Archie #16 Review: Thanks To Dilton, 'Black Mirror' Is A Reality.

This month's issue of Archie takes the focus off of Archie in favor of my favorite supporting character, Dilton Doiley. In monster movie terms, Dilton would be Riverdale's mad scientist, always concocting bizarre experiments and creating wacky gadgets to improve life. Results vary, especially if the story involves Archie's disastrous 'help.' He's also best friends with Moose Mason. It's an unlikely friendship, but a solid one. In the original canon and the "New Riverdale' universe, they help each other out.

Moose used Intimidation. Reggie ran away!
I hope this element carries over to the Riverdale tv show. Just because the adaptation is reportedly going to be darker, that doesn't mean that it can't have moments of friendship. In any case, the story focuses on Dilton's new invention. He creates an app that can be used to rate anything, but Reggie steals it and immediately begins abusing it. How? With cyberbullying, of course! Over the course of the day, he manages to insult everyone in town, driving some students to tears and offending others. One small digression: Nancy Woods is featured in the montage, leading me to hope that Chuck Clayton, her boyfriend, might return.

Dilton goes throughout his day, oblivious to the techno-terror, until a friend warns him about it after school. At once, he rushes home, knowing that Reggie had something to do with this scene. I love the art in this issue, especially in this scene. Dilton's fears of failure quite literally looming over him looks wonderful, especially in the rain. It helps to set the mood. As someone who suffers from anxiety, I also think that it works as a visual representation of what you go through during a bout of stress.

When Dilton recruits Moose to help him get his servers back from Reggie, the art is equally amazing.  The entire scene is evocative of a horror movie, with Moose silently glaring at Reggie, not leaving until he helps his buddy out. It's really great. Joe Eisma did a fantastic job.

Picture this, Archie Horror division: A slasher one-shot starring Moose as the killer.
Archie #16 is an exceptionally good installment of the series, with science and a refreshing change of pace. It is written by Mark Waid and Lori Matsumoto, drawn by Joe Eisma, lettered by Jack Morelli, and colored by Andre Syzmanowicz. 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.