I’ll let you read this article and digest it first:
This is kind of a big deal for me. Most people probably don’t know this, but I grew up reading a LOT of Archie comics. It was actually the first comic book I ever read, and something that’s always had a bit of a nostalgic pull for me (I’ll even grab an issue every now and again at a check-out counter). This comes as a surprise to probably no one, but Jughead was always my favorite character. When I was a kid, I thought he was just the coolest guy ever. He had lots of friends, but never tried to compromise himself to fit in. Something a regular Archie reader would also know is that Jughead never had a girlfriend. In fact, he would outright shun any girl that tried to date him (granted, it was mostly the buck-toothed Big Ethel, but there were a few exceptions).
Now, Jughead was never a gay character…at least not an explicit one. But I think a part of me still related to him on some level. Way before I came out, I recall playing off my lack of a girlfriend as a simple lack of interest. Now, with this new character I doubt they’ll be “outing” Jughead or giving him a boyfriend, and I’m honestly not sure if that’s even something I want. But at any rate, thank you Archie Comics, for showing another generation of kids that you can just be yourself.