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gayarchie.jpgThere’s a new kid at Riverdale High School. Archie Comics has announced that this fall Kevin Keller will join the gang at the maltshop and become the series’ first openly gay character.

“The introduction of Kevin is just about keeping the world of Archie Comics current and inclusive. Archie’s hometown of Riverdale has always been a safe world for everyone. It just makes sense to have an openly gay character in Archie comic books,” stated Archie Comics Co- CEO, Jon Goldwater.

VERONICA #202 features the full-issue story, “Isn’t it Bromantic?” that introduces Kevin, Archie Comics’ first openly gay character. Kevin Keller is the new hunk in town and Veronica just has to have him. After Kevin defeats Jughead in a burger eating contest at Pop’s Chocklit Shoppe, she desperately latches onto him. Mayhem and hilarity ensue as Kevin desperately attempts to let Veronica down easy and her flirtations only become increasingly persistent.

In addition to the new ongoing achievements at Archie Comics–the #4 iPad book app and most downloaded comics on iTunes, the launch of Stan Lee Comics, Archie’s Red Circle superheroes at DC, and exciting new partnerships with Abrams, Dark Horse and IDW–the introduction of Kevin as an openly gay character is part of the commitment to keep Archie properties reflective of the current world of teens and teen media.

archiecomics_2100_44483361.pngThe gentle, sweet comedy of the Archie comics has brought important lessons about inclusion in the past about Moose’s learning disabilities. The frank but casual approach to the new gay character and to Archie’s kissing Valerie of Josie and the Pussycats shows that Archie’s hairstyle may never change but that he and his writers keep up to date and want their readers to be, too.

The MVP for this week is not a person but a song. Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin'” was first released in 1981. But it’s back in a big way and has been featured in movies and on television shows. It was on the soundtrack during the stunning conclusion of “The Sopranos.” It was featured in a breakthrough performance on the first episode of “Glee.” And this week it appears in “The Losers,” sung by Chris Evans and later we get to hear the original, as sung by Steve Perry.

I often hear complaints from movie-goers who think that the trailers run before the movies they bought tickets to see are inappropriate. This has become even more important now that the MPAA has made the rules about content in trailers even more opaque, Slate explains how trailers are assigned to films. For the chains, it works according to

The “quadrant” system. As many as six trailers play before features at major chains, like AMC and Regal. The studio releasing a given film typically has automatic rights to two of these slots, and theater executives (in consultation with higher-ups from various studios) select the remaining four. Though theoretically studios and theaters could attach any trailer to any movie, they usually decide which releases to promote by using the “quadrant” system, which divides potential audiences into four different categories: men under 25, women under 25, men over 25, and women over 25.

This does not apply to independent theaters, which select trailers for films they will be showing.

The Washington Post has asked me to be a contributor to their “On Success” discussion page and I have enjoyed responding to questions about the importance of vacations, the challenges faced by a woman football coach, and the possibility of second chances.

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