Archie Vs. Predator And The Phenomenal Power Of “Not Yet”
Archie vs. Predator is a graphic novel written by Alex de Campi, drawn by Fernando Ruiz, and published by Dark Horse Comics and Archie Comics where the galaxy’s deadliest hunter, the Predator, collides with the all-American teenager Archie Andrews. And not everyone makes it out alive. Also, the Predator speaks in emoji.
< SPOILER WARNING >
We’re going to reveal key plot points of Archie vs. Predator as we explore the secret power of two little words: “Not Yet”. And we’ll do it all in 12 panels or less. You have been warned!
< /SPOILER WARNING >
Archie and his friends are enjoying Spring Break at Los Perdidos Resort, doing the things the Riverdale kids do… holding impromptu beach fashion shows which go embarrassingly wrong.
Betty discovers an ancient Colombian shrine where she casts a curse upon those who have wronged her.
Something about Betty captures the attention of the Predator, who follows her home to Riverdale.
The Predator attacks Riverdale, killing a whole bunch of people, starting with poor Pop Tate.
Thinking that Betty’s curse is the root of their problems, Betty and Veronica seek the mystical aid of Sabrina the teenage witch.
It doesn’t end well. (R.I.P, Salem Saberhagen.) Realizing now that they’re being hunted, the Riverdale gang tries all kinds of tricks and traps to stop the Predator.
Predator attacks again and again, taking out almost everyone — including Jughead!
Betty and Veronica take refuge at Lodge Manor, where they hook a critically injured Archie to an experimental healing machine. While the girls go off to fortify their defenses, Archie starts to mutate. And the Predator attacks!
Just when things look darkest for Betty and Veronica, hulked out Archie charges to the rescue.
That doesn’t end well either.
Badly injured, Betty and Veronica team up to take down the Predator…
… who, in his death throes, reveals he was motivated by a crush on Betty.
Veronica collapses, the Lodge explodes, and Veronica awakens to find Betty using the healing machine to transform the wounded Predator into a familiar face.
Clearly, Despite Its Artistic Style, This Story Is Dark
The art style in Archie Vs. Predator is very much the classic Archie art style: fun, vibrant, retro. Except, there’s an alien warrior watching the teenage drama and taking people out.
All the characters’ flaws are ratcheted up — even the Predator, whose bio-mask registers checkmarks and heart eyes when he first spots Betty and Veronica engaging in a beachside catfight.
One Theme That’s Consistent: Being Armed — Even Innocently — Puts You In The Predator’s Crosshairs
And that’s what got me thinking about ways Product Managers fall into people’s crosshairs.
I’d argue that one high-ranking way that good PMs fall out of good graces is when they say, “No.”
Now, don’t get me wrong — I’ve argued for No before.
There’s truth in the saying, “The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do.”
But if I’ve learned one thing in backlog grooming sessions with stakeholders, it’s the undervalued use of “Not yet.”
- “Not yet” doesn’t come across nearly as confrontational as “no” can.
- “Not yet” indicates there’s possibility of this happening in the future.
- “Not yet” can acknowledge an idea or a user story without prioritizing it immediately.
Justin Cox Said It Best
Management consultant Justin Cox said on LinkedIn:
“When someone answers ‘no’, the door seems closed forever. When someone answers ‘not yet’, it seems like a minor speed bump on their journey to success.”
Like any tool, “Not yet” can be overused or used inappropriately. But if used correctly, it can help the politically savvy Product Manager navigate the choppy waters of stakeholder negotiations.
And prevent you from being skinned alive and hung upside down from a tree.
Metaphorically speaking, of course.
New Around Here?
Subscribe to the Product Management Meets Pop Culture newsfeed to receive future updates. Follow me on Twitter to keep the discussion going!