You. Addicting. Piece. Of. Brilliance.
This is one dark, dark take on the lively Archie’s comics; and Roberto Sacasa did an amazing job with it. The direction, complications and subplots are so ‘grown-up’ that it almost feels like the comics and the readers left their paracosm behind, together. Having been through many a mystery series, I was wary of starting this one (not a big fan of adaptations or fan-fictions) but I am happy I did. Though my work to-do list is wailing for attention now.
The oh-so-familiar town of Riverdale suffers from a murder incident, an act that no Archie’s comics reading individual would expect in the story. The murder of Cheryl Blossom’s twin, Jason is the big news in the town and Riverdale High which pretty much steals the thunder away from Veronica’s entry into Riverdale. The famous Lodge heiress enters the story as a refugee into Riverdale, living the ‘modest’ life as her dad is behind the bars, convicted of embezzlement and fraud. Soon, old family rivalries (the Blossom and the Lodge (and the Coppers)) and romances (Hermoine Lodge and Fred Andrews) rekindle and suddenly the quaint town is a melting pot of emotions. The story has the quintessential HBIC, the hunk who’s a jerk, the closeted gay, the gangs, the friends and the frenemies. In this typical high school population, no one leaves unsacathed. The murder changes everyone’s lives – breaking more families apart than getting them together. Almost like a deer-caught-in-headlights, throughout the series you see Riverdale trying to shy away from the truth and cope as well as it can. Would the impact have changed had the characters not been our childhood favourites? Yes. The fact that I saw Jughead’s crown cap or Veronica’s pearls and attitude or the brawny Reggie, made the story hit harder. It’s like the story knew I was a grown up now and decided to grow up with me. Certain things that were unexpected, were, the illicit affair of Ms Grundy and Archie, the fact that Betty gave up on being Archie’s girlfriend (but Jughead and Bettie were the cutest couple in the series) and that Ethel and Jughead hardly ever met.
ALso, special mention to Cole Sprouse for an incredible performace as the social misfit, Jughead. I was always Cole’s fan, but this time, I am a fan of his acting. Also, Madelaine Petsch played Cheryl Blossom to perfection. The Blossom manor and manner still haunts me. They are the new take on Addam’s Family pretty much (lol).
No. of episodes: 13
PS- Seemingly season 2 will be out in October this year! [they did leave it at a cliffhanger]