If you’ve seen Riverdale, the TV show based on the Archie comics, you’ll know it covers some pretty dark topics. Murder, suicide, an illicit student-teacher affair, drugs, subterfuge and a whiff of incest are all topics on the table. Everybody involved with the show seems to be constantly banging on about how the next season will be darker still, but it’s difficult to imagine how.
At July’s San Diego Comic-Con, FANDOM spoke to Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Archie Comics chief and series developer on Riverdale. We challenged him on precisely what it is that takes Riverdale to some even darker places in Season 2.
Aguirre-Sacasa highlighted the character of Kevin Keller, played by Casey Cott, as an example of how the series, which will run for 22 episodes, plunges murkier depths by exploring his character more fully.
“In Season 1, and probably because we only have 13 episodes, there’s a limit to how much story you can tell,” he said. “Kevin is a character who everyone loved and who was always there but we didn’t get underneath, or tell a dark story with him.”
“I think there’s a cloud that’s settled over Riverdale after what happened to Fred Andrews and I think that the struggle is going to be to break out of that,” he continued. “We also had kind of a murder mystery in Season 1. We have a very strong crime and noir element [in Season 2] that I think is a little bit more dangerous than in Season 1. So it does get darker. And Jughead is with the Serpents and that’s a dangerous world, and Archie is wrestling with what happened – and what’s going to happen – with Fred.”
Reveals from Episodes 1 and 2
Aguirre-Sacasa was keen to assure fans that the series’ lighter touches are still there, however. And in doing so, he revealed details of some of the scenes we’ll see in the season’s opening episodes.
“Even in Episode 1, the premiere, when the stakes are so high, when Fred’s life hangs in the balance… there’s a great scene with [Kevin] and Betty talking about what happened with her and Jughead,” he said. “So, there’s always going to be humour and the aspirational friendship element to it. In Episode 2, the Pussycats are singing a number, everyone’s in retro costumes for Pop. So, that will always be part of the show.”
Riverdale returns to screens on October 11.