"Dark Betty" is no more, but girl-next-door Betty Cooper is going to get darker in Riverdale's second season, according to the actress who plays her.
In one of the earliest Riverdale episodes, Betty Cooper revealed a dark side, handcuffing and nearly drowning Chuck Clayton after discovering that he and other members of the football team had sexually abused and humiliated numerous girls at Riverdale High, including Betty's sister Polly. That aggressive side of her, nicknamed "Dark Betty" by the cast and fans, doesn't exist anymore, according to actress Lili Reinhart...but that might not be a good thing.
"Dark Betty I feel like doesn’t exist anymore," Reinhart said during a recent interview. "It’s like this season just her darkness kind of envelops her a little bit. Betty is, without giving anything away, a very big focal point of the mystery in season 2 and it takes a toll on her, just like it did with Cheryl in season 1. Betty gets wrapped up in something that she never asked to be wrapped up in and this kind, sweet, gentle person is pushed to her limit."
Cheryl, for those who might not remember, was the twin sister of Jason Blossom, season 1's murder victim. Jason's death nearly destroyed Cheryl, even leading her to attempt suicide in the season finale after she discovered that her father was the killer.
She was saved by Archie Andrews, and while the Riverdale gang now understand what makes Cheryl tick quite a bit more, don't expect her to be hanging around offering Betty coping advice: she's still the same old Cheryl Blossom.
On top of everything else, expect a rough patch for Bughead, everyone's favorite Riverdale couple.
"The first half of the season, they’re dealing with Fred being shot, helping their friend Archie and Betty is dealing with her relationship problems," Reinhart said.
That is not a surprise, really; while Riverdale is at its heart a teen drama, and those shows almost never have conflict-free relationships, Betty and Jughead got off to a pretty smooth start in season 1. The finale saw the beginnings of a conflict, though, and showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa recently teased something more.
"I’m a real believer in, the story itself guiding where we go," he told us when we asked how the fans might respond to trouble between the beloved pair. "Listen: I root for them, so I don’t want them to have problems, but sometimes you set stories in motion and they themselves take on a life of their own. All relationships are tested, that’s the truth. The most casual to the most profound and and intimate relationships. So that is going to happen, but I trust the actors and I trust the storytelling and that that will see everyone through."
As the town breathed a collective sigh of relief that Jason’s killer had been found out, another terrible crime occurred, in a space that had been considered one of the town’s safest, most innocent places. If Jason Blossom’s murder revealed the slimy underbelly beneath Riverdale’s surface, as we enter Season Two, the shooting of Fred Andrews threatens to plunge the entire town into utter darkness.
Riverdale returns to TV for its second season on October 11 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.