Betty & Veronica #3 – Review

When Archie Comics first announced Adam Hughes as the writer and artist for Betty & Veronica, I was cautiously optimistic. With each of the first two issues, I got more optimistic, but remained cautious. The book, however good it was, still didn’t seem to quite fit with the new narrative that Mark Waid had established for the New Riverdale. Now the final issue of the debut story arc is available, and we can fully evaluate how well Adam Hughes’ Betty & Veronica sits not only with the rest of the New Riverdale, but as a story as a whole.

BETTY & VERONICA BY ADAM HUGHES #3

Script: Adam Hughes
Art: Adam Hughes, José Villarubia, Jack Morelli
Cover: Adam Hughes
Variant Covers: Adam Hughes, Bengal, David Mack, Paolo Rivera
On Sale Date: 6/14
32-page, full color comic
$3.99 U.S.

All Heck breaks loose in Riverdale as the final act of BETTY VERSUS VERONICA reaches its combustible conclusion! The streets of Riverdale run red under the rockets’ red glare and no one will ever be the same!

Variant Covers:

Review:

The major critique everyone has of Adam Hughes is his style in drawing women that seems at times too carnal. I was concerned that Betty & Veronica, two teenagers, would be portrayed very much in the same manner as his Catwoman. However, after seeing the first two issues, I got more and more pleased with how the artwork was very restrained. I realize now, that the part of me that was worried was ignoring that Adam Hughes doesn’t only draw buxom, sexy women. Look at his Wonder Woman covers and see his treatments of characters that were adolescents, and characters other than Wonder Woman. His visual treatment of Betty and Veronica, is that while stunning, are hardly sexualized.

The story wraps up nicely without drastically changing the status quo. It feel s like a modern take on classic Archie stories that go up over the top, yet keep the characters relatively unchanged. We do get a good look at the Betty/Veronica dynamic, though. For the ending alone, I am very glad to have had these issues see publishing. I like them a lot.

However, do I love them? Well, that’s all relative, isn’t it? I think about the various takes on the characters. Over the decades, their relationship has been inconsistently portrayed. One story they will be best friends, and in the next, calling them rivals would be too kind. This story plays off of that perceived notion, putting it in the point of view of Archie and the rest of the gang, as the feeling is given that while Betty and Veronica are friends, no one can really see why. Veronica likes it that way, as she really values her image. Why she maintains that image is another story, one I hope we get sometime soon.

Rating: 8.5 (out of 10)