The Thursday announcement that Archie
Comics will add a gay student to Riverdale High in September is being
Kevin Keller will debut in No. 202 of
In a panel of Isn't it Bromantic?
released by the publisher, Kevin comes out to Jughead after he's
defeated Jughead in a burger eating contest at Pop's Chocklit Shoppe.
“Watch out for her, Kevin,” Jughead
says referring to Veronica. “She's a royal pain.”
“She's not so bad,” Kevin responds.
“I'm just not interested in dating her.”
Jughead insists: “Veronica's not
going to let that stop her!”
“It's nothing against her! I'm gay!”
Kevin says. “I guess I should just be up front!”
Instead of acting surprised, Jughead
wonders how long it will take Veronica to “figure it out for
“When Jughead finds out, he acts like
it's no big deal,” Dennis Ayers, who blogs at gay entertainment
told AOL news. “It's great that a comic book that is so wholesome
and white bread is treating being gay as if it's a perfectly normal
Jon Goldwater, co-CEO of Archie Comics,
said the inclusion of a gay character is part of an ongoing effort to
contemporize the comic book, which debuted in the 1940s. The comic
revolves around a love triangle between Archie Andrews and classmates
Betty and Veronica.
“The introduction of Kevin is just
about keeping the world of Archie Comics current and inclusive,”
Goldwater said in a statement. “Archie's hometown of Riverdale has
always been a safe world for everyone. It just makes sense to have
an openly gay character in Archie comic books.”
Other gay culture watchers cheered
Archie Comics for making Kevin's sexuality secondary to the story.
“We have to see how he develops,”
Lyle Masaki, another AfterElton.com blogger, said. “He needs to
have something that makes him human. As I understand it, the debut
story is more about Veronica's cluelessness.”
Goldwater said Kevin's introduction has
been warmly received.
“[Having a gay character] is a huge
sign of progress,” he said. “The world is a huge melting pot and
Riverdale is a reflection of what's going on. It also reflects what
is going on in American high schools. Kids are warmer and more
accepting than ever.”
Gay Entertainment Report is a feature
of On Top Magazine
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