One of the more interesting of the bunch is Afterlife With Archie, a book that takes our beloved Riverdale gang and drops them into the middle of a macabre horror story, far removed from the malt shop merriment Archie, Jughead, and company are so usually assorted with.
Beginning with a distraught Jughead appearing in the middle of the night at the doorstep of Sabrina the Teenage Witch, begging for mystical assistance in saving his beloved pup Hotdog after a late night run-in with a vehicle (later revealed to be driven by a familiar face to Archie readers). What follows is equal parts Romero and Pet Sematary, with artwork by Francesco Francavilla all draped in dark black, orange, and purple hues that evoke a very specific, spooky vibe.
Writer Robert Aguirre-Sacasa pulls no punches in giving a story that in no way belongs on the kiddie rack. In an interview with the New York Daily News he explained his ambitions with the story; “It’s a hardcore horror book,” said Aguirre-Sacasa, a Harvey Award-winning writer who melded his personal interests and horror obsessions into influences for the book. “This is why I was meant to do comics.”
If you’ve never read an Archie book, don’t worry, this book reads well as a straightforward horror comic. If you’re a fan of the Archie pantheon however, every page packs an extra punch. As far as Halloween horror comics go, Afterlife With Archie is the one to beat.