Archie Comics introduces first openly gay character

Veronica#202
Can a gay teen comically get in trouble with Mr. Weatherbee, humorously strive to win a burger eating contest, make horrible puns and have trouble deciding who to date? At Archie Comics, the answer is yes, as they have introduced their first openly gay character, Kevin Keller. In the words of Archie Co-CEO Jon Goldwater, “The introduction of Kevin is just about keeping the world of Archie Comics current and inclusive. Archie’s hometown of Riverdale has always been a safe world for everyone. It just makes sense to have an openly gay character in Archie comic books.”

Kevin will appear in September’s VERONICA #202, in a story called “Isn’t it Bromantic?” Kevin Keller is the new hunk in town and Veronica just has to have him. After Kevin defeats Jughead in a burger eating contest at Pop’s Chocklit Shoppe, she desperately latches onto him. Mayhem and hilarity ensue as Kevin desperately attempts to let Veronica down easy and her flirtations only become increasingly persistent.


The press release notes that “the introduction of Kevin as an openly gay character is part of the commitment to keep Archie properties reflective of the current world of teens and teen media.” which is, gven some of the other weird stuff we’ve heard from major comics companies, a pretty progressive attitude for comics.

Kevin Keller01

Also, note that all the PR mentions that Kevin is Riverdale’s first “openly gay character,” so everyone who has been wondering about Jughead all these years…keep wondering.
Veronica202-6

Comments

  1. “Archie’s hometown of Riverdale has always been a safe world for everyone.”

    Unless you tried to date Midge.

    kdb

  2. I am delighted by this announcement. Kudos to Archie Comics.

  3. Scott Rowland says:

    Wow! Very surprising, but very welcome. I echo Tony’s kudos!

  4. Nate Horn says:

    I think this is *really* cool.

  5. I re-echo the kudos, and would like to ask Kevin out for sodas.

  6. Synsidar says:

    I don’t see the benefits of introducing a character specifically because he’s gay. Being gay doesn’t affect how one works, plays, cavorts, etc. It affects sexual relationships.

    How many times will deflecting the attention of girls who want him because he’s a hunk work in stories? And if he’s the only gay in Riverdale, he has no one to date.

    I would have preferred identifying a longstanding character as gay or lesbian, and have him or her appear in the background on dates, thus providing Riverdale with several gays and lesbians.

    SRS

  7. Brent says:

    I give 2 thumbs down… Like others have said, this only promotes sex and I would not let my kids read these… I believe these COMICS are for kids and I dnt want my kids to be havn sex b4 marriage (no, that is not impossible) and kids should b able to b a kid without relating to everyone in the world… not just an opinion, read the Bible!

  8. Scott Rowland says:

    Synsidar, it may be a small step forward, but it’s a step forward. Not one I ever expected to see Archie Comics take, to be honest.

  9. Brent, I feel sorry for your kids. Sex has absolutely nothing to do with this. It’s an Archie comic, for Pete’s sake — this new Kevin character isn’t any more likely to have sex in the pages of an Archie comic than Archie and Veronica are. What it’s about is TOLERANCE, but then, I wouldn’t expect someone so intolerant that he doesn’t even want his kids to know that gay people exist to get that.

  10. Even as good as some of their recent output has been, I never would’ve expected something this progressive from Archie Comics. Way to go, folks.

    And if they thought the publicity from the marriage was gonna sell more books, I can imagine they’ll sell even more when Fox inevitably goes apoplectic over this story. And given how “mom & apple pie” Archie is generally perceived as being, you can bet they will.

    Finally, Kurt Busiek won again.

  11. Jason, you’re right. As a longtime Archie fan and reader, I don’t expect to see high-school sex (or any sex) in those comics. Heck, I was shocked when the comics adaptation of the TO RIVERDALE AND BACK TV-movie had Betty living with her boyfriend.

    But, trust me, it’ll be the potential sex that the Fox News buffoons and their listeners will try to use to mask their bigotry.

  12. I’m about to buy my very first Archie comic! Can’t wait, great news!

    And Jason, I echo your thoughts towards Brent. Brent, how is having Kevin in an Archie comic (and possibly at some point in the future) dating someone at all in ANY way different from having Veronica and Betty falling all over Archie each and every issue?

    That whole “being gay is all about sex” card has been played OUT. Time to find something new to help enforce your stereotypical intolerance. Either that, or well, I don’t know, perhaps get to know a gay person, and see they’re just like you.

  13. Joe Heffernan says:

    Good for Archie Comics. By the by, anyone who thinks Archie Comics doesn’t have some sort of sex appeal in it for kids, then please explain Betty, Veronica or specifically Cheryl Blossom. I don’t think putting a gay character in anything promotes sex at all. It just means that person would rather have a close relationship with someone of their own gender. I’ve got very good friends of mine who are gay and I’ve never felt “worried about sex” around these folks. When we all get together, (gay friends and non-gay friends)there is no difference in conversation…it doesn’t matter! It’s a true reflection of real life and, more importantly, people’s rights. Times have changed which I believe is for the better and sorry, but the Disney comics are about as “safe” as you’re going to get…(and even then, I’m not quite so sure about Minnie and Daisy being so pure…)! :)

  14. Rhea St. Rentry says:

    Just wondering, Brent, if you spend a lot of time thinking about the sex lives of straight people as well, given that’s apparently your focus.

    And what would your bible think about THAT?

    Either your mind’s in the bedroom for everyone, or not for anyone.

  15. Would that be the Bible where dudes bang their daughters, and let their virgin daughters be raped without any regrets, God strikes a man dead for shooting his load, and people are always having sex with temple prostitutes?

    I’ll stick with Riverdale!

  16. i don’t get it…i’ve always felt very gay reading archie comics. that aside, archie comics has always been very cool and getting even cooler by the moment with fantastic developments like this! a big resounding cheer to all involved!

  17. Kudos to Archie! This is fantastic news.

  18. Rachael says:

    Nicely done. I am about to buy my first comic.

  19. I like it. Go Archie!

  20. Joe Lawler says:

    But will this help Archie slash fic, or just take the fun out of it?

  21. i will, say, i’m in the middle of writing s big history book on archie comics to be published by yoe books/IDW and happily (or, gayly, in this instance) having to rewrite history every day with the amazingly wonderful things happening in riverdale!

  22. Tom Kidd says:

    Good for Archie Comics!!!

    A gentle reminder to some of you, Archie and the Gang were the first comics group to address AIDS education via a public service poster back in the late 1980′s/early 1990′s.

    Plus too, it’s not 1950, but 2010.

    Personally, I’ve been reading Archie since 1964; I’ve watched them introduce African-American, Latino and Asian characters for years and done so with grace and good taste.

    I am quite confident they will introduce Kevin in the very same style.

    Kudos to all.

  23. Rose Bear says:

    It’s great to see this. Gays are human, too. There’s no need to discriminate.

  24. Three cheers to the Beat’s comment for giving us a great example of tolerance!

  25. Carol says:

    Uh Brent..not everyone believes in The Bible. How about you keep your religion to yourself.Thanks. Also you sound like an ignorant human being sheltering your kids from the very things they will encounter in the real world. I assure you they have seen & heard a lot more in school than you would want to believe.Kids that are too young to fully understand this stuff wouldn’t be reading the comic anyhow.

  26. Good idea, of sorts, I’d rather of seen a character come out, but then that character’s fan would revolt.

  27. Dave Elliott says:

    I’m waiting for Archie’s first ‘tea-bagger’.

  28. >> I give 2 thumbs down… Like others have said, this only promotes sex and I would not let my kids read these…>>

    Riiiiiight.

    All those stories where Betty tries to get Archie to come over and neck in front of the TV don’t have anything to do with sex, but the existence of a gay character will make readers want to fornicate. Let’s get Hot Dog out of the strip, too, he clearly only promotes bestiality.

    >> Finally, Kurt Busiek won again.>>

    Well, it’s certainly the reason I never moved to Riverdale. That Midge — I was always attracted to her, but in a way that didn’t promote sex. If there was a gay teen in Riverdale, mind you, I’d have wanted to bang Midge, but as it is all that dating and kissing and bikinis and openly drooling over hot girls and such just made me want to play Monopoly and fix cars.

    kdb

  29. OMG, this is huge!

    I am truly shocked!! But in a good way!

  30. Synsidar says:

    I haven’t found any evidence online that the old Spire Christian Comics had stories that took any position on gay and lesbian lifestyles. In a thread at the Archie Comics Fan Forum, there are readers for and against Keller:

    It’s for real. Unfortunately, you can never make everyone happy, but we’re very excited for all the positive fan response we’re already started to receive.

  31. This is great news! I remember the controversy when the animated cartoon introduced Carlos, a Latino, but I also applauded that. I also liked the fact that Valerie from “Josie and the Pussycats” is black. I’m sure there will be bigots like Brent who will want to push things back to the days before the Civil War, but I’m happy to see Archie taking a stand for humanity. And lest we all forget, Archie is one of the few mainstream comics that also had a series of distinctly Christian comics with the characters openly quoting from the Bible. There is NO reason to discriminate against anyone, and I’m so glad at least one comic has seen the good in tolerance.

  32. Are people really….shocked?

    it’s 2010 whats next Archie gets a cell phone?

  33. Brent sounds too stereotypically indignant to be troll-I-mean-true.

    Since being gay still means being misunderstood, stereotyped, ostracized, ridiculed, nationally campaigned against, beaten and potentially killed, it totally affects how one works, plays, and cavorts. That ignorant statement underscores the need for the safe and welcoming community of Riverdale for straight kids to model themselves on and for gay kids to imagine themselves working, playing, and cavorting in without fear.

  34. Jim Massara says:

    I think this is great, and incredibly surprising considering it’s coming from Archie Comics. What’s not to like?

  35. RJ Ryan says:

    Two thumbs way up, and that page is pretty damn well-written, too. I’m a lifelong Archie (and Locas) fan.

    But they better give Kevin some dudes to date or this is gonna be Melrose Place ’92 all over again. Sharing a burger with bi-curious Jughead doesn’t count.

  36. Brett says:

    I’ve been a DC and Marvel guy since I started to read and in all my years of comic collecting, never bought an Archie because they just never interested me. I just thought they were silly.

    Now, I no longer read DC and Marvel because ironically, their current comics no longer interest me.

    This year, I bought my first Archie, the entire wedding storyline and was stunned by how much I enjoyed it. It was just pure fun.

    Hearing this news and reading the caption between Kevin and Jughead put this comic as a must buy. It sounds like they can have a lot of fun with this!

    PS. If someone told me that in the new millenium, I would be saying good-bye to Spider-Man and Superman (because they are just silly) but hello to Archie, I would have said they were nuts.

    Who knew?

  37. pinguino says:

    So awesome. Wouldn’t have expected it from an Archie book, and it’s really cool to see them doing this.

  38. Just stopped in from a post on The Stranger about the Fortune 500 cover, and saw this.

    “keeping the world of Archie Comics current and inclusive.” Archie is about the last comic book still in print that I’d think of as “current”. But ignore me, I’m just some interloper.

  39. About time?

    It was surprising to find out that a Gay character is FINALLY being introduced to diversify the Riverdale gang… considering he comes AFTER such barrier-breakers as “Aquarius” (a Hippie vegetarian)and “Adam the Alien” (a differently-planeted being) were introduced to the cast.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Archie_Comics_characters

    2010— you’ve come a long way baby! Of course it could only come at an Obama Presidency… cue the FOX NEWS blathering.

  40. Tom Spurgeon says:

    I don’t understand how anyone could look at that cover and worry that the gay dude is sexing things up.

    Wait, maybe I do!

  41. Tania says:

    if it promotes tolerance and one less kid has to suffer because of hate then thats all that counts..TWO BIG THUMBS UP ! :D

  42. Trish Mulvihill says:

    Can we focus on the real problem here? That’s some BAD airbrushing on Veronica!

  43. TRUTH says:

    Why is it when anyone disgrees with something that is pro Gay, they are critisized as being hatefull and ignorant. We have become a nation that has no morals or convictions! I believe being homosexual is wrong based on God’s Word (the Bible) I also beleive that only God can judge. As Christians we need to stand up and stop being intimidate becasue we dont want be be labeled as horrible people. I know swveral Gay, people, I even have gay family members, I love them all I just do not approve of the lifestle. Just as you have the right to say you like the comic change, I and anyone else have the right to say we dont like it and dont want our children to read it. What happened to freedom of speech! Why am I ignorant or hateful because I have differnt beliefs than you? So many of your comments are so hypocrital! Introducing diffenent nationalities is not the same as introducing a Gay character. A perso is concisded gay because of sexual oreintation. Our society is so sexualized, no wonder Rape, Aids, Abortion and teen pregnancy is so high! I can not letmy son watch videos or certain commericals without him seeing a woman being objectified or shaking her body! I pray for all of you as well as our Country. I pray that God will send someone in your life to show you the light. May Jesus be with all of you even the ones that will write hateful comments. As for me and my house, We will serve the Lord!

  44. Spoiled yapping Dog says:

    Yeah, I’m glad for teh ghey, but I’m still mad for letting Archie hook up with Veronica, cause she’s a haughy gold plated beyatch, yesiree.

  45. The entire thread, the entire controversy, and everything emerging from this storyline is entirely worth it for Busiek’s comment alone.

  46. Brian J. says:

    Why must Kevin be so damn fashionable and well-groomed? Some gay men are schlubs, you know. Think about the poor, dorky and unfashionable gay tween reading this and the pressure he’s going to feel!

    (I tease.)

    Nice job, Archie.

  47. read your bible

  48. Hmm, Well, any hope of Spire Christian Comics renewing their licensing deal with Archie just went right out the window.

  49. Why is it when anyone disgrees with something that is pro Gay, they are critisized as being hatefull and ignorant.
    _______________

    Because they’re being hateful and ignorant?

    _______________

    We have become a nation that has no morals or convictions!

    _______________

    I disagree completely, we’re developing NEW morals, such as respect for your fellow man, and tolerance for other people’s opinions, and lifestyles..

    _______________

    I believe being homosexual is wrong based on God’s Word (the Bible)

    ______________

    I believe being Christian is wrong based on History. And if you’re gonna chastise gays, then you need to follow ALL of God’s word and start killing witches.

    ______________

    I also beleive that only God can judge.

    ______________

    And yet you still judge others.

    ______________

    As Christians we need to stand up and stop being intimidate becasue we dont want be be labeled as horrible people.

    ______________

    Exactly, don’t be intimidated because you’re afraid of being labled!, stand up, open your mouth, and remove all doubt!

    ______________

    I know swveral Gay, people, I even have gay family members, I love them all I just do not approve of the lifestle.

    ______________

    I know several Christians. I even have Christian family members, I love them all I just do not approve of the lifestyle.

    ______________

    Just as you have the right to say you like the comic change, I and anyone else have the right to say we dont like it and dont want our children to read it.

    ______________

    It’s not your children I worry about you not wanting to read it. It’s mine.

    ______________

    What happened to freedom of speech! Why am I ignorant or hateful because I have differnt beliefs than you?

    ______________

    Because your beliefs are ignorant and hateful?

    ______________

    So many of your comments are so hypocrital!

    ______________

    Funny, I thought the same about ALL of yours.

    ______________

    Introducing diffenent nationalities is not the same as introducing a Gay character.

    ______________

    Oh, I dunno, Being born gay is not much different than being born Australian, or Black, or Hispanic…..too bad it’s not a choice like….Oh, I dunno….RELIGION.

    ______________

    A perso is concisded gay because of sexual oreintation. Our society is so sexualized, no wonder Rape, Aids, Abortion and teen pregnancy is so high!

    ______________

    Our society is also largely stupid. No wonder Church Attendance is so high.

    ______________

    I can not letmy son watch videos or certain commericals without him seeing a woman being objectified or shaking her body!

    ______________

    And that woman made a choice to do that, and is usually compensated for doing so with monetary gain.

    ______________

    I pray for all of you as well as our Country. I pray that God will send someone in your life to show you the light.

    ______________

    Our country is fine. It’s our mental institutions that seem to be missing an inmate.

    ______________

    May Jesus be with all of you even the ones that will write hateful comments. As for me and my house, We will serve the Lord!

    ______________

    As for me and mine, we prefer our Ghost Stories and Magic to be entertaining.

  50. Truth…

    Can we get this straight(!)?: you and those of your holy ilk are against introducing Kevin, an openly gay character to the cast of Archie because it will be a bad influence on your children?

    I understand, because you believe being Gay is against God and even worse, (heavens to betsy!) the thought of two gays marrying destroys the sancity of marriage because it is against God!!!

    Well, HOT diggety dog!

    Tiger, YOU just hit the JACKPOT!

    If introducing Kevin to the Archie cast is too much for you or your children because it violates your religious beliefs, believe it or not, you don’t have to buy it. There’s plenty of other comics out there for your child to read.

    In fact, you can always give your kid a Spider-Man.

    Peter Parker made a deal with the devil that destroyed the sancity of his marriage just so YOUR CHILD would feel right at home reading all about his adventures.

    To answer your question as to where has the morals of this country gone? I dunno, maybe it followed intelligence over the edge.

  51. Mister Blisterfists… well done! Not only did I get to have a laugh at all your answers(because they’re true, soo true!) but I get to read that there are more level- headed people like myself out there.
    I’ve been reading Archie comics since I was a kid and it’s always great to see them keeping up with society and all it’s changes for the better.

  52. Mike M says:

    Faggots Queers Bumlickers Sluts…they all have one agenda – screw the world and remake it in their own image.

  53. DanParent says:

    You’ll see about as much sex with our new character as with our other characters…which is NONE! We don’t show sex or violence in our books!Never have, never will! This is about tolerance, exceptance and diversity. Those are pro-family and pro-Christian values in my book!

  54. >> A perso is concisded gay because of sexual oreintation.>>

    A perso is also considered straight because of sexual orientation, you know.

    The ignorant idea that introducing a gay character is “promoting sex” while the many decades the Archie characters have showcased hetero characters drooling over each other somehow isn’t is why that attitude is considered ignorant. It shows ignorance.

    >> Our society is so sexualized, no wonder Rape, Aids, Abortion and teen pregnancy is so high! >>

    And strangely, teen pregnancy is highest in the regions that try to make sure their kids know nothing about sex. Go figure.

    kdb

  55. Mike M says:

    Male homo’s… Atlanta CDC, May 1994 have an average of 60 partners per year, a higher incidence of depression and suicide than their heterosexual counterparts, have a disease all their own – gay bowel syndrome, which is so disgusting its symptoms can only be alluded to, and they have a higher disposable income because they don’t have responsibilities toward wives and kids.

    And Archie comics wants to be contemporary?!
    What a bunch of sick, pathetic twisted perverts!

  56. Archie Comics are stories about teenagers written for a pre-teen audience. But evidently there are some adults who aren’t ready to read at that level.

  57. … I guess I just want to say, don’t tell him to follow “ALL of God’s word and start killing witches.” It may actually be a desire of bible-thumping christians to be able to do so legally. We aren’t too far out of the time when people were killed on the claim that they were witches, whether or not they were actually wiccan. I think it is still possible to revert back to that time, and I don’t want to be putting ideas into their heads. Even with all of the scorn against them, they still have a great deal more influence than they ought to.

    Oh, and homosexuality is about as much of a ‘lifestyle’ as breathing. Sure, you can choose not to breathe, but breathing is still natural.

    And… Everyone should check their sources to be sure they are reliable. It’s only common sense. Souces could mean anything you site or refer to including magazines, statistics, websites, and the bible.

  58. Joe Lawler says:

    “Oh, I dunno, Being born gay is not much different than being born Australian, or Black, or Hispanic…..too bad it’s not a choice like….Oh, I dunno….RELIGION.”

    I want to take issue with this point, Mr. Blisterfists. How many people really choose their religion? Most are born into it, because that’s what their parents were, back through the generations.

    It’s all they’ve known, it’s easy to see why they can’t accept outside views.

    And before anyone tries to accuse me of the same thing, here is where I’ll point out that for a time I considered becoming a pastor.

  59. Allen Rubinstein says:

    What strikes me is how amazingly SMART this move is. Not only is it a huge publicity boost, but it shows the extent to which Archie is really in touch with its audience. Most tweens and teens of today have zero hangups about gay people. Once that generation comes of age, so much of the homophobia we know today is going to seem like the debates over whether women should be in the workplace.

    What I love from that one page is that the story isn’t “about” a person being gay. It isn’t movie of the week, coming out of the closet bullshit. He’s just a guy embroiled in the teen angst silliness like all the rest of them. And that’s exactly how today’s young folks see it – “You’re gay? Oh, cool. I know a guy you might like.”

  60. Amen to you, Truth and Brent! Those who cry intolerance need to look in the mirror first. Seems like the angriest, and most hateful comments always seem to come from the ‘tolerant’ crowd. Denying God doesnt make Him any less real. As for Archie Comics…you were a wonderful part of my childhood but its time to say adios.

  61. All your bickering is so amusing you stupid adults! You are all missing the facts in plain view. To 9 to 13 year old boys this just proves the fact that Archie comics are for girls and sissy boys. I just feel sorry for the straight kid that gets punched in the face in the playground for reading a “gay comic”. I read Archie when I was young but discovered sex through other means (dad’s stash). oh yea B.T.W. I am bisexual!

  62. Joe S. Walker says:

    They can have Archie fucking a pig for all I care, but “another opportunity for the PC crowd to tell themselves how wonderful they are” is a pretty nauseating definition of “progress.”

  63. Cormorant says:

    In an era when trolling’s become an art (a pathetic one, but a refined one, no doubt), I can’t help but wonder how many of the disgusted respondees here are just 4Chaners screwing around. Really no way to know.

  64. Not discriminating against people simply for who they are is a pretty wonderful, and much needed, idea of progress.

  65. I think Kevin will grow into the gang well, showing that his sexuality does not make him dangerous, does not make his lifestyle so attractive that straight characters become gay because of him. If anything, this will ease the minds of parents and kids who have been given negative ideas about what acceptance of “out” gays might do in their communities. When readers see that Kevin is not trying to force some kind of subversive agenda on Riverdale, and that the other kids don’t make a big deal about his orientation, it could go a long way to cut down anti-gay bullying in schools. If just one kid is saved from the abuse some of my friends in HS endured, it will be a success in my mind.

  66. Dennis says:

    Tony Isabella wrote:
    “But, trust me, it’ll be the potential sex that the Fox News buffoons and their listeners will try to use to mask their bigotry.”

    I’m a Fox News listener and it doesn’t bother me that Archie Comics is introducing a gay character. But according to you and your anti-Fox News bullcrap (and obvious narrow mindedness), I must be a bigot because I watch Fox News?

    You know, I find it sad to find out that a person who I’ve enjoyed his past written works to be posting such stereotyping nonsense. Maybe in the future you can try not to paint with such a broad brush and condemning those who happen watch a particular cable news channel of “bigotry.”

  67. Tom Spurgeon says:

    My guess is that Veronica watches Fox News, while Betty follows Keith Olbermann on Twitter, but only at the library.

  68. Clearly a bittersweet moment for some. It’s 2010 and this is still news, and it ought to be news… too bad it’s not 1998, though. I’ve spent my whole life suffering “homophobic” harassment at the hands of cowards who do not know me, and I’ve spent some amount of time trying to figure out what their motivation is — religion? insecurity? maybe it’s just the “thing” to do when you’re in a group of guys.

    Now that I’m an adult, I’m used to it, some of the remarks have even been clever, enough to make me laugh. People shouldn’t get carried away. I believe Archie comics are quite a bit more subtle.

    I used to read them, a long time ago, but lost interest as I grew up. I don’t think it’s true that Archie has been free of violence, but that was always cartoon violence. I don’t know that anyone ever protested those aspects of the comic, but I would guess they did.

    I would also guess that very few people ever grew up as violent offenders due to Archie comics, if anyone ever did.

    Like I said, this is a comic book, and it’s quite a bit more subtle, even in the lives of the avid young readers. Though if only a handful of children go into “no big deal” mode because “that’s how it was in Archie” when one in their circle freely admits “I’m gay” without fanfare, being disowned, or tied to a fence, then I’d view it as a good thing.

    And hopefully, some day, members of that same circle can freely say “I’m a Christian”, or a Muslim, or any other religion, and be unafraid of the backlash, and view their friends as merely friends, not offenders to the Almighty.

  69. Jim Caldwell says:

    ll that dating and kissing and bikinis and openly drooling over hot girls and such just made me want to play Monopoly and fix cars.

    “play Monopoly” … if that’s not a euphemism, I don’t know what is.

  70. “I must be a bigot because I watch Fox News?” Of course not. It simply indicates that you have very low journalistic standards.

    “Seems like the angriest, and most hateful comments always seem to come from the ‘tolerant’ crowd.” That’s because we aren’t tolerant of just anything. We’re tolerant of things that aren’t really that big a deal. People who try to poison children with the idea that it’s evil to be in love with someone… that’s a big deal. And yeah: I hate it when you do that.

  71. Hooray for Kevin Keller & Archie. This is awesome. I’m sure Kevin’s love life will b e about as consummated as anyone else’s in an Archie comic – it won’t be. (Thanks for the reminder, Dan Parent, you talented guy.)

    I liked Archie comics growing up & am delighted they are making Riverdale a more inclusive place to be. Oh Veronica, you are in for some serious disappointment.

    JML & I talked w/ an Archie Comics editor over the weekend @ C2E2. It’s excellent to see that they want Riverdale to be updated, without losing its original innocent charm.

    @ Just Visiting: I’m on Slog, too. Yay.

  72. Riverdalian says:

    Alright, can’t wait! Wonder who will get it up the ass first, Jughead or Archie?

  73. Male homo’s… Atlanta CDC, May 1994 have an average of 60 partners per year, a higher incidence of depression and suicide than their heterosexual counterparts, have a disease all their own – gay bowel syndrome, which is so disgusting its symptoms can only be alluded to, and they have a higher disposable income because they don’t have responsibilities toward wives and kids.

    And Archie comics wants to be contemporary?!
    What a bunch of sick, pathetic twisted perverts!

    _________________________

    You’re using a statistic that is over 10 years old, and crazy fear-mongering, to support your stance?

    Yes, Gays have a higher suicide rate, but it has nothing to do with being gay, it has everything to do with the way society makes them fear and shame themselves.

  74. “Oh, I dunno, Being born gay is not much different than being born Australian, or Black, or Hispanic…..too bad it’s not a choice like….Oh, I dunno….RELIGION.”

    I want to take issue with this point, Mr. Blisterfists. How many people really choose their religion? Most are born into it, because that’s what their parents were, back through the generations.

    It’s all they’ve known, it’s easy to see why they can’t accept outside views.

    And before anyone tries to accuse me of the same thing, here is where I’ll point out that for a time I considered becoming a pastor.

    ____________

    still a choice, meaning something they can CHANGE.

    My dad was a MENNONITE (one step from Amish), not only did HE resist indoctrination, so did I. It can be done. It IS a choice.

  75. I really like that “what’s the deal with those three” panel. Funny.

  76. Nobody noticed that Sabrina Spellman “came out” to Jughead in his recent anniversary issue. (Loved his reaction!)

    As for Spire, they morphed into Barbour Publishing. They published “Serenity” for a while, but currently have only a comic book Bible listed. (Thomas Nelson currently publishes Serenity, as well as many others from RealBuzz Studios.) Christian Comics International has a decent database.

    For the other side of the story, check out:
    The Gay Blade, Birds and the Bees, Doom Town, and Sin City, all available from Jack T. Chick LLC. Read them for free online.

    I dabble in the Archie titles occasionally (hand me free copies and I’ll read every one), and will definitely buy this, just out of curiosity. Archie is doing some interesting stuff… if they can get their GN line up and running to libraries and bookstores, they’ll be a major player.

  77. Wow. Just wow.

    “Male homo’s… Atlanta CDC, May 1994 have an average of 60 partners per year, a higher incidence of depression and suicide than their heterosexual counterparts, have a disease all their own – gay bowel syndrome, which is so disgusting its symptoms can only be alluded to, and they have a higher disposable income because they don’t have responsibilities toward wives and kids.”*

    I’m sorry, there are so many lies in this quote it’s maddening. I’m gay, I’ve been out for eight years, and I think I’ve dated a total of MAYBE fourteen people during that time. Fourteen. In eight years. With a year of no dating between at times (because believe it or not, when a relationship with someone doesn’t work out, it hurts just as badly as a straight one. Oh yeah, cause it’s like, the same thing.) Depression and suicide are brought on by the hatred you and your kind spread. Imagine if someone told you 24/7 you were living your life wrong, and would be going to Hell each and every day. Imagine if you had to worry about what you said, who you were around, fear of bodily injury. Might get you a little down, now wouldn’t it? And gay bowel syndrome isn’t even a real disease. Furthermore, gay people DO have children, do adopt, and the whole disposable income thing is completely irrelevant to the discussion. But please, go on spreading your lies. Its fun, I’m sure.

    I hate seeing both sides fight. I’d love it if we could all just sit down and talk it out. But that’s not the way of America today. America is all about “GRR! I’m more angry than you are, and I’m not going to take it anymore, so I’m going to yell louder than you so I can hear myself yell! GRR!” I don’t like seeing gay people be intolerant of Christians (there is no God, etc.) as much as I don’t like (some, not all, we all need to remember this!) Christians constantly telling us we’re wrong.

    I go to a Baptist church! (Baptist! But it’s alright, it’s about as Baptist as McDonald’s chicken nuggets are chicken) and we are a very forward thinking church, in every sense of the word. Towards women, gays, African Americans, etc. (as it should be!) So everyone, please just keep in mind not all Christians are so close-minded.

    And as to all the intolerance you conservative Christians say you’re receiving. It’s more so about your sheer lack of a) actual knowledge. You know nothing about being gay (*see above blanket statement article.) You have no REAL gay friends (trust me.) and until you meet someone who’s gay, and really get to know them, perhaps you shouldn’t judge us (Oh, wait you shouldn’t do that anyway. I believe that’s what the Bible says, right? Or do you just ignore that passage, along with a slew of others?) Remember that whole “walk a mile in someone else’s shoes.” Yeah, why don’t you try that every once in a while. And b) you can’t spell worth sh*t. I mean, come on, if you’re going to come off as some high and mighty knowledge professor of all that’s right in the world, learn to freakin’ spell! Cause it’s hysterical, and you just come off as a dumb uneducated redneck. Seriously. (See above posts by stated Christians for obvious proof.)

    Personally, if God really truly sends people to Hell for loving someone of the same sex (and that’s ALL there is to being gay, loving someone of the same sex) then I think he needs to possibly realize there is a whole lot more going on with the world/universe that could occupy his time. In fact I simply don’t believe this. It’s too petty. In fact, it’s human being petty. And God isn’t petty. Hey, you know what, God might have put us gay people here to help control the population! (Oh, wait, isn’t that another sticking point for conservative Christians? We can’t reproduce, therefore its wrong? Sorry, wrong answer. Lame over usage. Move on please. There are WAY too many people in this world already.) It’s just a thought, but I think we’re here for a Divine reason, whatever it may be. But, if God WAS that petty, and IF all those conservative Christians that love to say how Christian they really truly are, but really truly don’t live what they say, all fly on up to Heaven… well, I’ll have way more fun down in Hell, thank you. Cause that version of Heaven is one I have no desire to be a part of.

  78. (Wow! That was long. So sorry about that.)

  79. Good for Archie Comics.
    Let the God-botherers go read their ancient holy book.

    One of the two is good for the mind. The other is a collection of made-up tales.

  80. “What it’s about is TOLERANCE, but then, I wouldn’t expect someone so intolerant that he doesn’t even want his kids to know that gay people exist to get that.”

    Nine posts in and the first stone is cast. It’s not about TOLERANCE, otherwise you wouldn’t have assumed that he’s intolerant just because he doesn’t care for an Archie editorial policy.

  81. I just want to clarify, I am not anti-christian. I know some very tolerant and loving christians.

    When I said “bible-thumping christians” earlier, it was meant to make the noun christians more specific, not describe the noun. Hope that makes sense.

    I whole-heartedly agree with you, Nathan Aaron, and it makes me happy that not all members of the top religion in America are stupid and hateful.

  82. I want it to be made perfectly clear that I am not claiming to be ‘tolerant’. I am intolerant of ignorance, hate, stupidity, and outright bigotry disguised as morality, piousness, and righteousness.

    If you claim to follow the word of God, and only selectively follow that which you wish to follow, simply because it allows you to be intolerant of some, but not others, then you are living a lie.

    if you are intolerant of Gays because the bible says so, but you don’t do as your god instructs and murder witches, then you are not really a Christian. If you fear man’s law more than God’s wrath for not following his word, then you’re not a true Christian. Follow God’s law, murder witches. That way they put you in the chair and I don’t have to listen to your dumb ass any more.

  83. Dude. Easy on the witches. They don’t need any more persecution, either.

  84. TRUTH: You have the right to free speech to espouse your intolerance, just as we have the right to use our free speech to call you out on it.

    rich: I cast the first stone? Please. Brent said that a comic with gay characters, and I quote, “only promotes sex and I would not let my kids read these.” How is that not intolerant?

  85. My only problem with this story is that It should have been a hotdog eating contest.

  86. Blackeye says:

    It won’t be long before Archie comics closes up shop…how much more desperate can they appear?

    I will always have a fondness for Archie comics when they weren’t social or political or blatantly crude.

    R.I.P. Archie Comics…

  87. Brian Steinberg says:

    I ponder this topic over at my Comics Examiner blog. Yes, it’s wonderful and a great step, but hardly progressive. Shouldn’t this have been done in the 80s or 90s? I liken it to Blondie Bumstead finally getting a job outside the home in “Blondie” – in 1991!

    http://www.examiner.com/x-567-Comics-Examiner~y2010m4d23-Archies-new-gay-character-means-comic-is-now-only-30-years-behind-the-times

  88. There’s some question as to whether Kevin Keller is the first gay character in Riverdale. See:

    http://www.comicmix.com/comic/comicmix/mundens-bar/9/reader/#p1

  89. It’s been over 24 hours since I apparently insulted Fox News and its viewers. Since I have a lot to do this weekend, can everyone just assume I insult them at least once a day? That’ll be a big time-saver for me. Thanks.

  90. TonyJazz says:

    Mr. Isabella,

    THANK YOU for your comments, and I appreciate your work (and enjoyed 1001 Comics, too).

    For those of you who profess to be Christian and anti-gay (and proud of it), there are many other more significant admonishments in the Bible—and I’m certain that you violate dozens of them.

    And, Mike M, I take comfort in knowing that you probably never have had sex. Poor guy!

  91. Congressman Barney Frank: ”Here’s my radical homosexual agenda: Let us get married, join the military and hold down a job.”

  92. Congrats on broadening your audience base, Heidi, seeing some of the comments above— be they redstate.com, breibart/Big Hollywood or 4chan “visitors”! ;)

    And still, it IS nice for ARCHIE COMICS to at long last allow a [White, Male, non-transgendered, h/w/p] Homosexual to board their Riverdale bus: hopefully, those Papists… Semites… Coloreds… Spics… Orientals… Handicapped… Vegetarian… AND [non-Mexican] Aliens… already on board will make some room for him.

    But only as long as he’s “commercially viable”, I suppose?

  93. Army of Dorkness says:

    I can’t believe this has blown up to 90+ comments. This isn’t news nor is it “new.”

    Everybody knows that Jughead is “the king of queen Archie’s world.”

  94. Joe Lawler says:

    Yeah, but they make it clear that Kevin is the “first openly gay character.” If other characters are keeping it on the downlow, it doesn’t count.

  95. To Truth: how do you relate homosexuality to higher rates of teen pregnancy and abortion? There’s a logical fallacy there.

    To Mike M: About the whole disposable income thing… not only am I a young wife, I am a chronically disabled young wife, and yet I contribute as much to our joint income as my husband. Don’t blame your lack of disposable income on your wife, and certainly don’t blame it on homosexuality.

    I’d also just like to say that I am a Christian, and I think this is a great move for Archie: it promotes the understanding and tolerance and inclusiveness that are the central message of the Gospels. I’m only sad that it also exposes the ignorance that has been cultivated in the name of Christianity through some of the comments here. Remember people, the Bible was written by men, and men are fallible. The challenge is to seek the truth in it using your God-given intelligence and compassion, and the experiences you encounter. It was a long hard fight to be able to read the Bible in vernacular, not to be dependent on the interpretations of a central church. Don’t throw that away.

  96. How long will it be before the town of Riverdale introduces their first ‘crack dealer’ character?

    ~

    Coat

  97. Crack dealing is illegal, Cary, and should be… Homosexuality is not… and should not be.

  98. Ahavah says:

    1. Does Archie need another token character that will be barely utilized/practically forgotten in a a year or so?

    2. I grew up reading Archie comics, and as a Jewish kid, always felt a little weird reading all those Christmas stories, complete with characters quoting Jesus. I don’t think there is one *non-Christian* character in all of Riverdale. It’s not like I want a “Hanukkah Special” (spare me!), but is one Jewish, Islamic, Hindi,or whatever character too much to ask for? *sigh* s/he’d just be token, too. Just don’t try to tell me that Archie comics are not openly Christian #MostofWhatIknowoftheNewTestamentIlearnedfromArchieComics…

  99. Manu P Nair says:

    It is true that Archie comics don’t show sex. I am an avid reader of Archie even at the age of 37 and I try to see to it that my kid atleast goes through the pages whenever i get one. But introducing Kevin is not a good idea. I know that “gay” is not something new…it was there, is still in our society and will be. But if you say it is natural then I can’t agree. It is like people talking incest saying everything in sex is right!!!

    Now coming to Kevin, just imagine a kid asking “Papa what is gay?” and how will u explain? You can’t say ‘gay is a male who likes to have only male friends’. If you have a boy kid in your house you are going to be embarrassed in public when he says “I am gay. I like only boys’…It comes to a point where you have to explain what really gay is to a 5 or 6 year old!!! It is not something to bne looked forward at.

  100. Great comic style

  101. PETER says:

    Dear Manu, Truth is your kids will find out what Gay means anyway. When they go to school. There has always been Gay people. We start to learn about it when were very young. They will have friends that are gay or might be themselfs. Try teaching them tolerance. You cant hind them from the world. Just tell your kids what it means, without judgement. Truth is no one chooses to be gay. No one would choose such a hard life. Were people hate you for no reason. Truth is gay people want the same thing as everyone else. I am Christian and Gay. I love my family and my friends the same as you. I want a spouse and kids, the same as you. When I had to tell my parent, I felt like a awfull person. I thought of ways to end my life, rather then hurt the ones I love. I hope your kids are not gay. I hope they never have to be ashamed and scared and confused.At such a young age. Because Dad never talked to them about it.

  102. Squidbilly says:

    So they have a character that won’t date women and can win a burger eating contest. But enough about Jughead, let’s talk about Kevin. I’m surprised, but interested. I wonder how it will affect their majorly conservative market.

  103. steven says:

    I have been buying archie comics books over 20 yrs now. I have over 500 books a lot of them are out of print. when I was growing up I learn how to read by these books. so I have been saving them so that my kids could do the same. but now that you have went and put a gay thing in I will not buy anymore of your books. and the book I have I will put up for sell and the money I get out of them I will give it to the mission field that stand against the filth that you are putting out. shame on you.

  104. Cas Stevenson says:

    OH MAN! I am so glad to hear this. As a young girl I was obsessed with Archie comics! I couldn’t buy and read enough. I so wish there could have been a gay character when I was young. This will help a lot of kids living with gay shame, as I did for way too long.
    As for the comments I read that say it will introduce sex? That is very silly and ignorant, has Archie had sex with Veronica yet? There is a lot more involved with homosexuality than just sex. Such as discrimination. I feel so sad that conservative parents wont let their children read this because they may be the ones who need it the most.

  105. Ccici says:

    I disagree with people whp say its bad to have a gay carecter in the comics because u no tht its not only srtait people in this world and kids are gonna find out anyway and u cant tell them its bad to be gay

  106. no comment.,

  107. Instead of reading Archie comics try reading Oswald Spengler’s Decline of the West.

  108. sharize cortez says:

    can you help me to find 2 logical fallacies in any of this Archie comics,,,please.,.,tnx.,.,=)

  109. sharize cortez says:

    can you help me to find 2 logical fallacies in any of this Archie comics,,,please

  110. Dinna says:

    Ya know, once apon a time, the U.S. had morals.. Dang Liberals always forcing us to support bad things. What’s next? Making laws to include the minorities? They need to realize that being gay IS bad. Every major religion agrees with that, and there is no way they can all be wrong.(and no, I don’t just mean Christians. Muslims, Jews, Buddists,Hindus,Taoists are major too.) So stop shoving it down our throats. We get it. Your gay. Now be quiet and be like the normal members of society and quit talking about it.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] April 22, 2010 in Interesting Tidbits from the Web Archie Comics introduces first openly gay character | The Beat. [...]

  2. [...] April 23, 2010 · Leave a Comment And he’s the latest addition — known as the Hot New Hunk! — to the Archie comics book franchise. [...]

  3. [...] Archie Comics introduce Kevin Keller (the "new hunk in town" who also happens to be the franchise's first openly gay character! Also [...]

  4. [...] Books, is the first homosexual character to join the gang. The creator of the series had this to say about the addition, “The introduction of Kevin is just about keeping the world of Archie Comics current and [...]

  5. [...] and see the full spectrum of reactions to stories like this, please visit this comments thread at The Beat. You know what you’ll find, so I won’t waste time [...]

  6. [...] Archie Comics introduce Kevin Keller (the “new hunk in town” who also happens to be the franchise’s first openly gay [...]

  7. [...] Archie Comics introduce Kevin Keller (the “new hunk in town” who also happens to be the franchise’s first openly gay [...]

  8. [...] Archie Comics introduce Kevin Keller (the “new hunk in town” who also happens to be the franchise’s first openly gay [...]

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