7.05.2017

Television: Riverdale

Was casting around for something to watch and settled on trying this one. (I'm not at any loss for things to watch, mind; my DVR is packed full of stuff that I just didn't feel like watching.)

Anyway, I used to live in the town Riverdale was modeled after. The local Applebee's was practically devoted to all things Archie. It really was this one town's biggest claim to fame. That and Rob Zombie.

As for Riverdale, it's so corny and self-aware that I couldn't help but enjoy it. The pilot, that is. Jughead as the narrator . . . It's really all pretty ridiculous, and of course all the characters are turned up to eleven. The mean girl is not just mean but MEAN. Betty isn't just sweet, she's SWEET. And layered under it all is the drama and decay. Nothing simply is in Riverdale; it's all extreme. A breakup leads to someone being institutionalized, and of course there's MURDER.

I dunno. I guess I was just in the right mood for this amount of silly. It's sort of like if the Archie comics went slightly Twin Peaks.

And of course I grew up reading Archie. They were some of the only comics my mother felt were clean and wholesome enough to allow. But Riverdale seems to be making a concerted effort to skew the other direction. No one wants to watch wholesome. So let's go salacious instead and have Archie bonk a teacher.

Yeah, okay.

Archie isn't entirely likable here, but then again, at least from what I recall, he wasn't all that likable in the comics either. Kind of a chowder head. But in innocent ways, whereas here he makes more egregious errors in judgement. Makes for better drama, I suppose. In any case, while Archie is central, he doesn't come across as the main character. As far as the pilot goes, Betty gets the focus and the sympathy. Maybe that changes as the show goes along.

I'll probably watch more. Don't know yet if I'll get through an entire season though. Will largely depend—as tonight's outing did—on my mood and viewer appetite.

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