplyDelete