Love was definitely in the air during the “Riverdale” panel discussion Friday at the WonderCon convention.
Fans packed the Arena at the Anaheim Convention Center, where the “Riverdale” cast and executive producers were on hand to talk about the arrival of Archie’s mom (played by Molly Ringwald), whether Sabrina (the teenage witch) will make an appearance in Season 2 and if there are plans for any episodes inspired by the "Afterlife with Archie" comics.
The cast members participating in the presentation included KJ Apa (Archie Andrews), Lili Reinhart (Betty Cooper), Camila Mendes (Veronica Lodge), Cole Sprouse (Jughead Jones), Ashleigh Murray (Josie McCoy), Marisol Nichols (Hermione Lodge), Mädchen Amick (Alice Cooper) and Luke Perry (Fred Andrews). Also present were “Riverdale” executive producers Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Sarah Schechter and Jon Goldwater.
Before diving into any discussions, attendees were treated to a “Riverdale” sizzle reel to relive some of the highlights of the series so far. And yes, there was plenty of kissing, plenty of hitting and plenty of dark and broody Jughead. The clip ended with Archie’s reunion with his mother, Mary Andrews.
While the audience cheered at the reveal, it turns out that a certain cast member was not completely convinced that Ringwald was the right fit for the character.
“At first I wasn’t so sure about it,” Perry said. But he admitted it only took two minutes of seeing Ringwald and Apa work together to realize he was completely wrong.
Nichols and Amick assured fans that there are definitely some “juicy and fun” scenes between their characters and Mary on the way.
Other early topics of discussion included the relationships between the younger stars Apa, Reinhart and Mendes and their respective onscreen parents (with Reinhart revealing that she and Amick discovered they had matching tattoos by the same artist) as well as fans’ social media reactions to the happenings on the show.
But eventually the talk turned to music.
After donning a pair of Pussycat ears, Murray, who plays the confident and driven Josie, explained how making the music for the show has been great.
“I suffer from a self-diagnosed form of audio-dysmorphia,” she said. “I didn’t like the sound of my voice growing up.”
“I was presented with this opportunity and I thought what better way to get over that and also enjoy it [than] by playing such an iconic character? Especially somebody I grew up watching and reading in the comic books,” Murray said.
Of course, Murray is not the only cast member with musical chops. “Riverdale” viewers have already seen (and heard) Apa and Mendes sing, and an upcoming episode will feature Reinhart lending her singing voice to a certain scene. But one cast member said he wasn’t as enthusiastic about all of the singing that was happening around him while they were shooting.
“I survived a Disney career without having to sing,” Sprouse explained.
Speaking of Sprouse’s Disney career, at least one fan was keen to know if there was any chance that his twin Dylan Sprouse would ever make an appearance on the show as Jughead’s cousin, Souphead.
“It would take a lot of convincing,” he said.
Aguirre-Sacasa played coy when asked about the possibility of Sabrina making an appearance in Season 2, but he did admit that there was interest in featuring some sort of “Afterlife with Archie”-inspired episode, perhaps for Halloween.
In addition to being Archie Comics chief creative officer, Aguirre-Sacasa is, of course, the writer of the “Afterlife with Archie” comic series.
Other takeaways from the panel? Apa and Sprouse’s friendship isn’t just a bromance, Betty and Veronica are a package deal and Reinhart first thought Archie was a superhero. Also, an upcoming episode will feature a house party celebrating Jughead’s birthday.
For more “Riverdale” at WonderCon, fans can check out a special screening of a brand new episode on Saturday at 3:15 p.m. at the Arena.