Analyzing Jughead: Betty or Veronica?

I know Jughead is the eternal bachelor, but that hasn’t stopped me, along with a lot of fans and Archie Comics, Inc., from visualizing what it might be like for Jughead to be in a relationship. There have been Debbie, Ethel, Joani Jumpp, Trula Twyst, and January McAndrews, but the two girls I’m going to focus on are the two that are currently tied up with the eternal player, Archie Andrews-Betty and Veronica. So in the vein of the current Archie Comics event Archie Marries Veronica, let’s see what would happen if Jughead was with either Betty or Veronica.
Jughead/Veronica

Laugh

Believe or not, there’s a rather big fanbase for this couple. Whether it makes you gag or makes you think delightful thoughts, there is definitely something about the couple that tickles the brain.
The main thing that probably draws people to this pairing is the obvious tension between the characters. Veronica hates Jughead’s laid-back approach to life; Jughead hates Veronica’s yuppie, privileged rich-girl attitude. The type of hatred that they have towards each other is sometimes written in a way that is reminiscent of quite a few love/hate relationships seen on television shows, like Maddie Hayes and David in Moonlighting, Laura and Remington in Remington Steele, Sam and Diane on Cheers, and more recently, Temperance and Seeley on Bones. Also, textual evidence shows that they have a more complicated relationship than what is seen on the surface.
In a story from Jughead’s Double Digest #99, “Shakespeare, Anyone?”, Jughead and Veronica are cast in a play where they had to kiss. Being surprised that Jughead is actually a good kisser, Veronica develops a crush on him that is only stopped when Juhgead goes to desperate measures (“desperate measures” resulting in him eating an onion and garlic sandwich to drive Veronica away). Also, in Veronica #177, Jughead saves Veronica from an awful boy and she feels indebted to him (this is not the first time it’s been written that Jughead defends Veronica).
If Jughead and Veronica did happen to end up together, it would be entertaining, to say the least. A relationship where there is a lot of back-and-forth snappy, hard-hitting banter and palpitating tension would be extremely fun to write and draw. That kind of relationship would also be a lot of fun to read; TV watchers are often happily strung along with love-hate relationships, so if they are happy with watching them on TV, they’d be equally as happy reading about them in a comic book.
Betty/Jughead
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For many, this couple is practically canon. It’s not really a question of whether or not Jughead has a little bit of affection for Betty. They both enjoy being in each other’s company; Jughead loves her cooking and defends her when Archie acts like a jerk and rejects her over Veronica, and Betty often confides him when she’s troubled about her lovelife and friendship with Veronica. Even many of the writers have commented on how if they had their way, they would pair Jughead with Betty in a heartbeat, so of course, there’s going to be a lot of textual evidence toward this pairing.
In one issue, there’s a panel where Jughead said that if he ever had a girlfriend, he would think about asking Betty and another where Jughead is actively defending Betty’s honor (actually, there are quite a few where Jughead is telling Archie off in Betty’s defense):

bj001
And plenty of other covers and scenes in various issues where the writers more than indulge their Betty/Jughead leanings:

knightstale(his line seems out of character to me…)

love(alternate universe story)

13d7_1_bJughead
If Betty and Jughead were actually a canon couple, I can imagine that their relationship would be pleasantly stable and satisfying. But it also has the potential to get extremely fluffy, something that wouldn’t happen with Jughead and Veronica. But the most important thing is that Betty’s heart would finally stop being broken once and for all.
Which one do you think is better? Or do you think Jughead should stay a bachelor? Sound off below.

Wanna read more about Jughead’s lovelife? Click here.

Want musical accompaniment? Listen to how these two pairings might sound in musical form:

Veronica/Jughead (I figured the tension seen in the Argentine Tango was the best way to represent Jughead and Veronica’s relationship)

Libertango – ViceVersa

Betty/Jughead

At Last – Etta James

*Thanks to the users/submitters on the livejournal community Never Noticed Before for some of the B/J scans.

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14 comments for “Analyzing Jughead: Betty or Veronica?

  1. Jane
    September 26, 2009 at 11:08 pm

    Veronica/Jughead was actually my first ship~ It’s still *technically* my favorite, but Jughead/Betty is closer to canon in my head.

    Does that make sense? XD I agree with everything here- I always liked Veronica and Jughead’s slap slap (sometimes) kiss relationship.

    The best case scenario in my head is “Archie becomes an eternal bachelor, Jughead marries Betty, and Veronica marries Reggie.” (Because, let’s face it, Veronica and Reggie are both Jerks with Hearts of Gold. They fit like a glove.)

    Second is tied between “Veronica marries Archie, and Jughead gets Betty.” and “Betty marries Archie and Jughead (after becoming rich after starting a fast food chain) meets up with Veronica years later, relationship happens, etc.”

    Of course, I still consider my Second-Best-Case-Scenario as a bit of a tragedy. Veronica and Betty are too good for that red-headed freak! People complain about Archie picking Veronica (though I don’t know why, seeing as #603-605 is going to be ‘Archie marries Betty”) but don’t they understand: That’s a GOOD thing. They escaped his clutches!

  2. moniquej
    September 27, 2009 at 12:20 am

    I agree with everything you said. And yes, it makes total sense to ship two pairings at the same time. I also am fans of both J/B and J/V. Although, to be honest, I lean more towards J/V, especially while drawing and writing. It’s just too much fun writing their lines. If someone wanted to take it to this level, an Archie Comics writer could easily add an extra level of sexual tension to their barbs. But, like I said in the article, J/B is just to sweet to really ignore . The world of shipping is hard to trek, indeed :)
    But yes, shipping aside, Archie is a pig. Personally, I always felt Veronica was the only woman who could really tame Archie. And he’s always seemed more genuinely drawn to her anyways; I think he only calls on Betty because she’s nice and she’s the girl who’s there when Veronica isn’t available or is mad at him or something. Essentially, she’s the more dignified version of a booty call.

  3. Jane
    September 27, 2009 at 12:43 am

    “Personally, I always felt Veronica was the only woman who could really tame Archie.”

    Oh, totally. Archie, although he looks at other women even when he’s with V, she’s still the one he’s most interested in, no doubt.

    In fact, there really is NO Betty/Archie/Veronica triangle- becuase, let’s face it, Archie doesn’t have any real feelings for Betty, he uses her, just as you said.

    In fact, the only real reason that the triangle is still a question is because people want Betty to win so badly.

    Sort of the whole ‘girl-next-door’ wins sort of thing. Y’know, when the next door neighbors are bff but the guy is in love with the mean hot popular chick, but by the end of the movie, he realizes what a bitch the rich girl is and notices that his bff is the girl for him?

    The only problem with that is that the B/A/V triangle isn’t really LIKE that. Veronica may be conceited, but she’s got a good heart, and she’s best friends with Betty.

    And unlike the movie story, where the boy bff is actually nice to the girl bff but just doesn’t realize her feelings, Archie KNOWS Betty’s real feelings, and just uses them for a date on friday night, a free car repair, or sweets.

    *Ahem*

    Also, yeah, isn’t J/V and J/B just so hard to choose from? They’re both so cute~

    (Also, I’ve seen your pics on DA, and they’re so good! I really like how you draw Jughead~)

  4. moniquej
    September 27, 2009 at 5:39 pm

    thanks. I’m really glad you like the pictures. I’m hoping to one day get a job at Archie Comics writing and/or drawing; I’m afraid my scripts might poke too much fun at the Archie Comics status quo, though, but they’re full of zingers, nonetheless. I really want to draw for them if I never get a chance to write for them. Even though it’s neat to see the characters drawn in a more realistic style, they’re never drawn in up-to-date clothes. Although I drew some of the characters in old-school ’40s clothes, I did a lot of research for all of the clothes by doing a lot of internet-shopping. Everything I drew the characters wearing is either actually in stores or based on real designs. I think for a while as I was drawing them, I had their characterizations down to specific stores, like Archie might shop at American Eagle and Jughead might buy some clothes from Hot Topic or some other offbeat stores.

  5. Jane
    September 28, 2009 at 8:29 pm

    I don’t think having tongue-in-cheek jokes will be bad. XD They’ve had a few already.

    If I remember correctly, when Archie comics went recycled, Archie told the readers so, and somebody replied with ‘Your jokes have been recycled for years!’.

    I’ve always wondered something; why don’t they explain away the out-of-date clothing by saying that all the characters are fond of the ‘vintage’ style? It would make sense. XD

    I like your idea a ton of giving them up to date styles! Especially Archie as an American Eagle guy; it’s so true.

    Betty would be one too, but maybe you can shake it up by giving her a slightly ‘straight-edge’ style? (It gives her color, that way, but also keeps with the good girl thing. And Betty looks good in black.)

    And Veronica would always been in high-style classic clothing, amirite? What do you think? Coco Chanel, or Versace? XD

    And Jugbeat having an off-beat style is perfect. Maybe he could be a thrift store lover? Always one of a kind clothes there!

    Good luck, by the way! I’m sure they’ll hire you! Those guys NEED new blood over there. XD

  6. moniquej
    September 28, 2009 at 9:45 pm

    Straight edge…that’s not a bad idea for a Betty hairstyle.
    Yeah, I thought of thrift-store for Jughead, too. It fits in with all of the punk stuff as well, so that would be a plus.
    And yes, Veronica would be Versace and Chanel. I think I went to Brooks Brothers and Ralph Lauren for some of her clothes. I think I put in some other high-profile designers, too, but I can’t remember them all. All I remember is that she got some high-priced clothes. Reggie as well; I remember saving some RL clothes for him too, especially the ties (their ties are so great!!!!! Even though it’d be a pain for my hand, I’ve been trying to get around to drawing Reggie with one of their paisley ties.)
    Thanks for the luck! I’m trying to see if I can get scripts at both Archie Comics and D.C. Comics, because I have a killer idea for a Martian Manhunter reboot comic series. But anyway, I agree that Archie really needs something new and fresh. If they would just give me a chance!!! I suppose I’ll have to put one of my scripts on this site sometime soon.
    Also, if I had my way, I’d have Dilton/Cheryl Blossom be actually legit. I read that they were together for a while, but like everything in the Archie universe, there isn’t much continuity, so that’s gotten cut out. I like the idea of the dork getting the hot girl; it’s very Jessica Rabbit of her to do something like that.

  7. Jane
    September 28, 2009 at 9:48 pm

    “Also, if I had my way, I’d have Dilton/Cheryl Blossom be actually legit.”

    FFFFFFFFFFFFF I LOVE THAT PAIRING.

  8. Tracy Johnson
    February 1, 2011 at 4:49 pm

    Great post-though I`ve always liked the idea of a Betty/Jughead pairing, you make a wonderful case for the Veronica thing as well. It would be unexpected…
    Where did you get the great little “alternate universe” pic? Is that from a 50`s Archie story?

  9. moniquej
    February 1, 2011 at 5:51 pm

    thanks. I got the alternate universe picture from this livejournal group http://community.livejournal.com/true_love_ways/ I’m not sure what story it came from, though.

  10. Cam
    February 27, 2011 at 5:14 pm

    I absolutely love the Jughead/Veronica pairing, it reminds me a bit of my OTP Ron and Hermione. I just wish there was an easier way to connect with fans of J/V as well as an easier way to find good issues with J/V stories. It’s also fun to see stories where the other Archie characters might think something is up between the two of them.

  11. gee
    June 3, 2011 at 2:05 pm

    for the first time I actually torn between j/b and j/v! although j/v has more chemistry!

  12. Abhishek
    July 3, 2011 at 8:20 pm

    Jughead and Betty are made for each other, however as you said, in the greater interests of the Archie universe, they have to remain apart and play the roles of the tragic noble lady and the knight who loves her but dare not speak.

  13. Llama
    February 16, 2012 at 3:05 pm

    Archie/Valerie has basically renewed my interest in the Archie universe, but for the sake of this topic I’ll say that I adore Jughead/Betty. I hope that Dan Parent will write a romance featuring these two where they get the same treatment as Archie’s relationships; falling in love, romance, marriage, kids It doesn’t have to be official, but a POSSIBLE future. That’s one way he could explore it.

    Although come to think of it, I don’t know if Jughead could be domesticated, and I’m not sure I’d want him to be, but I’d love to see him in a long term relationship with Betty. What kind of adventures would they have together? All I know is I’d love to see a story where Jughead has loved Betty for a long time, but wasn’t able to come to terms with it until now.

    Like the previous poster said, these two are made for each other.

  14. Elize
    January 24, 2014 at 10:50 am

    Jughead/Betty are practically canon. I think their relationship would be the most realistic pairing in the Archieverse. They’re both different, but have a common respect for one another and support one another in trying times. I truly believe that Archie will remain an eternal bachelor. He only likes Betty as a friend and for Veronica, I think he just loves the chase. I hope in the future we do get to see Betty less attached to Archie and see her around Jughead more.

    I also like Cheryl Blossom/Dilton.

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