It's no secret Katy Keene, the latest dramedy on The CW, draws heavily from Archie comics. After all, the series is a spinoff of Riverdale, and the latest installment in the ever-growing Archieverse. So for those wondering about Ginger Lopez, who is one of Katy Keene's breakout characters, look no further than the source material... sort of.
In the pilot episode of Katy Keene, audiences are introduced to Jorge Lopez (Jonny Beauchamp), an aspiring musical theatre actor who moonlights as a drag queen. Jorge is not a character from the comics, but true Archie fans will recognize the name of his drag persona: Ginger Lopez. Ginger was added to the Archie comics in the early 2000s as a member of Archie's group of friends. However, the version of Ginger from the comics is a bit different from the one fans are getting to know on Katy Keene.
In the comics, Ginger is a cisgender teen who moves from New York City to Riverdale with her family. She loves fashion and works as a teen editor at a magazine. Another version of Ginger was also briefly a minor character in Season 1 of Riverdale. She was a Vixen and a part of Cheryl Blossom's (Madelaine Petsch) posse, but she was kicked off the squad when she refused to vote for either Cheryl or Veronica (Camila Mendes) as cheer captain. After that, fans never heard the name Ginger again... until the premiere of Katy Keene, that is.
It looks like the Ginger Lopez of the comics, of Riverdale, and of Katy Keene are all three different characters. While the Ginger of the comics and of Riverdale is a teen girl, the Ginger of Katy Keene is Jorge's alter-ego. Jorge is a queer man who seems to feel just as comfortable performing as Ginger as he does performing as himself. The character's queer identity is important to Beauchamp, who is also queer himself. He told NewNowNext:
It blows your mind, and I think we need more of it: a queer person playing a queer person. The best queer stuff goes to heterosexual men. It’s high time we start allowing queer people to interpret and display and actually be the vessel. Since we’ve walked in the shoes, we can bring something that a heterosexual male maybe cannot. So I just feel really lucky that I’ve been picked to do that.
Season 1 of Katy Keene continues on Thursday, Feb. 13, at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.