The end of an era: a love letter to Riverdale’s insane seven year run

Athena Sherlock ‘23, Opinion Editor

“This is a story about a town, and the people who live in the town.” When audiences tuning into Riverdale’s pilot episode first heard these words, none of them knew the wild ride they would soon be in for. It is no secret that Riverdale is one of the most silly, absurd, and downright insane shows to ever air on television. The teen drama has been subject to heavy criticism and demands of cancellation for years now due to its increasingly bizarre storylines and campy dialogue. While no one would make the claim that Riverdale is any sort of cinematic masterpiece, it can certainly be argued that the seven-season show did exactly what any show sets out to do: entertain the masses. 

 Contrary to popular opinions, Riverdale is a show that truly has it all. From high school murder mysteries, teenage biker gangs, a multitude of ghoulish serial killers, sinister board games, gargoyle kings, cult leaders played by early 2000s heartthrobs, time jumps and time travel, and the show even features witches and superheroes. While Riverdale will certainly not be winning any sort of award for its screenplay, it cannot be denied that it has incredibly memorable dialogue.

 From Jughead’s angsty “I’m weird, I’m a weirdo” monologue that has since become a popular meme on the internet, to Archie telling his juvie cellmate that he’s “never known the triumphs and defeats, the epic highs and lows of high school football,” and their unironic use of popular slang among the youth and online communities, such as having couples refer to themselves as “endgame,” this show has no shortage of notable moments that anyone can get a kick out of. There is truly something strangely endearing about the kind of cringe that Riverdale offers to audiences. Despite all the criticism, the show still maintains a solid 81 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.

While Riverdale is certainly not the perfect show, it was a moment in pop culture, and it will certainly leave a permanent mark within television history. Even more than that, the show should serve as a reminder that it is okay to make unserious and campy television. While there is much to be appreciated in more acclaimed shows, appreciation should always be given to those willing to break the mold and do something different. Riverdale may go down as one of the most strange series ever made in American television, but some might argue it is better to be remembered at the very least in some way than to not be remembered at all.

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