The Archie Show

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
The Archie Show TV Poster Image
Classic, clean-cut 'toon has '60s music and dance.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Educational Value

The show intends to entertain rather than to educate.

Positive Messages

You can bridge differences with a common interest (for example, music). Archaic messaging, perhaps understandable in a 1960s series, shows Veronica often playing the damsel in distress to appeal to Archie's chivalrous side. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Archie, Jughead, and Betty may be positive role models, whereas Veronica and Reggie may be less so. Archie always has good intentions and loves the camaraderie of his group of friends. Jughead is a simple sort and slow to take real responsibility, but he's good-natured and out for fun. Betty is sweet and the peacemaker of the group. Veronica can be vain and boy-obsessed, particularly around Archie, and Reggie is mischievous, often scheming to turn Veronica's eye by upstaging Archie. 

Violence & Scariness

There's little violence per se but plenty of spills and bumps that are played for laughs, even if the victims are momentarily bruised (indicated by a throbbing, red point of impact) or dazed (stars orbiting the head). 

Sexy Stuff

Veronica flaunts her crush on Archie, much to the irritation of Reggie, who'd like her eyes trained on him. That said, there's nothing physical about all the flirting. 

Language

Rarely "stupid." 

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that in The Archie Show, Archie and his teen pals get into nothing but innocent scrapes. Generally they lead carefree lives between their school and the local soda shop. Veronica's persistent plays for Archie's attention can be grating after a while, and Reggie's counterefforts to catch Veronica's eye sometimes sabotage Archie. The show's '60s-era music and dance moves (with instructions!) might not catch on with kids, it's still fun.

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What's the story?

THE ARCHIE SHOW follows the misadventures of Archie Andrews (voiced by Dallas McKennon), a high school student and guitarist in his own garage band, the Archies. When they're not hammering out tunes together, Archie and his four best friends -- Betty (Jane Webb), Veronica (Webb again), Reggie (John Erwin), and Jughead (Howard Morris) -- can usually be found at the neighborhood hangout, Pop's Choklit Shop, with their canine mascot, Hot Dog (McKennon again). Each episode features two stories bridged by a segment that incorporates some of the band's rock music and a coordinating "Dance of the Week" tutorial given by one of the characters.

Is it any good?

Based on the Archie comic book series, The Archie Show was an animated version of the kind of musical TV series that populated the networks around this time, including The Monkees. The show's popularity manifested a few album releases from the fictional group, with one song ("Sugar, Sugar") topping the Billboard charts in 1969. Even though the style is very different from what kids listen to today, the incorporation of the tunes is still fun.

As for the content, there's little to worry about in the day-in-the-life structure. Each story sets Archie and the gang in some kind of ridiculous predicament they have to wriggle out of, and there are lots of laughs and wisecracks along the way. Even the less-admirable personality traits of some characters -- Reggie's plotting against Archie for Veronica's affection, and Veronica's undignified clamoring for Archie's attention -- stand out only because of the pristine innocence of the rest of the characters.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about what has changed in how cartoons look since The Archies came out. How is the animation outdated? How has technology allowed us to enhance cartoons? Does this make them more enjoyable? 

  • Even though these stories are set in a different time, how similar are the characters' experiences to your kids'? Do they ever have problems with friends being mischievous or mean? What do they think of boy-girl relationships among their peers? 

  • Kids: What is your favorite type of music to listen to? How does it make you feel? How can different musical styles suit different moods? 

TV details

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For kids who love classics and cartoons

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