Last season, Riverdale ended with Archie Andrews wrongly accused of murdering Cassidy Brooke (remember him?) and faced with the harsh reality that he might end up in prison instead of high school. Meanwhile, Veronica basically emancipated herself from her father and came away with a new business endeavor in the process: Pop’s Chock’lit Shoppe. Bughead seemed to be in fine form—for once—but Betty’s sister, Polly, was a different story. The elder Cooper sibling joined a cult, and it looked like Alice is her next target. Cheryl became an honorary serpent and coupled up with Toni, while legally emancipating herself from her mother and taking control of Thistlehouse. Oh, and Hal Cooper went to jail, as one would expect if you’re the Black Hood.
Got it? Good, because Riverdale returns for season three today (Wednesday, October 10) with a whole bunch of loose ends to tie up and a brand new mystery to reveal. Damn, can’t these people get any rest?
Actually, that’s exactly how Riverdale creator Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa likes it. “Everyone is treating season three like it’s season one,” he tells Glamour.com. “We want this to be an edge-of-your-seat season, so we’re really excited. Unless you’re Archie, of course, who probably wouldn’t mind a little less drama.
“We’ll definitely know Archie’s fate by the end of the episode,” Aguirre-Sacasa promises. “One thing we’re doing a little bit different this year is jumping in time—three months to be exact—so when we meet [up with] Archie he’s mid-trial.” While Aguirre-Sacasa won’t reveal Archie’s odds of being set free, he will tell us plenty of other information, including some exciting news for Choni and Bughead fans. But with the news that Jughead’s mom and sister are coming on board (played by Gina Gershon and newcomer Trinity Likins), what does that mean for F.P. and Alice hopefuls? To our surprise, Aguirre-Sacasa is spilling the tea. Spoilers ahead!
Fans have dissected the teaser trailer where the core four are at the lake, riding in the jalopy, etc. Is that all a dream sequence or, if it’s real, does that mean that Archie is exonerated?
Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa: Those scenes really happen, and we wanted to capture this idea of stealing one last moment of youth and innocence and, honestly, summer vacation. It’s like trying to get that last day of summer vacation to be the best day of summer vacation, and that’s what went into that episode. Those scenes really happened. I wasn’t there personally, but [I heard] the water was cold. It was a really hot day the scene was filmed, so even though the water was cold, I think everyone was really down for it.
Varchie fans will get some wish fulfillment in those scenes, but going forward, which pairing will have the happier season three? Varchie or Bughead?
RAS: I think right now Bughead [is going] to have the happier season three. I will say though to Varchie fans that Veronica and Archie are proving to be very much…they’re trying to hang on to each other through the troubles in a really visceral way. Even though they could be heading towards rocks, they’re really clinging to each other because they feel so deeply for each other.
Right. And Veronica has now severed ties with her father, owns Pop’s, and went through a major transition since we last saw her.
RAS: Veronica is not to be trifled with, and Hiram is the architect behind her unhappiness and Archie’s troubles. She’s not down with rolling over and just letting him steamroll over her happiness.
Over the summer, Lochlyn Munro (Hal Cooper) told me he’ll be back this season. When can viewers expect to see Hal again?
RAS: Not in the first few episodes, but sooner than you might expect.
Should we expect him to be behind bars all season?
RAS: When we reconnect with him, he’s definitely behind bars, behind glass, behind barbed wire. He’s in maximum security, that’s for sure.
And what about Chic? His fate was left open-ended toward the end of season two.
RAS: That is buried a bit, I would say. But we haven’t seen the body. Even when you’ve seen the body, I say never say never.
That’s why I have a theory that Cheryl’s uncle Claudius is really her father. I think he’s been impersonating his brother, and it was the uncle who we saw die at the end of season one.
RAS: [Laughs] That’s a theory that has been floated by a few people. It’s definitely something that’s within the realm of possibility on our show, that’s for sure.
Let’s talk about F.P. and Alice. We know from last season that Polly was trying to help Alice by drawing her into this cult, so how will that impact—if at all—Alice’s potential relationship with F.P.?
RAS: In a weird way, the farm could open the door for Falice because the farm says to be alive in the moment. Do whatever you think, burn the past, there is no future, there’s only now. So in a weird way, the farm could be seen as giving permission to Alice to pursue F.P. The bigger threat to them will be the fact that Alice is married to Hal and F.P. is married to Gladys.
Speaking of, what’s the state of the marriage between F.P. and Gladys?
RAS: They’re strained and estranged from each other. [Laughs]
Gina Gershon doesn’t appear as Gladys until December 12, which means there are two months of episodes from now until then. What will Falice’s relationship status be by then? One would assume they’d be in a relationship just to make things more complicated when Gladys enters the picture.
RAS: Yeah, I think if this wasn’t Riverdale and it was just Falice exploring their relationship, they would be in pretty deep by the time Gladys gets there. We do see them quite together and quite intimate, but Falice is also dealing with their part in a crime that happened 25 years earlier, which is sort of rearing its ugly head this season as well. So Falice doesn’t exist on a blissed-out island apart from the day-to-day trials and tribulations of Riverdale. They’re very much caught up in the season mystery as well.
Let’s move on to Cheryl and Toni. They were together by the end of the season, and Cheryl has emancipated herself from her mother and has Thistlehouse all to herself. So will Choni be moving in together?
RAS: We’re really enjoying them being the reigning queens of Riverdale High, which we’re going to play them as. They’re still in the honeymoon phase. They are kind of getting in and out of trouble with the Serpents, without the Serpents. They too will be drawn into the season-long mysteries, and, yes, there will be a discussion about Choni living together.