Archie-Based "Riverdale" Gets Series Order from The CW

Add yet another comic book-based series to The CW's lineup: Archie Comics-based drama "Riverdale" has landed on the network's 2016-2017 schedule with a series order, as reported Thursday by multiple sources including Deadline.

According to a press release from Archie Comics, "Riverdale" -- which will feature live-action versions of Archie, Betty, Veronica, Jughead, Josie and the Pussycats and more -- will debut on The CW in the fall. The news came shortly after word that "Supergirl" would move from CBS to The CW, further adding to the network's already-heavy slate of comic book-based TV shows. "Riverdale" will be produced by Greg Berlanti, in his fifth show for the network -- along with "Arrow," "The Flash," "DC's Legends of Tomorrow" and, now, "Supergirl." "Riverdale" will be The CW's sixth comics-based show overall, alongside "iZombie," based on a DC/Vertigo series. Archie Chief Creative Officer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa wrote the script.

"This is a historic moment for Archie Comics -- and I couldn't be more proud," Archie Comics Publisher and CEO Jon Goldwater said in a statement. "It's a culmination of my time here, and I'm eager to see Greg Berlanti, Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, The CW, Warner Brothers Studios, and the cast bring 'Riverdale' to viewers every week. My promise to fans? You ain't seen nothing yet."

While Archie Comics are historically known as all-ages entertainment, "Riverdale" has always been discussed as edgier fare, seemingly closer in line tone and content-wise to past CW successes like "Gossip Girl." The official network description of "Riverdale" calls it "a surprising and subversive take on Archie, Betty, Veronica, and their friends," set to explore "the surrealism of small town life - the darkness and weirdness bubbling beneath Riverdale's wholesome façade." In an October 2014 interview with CBR, Aguirre-Sacasa described the nascent "Riverdale" as "Archie Meets David Lynch."

That's certainly not out of line with recent developments in Archie's comic book line, either, which has included considerably more mature stories like zombie horror series "Afterlife with Archie," written by Aguirre-Sacasa and illustrated by Francesco Francavilla.

Here's the primary "Riverdale" cast; KJ Apa as Archie Andrews, Lili Reinhart as Betty Cooper, Camila Mendes as Veronica Lodge, Ashleigh Murray as Josie McCoy, Luke Perry as Fred Andrews, Cole Sprouse as Jughead Jones, Madelaine Petsch as Cheryl Blossom, Ross Butler as Reggie Mantle, Casey Cott as Kevin Keller, Mädchen Amick as Alice Cooper, and Marisol Nichols as Hermione Lodge. Notably, the cast represents a more diverse representation than the characters' traditional, vastly Caucasian, depictions in Archie Comics.

"Riverdale" was first announced in October 2014, with the show then in development for Fox. The project moved to The CW last year, where it was elevated to the pilot stage and attracted positive buzz.

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