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Archie Comics’ zombies are on the move.
The publisher’s critically-acclaimed Afterlife with Archie series by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and Francesco Francavilla — which brings the undead to Riverdale thanks to a well-meaning, but very unfortunate, magical spell by Sabrina the Teenage Witch — will spread onto newsstands with a new magazine launching next month.
Each issue of the 48-page Afterlife with Archie Magazine will reprint the main story from an issue of the Afterlife comic, accompanied by all-new special features (including a preview of Aguirre-Sacasa’s new Sabrina series in the November issue). The magazine will retail for $4.99, with the first issue available on newsstands in early October, with comic store distribution available October 22.
“Afterlife exists because Francesco drew a magazine cover — his zombie variant for Life with Archie — so to have Afterlife reprinted in this format is just great and feels like a homecoming of sorts,” Aguirre-Sacasa told THR via email. “It places Afterlife in the proud traditions of horror magazines like Creepy and Eerie. And the larger format makes Francesco’s art look that much more spectacular. This is a truly thrilling development.”
Announcement of the magazine further underscores a shift in Archie’s position as a publisher. Following the surprise success of Afterlife the comic, the company — which named Aguirre-Sacasa as chief creative officer at the start of the year — has pivoted away somewhat from the wholesome Americana it has traditionally been known for, with the announcement of the new Sabrina horror series and new superhero line Dark Circle Comics, to launch in 2015. To date, these moves have been confined to the comic speciality market; Afterlife with Archie Magazine marks the first time the “new” Archie Comics has been marketed to mainstream audiences.
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