One In An Alternate Archieverse: Riverdale

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As the CW prepares for the departure of one of their hit shows, The Vampire Diaries, the broadcasting company has proven successful in their execution of another. The CW’s huge new blast from the past, Riverdale, is making its way to the big leagues with its modernly dark rendition of the 1930s Archie Comics. Back with a coherent blend between the ever so dramatic Gossip Girl and thrilling Pretty Little Liars, Riverdale has TVLine praising it as “an artfully crafted, instantly engaging teen soap with loads of potential.”

Featuring the relatable and flawed teenagers Archie Andrews, Veronica Lodge, Betty Cooper, Reggie Mantle, and Jughead Jones, it’s no wonder why readers were drawn to Archie Comics. Toys, cartoons, and video games inspired by this iconic series have come and gone, but in January, the world witnessed another exciting adaptation.

Along with some new faces, many of the original characters are found in the town of Riverdale, where high school student Jason Blossom (Trevor Stines) is murdered. There are also some other minor changes whether it be the former old and cranky Ms. Grundy and her hot young appearance, or Jughead’s nonasexual sexuality.

The show casted many young actors, who’s evident connection to the characters in the script has rejuvenated the world’s beloved teenagers of the past. The actors bring a whole new element to the table, adding to their character’s identities. From Camila Mendes’s Latina blood in her character Veronica, to Ashleigh Murray’s racially different background than the sassy Josie McCoy, the story has only just begun.

In all its glory, it is Riverdale’s raw loyalty to the originality and retro vibe of the comics that keeps the series alive. Not only is it narrated by former Disney Channel child star Cole Sprouse as Jughead, but the hint of nostalgia in the show’s fashion, script, and environment is what viewers can count on to stay true to the Archie Comics.

Shook by the mysterious and sudden death of Jason, more and more secrets are slowly uncovered pertaining to the murder. With only a few out and more to come, the show has already defied limitations by targeting delicate subjects. Whether it be Veronica (Camila Mendes) and Betty’s (Lili Reinhart) passionate improvised kiss, the character of the popular and openly gay Kevin Keller (Casey Scott), or Archie (K.J. Apa) and Ms. Grundy’s (Sarah Habel) forbidden student-teacher love affair, it is not something you see everyday on national television, that’s for sure.

Especially in today’s society, Riverdale has gone above and beyond the barriers of censorship. Unafraid to take risks, it’s refreshingly truthful performance is rare in today’s sea of comedies, talk shows, and reality TV.  This show keeps the audience up to date with the LGBTQ+ community matter and serious law-infringing topics. With a strong voice and a microphone for the world to hear, be prepared to expect the unexpected with Riverdale.

Even though the mystery behind Jason’s death remains in the small town of Riverdale, one thing’s for sure—Riverdale’s captivating and inventive twist to a 1930’s classic is one that will go down in the books. New York Magazine journalist, Jen Chaney, said it best: “Riverdale is growing up fast before our eyes, like a clever, winking teenager [keeping] her deepest secrets to herself.”

After a few episodes, Riverdale has already proven to keep the audience on their toes. From the script itself to the culturally diverse cast, this unique series is earning its title as a crooked kind of perfect.

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