Reggie Mantle is the supervillain of Riverdale. The cool kid. The bad boy. The creep. The enemy. Told from the perspective of Vader, Reggie’s dog, this issue tells us about how nearly the whole town got on Reggie’s bad side when they left his party for Veronica’s. When Archie expresses his resentment for ruining Reggie’s party, he moves to the top of Reggie’s list.
Writer Tom DeFalco (The Amazing Spider-Man, Fantastic Four) so clearly represents Reggie in the way that we’ve come to know him. He’s cocky, stubborn, rude, conniving, and about a million other bad things. His one weakness is a girl, Midge, who is already taken by Moose. Unfortunately for Reggie, Midge isn’t interested—in fact, she pities him, and that’s about all.
Despite seeing his jerky side and having him only want his jerky side seen, we also get to see a softer side of Reggie. Or at least, we get to see what fuels some of his acting out. His parents are busy—all the time. He has no close friends (he had Archie, but then he lost him), his family doesn’t spend time with him, and he’s alone most of the time. This is why he got Vader. I’m really happy with how DeFalco is portraying Reggie thus far. Even though he doesn’t show it to other characters, we readers know the truth about his home life.
Artist Sandy Jarrell (DC Bombshells, Batman ’66) illustrates this issue with a mildly cartoonish art style that shows a lot of emotion, but is able to look fairly realistic at the same time. There are little details here and there that give the issue some character. For example, we see all the small pranks that Reggie plays on his classmates as well as a recurring “zero violence tolerance” sign (showing us just how much of a rebel Reggie really is).
The Archie line of books is really making a big impact on shelves, what with Archie, Jughead, Betty & Veronica, Life with Kevin, Reggie and Me, etc. This is a great addition to books that take a closer look at each of the characters from the iconic series. For both old and new fans, this is a great read.
Written by: Tom DeFalco
Illustrated by: Sandy Jarrell