I grew up reading Archie comics. No exaggerations: my dad would buy every new Double Digest and Digest comic he would see at the comic book store every two weeks since I turned 6 years old until I was about 14. It’s safe to say I have quite the huge collection of old comics. When the comics were revamped, I started buying them, as well, and learned to love them almost as much as I loved the older versions. I also watched the cartoons growing up and when they announced that they were coming up with a TV series called ‘Riverdale’ now that I’m in my almost-30s, I wasn’t quite sure how to feel. Now that I’ve actually seen the first episode, however, I am happy to say that I am relieved. Very relieved. Here’s why.
For starters, while ‘Riverdale’ is based on the comic book characters that I grew to love as a child, the TV show doesn’t stick too closely to the comic books and instead makes it more appealing to today’s generation. It also has a whole different storyline altogether – a darker one. Basically, the pilot episode of the series starts with the disappearance of Jason Blossom, Cheryl Blossom’s twin brother.
Another thing I love about ‘Riverdale’ is how they peppered in a bunch of good-looking actors in the show. This sounds strange, but in the old comics, I never really understood the appeal of Archie Andrews. With him looking so good in the show, though, I finally see the appeal. Call me superficial, but if you read the old comics, there really was nothing to like about Archie as a whole and I never understood why Betty and Veronica always fought over him.
As for the girls (Betty Cooper, Veronica Lodge and Cheryl Blossom), they are exactly the way I envisioned them to be. I love how beautiful and bitchy Cheryl is and I love how perfect Betty seems to be and I especially love how they didn’t make Veronica out to just be some rich girl, like some people thought she was in the comics. See, I’ve always been on Team Veronica and always felt the need to explain that she’s not just the rich girl who moves to Riverdale and ‘steals Archie away’ (as the people on Team Betty put it).
In ‘Riverdale’, you see a super nice side of Veronica and you’ll also understand why – even though she does try to fight it – she just can’t seem to resist that Archie Andrews. I also love how they pepper in her love for books and have her reference books here and there to show that she and Betty have things in common besides having the hots for Archie.
Of course, it’s always welcome to see familiar faces in the show in the form of the main characters’ parents: Maedchen Amick as Mrs. Cooper, whom you may know as The Duchess in ‘Gossip Girl’; Luke Perry as Mr. Andrews, whom I fangirled over like crazy in the original ‘Beverly Hills 90210’; and Lochlyn Munro as Mr. Cooper, most memorable for his role in ‘White Chicks’. :p (I’m old enough to enjoy the actors who play the parents, yes. :p)
I also love how they decided to bring Kevin Keller into the show. Kevin was introduced as the first openly gay character in the Archie comics in 2010, and he is a very welcome addition to the TV show in my opinion. He is exactly what ‘Riverdale’ needs to tone down the darkness and bring some life into the very seemingly problematic storylines of the main characters.
I do have a few gripes, though. Number one: why is Miss Grundy HOT?!?? It feels like Aunt May from Spider-Man all over again. I kind of wasn’t ready for that or the other plot twist that came with her… Not. Ready. At. All.
I’m also wondering why they decided to have Veronica show up with her mom in Riverdale instead of her dad and why they decided to make Mr. Lodge a ‘bad guy’. I always loved Veronica’s relationship with her dad back in the day.
And also: why is every member of Josie and the Pussycats a woman of color? This isn’t me being racist or anything. I just always loved the diversity of the Pussycats and was especially excited to see whether Melody would really be as ‘Melody’ as she is in the old comics, but now I don’t know how to feel about them. I’m not too sure how I feel about Reggie Mantle or Jughead Jones, either. Or of the the revelation about Moose Mason.
Generally speaking, though, I love the pilot episode and I can’t wait to see where the series will be going. Sure, there might be a ton of drama going on; but a ton of drama tends to work for other TV series, so who says it won’t work for ‘Riverdale’? And may I please take a moment to gush about Veronica’s eyebrows? GOALS!!!
Have you seen the pilot episode of ‘Riverdale’ yet? What did you think of it? Sound off in the comments section! 🙂