It’s hard to say who’s in a lonelier place, as the title of this week’s Riverdale refers to. Poor Forsythe Pendleton “Jughead” Jones III, living under the stairs of the school like a poor man’s Harry Potter, is certainly in a lonely place, struggling to keep his family drama under wraps, and hoping that his father, living hopelessly and nearly always half-drunk in the family trailer, will pull his act together. Betty is also in a lonely place, wanting to desperately to help her sister but caught in the competing demands of two families that hate each other. Hey, someone give these two kids a break. (more…)

If there was a word to describe this week’s episode of Riverdale it’s “peak”. It was “peak Archie” it terms of the characterization of our comic book friends and how we remember them. It was “peak teen soap” in terms of the romantic melodrama and friendship dysfunction. It was “peak mystery” in terms of new revelations and long simmering confrontations. And it was “peak deconstruction” as the writers throw in some compelling hiccups in terms of the relationship dynamics of the show. Let’s just come out and say: Jughead kissed Betty! Passionately. And our lives will never be the same again. (more…)

Nice day for a white funeral… Not quite how the song goes, but that’s the way Jason Blossom’s funeral ended up going thanks to Cheryl in this week’s Riverdale. The intrigue factor was ratcheted up to 11 this week, perhaps in no small part because the setting moved to Thorn Hill, Riverdale’s own house on the hill, and a location ripe for Agatha Christie-like sleuthing and skullduggery. Some big pieces of the mystery were filled in this week as we discover things about secret romances, an ancient blood feud, and and maybe the scariest family this side of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and it kind of centres around our girl next door, Betty. (more…)

Most teen shows don’t give a hoot about the parents, because if you have parents hovering in the background being actual authority figures it makes it harder for the kids to get up to increasingly more scandalous shenanigans. So good work on Riverdale for subverting expectations, and so early on. In “The Last Picture Show” the message is definitely sent that the parents need more supervision than the kids as the seedy underbelly of Riverdale got seedier thanks to shady real estate deals, money changing hands, and the loss of a beloved Riverdale cinematic institution. By comparison a little student/teacher dalliance is almost quaint. (more…)

Just when you thought the only bad thing going on in Riverdale was that someone put a large caliber bullet hole in Jason Blossom’s forehead, we see that there’s so much more going on under the surface. The third episode put the overarching mystery of Riverdale on hold for the most part, and instead, really, started peering in darker corners. For while a kid shot dead by unknown persons is shocking and tragic in its own right, there’s really nothing any less horrific than what a predatory teenage boy might be capable of with a girl that mistakes rapaciousness for charm. (more…)

It’s one thing to make a compelling pilot, but would Riverdale be able to string us along in a second episode and leaving us hanging, and waiting, for a third? That was the real question going into the second episode of this Noir Archies as the spectre of Jason Blossom’s now confirmed horrible murder hangs like a pendulum doom over the photoshoot ready teens in their foggy and elusive Pacific Northwest-ish abode. The answer? Still hooked. In fact, Riverdale made a couple of improvements over the pilot that I liked, which suggests to me that this show may not be as straightforward as I ultimately feared. (more…)

Let me tell you why I’m the best Nerd Bastard to review Riverdale: I enjoyed (and still enjoy) The OC, I watched Gossip Girl from beginning to end, and I kept tuning into One Tree Hill long after etiquette allowed me to give up the obsession. In other words, you want a Nerd Bastard to bring some kind of expertise to something so blatantly teen soapy as Riverdale then you’ve come to the right Bastard. So, having said that, how does Riverdale shake out after one episode? Intriguing, I say, filled with the usual trappings of teen TV drama, but expertly made, well acted, and maybe a little mysterious. (more…)


A foggy small town surrounded by woods. A young person found murdered by the river. A town gripped by feelings of shame and grief as a result. No, this is not Twin Peaks or its upcoming continuation we’re talking about, this is Riverdale, the improbable new CW show based on the safe as houses comic book series where nothing remotely horrifying has ever happened. It’s hard not to get a Twin Peaks vibe from this new teaser, but next month, Riverdale will premiere and give you a look inside the world of the Archies that repeated listening of “Sugar, Sugar” never prepared you for… (more…)


In January, your comic book comfort food world will be turned upside down when Riverdale premieres on the CW. The new series based on the long-running Archie comics and produced by Arrowverse mastermind Greg Berlanti will shake your world with tales of friendship gone wrong, inappropriate teacher/student relations and murder most foul. What this series needs is a little nostalgia to soften the blow, so enter Molly Ringwald. The star of the John Hughes triumvirate The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles and Pretty in Pink will be appearing on Riverdale as the mother of everyone’s favourite redhead, Archie Andrews. (more…)


It’s tough being the CW, they already have so many successful programs that they only picked up three for the fall, and only two of them will debut in October. The odd man out is Archie. Well, make that Riverdale, the new CW series based on the long-running comic book character and his friends from super-producer Greg Berlanti (whose superhero series make up 40 per cent of the CW’s fall programming). You’ve heard for a while that this is not going to be your mother’s Archies, as Berlanti and Co. were going for something “modern”, “dark”, and “subversive”. Prepare to click all three boxes as you sink into the sorted and scandalous world of Riverdale. (more…)