Look. I know io9 runs a lot of Archie Comics previews. The problem is they’re so damn fun, whether the classic gang of Archie, Betty, Veronica, and Jughead are facing monsters, angsty alternate universe doppelgangers, or giant robots. So we’d be doing you and ourselves a disservice if we didn’t show you this preview of Archie Vs. the World.
While the Mad Max: Fury Road influence is obvious by Archie and Jug’s jalopy joyride, the comic—by writer Aubrey Sitterson and artist Jed Dougherty—takes much more inspiration, at least in this preview, from the 1984 anime TV series Fist of the North Star. It was about Ken, a martial artist with the power to kill anyone with a single punch—usually he could punch them in various pressure points and a minute later their skulls would literally explode—as he wandered around an extra-brutal post-apocalypse. Archie here dresses like Ken, has the same demeanor and (less graphic) martial arts skills, and it’s just absolutely bananas that this exists, but see it for yourself:
Yes, that is indeed Old Man Jughead doing the narrating. And yes, that is Josie on the Fury Road-esque guitar on the first cover.
“For Archie Vs. the World, I took my huge and growing list of ‘Jed Is Great At’ and did my damnedest to fit them all in, trying to strike the right balance of suggesting formal techniques I think he would absolutely nail while also leaving him the space to innovate in his depictions of explosive, mind-bending action,” Sitterson told io9. “This constant evolution is what’s best about our process; Archie Vs. the World does things that our previous collaborations didn’t dare attempt but I’m already eager for y’all to see what we’re cooking up next.”
I honestly can’t imagine how they’ll top Fist of the North Starchie, but at this point, I have full confidence they can. At the present, however, Archie Vs. the World is available in comic shops now.
Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel, Star Wars, and Star Trek releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about the future of Doctor Who.