The long-running CW series Riverdale has embarked on its final season. Of course, its trademark (and much maligned) yearly musical episode is back. This time around, however, the musical episode won’t revolve around any pre-existing musical but one with original songs created for the show.
Written on the show by characters Kevin (Casey Cott) and Clay (Karl Walcott), Riverdale’s annual musical episode will be called “Archie: The Musical” and will come with a 1950s twist. Cast members K.J. Apa, Lili Reinhart, Camila Mendes, Cole Sprouse, and Madelaine Petsch will all be playing the roles that have made them household names in a fun, campy in-show original musical.
Popular Riverdale fan account @nocontextriverdale gleefully reported, “Original! Archie! Musical! Episode!”
Meanwhile, the playwright behind Archie’s Weird Parody, Neil Klein, took to Twitter to comment: “So this is why the archie lawyers were on my ass during the run of archie’s weird parody.”
He continued, “‘the borrowing and use of elements from our client’s Archie/Riverdale properties (e.g., character names/attributes, storylines, and plot details) and the potential impact upon the future marketing/licensing value of those properties (e.g., for musicals or dramatizations)’ I SEE U.”
According to the show’s website, Archie’s Weird Parody is a “rock musical about suburbia, conforming, and changing your fate, even if you’re a character trapped in a comic book.”
As Riverdale’s Jughead did in this season’s 1950s time warp, the musical’s Jughead is the first to realize that he is “trapped in a doomed narrative.” The musical uses the driving plotline of Riverdale season 1, the murder of Jason Blossom, as the nexus point for Riverdale’s descent into chaos. With the help of his fellow comic book characters, Archie, Betty, Veronica, and Cheryl, the gang tries in vain to stop the murder before it happens.
This season, Jughead and friends have forgotten what life was like during their original timeline, and by looking at the 1950s outfits in the promotional stills, it’s safe to say that the brand new musical episode will also take place in the wholesome decade. In the past, Riverdale has explored different genres depending on the season. They first tackled Carrie: The Musical and then took on Heathers: The Musical, Hedwig & The Angry Inch, Next To Normal, and American Psycho: The Musical.
Will the new musical overshadow the efforts of the off-broadway play? Klein doesn’t seem to think so, tweeting, “archie’s weird parody you will ALWAYS be famous.”
Riverdale airs new episodes Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET on The CW. “Archie the Musical” airs on July 5.