In its latest episode, Riverdale confirms Toni Topaz, played by Vanessa Morgan, is bisexual. Ever since Riverdale began airing, the subject of sexuality has been discussed regarding the characters. Early on, Jughead was drawing a lot of attention because fans wanted to see him portrayed as asexual on the show, to match his sexual orientation from the reboot of the comics. For the time being, though, fans have had to put aside that hope as we watch Jughead experiment with dating to see if there is anyone he connects with.
However the latest episode of Riverdale did wind up confirming the sexual orientation of another character in a way that fans had been anticipating. When it was announced that Toni Topaz would join Riverdale it was revealed up front that the intention was to be true to her comic roots and depict her as bisexual.
That came to fruition in the latest episode of Riverdale, 'Death Proof,' which included Toni revealing that she is “more into girls” after kissing Jughead in last week's episode. This makes her the show’s first openly bisexual character, since Moose’s sexuality is still not something openly known among the other characters or the viewers.
The actress behind Toni, Vanessa Morgan, has been an open proponent for her character to explore her sexuality on Riverdale. In an interview with Bustle, Morgan said that she hopes Toni will get to have a romance with Cheryl Blossom. It’s not uncommon for characters to be revealed as bisexual, but then never really have that aspect of their personality showcased thanks to them only engaging in relationships that could pass as straight or gay. Morgan wants to be true to Toni’s character, though. "My character is bisexual," she said. "This is one hundred percent important."
Many fans had been thinking Toni’s arrival in the series would spell the end of the romance between Jughead and Betty. And Toni and Jughead did admittedly have some romantic tension going on, but in the end Toni backed off because she knew him and Betty still had unresolved issues together. It was at this point that Toni revealed her interest was not strictly in guys.
Morgan previously played the lesbian character Lyria on The Shannara Chronicles, and seems to take pride in bringing these underrepresented characters to the screen. "I love being able to represent different people, and every single type of love," she told Bustle. It looks like she’s picking the right shows then, since Riverdale is living up to its promise with the depiction of Toni. But since she has turned down Jughead for now, the question going forward is who will pique Toni Topaz’s interest next? Morgan did say she’d like Cheryl Blossom to be that character, so while Cheryl said she was done with love after Riverdale’s first season, who knows if Toni could change her mind.
Riverdale airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.