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Archie’s so hot right now: How a G-rated comic became a shirtless CW drama

Jingle-jangle all the way

On Issue at Hand, Polygon’s show about the strange world of comics, we try to answer important questions — questions that inform our viewers, that give them the tools they need to stride boldly into a comic shop or a digital comics app, and buy comics that they like.

This is ... not one of those questions.

It’s fair to say that the average person associates Archie Comics with slightly old-fashioned stories written for an average reader age of 10, printed up in magazines about the size of your hand and stacked in the check out aisle of your local grocery store. But in the past couple of years, a new Archie has sauntered on to the scene.

And he did it while lifting the front of his shirt — revealing approximately 17 abs — to wipe the sheen of summer sweat from his prominent cheekbones.

How did we get from one to the other? How did we go from three teens sharing a malted milkshake to a show that’s been called “a very horny Twin Peaks?”

Today, on Issue at Hand, we answer the question: Why is Archie hot now?

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