Riverdale's first season rocked our idea of Archie Andrews and his sunny friends with a twisted tale of sex, murder, and maple syrup. With Season 2 hitting this October, much of the cast and key creatives took to Comic-Con International in San Diego to tease what's to come.
CBR sat down with Riverdale's creator Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, executive producer Sarah Schechter, and castmembers KJ Apa (Archie), Lili Reinhart (Betty), Camila Mendes (Veronica), Cole Sprouse (Jughead), Madelaine Petsch (Cheryl), Ashleigh Murray (Josie), Casey Cott (Kevin), Haley Law (Valerie) and Asha Bromfield (Melody), to talk all things Season 2.
22-Episodes Means Two Mini-Seasons
Season 1 packed in tons of goodies into just 13 episodes, but with The CW requesting 22 eps for Riverdale's sophomore season, the show's creators are structuring things in an unexpected but exciting way. "We're looking at it as two smaller seasons that overlap with each other," Schechter explained. "[We're] really looking at the winter finale as a halfway point to the season. It's like 10 episodes in."
The grander episode order also means secondary characters like Kevin Keller, Josie and the Pussycats will be fleshed out in Season 2. "What's great is it allows us to explore and play out certain relationships and characters," Schechter said.
Archie Seeks Revenge
The final moments of Season 1 took a tragic turn with the shooting of Archie's father Fred Andrews (Luke Perry). Will Perry return for Season 2? It seems so. Though he was not on hand at Comic-Con, the way Apa speaks about the incident suggests Archie's hunky dad was wounded, but not killed, which is also what the first trailer for next season indicates. Still, witnessing this horrific violence against his Fred pitches Archie into a dark quest for vengeance.
"It all starts properly when Fred is shot," Apa told us, "After that, (Archie) wants revenge. And he's blinded by that want for revenge." Apa explained that Archie's focus on hunting down his dad's shooter puts a stress on his recently reignited romance with Veronica. And with Jughead in the Southside, their friendship is likewise becoming strained. "He's not as interested in working on those relationships, when he's focusing on that, focusing on helping his dad," Apa said. "I'm so stoked to finally be able to get my hands dirty."
Betty and Veronica
These two devoted friends have been through a brutal year. But their bond will take a new blow in Episode 205. "There's conflict," Mendes said, "And it comes from a place of love and protection. But Betty has a secret. And for various reasons, she can't share that secret with Veronica."
"She's very much involved in the thick of the mystery that we can't say anything about," Reinhart shared, "Which is extremely difficult obviously."
"Betty's speech in the (Season 1) finale, has inspired the mystery in Season 2," Reinhart teased. "So Betty's really pushed to her limits in Season 2 and you see a whole new side, like a broken down very raw, just broken girl."
Things get rough for Ronnie too, thanks to the return of her infamous father, Hiram Lodge. "He's a scary figure," Mendes told us, "And he has a plan for Riverdale. He's got something brewing. "
"I think Veronica senses it, and wants to be a part of it," Mendes mused, "But he's not really letting her in. And Hermione is not letting her in. And neither will talk about her plans. And right now, that concept is manifesting itself in Hiram's study. He has a study in the Lodge apartment…and Veronica can't go in there. She's constantly looming over, staring at the room. And I think that signifies their relationship." Behind closed doors, lie secrets that could tear the Lodge family to pieces.
A New Season, A New Genre.
Much talk has been made about what genre Season 2 would take on, with many speculating the addition of Sabrina Spellman would turn it from murder-mystery to outright horror, or zombie apocalypse. But as Season 2 comes together, Mendes told us, "This season is so much more of a thriller now. Like, that is the genre of the season, and we're running with it."