The world that we live in is a vast place filled with a variety of people. However, the media that we have consumed for decades hasn’t really reflected its diverse audience. It’s only fairly recently that films, TV shows, and the like have started to provide representation to those other than straight white males. But now it looks like a comic book icon will emerge as part of a sexual demographic that rarely (if ever) finds the spotlight in mainstream media.
In this week’s issue of ‘Jughead’, writer Chip Zdarsky and artist Erica Henderson depict the Archie Comics mainstay as openly asexual. According to Comic Book Resources, this is something that the creative team said that they would do all the way back at New York Comic Con. Although, Zdarsky shared that he never really thought that this was anything new anyway. Instead, Jughead Jones’ sexuality just didn’t have a designation before:
“My view of Jughead is, over the 75 years [of his existence] there have been sporadic moments where he has dabbled in the ladies, but historically he has been portrayed as asexual. They just didn’t have a label for it, so they just called him a woman-hater. But he’s not a misogynist — he just watches his cohorts lose their minds with hormones. People have asked me if there is going to be a romance if I’m writing ‘Jughead’, because I’m very romantic, and the answer is no, because there is enough of that in ‘Archie’. I think something like asexuality is underrepresented, and since we have a character who was asexual before people had the word for it, I’m continuing to write him that way.”
Despite allusions in the past, though we’d typically see the crown-wearing teen choosing burgers over the ladies anyway, this is the first time that Jughead’s sexual preferences have been explicitly addressed. But based on the bold new direction of the line-wide relaunch of the classic Archie comics, it shouldn’t be that surprising to see a more varied spectrum in all the characters featured in these books. So before you pick up a copy of ‘Jughead’ #4, check out this preview of the issue:
What do you think about a household name like Jughead Jones of Archie Comics being identified as asexual? Judging by his history, are you really that surprised by this revelation? And are there any other comic book characters similar to Jughead that you think are considered asexual, but they were created before that label or the understanding of that sexual preference existed? Sound off in the comments below.