10:15am PT by Jean Bentley
With 'Riverdale,' Which Other Archie Comics Characters Could Make It to TV Next?
Riverdale, The CW's sexy new murder mystery featuring your favorite archetypal characters from Archie Comics, debuts this week. But while you're probably familiar with redheaded Archie (played by K.J. Apa); his blond next-door neighbor, Betty (Lili Reinhart); new brunette in town Veronica (Camila Mendes); and BFF Jughead (Cole Sprouse), there are plenty of other characters in the Archie universe who could carry their own shows.
Riverdale creator Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, who also serves as the chief creative officer of Archie Comics, recently told reporters that he's absolutely interested in creating a whole Archie world — including projects involving other characters.
"The mother ship right now is Riverdale and launching that and building that world out," he said. "But we have so many great characters: Josie and the Pussycats, who are part of Riverdale. … There are other characters, like Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, which is an Archie character. We definitely want to do something with Sabrina. We want to do some animated movies, we want to do some stage work, an Archie Broadway musical, which is, in fact, being written by Will Ferrell and Adam McKay."
Not familiar with the rest of the Archie Comics world? Here are a few spinoff-friendly characters to acquaint yourself with.
Josie and the Pussycats
You'll meet the girl band in Riverdale's pilot — and immediately want more, especially of Ashleigh Murray's outspoken (and incredibly talented) frontwoman. The Pussycats already have had their own Saturday-morning cartoon (not to mention a 2001 movie), so they're natural candidates for the inevitable first Riverdale spinoff. "Later on in the season, you’ll start to see a better idea of who Josie is, between the relationship that she has with Veronica, with Cheryl, with Archie and with her other Pussycats and also with her parents, which is a lot of fun," teased Murray.
Sabrina, the Teenage Witch
Riverdale won't necessarily involve the supernatural, but Aguirre-Sacasa said his plans for Sabrina Spellman certainly will. "We talked about Sabrina being something that’s a bit darker and a bit more like Rosemary’s Baby and things like that. So it’s not going to be the half-hour sitcom with Melissa Joan Hart."
The Mighty Crusaders
The Archie Comics superheroes would probably be at home on The CW, considering nearly half of the network's programming hours are filled with the adventures of DC's finest. The Mighty Crusaders are Archie's version of the Avengers and include the Black Hood (a former cop who fights for justice while, yes, wearing a hood); the Comet, a scientist who can shoot lasers from his eyes; the Fly, a boy who switches bodies with a Fly Person, thanks to a magical ring (sure, why not?); and the Shield, a patriotic figure inspired by the American flag.
This series is essentially about an alt-universe Archie named Wilbur Wilkin, a self-absorbed teenager who is not nearly as well-meaning as the redheaded Riverdale star. In fact, he has been known to manipulate others to get his way. But the archetypes are all the same and — fun fact! — actually debuted a few months before Archie.
There's no way this doesn't have CW written all over it: Katy Keene is a 21-year-old model and movie star, and her comics revolve around her glamorous modeling career and love life. Like most other characters in the Archie universe, she apparently doesn't hang out with anyone who has the same hair color as she does (see: redheaded younger sister, blond BFF/fellow model Gloria and redheaded BFF/fellow model Lucki).
Riverdale premieres Thursday, Jan. 26, at 9 p.m. on The CW.