Riverdale: The New Story of Archie Andrews

Riverdale has changed.  It looks more like Twin Peaks than the Happy Days town of my youth.  I’m a little surprised that a production that is getting help from the comics would change the story so much.  I’m not sure why I’m surprised really.  They have done three alternate stories in the last five years.  First there is the gothic edition known as the Afterlife version. Then they took on who alt realities in Life with Archie where he married Veronica in one reality and Betty in another.  And that’s the version that saw the death of Archie which is why I read the final two editions of this series.  And then there is the latest in which the story if modernized and the characters appear more — let’s say current — than ever before.

I think Riverdale may just shake up the story more.  And I’m only focusing on the adult characters because they have changed the most.  Let’s have a quick go now at the major ones.

Hiram Lodge–we haven’t even seen him yet (if we do at all).  He’s been arrest in New York for fraud.  If you look at the old comics, he’s just a rich dad.  In Life with Archie, he’s out for revenge because in the Veronica edition, Archie is aware of shady business dealings.  In the Betty version, he’s upset because Archie broke Veronica’s heart.  In the new edition, he seems to be shady in business and a big bully when he doesn’t get his way.

Hermonie Lodge — Married to Hiram, she leaves New York in the Riverdale series and escape to the one place she has a place that isn’t in her husband’s name or been taken for his crime.  The place is nice but she needs cash.  First she tries Archie’s dad but ends up working at Pop Tate’s.  There isn’t much to point out in the new versions (which I have scanned for this piece).  Let’s see where Riverdale takes it.

Fred Andrews — Instead of working for an named company which is how Fred is portrayed in the comics, Riverdale’s Fred is a business contractor who has his own business.  And he’s not overweight.  Played by a former youth heart throb, Luke Perry, he does continue the concerned father but Riverdale has him as the up-and-coming business man.

Miss Grundy — I’m going to stop with this one tonight probably because it is the most disturbing.  In all the drawn comic strips, Miss Grundy is a late-in-life teacher who has a crush (I think) on Mr. Weatherbee.  With gray hair which is worn in a bun, she would never be having an affair with a student.  Riverdale’s Miss Grundy looks to be in her 30s, has no gray hair, dresses not as demurely as the one in the comics, and has a thing for young men.  Having had an affair with Archie, you have to wonder if this one has had other affairs with other young men along the way.

I chose to focus on these tonight because of two things:  (a) they’re the most changed and (b) we’re still getting to know the students.  I had not intended to watch Riverdale but I will if I’m home and don’t have anything else that I must do.  The reason:  it’s interesting to see how they change something from my childhood and I did so love Twin Peaks!

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