File53As the story goes, John Goldwater was inspired by the popular Andy Hardy movies starring Mickey Rooney to create “America’s typical teen-ager” Archibald “Chick” Andrews.  Yet, another story suggests writer Vic Bloom (who worked with artist Bob Montana) may have had more than commonly acknowledged to do with creating Archie’s first adventure.  With Archie showing off for his new neighbor, Betty Cooper in Pep Comics #22, December 1941 a comic phenom was born.

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As Archie’s popularity grew, MLJ Magazines changed its name to Archie Comic Publications. As “The Mirth of a Nation,” the Archie brand remained strong and comics under the title are even still sold today.  He is one of the few non-superheros to survive though the mid-1950s as the advent of television caused the comic industry in general to decline.

The issue of Archie Comics #35* above features artwork by Bill Vigoda (brother of actor Abe Vigoda) and is from November-December 1948.

Archie Comics #44* (May-June 1950) has a Bob Montana (signed) cover with a distracted Archie in art class where Veronica “can hardly wait to see what kind of picture” he has drawn of her.  Inside Miss Grundy teaches Archie how to become a square dance caller.

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