All the drama and madness that goes on in The CW’s Riverdale feels a lot more like a thriller novel than a teen television show. It has to be based on a book, right? You might be surprised!
Is Riverdale a book?
With the way that Riverdale is gaining major success, you’d expect it to be based off of a book like Gossip Girl, The 100, or Pretty Little Liars. So, is Riverdale based on a book? Well, it’s not! It’s actually based off of a comic book.
Archie Comics, named after everyone’s favorite jock, Archie Andrews is an actual series of comics based on the antics of Archie, Betty, Jughead, and Veronica. It follows the four of them throughout high school, with a special focus on the Archie/Betty/Veronica love triangle. The comic books are much more innocent than the TV show. You won’t read anything about murders or indecent relationships.
What are the differences between Archie and Riverdale?
As far as characters go, there are a few major differences. Archie in the comics is kind of nerdy, goofy, but an overall good guy. K.J. Apa basically throws away any nerdiness (I mean, he has a six pack). Still, K.J’s Archie is just as nice.
In Riverdale, Cole Sprouse’s Jughead serves as the brooding narrator. In the comics, Jughead is the comic relief. In a later version, the writers decided he was asexual, which Cole Sprouse has fought for in Riverdale. However, Bughead doesn’t exactly follow the comics, does it? Betty and Jughead are still our OTP on The CW show.
Veronica Lodge was originally a rich, queen bee whose doting father cared for her and Archie. In the show, she’s still a rich girl, but definitely a lot nicer. Plus, the actress who portrays her, Camila Mendes, is Latina, so they changed Veronica to have a Latinx background. Score one for diversity!
Another major update is Veronica's friendships. Betty and Veronica hated each other in the comic book. Like, they both loved the same man, so it was bound to get complicated. Everyone in 2017 should know that women aren’t constantly fighting over guys and can actually be friends with one another. So, Riverdale created a pretty enviable friendship between the two leading ladies. Betty herself has changed quite a bit. In the comics, we don’t really get to see what she’s like alone. In the show, there’s definitely more to her than meets the eye.
Cheryl Blossom wasn’t the picture of innocence in the comic books. She was supposed to be the fiery counterpart to Betty and Veronica. But, um, she wasn’t as crazy as she is in Riverdale. Maybe that’s just because they never killed off her brother, Jason.
The differences between the comics and the show are pretty huge, but if you're still interested in the origins of Riverdale, read on.
How can I get Archie Comics?
If you want to throw it way back, Amazon offers 1,000 page comic books that feature the original Archie comics. These are short, slice of life comedies that feature the characters you've grown to love in new situations.
But, if you want to ease into the Archie world, the latest reboots are the way to go. In 2015, Archie Comics created a new line of comics based on the original characters, but in a new drawing style and modern storylines. These will be a little less dated than the OG issues of Archie and probably more fun to read! The series has since been expanded to include Josie and the Pussycats, Jughead, Betty and Veronica, and more! You get a comic book and you get a comic book! This way, if you're a huge Betty and Veronica fan, you can just read about their adventures together. All of these comic books are offered in volumes on Amazon. You're just a few clicks away from buying more Riverdale hijinks. It's perfect for those days in-between episodes of Riverdale Season 2!
For those of you who live for the drama each week, Riverdale was made just for you. But if you’re looking for something a little more playful and a little less dire, definitely grab an issue of Archie Comics.
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This story was originally published on November 1, 2017.