Appropriately for a town that’s served as a backdrop to X-Men movies (the third opens May 26), Victoria’s had a number of cameos in comic books. In 1986, Marvel Comics used a convention at the Empress hotel to launch its New Universe series, and later set several of the episodes here – including one in which supervillains kill everyone in a comics store in Market Square. (The issues aren’t collectors’ items: Gareth Gaudin of Legends Comics on Johnson Street says New Universe is considered “the Ishtar of comics,” a financial and artistic flop.) Another locally-set comic appeared in 1989, when the Archie girls Betty and Veronica spent an entire issue here and in Vancouver on a fashion shoot, and dodging a design-stealing rival photographer; in one scene they elude him by jumping on a Tally-Ho wagon. As you can imagine, the story’s pretty dumb – “I had no idea the climate was so mild!” exclaims Betty – but it probably thrilled Tourism Victoria at the time.