Like the rest of Planet Earth, Gaby, Matt, and Rachael have been busy binging the CW’s new show. This new iteration of our beloved Archie Comics characters is set in a murderous Riverdale, a town reminiscent of David Lynch’s Twin Peaks. Archie, Betty, Veronica, and Jughead lead us through the investigation of Jason Blossom’s murder, a varsity football star found face-down in the river.
Given that many are somewhat implicated in Jason’s murder, Riverdale characters are hard to rank. Are the people we deem morally sound only just characters who haven’t had enough time to show their true colors? Who knows. But we’re definitely giving it a shot.
For more on the Riverdale characters, check out “Riverdale Characters: Myers-Briggs Personality Types” and “20 Reasons Why Jughead Jones is the Best Riverdale Character.”
The following Riverdale character ranking includes spoilers from Season 1. Swim at your own risk.
[Factors that play a part in TNL rankings: good looks, moral soundness, spunk, nice glasses.]
29. Clifford Blossom
G: Would Clifford even have suffered if he had been forced to stay alive to see his penitence through? I don’t think so.
M: Clifford seemed like the kind of guy who’s into some weird shit but his conservative upbringing kept him from communicating this to his wife and the pent up frustration led him to kill his own son. Am I right?!
R: Murder schmurder. The real crime here is the fact that Clifford Blossom thought it was ok to wear a black turtleneck with red pants.
28. Penelope Blossom
G: To quote Alice Cooper, “What is wrong with you?”
M: Never forget that Penelope Blossom asked Archie to “escort [her] daughter to the tapping.” She wants ginger grandchildren BAD.
R: It does take two gingers to make a ginger, Matt. She was just keeping the bloodline pure. If this were Harry Potter, Lucius Malfoy would be proud.
27. Ms. Grundy
G: I feel like Grundy needed Molly Weasley to storm into her office and be like, “Not my son, you bitch!” Sure, her backstory was kind of sad, but I also didn’t believe much of it.
M: Remember the first story arc with Ms. Grundy being a statutory rapist? No? It’s okay, neither did the writing team.
R: Remember when Mr. Andrews was a bro-five away from being totally cool with Ms. Grundy being a statutory rapist? Because I do, and I’m still uncomfortable about it.
26. Myles McCoy
G: Trash human is trash.
M: Another case of “Matt has to Google this character because he’s so irrelevant to this story.” Now that that’s done, fedoras are still not in style.
R: Maybe Myles McCoy is a secret Brony.
25. Mayor Sierra McCoy
G: This woman has no scruples, can’t stand up for her daughter when her trash husband comes to town, and clearly is doing a horrible job as mayor. NEXT.
M: I would love to intern for the mayor! Working in such a corrupt office in a small town seems like a great time! Also, hush money!
R: S2 will be all about Sierra McCoy discovering that her husband is a secret Brony. Chaos and David Lynch references will ensue.
24. Principal Weatherbee
G: What is this man even doing? Does he even have a teaching degree?
M: Disappointing character adaptation. Sad.
R: Not my Weatherbee!
23. Chuck Clayton
M: Chuck should be ashamed of himself. Trying to get revenge for the gift Dark Betty inflicted on him! Be thankful to have been touched by the evil queen!
G: Also, grow the fuck up.
R: Things Chuck Clayton definitely lies about: his penis, having herpes, and how many women he’s been with.
22. Hermione Lodge
G: The road to hell is paved with good intentions, Hermione. And I’m not even sure you have any. Don’t get me wrong, Hermione is cool. But she’s also a) not to be trusted b) endangering her daughter for personal gain, no matter how good her reasons.
M: Habitual liar? Check. Brunette? Check. Means well but will ruin your life with a smile? Check. Just my type.
R: Matt, I’m concerned.
21. Hal Cooper
M: Definitely a Trump voter.
R: Not only a Trump voter, but definitely a mansplainer as well.
20. Sheriff Keller
G: It’s not that I don’t think Sheriff Keller isn’t trying to help. It’s just that he’s mighty incompetent when you need him most and only does his job when it gets in the way of our true detectives.
M: Fire this man. So bad at his job.
R: What he lacks in crime solving skills, Sheriff Keller makes up for by loving and supporting his son.
G: This is true. Star father.
19. Reggie Mantle
G: Reggie’s the kind of guy that makes you want to say “STFU” all the time. Except he rarely talks, so I don’t even get the pleasure of saying it as often as I’d like.
M: Really bummed we didn’t get to see more of Reggie. So much character potential there since, you know, he’s a genuine sociopath.
R: I’m a sucker for a well-rounded fictional sociopath, so I really hope S2 gives use some more Reggie.
18. Josie McCoy
G: I don’t really like Josie, but have you seen her parents? Girl definitely turned out as best she could. Still, I don’t like that she bosses around the Pussycats and that she only does the right or sensitive thing after being insufferable for the whole episode.
M: Kind of a jerk but that cat costume, though? Purrfect.
R: I just read Matt’s response and sighed so heavily I’m surprised he didn’t hear it.
17. Moose Mason
G: At first, he was just Kevin’s original squeeze in my head. But he earned a lot of pity/sympathy points after taking that beating while working for Fred. I hope you mature and find your own path in life, Moose.
M: Moose was in two memorable scenes. He almost blew Kevin in the woods, and he got beaten up by gang members. I hope season 2 has a scene where that happens at the same time.
R: This is Riverdale, Matt. Not Game of Thrones.
16. Jason Blossom
G: Much like Laura Palmer in Twin Peaks, we don’t really know much about Jason aside from what others tell us. Is everything we hear good? No, but that doesn’t mean he deserved being shot by his father for not going with the Blossom drug cartel shenanigans.
M: I FUCKING KNEW HE WAS INTO INCEST. HE HAD THE “I WANT TO BANG MY RELATIVE” SMILE ON FROM SCENE ONE!
R: Name a story arc about twins that doesn’t involve incest. Can’t think of one? That’s because story arcs about twins without incest don’t actually exist.
G: My siblings are twins. Please stop.
15. Mary Andrews
G: Clearly learned nothing from detention.
M: Molly Ringwald looked just as bored as I was during her scenes, and I respected the hell out of that.
R: I know what you’re all thinking: If Molly Ringwald is Mary Andrews, does that make Mary Andrews the Claire Standish of Riverdale? And if so, is Fred Andrews Andrew?
14. Alice Cooper
G: Alice isn’t the most morally sound of people, or even the most responsible of parents. But the woman has been through enough, her husband isn’t that great, and her craziness mostly comes from a good place. I loved her character development, and I’m a strong advocate for Alice seeking a therapist and reaching greatness in Season 2.
M: Get this woman some damn Prozac.
R: Alice Cooper is just as metal as Alice Cooper.
13. Polly Cooper
G: Clearly stuck in a difficult conundrum. That being said, what exactly was she doing with her life before she got in this whole mess?
M: One day, you’re just a small town girl falling in love with the high school quarterback. A few months later, you’re carrying incest twins and have a real weird relationship with your family. At least you’re still the sane one in the family, Polly.
R: Polly’s either the heroine of an 80s rock ballad or a Daphne Du Maurier novel, and I’m really not sure which.
12. Trev Brown
G: Until now, I had no idea that Trev and Val were siblings. However, they’re definitely taking the torch for “Most Mentally Sound Family” in Riverdale.
M: Gaby, you’re making characters up to fuck with me. I know it.
G: I’m just testing your memory. (Aka, I went down the IMDb list to make sure I got most of ‘em).
R: “Most Mentally Sound” and also “Most Attractive”.
11. Ethel Muggs
G: I’m not sure this is what we meant with “Justice for Barb.” Ethel isn’t leading a great life.
M: Why does she dress like an Amish runaway?
R: I feel like Ethel and Barb would get along really well (and not just because they’re played by the same actress.)
10. Valerie Brown
G: Had Val branched out of the Pussycats for real and taken control of her own life like she did her breakup with Archie, she would’ve ranked higher. I just feel that, even though she’s the best Pussycat, she’s still stuck in the status quo. Fly high, Val! You can do it!
M: Val is the only character on this show who is a normal teen that will eventually be a successful and happy adult.
R: Val isn’t a Pussycat. She’s a Khaleesi.
9. Joaquin DeSantos
G: Would I trust Joaquin with my life? Probably not. Would I make out with him? Definitely.
M: I googled this character and I ended up on LinkedIn? Apparently, he’s Kevin’s boyfriend so bless him for giving more screentime to Kevin. #KevinKellerSoloShow
R: FOUR FOR YOU, KEVIN! YOU GO, KEVIN!
8. FP Jones
G: FP might not be a good father, but he is a good person. His unconventional outlook on life has created an almost unbridgeable gap between him and the rest of his former Riverdale High classmates. Had his alternative lifestyle only affected him, I’d judge him less harshly. I wouldn’t want FP to birth my children or to be dependent on him as a father figure, but I do love his character and Skeet Ulrich’s acting is amazing.
M: Second best sad dad on this show. Desperately needs a shower and is not self conscious about it. Respect the hell out of that, I do.
7. Archie Andrews
G: We all knew going in that Archie was going to be annoying. It’s who he is and what he does. That being said, I liked that Riverdale afforded him the opportunity to grow and mature. He went from having illicit relations with his teacher, to chasing his dream and then becoming really obsessed with it to the point of aloofness, to saving Cheryl from a freezing lake dive. I think it’s safe to say we’ll be seeing a lot more of character development for Archie in the coming season, and I’m thankful for it.
M: America’s favorite fuckboy is just as much of a fuckboy on TV as he is in the comics.
R: Archie Andrews is the only character who hasn’t changed a bit from page-to-screen, and as much as I can’t stand his douchebaggery, I will forever love him to bits.
6. Fred Andrews
G: I spent all of Season 1 suspecting Fred Andrews of murder. AND NOW LOOK. Maybe he was the only good parent all along.
M: Remember when Cheryl told him that he looked like a DILF? I’m still laughing.
R: I love Beverly Hills, 90210 just as much as the next girl, but FP is the one true River-dilf, Cheryl. Get it straight.
5. Jughead Jones
G: Juggie has definitely fallen from grace since his “I’m a weirdo” phase. But all things considered, the dude is going through one hell of a rough patch–or life. I hope one day Jughead will return to the good ol’ days of episodes 1-6 (roughly), but more mature and slightly less emo. Out of all the redeemable characters, Jughead is definitely poised to come out on top.
M: I could not care less. I mean, I knew not to expect a sex scene with a hamburger, but I didn’t think they’d take away every enjoyable aspect of the character. #NotMyJughead
R: Sometimes I lay awake at night wondering if Jughead Jones grows up to be Guy In Your MFA with a secret burger fetish.
4. Cheryl Blossom
G: Cheryl isn’t the best at decision-making. She also gives me anxiety. But all in all, Cheryl is a kickass bitch that deserves much better than having a murdered brother and a textbook-psychotic family.
M: Cheryl could murder me, and I’d still be into it until my last breath. Too much info?
G: Matt, I think you really need to see a therapist about your life-threatening kinks.
3. Kevin Keller
G: Kevin’s funny, loyal, and always there when you need him. He has yet to do much to lead his own life, but I have full trust in Casey Cott being able to pull it off when the time comes.
M: I want more Kevin. The entire show comes alive during his scenes and it is DESPERATELY needed.
R: I would be 100% down for a Kevin Keller spinoff.
2. Veronica Lodge
G: Veronica is the epitome of Blair Waldorf in her good days. I like that what we’re seeing is her redemption arc, and not bad-girl-from-NYC-comes-to-town. Still, she’s kind of manipulative and doesn’t always think her plans through. The result? Some unintentional backstabbing.
M: I found it a little strange that Veronica wasn’t the cruel narcissist that I’m in love with from the comics. She’s just…nice and that’s….nice.
R: I would also be 100% down for Cheryl, Val, Veronica, and Betty to sail off into the sunset together a la the cinematic classic, Crossroads.
1. Betty Cooper
G: First of all, Lili Reinhart is #daddy. End of story. I love Betty, and she’s truly one of my favorite characters regardless of how she ranks on here. I like that she always does the right thing, even if it means going against her family or jeopardizing her mental health. She has the guts to speak up when she has been explicitly forbidden to do so, and is honestly the one character that positively influences the Riverdale community.
M: Dark Betty could smother me in maple syrup and drown me in a hot tub any day. I second Gaby’s #daddy.
G: Again, therapist.
R: Betty Cooper is like Nancy Drew if Nancy Drew didn’t have a convertible and her family was supremely fucked up. I heart her.