I started reading Archie comics when I was 9 years old and quickly became obsessed. I was fascinated by the mysterious teenage world it depicted, where boys and girls dated, went to dances every weekend, smooched in the backseat of old cars and jockeyed for position in Riverdale High’s precarious social hierarchy. I was most mesmerized by Betty and Veronica, Archie’s two competing love interests who were also best friends with amazing wardrobes (the characters never wore the same outfits twice).
Yet when I found out Archie is slated to die in an upcoming issue, I didn’t get down on my knees and start weeping. On the contrary: It’s time for Archie and his gang to ride his red jalopy off into the sunset. Because even though the comics may seem like a relatively wholesome, innocuous diversion for kids, the lasting impact is more insidious. It was only after I was well into adulthood reflecting back on my Betty and Veronica fixation that I realized I wouldn’t let my girls read those comic books today. Click here to find out why.