I grew up reading the Archie comics, most of them older issues from the 60s and 70s that my Dad and his siblings had growing up, that were still up in the attic there, so as such I’m pretty familiar with the characters in the Archie-verse, less so with some of the more recent additions to the canon like Kevin Keller, the first gay character in Archie and the Blossom twins, who play major roles in this series, but I’m familiar with the characters enough to write up a review on this new CW series, Riverdale, which reads like Archie crossed with any sexed up CW teen soap opera.
It plays out like one too, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, per se. We get in this pilot episode the basic concept for the season, Veronica (Camila Mendes) is moving to Riverdale with her mother Hermione (Marisol Nichols-Teen Wolf) , after her father Hiram was involved in some scandalous embezzlement of company funds.
Meanwhile everyone in Riverdale is still reeling from the shocking disappearance of Jason Blossom from the previous summer. Also, Archie (K.J. Apa- A Dog’s Purpose) hooked up with his music teacher, Mrs. Grundy (a much younger version than the comics, played by Sarah Habel-Whip It) and there’s that secret. Before long we get into the standard love triangle/friendship of Betty (Lili Reinhart-The Kings Of Summer) , Archie, and Veronica, along with every teen drama, soap opera cliche known to Aaron Spelling. Hell, even Luke Perry is in the show playing Archie’s dad.
It’s a very weird show, coming from an Archie fan, but I like the mashup of Archie and CW teen drama, it’s done very well, and there’s some twists and turns to come I’m sure as the season goes on. It’s got every cliche in the book, but that makes it fun to me. And still this isn’t the weirdest thing that’s ever happened to the characters. No, that would still be the Archie vs Predator comic.
It’s a show that I feel will definitely have an audience, even if they don’t get the references or the character names, they will get onboard with this show, as it’s one fun, cheesy, trashy ride. You can watch Riverdale Thursdays at 9 pm on the CW.
Final Grade- B