Off-Panel: 75 Facts for the 75th Anniversary of Archie Comics

Welcome to Off-Panel, your weekly digest of comics news, from the gutters and beyond. We’ve come to the end of the Off-Panel road — it’s been a real pleasure rounding up the best (and worst) of the comics internet for you! I was going to give you one last all-Alpha Flight news round for old times’ sake but there was too much new news to share.

Leth explained that, at first, all of the characters she wrote were either bisexual or lesbian, because it’s not like she had to worry about overrepresentation. “I could put lesbians in every comic I write and it would still be like 0.3% of comics,” she joked.

Fusion has a great piece on female comics creators kicking against the default male gaze.

Summer is nearly at it end, and as publishers put away its big events and crazy twists for the latter part of the year, getting ready to replace them with… well, more big events and crazy twists! Here’s our guide to the very best new comic series you’ll want to curl up with in the cooler months. Warning: There are a lot.

Check out io9’s feature on all the awesome new #1s hitting shelves in the fall.

According to submission forms sent out to publishers last week, FCBD has now suggested to publishers a preference for single story (with backups) comics to be included as free issues, rather than samplers or collections of stories from a variety of comics.

Free Comic Book Day is saying “thanks, but no thanks” to anthology comics for FCBD 2017. That will change the landscape markedly.

Instead of blaming existing readers for not buying diverse comics, we must devise better ways to make them accessible and draw in more readers—something all publishers should be interested in.

The Mary Sue, as always, is killing it on arguing for the support of diverse comics.

7. In 2003, American TV and comic book writer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa wrote a play called Archie’s Weird Fantasy, which portrayed Archie Andrews as gay. The play was to be performed at the Dad’s Garage Theater Company in Atlanta, but they shut it down after receiving a cease-and-desist letter threatening about $1 million in fines for copyright infringement.

8. In 2014, 11 years after that cease and desist letter, Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa became the Chief Creative Officer of Archie Comics.

These gems and more in CBC’s list of 75 facts for the 75th anniversary of Archie Comics.

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