Is Jughead’s Time Police #3 Archie’s Version Of DC’s Identity Crisis?

by James Ferguson

If you thought you were just going to get a wacky adventure through time in Jughead’s Time Police, that’s just where this book starts. Now we’re entering a multiverse-spanning epic where the original Jughead has a bone to pick with the modern day version. This sets us off on an even bigger adventure through time with more surprises along the way.

There are some parallels between Jughead’s Time Police and DC’s Identity Crisis or maybe the recent Doomsday Clock. You have an alternate and older version of a character lamenting how the present day version is not up to par so he sets out to change or eliminate it. Replace OG Jughead with Superboy Prime or Dr. Manhattan and you’re sort of in the same ballpark.

That’s where the similarities end though. Writer Sina Grace may play with that concept, but he makes it all his own, put through the lens of a character as quirky as Jughead Jones. Case in point, when faced with where to escape in time, Jughead goes to Hamburg in 1847…the birthplace of the hamburger. I love this so much.

When Jughead samples one of the original hamburgers, it’s like a feeling of pure ecstasy. It blows his mind. Letterer Jack Morelli squishes all his dialogue together into one large, flowing word, like his thoughts are moving so fast he can’t even pause for spaces. This is the perfect representation for a man’s love of hamburgers.

OG Jughead is painted with a pretty sinister light. Artist Derek Charm matches him up to the style used in the classic Archie stories. This makes him stand out a bit compared to the futuristic setting since he looks more like a cartoon than the others. Despite this, there’s an evil flair to him. You can clearly see he’s up to something.  Colorist Matt Herms gives him a faded look, like his colors have washed out over the years.  This complements his darker nature, even in this bright and shiny setting.

This contrasts well with the modern day Jughead who is innocent and a little clueless. There’s a great shot where he surprises old Jughead and January McAndrews as they reveal their plan. The look on his face is priceless as he revealed himself too early based on his own clumsy reflexes.

Right when you think you have an idea of where Jughead’s Time Police is going, it takes another big turn, upping the ante considerably. This comic is so much fun. It’s crazy, quirky, and a little bizarre, and it will definitely leave you with a smile on your face.

Jughead’s Time Police #3 from Archie Comics is currently available at your local comic shop and digitally through ComiXology and Amazon Kindle.

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