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Beloved comic comes to life

February 10, 2017

K.J. Apa and Luke Perry star in “Riverdale.” – CW Studios

 

Sarah-Katherine Semon
Staff Reporter | sks033@latech.edu

 

On Jan. 26, the CW premiered its new series, “Riverdale,” based on the beloved  “Archie” comic books.

 

The premiere episode presented multiple plots and storylines as a way of introducing the characters and providing background, illustrating the differences between this version of “Archie” and the original comics. Although this was the first episode, and it is expected to set the scene for the season to come, so much was established in the beginning it was difficult to follow along.

 

The show successfully intertwined almost every character in some way, whether it be through friendship, a relationship or conflict.

 

K.J. Apa, whose hair was dyed an outrageous orange color, plays the role of Archie. As the main character of the show and the namesake of the comics, Apa had some big shoes to fill. At first his character was slow to develop and was lacking in emotion, but eventually he became likable and relatable.

 

Archie’s best friend, Betty Cooper, is played by Lili Reinhart. Betty’s character began as intelligent with a get-it-done attitude, which quickly changed to a whiny and somewhat pathetic demeanor after her relationship with Archie takes an unexpected turn. The friendship between Archie and Betty serves as one of the many storylines that audiences will find intriguing.

 

The character of Veronica, a New York socialite, moves to Riverdale in this episode and makes her place among the characters.

 

She is portrayed by Camila Mendes, who gave one of the best performances of the show. Veronica tests the trust of many characters in this episode and portrays the challenge of being accepted that many teenagers face today.

 

Perhaps the most well known actor of the Riverdale bunch is Cole Sprouse, who is also known for his Disney Channel show “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody.” He plays Jughead, and while Jughead does not appear to be a central character in the social relationships between the main characters at Riverdale High, he plays a pivotal role in that the show is narrated as a result of his observations and interactions.

 

Cheryl Blossom, the twin sister of the boy whose death serves as a key storyline is played by Madelaine Petsch. Her personality is vibrant and bubbly while being cruel to everyone she comes in contact with. Although she is the typical mean girl, there is a dangerous edge to her that separates her from the stereotypes that come with that sort of character.

 

“Riverdale” did border on the side of a cliché teenage drama. The characters fight over boys and use text lingo in actual speech, as if that is something normal teenagers do. The only thing that saves it from going full on teen drama is the murder mystery plot line that brings not only substance but intrigue to the story.

 

The premiere episode was very promising, and if “Riverdale” lives up to the success of other CW shows it is sure to be a hit.

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