To be fair to Riverdale, it’s not like its reimagining is actually anything like the Archie comics most people remember. Plus, the TV series starts right after a murder, so a prequel comic makes some sense.
The one-shot will be a prequel, of course, but the hope is to turn it into a full series that interweaves with the show. Showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa is writing the comic with the help of the rest of the Riverdale writers, and Alitha Martinez will illustrate. Aguirre-Sacasa said of the plan:
Believe me, these stories matter. If you’re a fan of the show, you’ll find that the comics add another layer of conflict and drama. If you’re an Archie Comics fan, this series will serve as a great set of standalone stories in the universe of the TV series. We — myself and the show’s writers — are treating the comics with the same care and attention to detail fans will see on the screen as we weave one, large unforgettable narrative.
Too much narrative! Too much narrative! Having seen the Riverdale pilot, I’m thinking that giving an audience even more to follow is possibly a bridge too far—one that takes us out of “campy soap opera noir delight” and into “impenetrable nightmare story.”
Of course, the joy of Riverdale isn’t in understanding the story. It’s in the characters, the setting, and going along with a ride that you know, in your heart of hearts, will be much more fun than the eventual payoff. So, in that respect, even more content from these writers is a good thing.
Head over to TV Guide to see all 10 of the preview images from the one-shot.