Riverdale – The Not-So High School Drama

Last week, I covered the new Netflix show called Anne with an E. For some of you, that might not have been up your alley. You want some more drama and maybe some murder mystery type of shows to binge on. If that is you, here is another Netflix show that might peak your interest.

Riverdale is another Netflix original that has been on my popping up on my screen for some time lately. As you might know, Netflix has a match percentage that they place on all titles to help you choose which show or movie to watch next. Based on your watching history, they will give you a percentage of how likely you are to enjoy watching it. Well, Riverdale was over 95% of a match for my profile.

I was hesitant to watch it at first because it seemed like a poorly produced high school drama that would not differ from all the other high school dramas that are on TV. However, I was wrong… to a certain extent. While Riverdale does follow a group of high schoolers, there are a few subtle, yet necessary shifts in the plot that actually make this show binge-worthy. How do I know it’s binge-worthy? Well, cause I binged on it this last weekend.

So, if you are still reading this article and have not exited out soon as you saw the words “high school drama”, congratulations! I will now share a few ways that this drama is different that other shows. Keep in mind, there has only been one season that is currently released on Netflix. I do not know what season two has in store so these points might differ once the next season is released.

Here are the main differences when comparing Riverdale to any other high school drama:

The Parents, Not The Kids, Are The Primary Source Of Drama

Unlike most high school dramas, there was not too much drama that goes on between the students. While this may seem impossible, it was actually somewhat of a relief. The kids all remain close together throughout the show. Of course, there are a few different dramatic moments, but overall the drama was between the parents of this small town.

Now, you might be thinking that the teens drama is a main reason for watching the show. Do not fear, there still is teen drama involved. However, it is just not between the core group of friends. The drama might be between one group and another, but the core group remains the same throughout the first season.

It Is Mostly Clean

We have all been there, the moment puberty hits and the hormones start raging. As with most high school’s the shows are full of scenes that… well, you wouldn’t watch with your mom. Netflix kept this show fairly clean, which is surprising for a Netflix original. There are a few scenes here or there, but overall this show alludes to the fact that the kids have hormones, but don’t actually show much of the stuff happening.

There Is A Murder Mystery Tied Into The Plot

As you will find out in the first episode, a young boy is shot. The rest of the show has a plot of figuring out who murdered him. The show is produced in a way that has you on the edge of your seat and keeps you guessing. I, personally, could not guess the murderer until it was actually revealed, a sign of a good murder mystery.

Okay, There Has To Be Some High School TV Show Resemblance, Right?

For those who are skeptical of this being a completely new genre of high school shows, I admit, there are some similarities. If I had to explain the show in a way that most people can understand, it is a mix between High School Musical and a murder mystery.

Just like High School Musical, there is a jock athlete that is the star of the team. There is also a transfer student that immediately becomes part of the popular crowd. Don’t worry, there is no singing. Okay, that’s a lie. The jock is musical and can sing, but it’s not musical as in High School Musical so you can relax again.

Overall, this show is a great compromise of a clean drama, murder mystery, and Netflix original. It will have you laughing, scared, and overall excited to watch the next episode. Don’t be too afraid of watching a high school drama. If you are not sold in a couple of episodes, then I apologize. But, I do think that this is a different spin on the usual high school drama that is worth giving some time to.

Alex Smith: Alex Smith is a freelance writer and the owner of CATV.org. He covers the latest happenings in the world of cable TV: deals, reviews, previews, new tech gear & more.