Last year, The CW was so uncertain about their teen-drama based on the Archie Comics show, Riverdale, that they held it until the second half of the television season and only ordered 13 episodes. On paper, it sounded ridiculous: a "dark and gritty" reboot of the most fresh-faced teenagers in the comic book world. But in practice, the show is a runaway hit. So, we need to know: how many episodes are there in Riverdale Season 2?
Well, rejoice, fans of the most improbable show of the year, because we're getting may more than a half season this year. Riverdale is part of the Fall lineup on The CW, and as one of their most anticipated programs, it's already been ordered to have a full season that will run through next spring. That means that they have a full slate of episodes, which, in this day and age, equals 22.
What this means is Riverdale will function like a full season show on broadcast networks. The show will have a "mid-season finale" and a winter hiatus before returning again in February or March of next year, depending on The CW's wishes.
A quick look over the calendar suggests the season will break evenly with 11 episodes in the fall, ending in mid December just before the Christmas holiday. The back 11 episodes will then, most likely, comprise the spring half of the show.
Even with the extension of the season to a full, 22-episode order, that doesn't mean that the numbers will somehow start over. Showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa confirmed that the episode count will continue where it left off last year, and the convention of each hour-long episode comprising a "chapter" of the tale (that Jughead is writing) will continue. Episode 201, therefore, will be entitled "Chapter Fourteen: A Kiss Before Dying."
Note the title, like the ones before it in Season 1, are based on classic films. Last season referenced the 1984 thriller Body Double. My personal favorite episode title was "Chapter Six: Faster, Pussycats! Kill! Kill!," which was an episode featuring Josie and the Pussycats. Natch! (The actual title of the 1965 film is singular, Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill!, but who's counting.)
With 22 hours of drama to fill, what will Riverdale do with itself? The first 13 episodes saw twists and turns that seemed to never end, from the moment Jason Blossom was murdered to Archie's father Fred being shot in the finale.
In between, we not only had our "Core Four" (Archie and Veronica, Betty and Jughead) pair off into fan favorited couples, but it seemed like every week some new spanner would be tossed into the works. From Betty's sister Polly turning out to be engaged to Jason and then also pregnant by him, to the Coopers' and the Blossoms' generations-long feud dissolving into the discovery that they're all just one big unhappy family (technically making Polly and Jason as incestuous as some Game of Thrones love affairs.)
And that's just the story of the murder, leaving out all the extraneous drama between the Andrews' and the Lodges, and the hints that Jughead's father FP, who is now a gang leader, was once part of the previous generations' Core Four, with Betty and Veronica's mothers and Fred Andrews.
If that's what the show can pull off in 13 hours (well, 9 and a quarter hours, actually, if you subtract all those commercials), how insane is a full season going to be? We feel like our imaginations can't begin to guess.
Riverdale Season 2 premieres on Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2017, at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.