Mark Waid needed to know he truly cared about Archie, Betty, Veronica, Jughead and the rest of the teenagers he oversees in “Archie” before adding a little darkness to the recently revamped Archie Comics series.

So now, two years into his “Archie” writing run, Waid says he is finally ready to bring a little bit of pain and consequence to Riverdale.

“I needed my first couple of years to really get to know and love these kids before I put them through hell,” Waid said.

“Archie” no. 20, available now in print and digitally, debuts the first part of a three-part storyline titled “Over the Edge,”written by Waid and illustrated by Pete Woods.

The three issues will deal with what happens when Archie and his constant rival Reggie turn their never-ending war of words into a war on wheels. A car race between the two will end with a major character being seriously injured and near death.

Candidates for who that character might be are the racers – Archie and Reggie – plus Betty, who, if you’ve been reading Waid’s “Archie,” you know would be a better racer than Archie. Betty actually zooms towards Archie, trying to prevent him from participating in the race, knowing the redhead isn’t as fast and furious as he thinks he is.

Waid said just because other classic Archie characters, such as Jughead and Veronica, are safe from the high-impact car accident, doesn’t mean they won’t be affected drastically.

“I realize this sounds like oversell, but I mean it – the events of ‘Over the Edge’ change all the kids, and most of the parents,” Waid said.