PELHAM, N.Y., May 16 (UPI) -- Archie Comics canceled its Kickstarter campaign Friday after less than a week. Critical response from fans reportedly caused the company to think again.
The campaign looked to raise $350,000 to launch three new titles to build on the "new Riverdale" created by Mark Waid and Fiona Staples for the recently introduced Archie #1. After 642 backers pledged over $34,000 in just five days, Archie CEO Jon Goldwater decided to back out.
"It was no longer about the books and how amazing they will be," the company said in a statement.
Buzz about the new titles was overshadowed by critics who questioned why an established company like Archie Comics was crowdfunding at all. The independent publisher intended to use the funds to literally kickstart their project and make them available to the public sooner.
"The conversation, at least in some circles, was no longer about funding these great new launches," Goldwater told Comic Book Resources. "Once that happened, we decided it was time to stop. While we don't mind putting ourselves under the microscope or answering questions, the creators involved didn't deserve that level of negative attention," he said.
"Though we fully expected to get funded, we felt it was time to step back."
The fundraiser's closing does not mean the end of the three new projects, however, just that they will take longer to produce.
The three new series are Jughead (by Chip Zdarsky), Betty and Veronica (Adam Hughes) and Life with Kevin (Dan Parent and J. Bone). Goldwater predicts Jughead will be released first, and a little later, now that they are to rely on their own funding.