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Robot Archie

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Robot Archie (ஆர்ச்சி) is the name of a fictional comic book character who first appeared in Lion #1 published in February 1952.

Publishing history

Robot Archie first appeared in the first issue of Lion, a weekly British boys adventure title published by IPC Magazines, who were at the time, the biggest publisher of weekly adventure titles in the UK along with DC Thompson. Lion was a science fiction action-adventure comic in the mold of Eagle and was a direct competitor to that comic.

Robot Archie appeared in the first issue but was known as The Jungle Robot in this first issue. the character was created by writer E. George Cowan and artist Ted Kearnon, who remained the main artist on the strip for much of its time in Lion. The strip lasted 25 weeks before it took a four year gap and returned in 1957, this time the strip was called Archie The Robot but eventually the strip became better known as Robot Archie.

The strip was one of the most popular in Lion during the 1960s but the character's adventures ended when Lion was finally cancelled in May 1974. However Robot Archie strips did appear in colour in Vulcan, a short lived weekly title which was cancelled in 1976. The series was published and popular in France and the Netherlands too. In the Netherlands the series was published in the magazine Sjors(for which Bert Bus made new Archie material -which was translated into French too-since 1971)and two or three series of albums which - like the Archie publication in France - stopped in the early 80's.

After this the character entered publishing limbo but remained well loved by fans. The character made a brief cameo appearance under the name Android Andy in Alan Moore and Alan Davis's run on Captain Britain for Marvel UK. The next appearance after this was in the pages of Grant Morrison's Zenith strip in 2000 AD. This portrayed Archie as a burned out acid casualty and part of a team of heroes called Black Flag. This was followed by an attempt by IPC to launch its old adventure heroes into a new title called 2000AD Action in 1991, but the title sold poorly and was not continued into a series.

In 2004 a new "Classic Archie" adventure by Bert Bus was published in Dutch.

In 2005 it was announced that Robot Archie, as well as all of IPC's adventure heroes, would feature in a new six issue mini-series to be published by the Wildstorm imprint of DC Comics. Called Albion, the series is plotted by Alan Moore, and written by Leah Moore and John Reppion, with art by Shane Oakley and George Freeman. Robot Archie features on the cover of the first issue which was drawn by Dave Gibbons.

Character biography

Robot Archie was built by Professor C.R.Ritchie to be the worlds most powerful mechanical man. Originally he was called The Jungle Robot (due to his early adventures taking place in the jungles of Africa and South America) and was remote controlled by Professor Ritchie and his nephew Ted Ritchie and his best friend Ken Dale. Robot Archie's adventures started as conventional action thrillers with Archie and his friends battling criminals and jungle creatures, but eventually he began to fight more fantastic and dangerous villains and aliens, including The Sludge, a monster who had previously had its own strip in Lion.

When Robot Archie reappeared in the pages of Grant Morrison's Zenith, he was a burned out 1960's acid casualty (renaming himself Acid Archie) who helped Zenith fight the Lloigor. Archie apparently dies during this story but is later shown to have survived the battle in the one-off Zenith story called in the special Prog 2001 edition of 2000AD. He is last seen in the story escaping on a bus after sexually assaulting popstar Britney Spears.