Archie comics are a great example of the power of storytelling. It is a comic book series about Archie and his friends including Ethel Muggs, and there has been a resurgence of interest due to the show Riverdale. The comics were first published in 1941 and they have been around ever since. The Archie comics are not just for kids either, they can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Read on for a review of Big Ethel Energy Volume 1.
In Big Ethel Energy Volume 1, once Ethel Muggs had the chance to get out of Riverdale, she took it and ran. Despite the one nice friend she found in Betty, Ethel had a terrible time in high school, watching and longing to be a part of Archie’s friend group. When she gets an opportunity to move back to Riverdale to further her writing career, Ethel is torn. Yes, she’s changed and is a successful journalist, but her experiences with Archie made her wary of returning.
Once Ethel settles into her shared apartment with Betty, she finds herself being pulled back toward Archie’s friend group. Jughead is strangely sulky, Archie and Moose are happy to see her and Veronica is still self-absorbed but friendlier than in the past.
Big Ethel Energy Volume 1 is a Webtoon but this graphic novel has several webtoon chapters in it that make up Volume 1. The art is crisp and clear and Ethel is drawn with a curvier figure which to me, makes her the most realistically drawn Riverdale resident. Gone are all the traits of classic romantic Ethel, in fact, she prefers to go out of her way to avoid Jughead when in previous stories have Ethel obsessed with him.
It’s important to remember this is YA themed graphic novel so while Volume 1 has Ethel settling back into the town of Riverdale, we get some hints of a possible romance with Jughead and Moose. Big Ethel Energy Volume 1 reminds readers how to be more kind, how to show more empathy towards others, and the effects of bullying on the psyche of a young woman.