On The CW series Riverdale, Betty (Lili Reinhart) is upset that her mother (Madchen Amick) turned to Archie (KJ Apa) and Veronica (Camila Mendes) for help with the Jason Blossom murder investigation, and Jughead (Cole Sprouse) is hurt about the fact that people are pointing the finger at his father (Skeet Ulrich). And with just two more episodes of the season to go, everyone in Riverdale is on a quest for the truth.
After screening the episode, “Chapter Eleven: To Riverdale and Back Again,” at the offices of The CW in Burbank, California, co-stars KJ Apa, Cole Sprouse, Luke Perry and Skeet Ulrich were joined by showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa to talk about the aftermath of the story’s events and what comes next. During the interview, they discussed how Episode 12 is a big mystery episode, suspecting pretty much everyone before learning who the real killer is, why Jughead is having such a hard time, continuing to learn more backstory about the parents, another death that will set things up for Season 2, and those Sabrina, the Teenage Witch rumors.
Question: Now that we know that FP is being framed, what can you tease about that?
ROBERTO AGUIRRE-SACASA: With most of our episodes, there’s a balance between the soap and the mystery. Episode 12 is all about the mystery, and the kids are trying to prove that FP was framed, but no one believes them. It seems like the entire town is going in lockdown to railroad FP, so it’s a little bit of a race against time. There’s still a couple of characters out there who think someone else my have done this to Jason Blossom. It’s a big mystery episode.
Before you guys found out who did kill Jason Blossom, had any of you suspected FP?
COLE SPROUSE: We were in the bubble of Vancouver for so long and we were putting so much energy into possible theories that, by the time the murderer was announced, I personally had blamed just about everyone. So, yes is the answer.
How is Jughead going to be handling his dad’s arrest?
SPROUSE: Episode 12 very much deals with a lot of that content. Jughead has a real fondness for a Riverdale that was once more pure and beautiful, and is a Peter Pan-like childhood of Riverdale that existed. As time goes on and these characters get darker and darker and the secrets are revealed, he’s one of those characters that’s really going to struggle, like the rest of the town, with dealing with the fact that this town can be a legitimate place of darkness. He’s experiencing it first-hand, which is going to be complicated. Jughead’s most touching narrative is Episode 12. Episode 11 was a very heavy Jughead episode, but Episode 12 is, even more so.
Will we get some FP and Jughead jailhouse scenes?
SKEET ULRICH: It gets pretty emotional. There’s a lot of disappointment and a lot of secrets still being hidden. It’s quite intense. Cole is a blast to work with on stuff like that. It’s so much fun.
AGUIRRE-SACASA: When we started working on Riverdale and we went out and pitched it, I said Riverdale was a lot of things, but I never said it was going to be a show about fathers and sons. I have a really close relationship with my dad, but I did not anticipate the Fred and Archie, and Jughead and FP stories to go as deep. On a show where there’s a lot of female energy, I think those two relationships just go so deep. It was a surprise to me, as we were working on the season, that a lot of the heart of the show resides there. It’s been a joy to see them work in scenes together. It’s moved me and it’s moved a lot of people, and that’s a testament to them.
SPROUSE: The jailhouse scenes are my favorite of Season 1, undoubtedly. Episode 12 is probably my favorite episode.
How will Fred react to FP being arrested?
LUKE PERRY: Fred’s not a reactionary. You don’t know who your friends are until the shit gets deep, and when it gets deep with FP, it makes Fred stop and think about what this friendship is and the history behind it, and whether he can be friends with him, going down the road, because he’s gotta set an example with Archie. Fred values friendship so much. The only thing that he values more than friends is family, and this brings it all right to that place where he’s gotta choose.
Will we continue to learn more backstory about the relationships between the parents, back when they were in high school?
AGUIRRE-SACASA: It wasn’t intentional, but the idea that they all went to high school together was in the pilot. At the time, we almost arbitrarily decided that they all went to Riverdale high. And then, we decided that it was great because they had a shared history and they know secrets about each other that their kids don’t know. In the dinner scene, FP seems to know something about Alice and Hal that Betty doesn’t know. Part of the DNA of the show is to reveal these secrets, and there are still some huge secrets to come, in the last two episodes, that are game-changing secrets. That’s part of the fun of it. When we were bringing Mary in, one of the nice things was that they all know each other because they all went to high school together, so we could immediately get into a story with them. You’ll just get deeper and deeper into the swamp of secrets.
Are we going to maybe meet Hiram Lodge, before the end of Season 1?
Will Archie’s affair with Miss Grundy come back up?
AGUIRRE-SACASA: It’s a really good question. You’d think it would, right? It’d have to, it’s so big. Stay tuned!
Will Jughead maybe be a bit more open to Betty, now that he knows about her darker side?
SPROUSE: Sure. When Roberto, Lili [Reinhart] and I were talking about the purity of Bughead, we said that it’s a bit unrealistic. There has to be this tension between just how fundamentally dissimilar the two are, and that was what we ended up playing with in Episodes 9 and 10. The argument in the garage lead to a much more open form of communication and inherently strengthened the bond between the two characters.
Is there any truth to the rumor that there’s going to be another death by the end of the season?
AGUIRRE-SACASA: Yes, there is truth to that rumor.
Are you setting up for Season 2, with that death?
AGUIRRE-SACASA: Yes, it would set up Season 2.
There were also rumors about adding Sabrina, the Teenage Witch to the story, at some point. Is that true?
AGUIRRE-SACASA: Every time I comment on Sabrina, I get in trouble, so I’m gonna say no comment. I’ll say that I love the character of Sabrina, and I would love to be a part of bringing her to life. And I’m so going to get in trouble for saying that.
Riverdale airs on Thursday nights on The CW.