Will Season Three of “Riverdale” Introduce Dark Magic and Monsters?

Matthew Loffhagen
The CW
(Photo: The CW)

Big things are afoot in Riverdale, and season three looks like it’s going to be more bizarre than anything we’ve seen thus far.

The big challenge facing the creators of “Riverdale” is that it’s hard to constantly top the levels of drama and excitement.

According to showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, the plan had initially been to create a simple coming-of-age show. As season one progressed, the big murder mystery became more and more compelling both for writers and viewers, so the show’s dark, pulpy elements spiraled out of control.

All of this has led to the finale for season two, which I won’t be spoiling here. It’s enough to say that things are going to get a lot weirder in the near future.

Riverdale Season 2 Finale Cheryl
Source: The CW

Speaking about what’s coming in the next season, Aguirre-Sacasa is hesitant to give too much away, but it sounds like he’s got some big plans:

“Well, look, Season 1 was a murder mystery and Season 2 had elements of a serial killer in a small town and The Godfather in a small town. So, we’ll always draw from pulp fiction and noir movies and stuff, so the idea’s that there’ll always be some kind of criminal or mystery element to the show.

“But in Season 3 there’s going to be kind of a new genre as well and we’re going to examine different kinds of pulp and noir. So if it feels like Riverdale is a place where people are getting killed all the time, maybe we find out that that’s not a coincidence. Maybe in Season 3, that’s actually part of a bigger pattern and a bigger unspoken history of Riverdale.”

Can anyone else smell a conspiracy theory on the horizon?

Is Magic Coming to Riverdale?

While Aguirre-Sacasa isn’t giving any of the details away about these “different kinds of pulp and noir” that the story will be focusing on, I have my suspicions.

Riverdale Season 2 Archie and Veronica
Source: The CW

Where else can the story go at this point, other than into the realms of dark, icky conspiracy? What if Riverdale is a town that’s founded on ancient cults and secret, unknowable evil?

I’m wondering whether the future of “Riverdale” will in any way tie into the upcoming Netflix show about Sabrina the Teenage Witch, which is meant to be sorta-kinda connected to “Riverdale” without actually getting too bogged down in specifics.

I wouldn’t be surprised if the roots of magic and witchcraft show up in “Riverdale” season three in order to lay the ground work for “The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina”. All while strictly avoiding actually mentioning any of Sabrina’s friends and enemies.

If “Sabrina” does well, I could imagine there’d be future crossovers between the two shows. If the Netflix endeavor bombs, “Riverdale” can introduce its own version of Sabrina at a later date.

Either way, it’s hard to ignore the fact that the original Archie comics have always featured magical worlds as part of their larger shared universe. As this element hasn’t yet been explored in “Riverdale”, I imagine it’s only a matter of time before something arcane happens.

Personally, I’m looking forward to what the future holds. One way or another, this show is about to get even weirder.