Kevin Keller of Riverdale: Gay Man

In Veronica #202, Riverdale steps out of the closet, and we'll meet Kevin Keller, the first openly gay character in the history of Archie Comics.  In the story, Kevin is the new hot dude in town, and Veronica is all about that piece, after he beats Jughead in a burger eating contest.  Because that's what chicks dig in Riverdale.  But Kevin has a different sort of taste, and now we can look forward to years of wondering both will they or won't they, and will they be legally able to anyway, and if not, when?

The story is called, and this is simply wonderful – Isn't it Bromantic? – and it ships in September.



  1. I shocked that this wasn’t a Conor article. I thought he covered iFanboy’s Riverdale beat.

    Curious to see how this plays with the readers.

  2. I’m surprised Conor isn’t reporting this.

    That being said, Kevin is much better looking than Archie, but doesn’t he have the personality? 

  3. All I can think of is Chasing Amy now.

  4. Well, he certainly is dreamy.

  5. "Veronica is all about that piece"  Indeed. 

    I can’t wait to hear Conor summarize this issue.

    That’s kind of a misleading cover.  Where’s Ron? 

  6. "I guess I should just be up front!"

    That’s what he said.

  7. Is it just me, or is Kevin staring at Archie’s butt in that last panel?

    I sense a love…square(?) coming soon! 

  8. What’s with the alternating lined/cloud-like borders for the panels? Is that normal in Archie? It’s kind of distracting and makes me think those panels are flashbacks or something.

  9. Do you think we’ll have to wait for issue 666 for Archie to wander down Memory lane and see what his future with Kevin would be like?

  10. Which raises the question of when Jughead’s going to come out of the closet.

  11. He is kinda dreamy.  I’m all for more gay characters in comics but I’m noticing that to avoid the limp-wristed scarf-wearing stereotype they are tending to go in the opposite direction.  How about a gay character who just looks like an average joe?

  12. So what you’re telling me is that it’s neither Archie nor Jughead! Well that’s just silly.

    On a more serious note, this is great news. I will be interesting to see how this plays out with readers, etc.  

  13. Things like this make it seem like some creator’s add gay characters just because they’re gay.  Not because it necessarily adds to the comic.  Granted, in this case, this is mighty presumptuous of me.  Judging by the cover, though, it seems pushed and cliche.  I hope this isn’t the case for Jughead fans.

  14. @SilverAgeTom: Well he is the King of Queen Archies world.

  15. I like the way Jughead just accepts he’s gay and immediatly trys to use it as a prank. The fact he’s gay is no big deal. The big deal is the prank he’s going to play on Veronica. Good job by the people at Archie Comics!

  16. @vadamowens-Considering they actually made it a point to announce that he’s gay, rather than just having it come up casually within the comic, I’m inclined to agree with you.

  17. @vadamowens and @drakedangerz:

    Since Archie comics are all about the dating hijinks and hangups, wouldn’t it be fair to say that a character being gay would add to the comic?

  18. @akamuu – Awesome.

  19. i’m not sure who it is at archie that’s initiating all of this change over the last couple years, but hats off to them. archie is doing some really great stuff.

  20. While I’m glad this doesn’t take the “After-School Special” route, it does seem off-putting that when Kevin says he’s gay, Jughead’s first thought is how to use this to trick somebody. Being over-sensitive?

  21. @ActualButt-The point isn’t whether or not they should have a gay character. The point is whether or not they are bringing in a gay character as simply a promotional tool. That may not be the case, but the manner in which he is being announced somewhat indicates that he is.

  22. So Archie is adding a Gay character, how 1995 of them. Oh wait, are they going to make him a regular character? How 1999 of them. I can’t believe stuff like this is still seen as a big deal, it just reminds how much farther society still needs to go. Either way, I’m glad they are finally doing it. Now when will sesame street add a gay character…. Oh wait a minute…

  23. In the interest of accuracy, I need to point out a slight typo in this story. It’s actually a hot dog eating contest, not hamburgers.

  24. @frankloudly: We got that information from Archie. You’ll have to take it up with them.

  25. @Conor: I think you missed frankloudly’s joke.  Well played, frankloudly, well played.

  26. Archie is really starting to do serious things in their comic. Obviously writing it in a lighthearted tone, but this has been the most discussed on anything involving Archie in the last year.

  27. this… this… this… ow, wow.

  28. So some new guy shows up and Veronica just ups and dumps Archie? Veronica, you’re a fucking cold hearted bitch.

  29. Up next, the Jughead is on drugs issue.

  30. I have to applaud the continued attempts by Archie and Co. to evolve, even if it’s just a little bit.  Kudos to them for getting us talking about their book again. 

  31. This is one of those rare moments in comics history where I shake my head profoundly.

  32. @JesTr ala Green Arrow/Roy Harper? 🙂

  33. So now making Gay Characters is the New Gimmick?

    Wait, what am I saying? It’s been the Gimmick, Isn’t that right Countdown Batwoman?

  34. It’s not a storytelling gimmick as much as it’s a way for publishers to get attention they weren’t getting before.  That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but it can be.  Rawhide Kid = bad thing. Batwoman = good thing.  I can’t blame Archie, or DC or whoever for trying to get some eyeballs on their product. It’s a small, niche market, and they always need to grow it.  That doesn’t mean the stories will be bad or offensive.


  35. @josh: If you don’t mind me saying, I don’t think Batwoman was a good decision…..At first!

    When they first introduced her it was for obvious shock value and DC had no idea how to handle her. It wasn’t until years later when DC decided to let Rucka/Williams publish their stories about where when they finally got an understanding how to make her work. Even now people like Morrison is using her when normally no one other then Rucka was writing her.

    Again now DC knows how to use her instead of ‘lipstick lesbian’ superhero. But for a good chunk of time the invention of her wasn’t good. 

  36. You’re talking about the promotion. It was always Rucka’s character, but he didn’t get a chance to do it for a long time. The promotion was entirely separate from Rucka’s stories. And he just walked away from the company, telling me that he wasn’t happy about a lot of things, and I’m guessing this is one of them.  I never read a bad Kate Kane story.

  37. @josh: Well that was the gist of my argument. Promotion wise DC seemed to make her more ‘shocking’ because she was a lesbian. Obviously when you read her in issues (when she was apart of anything early on), Rucka knew how to write her well. Now DC, with or without Rucka, seems to know now that they should let people write her as best as they can and not make her sexual orientation matter.

  38. he’s not the first gay man to appear in an Archie book – Archie was

  39. Nothing bad about this at all…. Archie piles on more sales (As we already know Archie outsells the hell out of all the comics most of us read here) and kids get exposed to something and maybe grow up a bit more accepting of someone who is different.  It certainly can’t hurt anything.  Poo-poo it all you want…  it’s not a bad thing for anyone.

  40. His belt doesn’t match his shoes.  I’m just throwing that out there.

  41. It’s all well and interesting until he hooks up with Northstar.

  42. I find it hard to believe that more people do not have a problem with this.  As a parent, I just dont think its a good idea to be introducing gay characters in a kids comic book. I think the ages that this book has been aimed at in the past are just too young to be dealing with this type of material. Regardless of what your views are on homosexuality, its just not a good idea. Maybe this is just another attempt to boost sales and broaden the audience. I just know my kids will not be reading Archie comics.

  43. Hmmm

  44. Also, judging by some of the above comments and subtle jabs, however harmless they may be, I’m starting to understand why you guys have a tendency to shy away from such subjects.  I admire how you guys handled the last issue of Scalped on the podcast from the purely critical standpoint of the comic itself, instead of dealing with the polarizing issue the comic actually delves into.

  45. By introducing a gay character all it does is acknowledge that homosexuality exists. I can’t see the harm in that.

  46. This gimmick will totally make me read Archie now for sure!

  47. @boostergold4 Why is it not a good idea?  By saying it is not a good idea you are saying there is something inherently wrong or dirty with homosexuality and there isn’t.  Why is it okay to introduce a young child to a heterosexual character but not a homosexual character? 

  48. I guess we can agree to disagree on what is right and wrong.

  49. You know what’s wrong? Archie friggin comics!

  50. So, here’s where I say that if you want to discuss the merits of homosexualtiy as a valid lifestyle choice, you can take it on the road.

    Not that I want to do that, mind you. But it’s a comic book site, and that way only madness lies.  Sorry, but that one is politics and religion and all that at the same time.

  51. Sorry Josh.

  52. It had to enter he publishers of Archie Comics thought process that there was going to be a certain reaction from a particular segment, but at the same time I believe that it is a responsible thing to to but once its done they should no loger draw attention to it.  Ok the new guy is Gay, great lets watch how he and the rest of the gang have their story told. There has been some past commentary about Apollo and Midnighter, Wiccan and Hulkling, maybe the reactions that certin people have to this one is that Archie has been known as a young people’s book for quite some time. But that doesn’t make the introduction of this character wrong by any stretch.  Lets see what happens with the character and let the the story telling drive the discussion as opposed to anything else.

  53. If many are not happy about the another new character in the Archie Comics, I am at the opposite side. I don’t think this will affect the readers view if they are straight enough. I don’t think this is all about promotion of homosexuality but adding a twist in the story for us to be more entertained. It is extraordinarily normal now for a high school student to have gay friends or at least gay classmates, so I guess they really are staying with the times.