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Thread: Jab's Builds!

  1. #13381
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    She's Josie




    JOSIE & THE PUSSYCATS:
    -Among the few indicators of who the "True Fans" are in the Archie-fandom is the answer to the question of "which version of Josie is better- She's Josie or Josie & The Pussycats?" Because ALL True Fans know that She's Josie, a creation of Dan DeCarlo using characters of his own invention, is the superior work. And I will fight anyone who says otherwise.

    It seems obvious that, during the early years of Josie's run, the focus was more on her as a female counterpart to Archie than anything else. Think about it: the red hair, the "typical teenager" tag, the two potential mates (one a good-natured down-to-earth blonde grease-monkey, the other a vain, spoiled rich snob), the bitter rival for said affections of one of them, and even the early position of Pepper as her best friend; an iconoclastic, sarcastic, Jughead Jones-like figure always there to point out the absurdities of Josie's life.

    Alot of early issues revolve around this concept. Rather than a focus on the band "Josie & the Pussycats", it's about Josie's daily life, trying to date a guy named Albert, while Alexander & Alexandra scheme behind her back for various evil purposes. It should be noted that Alexandra, an obvious rip-off of Veronica Lodge, down to the dark hair and rich stereotypes, is far more evil than the basically good Veronica could ever be. Curiously, this whole series initially takes place in Riverdale as well (as shown by a few comics that have a crossover or two with some Archie characters), yet the two groups rarely meet; we NEVER see Josie & the gang in Archie stories, nor in their classes (where usually there is the whole "Archie gang" along with generic background kids), despite the fact that we all know Riverdale has only one high school. What are they, drop-outs? They're obviously only teenagers....

    Of course, later they're shown living in "Midvale", which is quite possibly the only name more generic in Americana than "Riverdale"... and eventually they're just assumed to have graduated from High School.

    Later on, in the years following the early '60s, the ONLY focus of the series seems to have become the band and their trials and tribulations. With Melody as the dumb, hot one (Curiously, she is one of the only women in Archie mythos actually drawn with a non-Betty & Veronica body type, given the Cheryl Blossom-like Pamela Anderson figure, a sure sign of how she's supposed to be hotter than every other woman), Valerie as the sarcastic, wise one (edging out Pepper), and Josie as the good-natured basically normal one, with Alan M. as a roadie and Alexander as their manager, and the scheming Alexandra trying to get in on the fame of the group. Unlike the Archies, however, the Pussycats are often given a fairly standard, non-shifting fame: They are quite well-known, and constantly shown making music videos and the like, whereas The Archies shift between garage-band, school-band, club-hopping indie band, or MTV-interview-requested national band. This shift save Alex & Alexandra's millionaire father, and friends outside the group. Pepper Potts was basically eliminated from continuity as if she'd never existed, since she was now irrelevant. What was she gonna do? Follow them around on tour? Also gone were poor Albert & his pal "Sock".

    The reason for the change? With the massive success of The Archies, Hanna-Barbera came to Archie and asked if they had any OTHER "Hip, Young Musical Properties" around which they could base a show. And so Archie was like "ummm... SURE!" and simply re-wrote Josie into a bandleader.

    Funnily enough, Archie Comics has attempted many Josie comebacks, aside from the usual appearances in the Digest magazines. When the movie came out, based off of the nostalgic cartoon series (which, by the way, was total crap. It was basically Scooby Doo with actual musical montages in the chase scenes. Alexander was even voiced by Shaggy's voice actor, and showed it. Everyone was decked out in VERY retro '60s clothing, and there was really nothing good about the series save a "so bad it's good" flavor), Archie wisely tried to capitalize. Josie got her own book back, and the Digest versions of old stories were now prefaced with a big "It's Time For Another... Josie & The Pussycats Story!" much like the Little Archie "remember when we...." moments placed before old collected stories of his book in the Digests.

    Unfortunately, the movie bombed. Considered an embarrassment (even earning late-night comedians' jokes about failed movies years after it's release), and a signifier of dying careers (Rachel Leigh Cook has all but vanished since the movie came out, not making another film, and let's not get started on Tara Reid's fall from grace... only Rosario Dawson, a nobody at the time, survived thanks to Alexander and Sin City coming out years afterward, making this an "Old Shame"), the movie failed big-time. And presumably the comics did as well, as I only recall one single issue ever being released, though they probably pushed out a few more. And back Josie goes, to the Digests with her old stories being all we have left.

    Personally, I like the non-rock & roll-group adventures of Josie alot more than the other stuff they always pull. Most of their rock star stories either involve wacky hi-jinx while playing for Arab oil barons, shooting videos, or trying to make their gig while Alexandra tries to pass herself off as a Pussycat. The humdrum life of boring-old "Chick Archie" and her pals are a lot more interesting, and create far funnier, more believable moments.
    Last edited by Jabroniville; 07-26-2017 at 04:49 AM.

  2. #13382
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    Re: Cheryl Blossom

    Quote Originally Posted by Earth-Two_Kenn View Post
    Involuntary my @$$.
    It's been a while- I thought the comic implied that Cheryl was uncomfortable with their relationship, and that she allowed Jason to be killed, or killed him herself.

  3. #13383
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    Josie



    Yes, this is a real panel.

    JOSIE McCOY
    Created By:
    Dan DeCarlo
    Role: Girl Version of Archie
    First Appearance: She's Josie #1 (1963)
    Group Affiliations: The Pussycats
    PL 1 (36), PL 3 (36) Defenses
    STRENGTH
    0 STAMINA 0 AGILITY 2
    FIGHTING 0 DEXTERITY 0
    INTELLIGENCE 0 AWARENESS 2 PRESENCE 3

    Skills:
    Acrobatics 2 (+4)
    Deception 2 (+5)
    Expertise (Pop Culture) 6 (+6)
    Expertise (Singing) 5 (+8)
    Expertise (Guitar) 4 (+7)
    Insight 3 (+5)
    Investigation 3 (+5)
    Perception 2 (+4)
    Persuasion 3 (+6)
    Vehicles 2 (+4)

    Advantages:
    Set-Up, Teamwork

    Offense:
    Unarmed +0 (+0 Damage, DC 15)
    Initiative +2

    Defenses:
    Dodge +2 (DC 12), Parry +0 (DC 10), Toughness +0, Fortitude +1, Will +5

    Complications:
    Relationship (The Pussycats)
    Rivalry (Alexandra Cabot)- Alexandra is annoying, and constantly schemes to join the band.
    Relationship (Alan M.)

    Total: Abilities: 14 / Skills: 32--16 / Advantages: 2 / Powers: 0 / Defenses: 4 (36)

    -Josie debuted as a nice, average redhead with a dark-haired buddy who was a bit off-kilter (the odd duck known as Pepper... it was the '60s, y'know?), having to choose between a nice guy (Albert) and a conniving rich boy (Alexander Cabot III). It was the brainchild of Dan DeCarlo, the man who perfected the "Archie House Style" and is generally considered the greatest of all their artists. Very nice, very quaint stuff back in the day, and most of those old stories hold up.

    -Six years later, the Archie cartoon show and Sugar Sugar hit HUGE, resulting in a scramble for like-minded TV & music tie-ins. 1968-69 was a MONSTER year for Archie, as they actually surpassed Superman's sales for the first time ever, and were arguably the most successful comic book company around. Their decision: alter the Josie book to feature ANOTHER "cartoon band", and The Pussycats were born. Me, I never liked the change- Pussycats stories tend to be rather trite and boring, break zero new ground that "The Archies"-themed strips did, and the shift in formats resulted in Albert, Pepper and Socrates (Pep's boyfriend) all coming down with Chuck Cunningham Syndrome. Okay, so the boys were lame characters and we got Valerie in exchange, but Pepper was almost as good as Jughead at the sass-mouth.

    -Josie herself was a pretty basic character, maintaining many Archie-ish traits, but lacking his bad luck and clumsiness. Named after DeCarlo's wife, Josie was a sweet girl, but her steady boyfriend Alan M. (replacing Albert once the Pussycats came around) left her with way fewer stories to tell. She's another low-end version of Betty, but with some investigative pluck (since the Pussycats solved a ton of mysteries, much like the Scooby Doo gang). And yes, her name is now "McCoy", after being called "James" or "Jones" up to the year 2000 or so. No idea why the decision was made, really.
    Last edited by Jabroniville; 07-26-2017 at 04:51 AM.

  4. #13384
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    Re: Jab's Builds!

    And... do we know who Josie deCarlo looks like?

  5. #13385
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    Re: Josie

    Quote Originally Posted by Jabroniville View Post
    [/URL]

    Yes, this is a real panel.

  6. #13386
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    Re: Josie

    Quote Originally Posted by Phrozen View Post
    this apparently happened a few times to Josie, where legit 'what the fuck was that' supernatural shenanigans would occur

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    Re: Josie

    Quote Originally Posted by Kreuzritter View Post
    this apparently happened a few times to Josie, where legit 'what the fuck was that' supernatural shenanigans would occur
    Seems less supernatural and well more you know.....

  8. #13388
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    Re: Jab's Builds!

    The "Josie and the Pussycats" movie is a strange thing, and I'm one of the few people on the planet who enjoyed it.

    I was peeved that DeDarlo wasn't given his due, and as an adaptation of the comic, it's okay, but not great. Tara Reid's Melody I found particularly weak. The fact that Alexandra's role was so minor was also off. But at least they acknowledged it when someone asked she was there and she eplied "because I'm in the comic book."

    But as a subversive commentary on modern pop music, I thought it was absolutely brilliant. The homoerotic overtones of the boy band "Du Jour", and their hit song Backdoor Lover were spot on.

    And it was
    the best movie ever, join the army.

    Rachael Leigh Cook was the second lead on the TNT drama "Perception" for a while a few years back.

  9. #13389
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    Valerie



    VALERIE SMITH (aka Valerie Brown)
    Created By:
    Dan DeCarlo
    Role: Black Best Friend, The Sensible One
    First Appearance: Josie and the Pussycats #45 (December 1969)
    Group Affiliations: The Pussycats
    PL 1 (36), PL 3 (36) Defenses
    STRENGTH
    0 STAMINA 1 AGILITY 2
    FIGHTING 0 DEXTERITY 0
    INTELLIGENCE 2 AWARENESS 3 PRESENCE 2

    Skills:
    Acrobatics 2 (+4)
    Deception 4 (+6)
    Expertise (Pop Culture) 3 (+5)
    Expertise (Bass Guitar) 6 (+8)
    Expertise (Singing) 4 (+6)
    Intimidation 1 (+3)
    Investigation 3 (+6)
    Perception 3 (+6)
    Persuasion 2 (+4)
    Stealth 2 (+4)
    Technology 3 (+5)
    Vehicles 3 (+3)

    Advantages:
    Beginner's Luck, Set-Up, Teamwork

    Offense:
    Unarmed +0 (+0 Damage, DC 15)
    Initiative +2

    Defenses:
    Dodge +2 (DC 12), Parry +0 (DC 10), Toughness +0, Fortitude +1, Will +5

    Complications:
    Relationship (The Pussycats)

    Total: Abilities: 20 / Skills: 36--18 / Advantages: 3 / Powers: 0 / Defenses: 4 (36)

    -Valerie debuted with the "Pussycats" concept, being added to the band at it's inception, replacing snarky bookworm Pepper. She was a MUCH bigger deal at the time (nowadays she's just "The black one"), since she was the first black Archie character, one of the first recurring black characters to appear regularly in a comic since the WWII era (when they were given names like "Whitewash" and "Ebony"), and usually depicted as the smartest and most streetwise of the entire Pussycat crew. This was advanced even FURTHER in the cartoon series (where she was the first recurring black cartoon character on TV, period), where she was a technical genius and inventor! For the time, it was pretty epic.

    -Valerie is typically given the least to do of the Josie characters these days, save for a big arc in the main books when the Pussycats started teaming up with The Archies to do a dual concert, and Valerie & Archie ended up FALLING IN LOVE. This was treated rather maturely, though Betty & Veronica weren't exactly pleased (the confessed they'd realized what was going on, but that nobody really MEANT for it to happen). Also, this means that Archie was now shooting above his own age group, as the Pussycats had since graduated. They even did a "Sequel" to The Married Life featuring Archie marrying VALERIE in the future, and raising a cute biracial musician daughter together.

    -Valerie's still kind of the Deadpan Snarker of the team, making comments about Alex, Alexandra and Melody for the most part, but is otherwise pretty basic. She's more costly than Josie herself (the main character!) because of her aforementioned smarts occasionally making it's way into the comic series.
    Last edited by Jabroniville; 07-26-2017 at 04:52 AM.

  10. #13390
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    Melody




    MELODY JONES (aka Melody Valentine)
    Created By:
    Dan DeCarlo
    Role: Miss Fanservice (even by the standards of a Dan DeCarlo character), Innocent Fanservice Girl
    First Appearance: She's Josie #1 (1963)
    Group Affiliations: The Pussycats
    PL 1 (28), PL 3 (28) Defenses, PL 4 (28) Hottie
    STRENGTH
    0 STAMINA 0 AGILITY 1
    FIGHTING 0 DEXTERITY 0
    INTELLIGENCE -2 AWARENESS -1 PRESENCE 2

    Skills:
    Expertise (Drums) 6 (+8)
    Persuasion 2 (+4, +9 Attractive)
    Perception 2 (+1)

    Advantages:
    Attractive 2, Daze (Persuasion), Fascination (Persuasion)

    Powers:
    "Ears Wiggling When Danger Approaches" Super-Senses 1 (Danger Sense) [1]
    Affliction 4 (Will; Entranced/Stunned/Transformed to Stupid Drooling Idiot) (Extras: Area- Visual Perception, Reaction +3) (Flaws: Limited to Those Attracted to Women, Uncontrolled) [12]

    Offense:
    Unarmed +0 (+0 Damage, DC 15)
    Initiative +1

    Defenses:
    Dodge +1 (DC 11), Parry +0 (DC 10), Toughness +0, Fortitude +1, Will +4

    Complications:
    Relationship (The Pussycats)
    Reputation (Dumb Hottie)- Melody is considered thick-headed by everyone else. She's also considered an evil threat by most of the women in town, who wanted to ban her presence. The Pussycats were only able to call them off by hiring a MALE hottie.

    Total: Abilities: 0 / Skills: 10--5 / Advantages: 4 / Powers: 13 / Defenses: 6 (28)

    -Rounding out the trio is Melody, the Fanservice goddess of the Archie universe until Cheryl Blossom came around in the mid 1980s. Drawn by DeCarlo as pretty much an idealized, ridiculously curvy creature (a hippie club owner described "That thing her head rests on... it's gangbusters! Like, WOW!"), but alas, she was stupid to Big Moose levels. She was the source of a ton of "Dumb Blonde"-type jokes, cat-calling, guys falling over themselves to impress her, and general Big Moose-type "misunderstands an old saying or what someone just said" gags. They never really developed her character too far beyond that, but what the hey? She's the sex appeal, even going back to She's Josie #1.

    -One of the funniest Josie comics featured the girls dressed as showgirls for some play they were putting on (yes High School girls dressed in Vegas-style skimpy suits it's Dan DeCarlo drawing just roll with it), and Alexander comes by and asks what they're up to. Unfortunately, Josie tells him that Melody went to get something... while wearing the uniform. Alexander sees what the suit looks like, FREAKS OUT ("OMIGOSH!! She'll wreck the town!"), and so begins the quest to find her. And the trail is easy to follow- the first sign is a man who's SLAMMED HIS CAR INTO A TREE, leaning out of the totaled vehicle while still holding the steering wheel straight out, while he stares behind him with a slack-jawed imbecilic look on his face. Next up, they find a motorcycle-driving police officer... bouncing his bike six feet off the ground as he rides along a fence, also while staring back. EVENTUALLY, they find Melody before she destroys too much of the town.

    -Melody comes pretty cheap since she's so blatantly giblet-headed, but she's got some unique stuff. She's got one of the highest Attractive ratings in the Archieverse, and even has a POWER representing her unwilling ability to turn men into supreme morons at the sight of her (a personal favourite Josie story features Melody being stalked by a young boy who fell in love at first sight- the girls actually find it adorable, and Melody even KISSES HIM, sending him into orbit- complete with giant smoke cloud. Alexander admits that'd probably be his reaction, too). It's pretty cheap since its Limited across the board, but hey, these girls are NPC-types for the most part. I left in her Danger-Sense from the cartoons for the hell of it.
    Last edited by Jabroniville; 07-26-2017 at 04:52 AM.

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