Betty And Veronica #2 Review: Absence Makes The Heart Grow Fonder As The Series Improves

Readers may recall, I wasn't the biggest fan of the first issue of the rebooted Betty & Veronica series. To me, the debut issue faltered by not giving the title characters enough agency, inexplicably having a fanservice moment as a 'joke,' and throwing away the complex relationship between the two in favor of 'catfight' jokes. Thankfully, it seems like the extended length of time between issues has ironed out most of the problems.

Betty And Veronica #2 focuses on Betty's attempts to save Pop Tate's Choklit Shoppe from destruction and convince Veronica to stop supporting the company threatening to tear it down. Unfortunately, for every one of her well-meaning fundraising attempts, Veronica retaliates with a slimy, underhanded trick. Betty makes a lemonade stand, Veronica parks an alcoholic snow cone stand nearby.

Don't worry, that's lipstick, not blood. Veronica will do a lot of things, but she won't sign a blood pact with a demon. As far as I know.
At one point, Veronica even goes so far as to set up a bikini car wash, much to Archie's delight. One amusing background gag has someone, presumably Jughead, pulling him away as he tries to film them. You're a class act, Andrews. Thankfully, the scene isn't too uncomfortable. The one time that it does show them in full has the panel's 'camera' simply showing everyone reacting, with the car washers not drawn in a lot of detail. I do have to laugh at Cheryl Blossom being one of the car washers, given her recent appearance in the main Archie title.

Betty's exasperation can be used as a reaction to a lot of things.
I'm really enjoying the issue's exploration of the differences in personality between Betty and Veronica. Due to her lifestyle, Veronica doesn't think much of Pop Tate's, believing that a corporate-owned chain is automatically better. On the other hand, Betty has lived in Riverdale for her entire life and she's grown up around small stores. She has a lot of faith in humanity and devotes much of her day to social justice. As the issue progresses, she gets more and more frustrated, even snapping at her adorable cat. Veronica seems to see Betty's views as 'outrage culture', to use her words, because of her privileged life.

The issue is a vast improvement over the last one. If I had to nitpick, then I would say that the artistry occasionally produces some awkward facial expressions. Other than that, it's perfectly fine.

Betty And Veronica #2 is written and drawn by Adam Hughes. You can find it at your local comic book shop.

Zachary Krishef is an evil genius. Do not question his knowledge of Saturday Night Live trivia or Harry Potter books.