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EXCLUSIVE: Archie Sends Riverdale To Hell In A Horror Story That Is 'Metal AF'

The Archie Comics universe might be best known for its wholesome stories starring Archie Andrews, Jughead Jones, Betty Cooper, Veronica Lodge, and the rest of the Riverdale gang, but some of the publisher's most exciting comic book tales in recent memory have taken its characters down a much darker, horror-themed path. From "The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina" (which was brought to life on the small screen in the Netflix series of the same name) to the violent "Vampironica" reimagining Riverdale High's queen bee as a bloodsucking vampire, Archie Comics continues to embrace horror in its line of mature reader stories. Now, fans of this line are about to be taken to Hell in "The Cursed Library: Alpha," a new Archie Premium Event series bringing several recent one-shots together.

Following the events of 2024's Free Comic Book Day release, "Archie Horror Presents: The Cursed Library Prelude" #1, where the story has Jinx Holliday recapping previous Archie Comics one-shot horror stories to Madam Satan herself, "The Cursed Library: Alpha" (by Eliot Rahal, Magdalene Visaggio, Craig Cemark, Matt Herms, and Jack Morelli) picks up right where things left off. All of these stories will converge when Dani Malloy, Archie's first trans character who starred in "Chilling Adventures Presents... Strange Science," calls for the help of Madam Satan as her guide through Hell as she tries to save Jinx's soul by rescuing her mother. However, as you'd expect, this won't be easy, as they'll be up against some of the most frightening folks found in the pages of the titular Cursed Library. 

The Cursed Library: Alpha is important for Archie Horror's future

Co-writer Eliot Rahal ("Madam Satan") describes the upcoming "The Cursed Library" as unlike anything Archie Comics has ever done before. The story is "a throughline and nexus point that weaves together everything in the Archie Horror universe that's happened so far," and the end of the three-issue miniseries is intended to set the stage for "a very new and exciting future" for the publisher's darker line of comics. Artist Craig Cermak ("A Man Among Ye") expressed his enthusiasm about drawing Jinx and Dani, promising a horror tale that's both big and dramatic. "I hope to give readers something they'll want to revisit for years to come," Cermak stated, "as well as a strong interest in checking out the previous 'Chilling Adventures' tales that led to this story."

Check out Cermak's main cover art for "The Cursed Library: Alpha."

In a statement to Xoop, Jamie L. Rotante, Archie Comics Senior Director of Editorial, complimented the work of Rahal, Cermak, and Magdalene Visaggio, offering praise for what's coming in the much-anticipated story: 

"This is an ambitious project led by two of the best writers we've had the pleasure of working with on our horror titles, and, honestly, two of the best writers in comics, period," Rotante told us. "I have the ultimate trust in them to craft a story that is layered, poignant, and still metal AF. This feels like the culmination of almost everything I've personally worked on as an editor, and I'm thrilled that I get to watch Eliot and Mags create a world (or rather, convergence of worlds) that I'm, frankly, in awe of. This is not just a love letter to our fans, but to the art of storytelling as a whole, complemented by the stunning artwork of Craig Cermak."

The Cursed Library Alpha is coming soon!

"The Cursed Library: Alpha" features three additional covers released with the issue. Robert Hack ("Chilling Adventures of Sabrina"), Soo Lee ("Wicked Trinity"), and Reiko Murakami ("Basketful of Heads") all bring their unique stylings to art for variants. Check out those covers, followed by the text solicitation for the upcoming horror story below.

This is it... this is the moment our horror one-shots have led to... THE CURSED LIBRARY! When we last left off in MADAM SATAN: HELL ON EARTH, Jinx has the former Queen of the Underworld trapped in the mysterious library, as her father-bestowed demon powers have intensified. To stop Jinx from becoming like her father, her best friend Danni Malloy must rescue and convince Madam Satan to guide her through Hell itself to find the one thing that can possibly save her friend's soul––Jinx's mom. Along the way, they'll also discover a number of faces they've seen before, though only in the pages of the terrifying tomes within the cursed library. This three-issue limited series horror event tells a story about the bonds that tie us together and how the only thing that can save the world from evil is radical love. 

"Cursed Library: Alpha," the thrilling culmination of the Archie Horror offerings and set-up for the line's future, arrives in comic book stores on August 21, 2024. "Cursed Library Omega" releases in September, while the three-issue miniseries concludes with "Cursed Library: Unbound" in October.