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Archie & Friends and The Shield 2002

Reviews for the various Mighty Crusaders Comics.

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Post Thu Dec 01, 2005 4:21 pm
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Gem Mint
Gem Mint

Posts: 258
Location: Edinburgh

Image

Script: Paul Castiglia, Pencils: Fernando Ruiz, Inks: Rich Koslowski

This magazine is from 2002 and as far as I know is the most recent Crusaders related comic to have been published with new material in it (I say this in December 2005!).

There are twelve pages of story as well as a new cover. It's on nice paper with nice colours, which makes it more readable in my opinion, however it is A5 size rather than the more normal US letter size (making this magazine almost annoyingly small).

The premise is entertaining, the Archie gang go to their local cinema to see the new Mighty Crusaders film, and the cinema is offerring half price tickets to anyone dressed as a superhero! This gives the artist a great chance to show tons of teens dressed up in homemade superhero costumes based on ultra heroes from any and every incarnation of the MLJ/Crusaders line. A good few pages are devoted to a retelling of the original Shield's origin story (as part of the movie) although the dialogue in the movie is really corny! I like to think this was done deliberately :-) One thing which I thought highlighted the lack of female Archie Adventure heroes is the fact that the teenage girls going to this movie tend to be dressed in the costumes of male superheroes! Veronica is dressed as the Jaguar (the sixties version, not the Impact version) and Betty is dressed as the golden age Comet!

Other highlights include a couple of panels showing the Crusaders' battle with the Brain Emperor and the Eraser, originally shown in the Red Circle run of Mighty Crusaders, and an audience member dressed as the original Black Hood notices that the two villains look different from their comic book counterparts. Steel Sterling, Black Jack and even the Shield's kid sidekick Dusty walk on for a panel each and in the final page Archie even enthuses about the new Archie TPB, "The Shield: America's 1st Patriotic Comic Book Hero". I was also quite interested in one panel which shows the gang going into a comic book shop. A few comic covers were vaguely sketched out as part of the scenery and i noticed on closer inspection that they appear to be the new Shield TPB, Flyman 38 (with the Web on the cover and oddly enough, the word "Web" instead of "Flyman") and a couple of the DC/Impact issues of the Comet.

I only know of two other 21st century appearances of the Mighty Crusaders, in Archie's Weird Mysteries 3 and 14, although I heard they had had a few one page origin stories in the back of Sonic The Hedgehog. It's nice to see the Crusaders back in action although I have to admit that reading this issue was only enough to whet my appetite. Whilst it is a good read in itself, it's apparent that it's real purpose is to advertise the Shield TPB, which is no bad thing I suppose.

Post Fri Dec 30, 2005 4:47 pm
Calum User avatar
Gem Mint
Gem Mint

Posts: 258
Location: Edinburgh

As an addendum, I just remembered there's this little press release about this issue on the mightycrusaders.net site.


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