Tonight, The CW will be premiering one of its more unique and unexpected comic book adaptations yet with Riverdale, the new series based on the famous Archie comic books. This won’t be the Archie that some fans might initially think it to be, though; taking a much darker and weirder approach to the lives of Archie Andrews (K.J. Apa) and his friends than the comics ever have, with visual and thematic influences being taken from none other than David Lynch’s Twin Peaks. While that might not seem like a winning combination on the surface either, early reviews and promotional materials for the series seem to indicate otherwise.
As fans of the comics are likely already aware too, one of the most integral aspects of the Archie comics is the love triangle between Archie, Veronica Lodge (Camila Mendes), and Betty Cooper (Lili Reinhart), something it seems like the series is going to be staying fairly true to with its adaptation. In fact, it seems that the romantic tension between the three characters is going to be a throughline of the series until the very end of it.
Speaking with The Wrap ahead of the Riverdale premiere tonight, showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa addressed how the series will be handling the love triangle. While it will still play a major role on the TV show, Aguirre-Sacasa also promises that he and the other writers won’t be pitting Veronica or Betty against each other ever, and the series won’t ever just be about Veronica and Betty waiting for Archie to make his decision:
“It was much more important for me to have Betty and Veronica be real friends, not bitchy frenemies. The truth is, Archie, Betty and Veronica will all have romantic storylines that don’t lock us into the love triangle — not at all during Season 1, at least. There’s a reason the comic books have been around for 75 years. There’s a reason why even shows that aren’t ‘Riverdale’ have love triangles.
That will always be a little bit a part of it, but it’s not my bag. I don’t want Betty and Veronica to be fighting over Archie. The comic book has done that, there are fresher ways to tell that story. In the series finale, we’ll finally answer the question. If Betty and Veronica even care about Archie at that point — they will as friends, but they’re not waiting around for him to make his decision.”
Obviously, Riverdale has already drawn comparisons to other popular teen TV shows like Pretty Little Liars and The O.C., and because of its murder mystery storyline or the fact that it takes place in a very specific region and town, those comparisons seem rather easy to make. For a show preparing to begin its freshman season, those are some nice and successful shows to be compared to as well, but it seems like Riverdale is also very clearly intent on carving out its own path for itself; one that combines multiple genres into one, until it becomes something wholly unique and its own.
While some fans might be upset by the stark difference in tone and aesthetic between the series and the comics its based on, this won’t be the first time that the Archie world has taken some modern twists and turns either. At one point, Archie’s lifelong friend, Jughead Jones (Cole Sprouse) was revealed to be asexual in the comics (an aspect of the character that apparently, hasn’t been officially decided in the series yet), and back in 2014 even, Archie himself died. So despite starting out as a rather traditional and straightforward, the Archie comics haven’t been afraid to evolve and change throughout the years, and Riverdale looks to be just yet another exciting evolution in the continued lives of Archie Andrews and his loved ones.
Riverdale premieres tonight with ‘Chapter One: The River’s Edge’ at 9pm on The CW.
Source: The Wrap
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