Reggie Mantle

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Reggie Mantle
Archie Comics character
Reggie Mantle.png
First appearanceJackpot Comics #5,
Spring 1942 (two panels)
Jackpot Comics #6, Summer 1942 (full appearance)
Portrayed byGary Kroeger (Archie: To Riverdale and Back Again)
Ross Butler (2017)
Charles Melton (2017–present) (Riverdale)
Voiced byJohn Erwin (1968–1976)
Sunny Besen Thrasher (1987)
Paul Sosso (1999–2002)
HometownRiverdale
SchoolRiverdale High School
Information
Significant otherVeronica Lodge
Midge Klump
Betty Cooper
Cheryl Blossom
Harper Lodge
Haley
RelativesRicky and Vicky Mantle (parents)
Oliver Mantle (brother)

Reginald "Reggie" Mantle is a fictional teenager in stories published by Archie Comics. Created by writer-artist Bob Montana and John L. Goldwater in Jackpot Comics #5 (cover-dated Spring 1942) as well as CW's Riverdale. He is a frenemy of Archie Andrews. Also, he is Veronica Lodge’s future soulmate. The live action version of Reggie is portrayed by Charles Melton in Riverdale. Ross Butler portrayed the character in the first season, until Melton took over the role for the next seasons.

Publication history[edit]

Reggie Mantle debuted in Jackpot Comics #5 (cover-dated Spring 1942).[1] An enduring character, he appears across the Archie Comics line and headlined the series Archie's Rival Reggie (14 issues, 1949 n.d. – Aug. 1954),[2] which returned a decade later as Reggie for the sporadically published issues #15-18 (Sept. 1963 – Nov. 1965).[3] The series was renamed Reggie and Me for issues #19 – #126 (Aug. 1966 – Sept. 1980).[4]

Other series include Reggie's Wise Guy Jokes (55 issues, Aug. 1968 – Sept. 1980),[5] and the three-issue miniseries Reggie's Revenge (Spring 1994 – Spring 1995).[6]

Reggie appears as a main character in the 2015 Archie and Jughead titles that launched the New Riverdale reboot. On September 20, 2016, it was announced that a five-issue miniseries titled Reggie and Me would be published as part of the launch.[7] It was written by Tom DeFalco with art by Sandy Jarrell.[8]

Fictional character biography[edit]

Reggie Mantle at one point says he was born in Texas, and comes from a fairly well-to-do family, although certainly nowhere near the level of Veronica Lodge's. In Reggie's debut story, Archie refers to him as, 'that snooty Reggie Mantle', indicating his upper-class background. His father, Ricky Mantle, owns a newspaper-publishing company, one of his publications is The Riverdale Gazette. Reggie seems to show journalistic aspirations himself, often working as the editor of the high school paper, Blue and Gold. He is quick to use the term "freedom of the press" to defend controversial or inflammatory articles. Little is known of his mother, though her name was eventually revealed to be Vicky Mantle. Reggie has a brother, Oliver Mantle, who has appeared in Life With Archie issue #26. Compared to the families of the other main characters, Reggie's family members have made very few appearances in the comics through the decades.

Like many Archie characters, Reggie has a number of relatives who are created for one story only. One, his cousin May, is often mistaken for a pre-teen. After a makeover, she attracts attention at a school dance, but choses to dance with short Dilton. Another cousin, Regina, has Reggie's style of humor, but after a date with Jughead, appears to enjoy herself. Reggie also has a number of relatives whom he often uses to get favors.

Reggie has been known to boast that his family is the only one in Riverdale that has its own coat of arms.

Interests and personality[edit]

Reggie Mantle's chief characteristics are his love of sarcasm and practical jokes, his vanity, his athletic abilities, and his interest in dating multiple women.

Reggie is a naturally gifted and talented athlete who excels at nearly every major sport, including football, baseball, and basketball, along with more obscure sports such as cross country running and Kung Fu.[9] He often works as a surfing or skiing instructor. Sometimes, if his skills are not enough to secure victory, Reggie cheats, and he often shows little team spirit. Once in a while, Reggie tries to win competitions on a technicality by pulling out a rulebook.

The most common accessories associated with Reggie are the mirror and the comb. A lot of jokes in the comics are about his vanity, earning him the nickname "Reggie 'I-Love-Me' Mantle". Somewhat of a fashion plate, Reggie is the character who most frequently experiments with his hairstyle to match current trends.[9] These looks have lasted months (rather than been contained within a single story) and have included several incarnations of sideburns, slicked back, short, shaggy, and even a ponytail in the early 1990s.

Reggie, along with Archie and Jughead, is one of the founding members of the band The Archies. Reggie is a bassist for The Archies and occasionally lead guitarist after Archie, and thinks of himself as the most important and talented member of the group—and has gone to great lengths to prove it, such as hiring groupies to scream his name during concerts. Although his instrument of choice is guitar, Reggie has also demonstrated skill in singing, acting, and piano-playing.

His sharp, quick wit has led him to working part-time as a stand-up comedian at a Riverdale comedy club, and hoping to perform professionally someday. In spite of his evident upper-middle class status, he is remarkably cheap, and the first time his schoolmates remember him inviting them to a party, he had filled the room with vending machines from which to obtain the party food.

Reggie is Riverdale High's resident prankster. It is not unusual for Reggie's practical jokes to backfire.[9] His pranks are usually meant to embarrass his victims rather than physically hurt them. When he tries to humiliate Chuck Clayton during a sledding contest, Reggie digs a pit for Chuck to fall into when he landed. Reggie fills the pit with sawdust to soften the blow, adding crankcase oil to make it stick and covering it with snow to conceal it.

Reggie likes to chase girls, delighting in the pursuit, but is not usually interested in having a serious relationship with one girl. Reggie likes to play the field, and openly announces himself 'a true practitioner of the art'. He has expressed horror at the idea of being tied down to one solitary female, saying that, "having one girl is like having one peanut, one potato chip."

Reggie is Archie Andrews's rival, and has a perennial crush on Veronica Lodge. The fact that she loves Archie makes Reggie jealous, so he spends most of his time trying to outwit Archie, and playing practical jokes on him. Despite the rivalry, he and Archie are generally amicable, and often spend time together pursuing dates or practicing athletics. In Archie's Double Digest #201, during the possibility of Archie moving, he eventually admits he would miss Archie, whom he calls his best friend. In a lot of the older Archie Comics stories, Reggie and Archie team up to play pranks on Jughead Jones. Their schemes usually backfire as Jughead outwits them.

Other than Veronica, Reggie is romantically interested in Midge Klump, who is the girlfriend of one of Reggie's athletic teammates, Moose Mason. Reggie's relentless efforts to spend time with Midge without attracting Moose's ire are a running gag.[9] He occasionally seeks to date other women, including Betty Cooper. Reggie and Betty frequently join forces to try and break up Archie and Veronica. In some stories, Reggie and Betty are shown to be a couple, even though their respective interests still lie with Veronica and Archie. The Life with Archie series looks to a future where Archie marries Veronica and Betty and Reggie are a loving couple. It has been hinted that they are thinking about getting married.

In the rare occasions when Reggie is genuinely trying to help someone, the others usually believe he has nefarious motives, and are wary of trusting him.

Reggie is insanely jealous of anyone else but him being in the spotlight, and will sometimes deliberately cause them trouble to get what he wants.

Reggie is also known to date Cheryl Blossom occasionally. The two have very similar personalities, and at one point, before she dates a boy named George, try going out together. Like Betty and Veronica, however, Cheryl mainly uses Reggie as an alternative to Archie.

On certain occasions, Reggie shows a kinder side where he will come to the aid of his friends or total strangers, although he prefers to keep these good deeds secret. In one comic, he has a close childhood friendship with an elderly woman named Mrs. Finklehoff.

In one storyline, Reggie is shown to have fallen in love with Veronica's cousin, Harper. They have a long distance relationship, so there aren't many times they are shown together. Harper is a disabled author, blogger, and fashion designer with an automated, bedazzled, bright pink wheelchair.

Alternate versions[edit]

In Afterlife with Archie, Reggie Mantle caused the zombie apocalypse. Midge asks him for money so she can pay for an abortion. This frustrates and angers him to the point that when he sees Hot Dog on the side of the road he swerves to hit him. He immediately regrets his actions and tries to carry Hot Dog to a vet, failing that, he takes him to Jughead's lawn so that he can die at home. Hot Dog's subsequent reanimation results in him infecting Jughead and starting the zombie apocalypse.

Reggie survives with the others on the road, growing increasingly bitter towards Archie for becoming a natural leader and thriving while he is continually wracked with guilt for starting all this horror. Archie remains oblivious to this, intending to make Reggie the best man at his wedding to Betty. Reggie eventually goes out hunting with Kevin and tells him how he caused the apocalypse, how he killed Hot Dog, how he fears he might be a sociopath and how he thinks the only way to end the zombie plague is by offering himself up to the horde so they can have their revenge and hopefully stop their rampage. He wanders off alone into the woods. Kevin tells the others his story, Archie wants to go after him but Veronica and Betty convince him otherwise.

Reggie walks into the horde, expecting to be torn limb from limb, but instead they part for him until he reaches the zombified Jughead. The zombified Hot Dog walks forward, and Reggie kneels before it, expecting it to kill him and accepting his fate. But, at that moment a vision of Sabrina Spellman appears before him. She tells him that they will make the zombified Midge whole once again and make her do whatever Reggie wants if Reggie returns to his friend and kills Betty Cooper. Reggie's resolve to redeem himself crumbles upon being offered Midge and he responds with "Kill Betty Cooper... sure, why not?"

In other media[edit]

Television[edit]

Animation[edit]

Live action[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jackpot Comics #5 at the Grand Comics Database.
  2. ^ Archie's Rival Reggie at the Grand Comics Database.
  3. ^ Reggie at the Grand Comics Database.
  4. ^ Reggie and Me at the Grand Comics Database
  5. ^ Reggie's Wise Guy Jokes at the Grand Comics Database.
  6. ^ Reggie's Revenge at the Grand Comics Database.
  7. ^ Reggie and Me vol. 2 at the Grand Comics Database.
  8. ^ http://www.bleedingcool.com/2016/09/20/archie-to-launch-reggie-and-me-with-tom-defalco-and-sandy-jarrell/
  9. ^ a b c d Thompson, Steven (September 2016). "Archie's Antagonist, Reggie Mantle". Back Issue!. Raleigh, North Carolina: TwoMorrows Publishing (91): 63–67.
  10. ^ Ge, Linda (March 9, 2016). "CW's Archie Pilot 'Riverdale' Casts Reggie, Moose and Dilton (Exclusive)". The Wrap.