While browsing Facebook earlier, I was elated to see this photo:
Growing up reading Archie Comics, I always find the dynamics between the two to be interesting and exasperating at the same time. What’s with Archie, anyway, and why were they fighting tooth and nail to catch his attention and affection? Betty Cooper and Veronica Lodge are definitely the epitome of the cartoon version of what frenemy is. Frenemy, a portmanteau of the words ‘friend’ and ‘enemy’, which readily gives us an insight on what sort of relationship that exists between people who consider each other frenemies. But in the entertainment industry as a whole, how many men frenemies can you identify? Maybe not a lot, or if ever, none at all. This frenemy phenomenon must be exclusively existing between the ladies, and popular culture from generations before until now have its own version.
Another notable thing: the brunette-blonde dichotomy. Joan Crawford and Better Davis, Blair Waldorf and Serena van der Woodsen, and of course, Betty and Veronica. There seems to be a fascination on the difference between the dark-haired and light-haired girl.
Anyway, back to the magazine cover, Archie comics’ Dan Parent has illustrated the girls wearing local designers’ collections, presumably from the Holiday 2012 collection (because we obviously don’t have Fall/Winter here). Betty’s wearing Veejay Floresca, while Veronica’s donning a Cary Santiago piece. Reading the text next to Veronica, it mentions the girls being the new faces of MAC. O_O How will that exactly work and the simpleton me was left wondering how on Earth do you make use of cartoon characters as the “face” of a cosmetic brand. But reading from this article on Dailymail, it is actually more of the personality of the girls. Now, it brings us back to the supposed dichotomy of personalities between blondes and brunettes because product names such as ‘Girl Next Door’, ‘Summer Sweetheart’ and ‘Kiss and Don’t Tell’ (for Betty) or ‘Boyfriend Stealer’, ‘Past Curfew’ and ‘Double Trouble’ (for Veronica) actually reinforce such split. Not to mention, “Archie’s Girls” — they were not even “Betty and Veronica”, but are still attached to Archie’s identity.
As for concept of the shoot, it is definitely not the first time that cartoon characters are used for a fashion magazine editorial. Sure we had Disney characters posing as designers for the April 2010 issue of Elle España, or even an appearance of Shrek characters in VMan May 2010 (which was controversial because of the ‘sexy’ nature of the shoot), the most famous and notable one is still the “Simpsons go to Paris” editorial from Harper’s Bazaar’s August 2007 issue (for more pictures, view it here on harpersbazaar.com). I think it is a very wise decision for the MEGA magazine team to have this clever cover featuring Betty and Veronica. I’m not too sure if there will be a spread inside but I might be actually buying my first ever MEGA magazine just to own this unexpected cover. Unlike the Shrek and Disney ones, Betty and Veronica would hopefully be wearing the clothes, similar to the Simpsons one. If I see that inside, I’ll be extremely happy. =D