When the CW announced plans to bring ‘Archie’ comic book characters to a modern teen soap, there were plenty of skeptics. Did audiences really need another show about teenagers caught up in a love triangle in a small town? With the show carrying a bit more ‘Twin Peaks’ vibe than your typical teen fare though, a love triangle might be the least of the drama. Betty and Veronica actresses Lili Reinhart and Camila Mendes also promise that the two comic book rivals aren’t nearly as catty on the small screen.
In the 70-year comic series, Betty and Veronica are polar opposites who vie for the affection of good guy Archie. Betty is the stereotypical girl next door – nice to a fault and the kind of person everyone wants to befriend. Veronica is the school mean girl, a little spoiled, and used to getting exactly what she wants. While some of those traits make their way into the new television series ‘Riverdale,’ the two characters become fast friends instead of bitter rivals.
When Reinhart and Mendes appeared on ‘Late Night With Seth Meyers’ to promote the premiere of ‘Riverdale,’ they made a point of addressing the fact that their characters only really “fight” once in the pilot episode. Reinhart assured the audience that before even taking on the roles, the two actresses were aware that, “these two girls weren’t going to be catty with each other because we’ve seen that… We wanted to bring to television girls that cared about each other, and were friends, and supportive.”
That idea was promoted right away in the premiere when Veronica (Mendes) immediately befriended Betty and helped her with cheerleading tryouts, even setting her own attraction aside to help Betty get a date with Archie.
Viewers can make their own decision about how well the series keeps up the positive female friendship as ‘Riverdale’ airs at 9PM on Thursdays.