Crown-wearing Archie Comics character Jughead Jones has traditionally been more into burgers than romance, and a new comic is about to casually reveal that he is, in fact, asexual. In other words, he's a person who isn't sexually attracted to other people — a kind of sexual identity that's rarely depicted in popular fiction. But when writer Chip Zdarsky and artist Erica Henderson were tasked with helping Archie's companywide reboot of its classic characters, they opted to subtly take a stand and add a new facet to a long-established property. The revelation happens in Jughead No. 4, which hits stands and digital outlets on Wednesday. Archie gave some preview pages to ComicBookResources.com, one of which had the following exchange:
Zdarsky had actually talked about Jughead's asexuality last September during an interview with ComicBook.com. "There have been iterations of Jughead over the decades where he has been interested in girls, so there's room to play around if someone was inclined. For me though, I like an asexual Jughead," he said. "That's more interesting to me than writing him as just being behind everyone developmentally."
The move is being met with a ton of praise from comics fans:
I'M GONNA GO OUT AND BUY A JUGHEAD COMIC— J. A. Micheline (@elevenafter) February 8, 2016
Jughead is canonly asexual! This is incredible and huge and I'm so happy.— Joan (@bedabug) February 8, 2016
Cool to see that Jughead has been confirmed as asexual. There are not enough characters like that.— O. Rodriguez Mangier (@Comic_Obsessed) February 8, 2016
JUGHEAD MY BOI— ayden gilmore (@imcloudbusting) February 8, 2016
This is yet another boldly interesting move from Archie, a publisher that broke out of decades of stagnation a few years ago by taking steps to wildly reimagine the world of Riverdale. Speaking of which: Could this mean an asexual Jughead on the CW's pilot for Greg Berlanti's Archie-based Riverdale show? One can hope.