Next week, Archie Comics will release Archie’s Valentine’s Spectacular. The new seasonal one-shot collects classic Archie romance stories, and features a brand-new tale, “More Than Meets The Eye,” which introduces Cassie Cloud, another new member of the Riverdale gang. The new story is written by Jamie L. Rotante, pencilled by Holly G!, inked by Jim Amash, colored by Glenn Whitmore, and lettered by Jack Morelli. Today, ahead of the one-shot’s release, The Beat is pleased to offer an early preview of the issue’s new story, as well as a full classic story from the issue.
Here’s how Archie describes Archie’s Valentine’s Spectacular:
Love is in the air with a BRAND-NEW story to kick off this collection of romance tales! In “More Than Meets the Eye,” a new student has arrived at Riverdale High! Cassie Cloud is tall, confident, funny, and catching all the guys’ attention—much to the chagrin of the girls. But she doesn’t seem interested in the most popular guys in school—instead she’s been hanging with the likes of Randolph, Dilton, Toño, Raj and even Prankenstein. What can Archie and Reggie do to get her attention, without catching the ire of Betty and Veronica? The short kings rise in this new Valentine’s Day tale! Plus, a collection of sweet stories perfect for that special someone!
Penciller Holly G! told The Beat about some of the influences that went into her design for Cassie Cloud. “Because I grew up in the fashion industry, I love to shop for my characters,” she explained. “Not that it’s a label thing, but Cassie looooves PacSun; their clothes have a warm, caring message and an active vibe. Even her oversized sweatshirt that I drew her in has a ‘Be Kind to the Earth’ theme. Oh, and I chose a theme song for her: “SNEAKERS” by ITZY. So that’s homework for ya; find that song and start dancing!”
“Holly G was a delight to work with on this,” said writer Jamie L. Rotante, “as her illustrations are absolutely beautiful, vibrant, and filled with life. Who WOULDN’T want to be Cassie Cloud’s friend?!”
“Jamie introduced a gal that isn’t playing those old games . . . I LOVE that,” G! added. “My hope is that Cassie’s breath of fresh air will inspire the gals of Riverdale high to keep growing in kindness and joy!”
Check out the preview for “More Than Meets The Eye!,” as well as the full classic story “Out of Tune” by writer/penciller Dan Parent, inker Rich Koslowski, and colorist Bill Yoshida, below. Archie’s Valentine’s Spectacular is due out in stores and digitally next Wednesday, February 1st.