Just as “The OC” turned a seemingly cookie-cutter place like Orange County into a hotbed of drama and fun, “Riverdale” has turned the wholesome world of Archie comics into a dark, twisted world of mystery, sex, and intrigue. Based on the Archie comics, “Riverdale” follows Archie (KJ Apa), Jughead (Cole Sprouse), Betty (Lili Reinhart), and Veronica (Camila Mendes) as they love each other, fight each other, and discover that there is a whole underworld of secrets in the town of Riverdale.
“Riverdale” incorporates a number of elements to make it a great teen show: a blend of drama, comedy, and mystery, a strong use of music (of course, Archie and the gang love their music), and a self-awareness of both itself and the world outside of it. So, several former teen idols such as Luke Perry and Molly Ringwald appear as parents in “Riverdale,” making it feel like they’re passing the teen torch down to Archie and friends. Although Riverdale is a CW show, it has found great success on Netflix, which helped bump up viewership 60% for the second season premiere. “Riverdale” has plot twists for days but like “The OC” and other great teen shows, it’s really about the issues that many teenagers face everywhere: peer pressure, following in your family’s footsteps, changing friendships, substance abuse, and sexual assault. So, crank the jalopy and head on over to “Riverdale” for your next dark teen drama viewing.