No One In Riverdale Is Safe: Blossoms 666 #5

by Brendan M. Allen

This is it! Who will reign as the true Anti-Christ—Cheryl, Jason or their mysterious brother Julian? And what will become of Riverdale once darkness takes over? Find out in this shocking and jaw-dropping finale of Blossoms 666!

In Blossoms 666 #5, Cheryl, Jason, and Julian Blossom are still all in the running for the title of Anti-Christ, and every resident of Riverdale is an expendable pawn in their nefarious designs. Dilton’s in jail. Ethel has been completely brainwashed, and she’s led Jughead into that cave with the altar and the skulls. Archie’s been fooling around with Ronnie, which opens the door for a certain OTHER ginger Cassanova to take a crack at Betty. People die.

One of the great things about Blossoms 666 is that Cullen Bunn isn’t necessarily bound by canon or Archie-verse continuity. He’s given free reign to off whomever he pleases, and he flexes that muscle quite a bit. It’s a great dynamic seeing all these deadly scenarios playing out all over Riverdale with permanent repercussions, while the two kids who started most of those balls rolling sit by their pool, not a care in the world, discussing the developments as casually as if they were discussing the latest episode of a television show.

Art by Laura Braga and Matt Herms is brilliantly suited to tying Bunn’s twisted vision into the bright and shiny Archie aesthetic. Blossoms 666 started out all polished up with that virtuous veneer that screamed grocery store magazine rack, with just a hint of the pure evil lurking just beneath the surface. Then it turned, but kept enough of the original imagery that it was easy to hold out hope, right up to the last pop.

I’ve mentioned before the tonal shift in horror comics over the last half decade or so. We’re steadily moving away from ridiculously complex setups and implausible scenarios to a much more relatable, real world approach. The really scary stories, the stories that will keep you up at night, are the ones that feel like they could actually happen. Take something that is ridiculously comfortable and familiar, like a certain idyllic Midwestern community that everyone grew up with, and shift it ever so slightly to the left. That’s where Blossoms 666 lives.

Blossoms 666 #5, Archie Comics, released 17 July 2019. Script by Cullen Bunn, art by Laura Braga, color by Matt Herms, letters by Jack Morelli. Covers by Laura Braga, Adam Gorham, and Pat Zircher with Matt Herms.

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