Riverdale, a modern, subversive, live-action adaptation of the iconic Archie Comics series, originally developed for FOX, is now in development at The CW. Per Comic Book Resources, the pilot is written by Archie Chief Creative Officer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, and executive produced by The Flash and Arrow‘s Greg Berlanti. Now character details about Archie, Jughead, Betty, and Veronica are coming to light.
From TV Line:
ARCHIE ANDREWS | A high school sophomore, the redhead is still boyishly handsome but “pumped and looking good after working construction for his dad during the summer.” Archie is grappling with heavy issues and juggling the interest of several girls while discovering his passion for writing and performing music against his father and his football coach’s better wishes. Oh, and he’s harboring more than one dark, terrible secret.
BETTY COOPER | The blonde and pretty sophomore is described as having “some self-esteem issues and affinity for Adderall.” Eager-to-please, wholesome and studious, Betty has a super-crush on her longtime best bud, Archie. But tired of being the “perfect” everything, she turns to her new friend, Veronica, for life advice. Betty has an emotionally brittle mom, a goth-like sister and a coveted spot on the cheerleading squad — though with certain conditions….
VERONICA LODGE | Producers are aiming to ideally cast a Latina as this “silver-tongued” stunner, who has just returned to Riverdale from New York following a scandal which resulted in her father going to prison. Extremely intelligent, self-confident and immediately popular, Veronica is eager to reinvent herself — from Mean Girl to caring friend.
JUGHEAD JONES | A hearing-impaired actor is being sought to play Jughead as an “emo-heartthrob.” The lanky lad is Archie’s former best friend, seeing as the two still are smarting from a rift that took place between them. Angry, but with a philosophical bent, Jughead “refuses to take the olive branch being proffered by Archie, the hurt goes that deep.”
During October’s New York Comic Con, TV Insider got some Riverdale dirt from Aguirre-Sacasa:
…currently part of the pilot cycle at The CW, it was originally in the works at Fox. It was there that the show became darker than initially intended. “They really pushed us to kind of go beyond a typical high school show like Saved by the Bell and to go into something that was a little darker and weirder like Twin Peaks,” says Aguirre-Sacasa. […]
The Perks of Being a Wallflower came up as inspiration when Aguirre-Sacasa was originally pitching Riverdale as a movie, alongside Pitch Perfect director Jason Moore. “I was like, wow, if we could do that with Archie, that would be great,” he says. “A real John Hughes[-esque], contemporary, emotional, deep, dark, funny, coming-of-age movie—that’s what it would be.” That goal carried over to the TV show. “These are the ultimate teenagers who will tell the ultimate coming-of-age story,” says Aguirre-Sacasa. […]
“Veronica and her mom move back to Riverdale under very mysterious circumstances,” says Aguirre-Sacasa. The first thing that happens then is the Virgin Suicides inspired event, which is “the mystery that propels” the show. […]
Ginger bombshell Cheryl Blossom will be stirring up all kinds of trouble. “I don’t think it’s spoiling to say that Cheryl Blossom is our lead villainess for season one… and she’s really crazy,” says Aguirre-Sacasa, with a laugh.
You’ll see Josie and the Pussycats, who attend Riverdale High, as well as Kevin Keller, the comic series’ first gay character, who will appear as Betty’s best friend on the show. As for Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Aguirre-Sacasa is coy: “Let me say this: she’s not in the pilot.”
What do you think? Do you like the sound of this gritty, live-action adaptation of Archie, or is the comic series’ wholesomeness part of its appeal? If Riverdale makes it to air, do you plan to check it out?