The fourth season of Riverdale ended abruptly after the hit CW teen drama was forced to halt filming due to the coronavirus outbreak.
As a result, the season cut short at 19 episodes.
Nonetheless, after it finished on a cliffhanger, fans are eager for the release of season five, looking to finally find out what drama the prom episode will bring.
Helpfully we’ve collated everything we know so far about Riverdale season five, and here it is…
*Warning: spoilers ahead for Riverdale season four*
Will there be a Riverdale season 5? When will it be released?
Absolutely. Back in January, The CW confirmed a fifth season of the outlandish show, which is based on the Archie Comics, was in the pipeline.
While it was originally scheduled to air this coming October, the impact of the pandemic may impact upon the planned premiere date.
We’ll keep this page updated with the latest news on the release of Riverdale season 5.
The CW is also set to launch Riverdale’s first spin-off, Katy Keene, which follows “the lives and loves of four iconic Archie Comics characters — including fashion legend-to-be Katy Keene (played by Pretty Little Liars’ Lucy Hale) — as they chase their twenty-something dreams in New York City.”
Katy Keene’s official synopsis continues: “This musical dramedy chronicles the origins and struggles of four aspiring artists trying to make it on Broadway, on the runway and in the recording studio.”
This might only be the beginning of an expansion for the Riverdale universe – though CW president Mark Pedowitz insisted in August 2019 that there are currently no more spin-offs in development, he said the network is “always open when Roberto [Aguirre-Sacasa, Riverdale showrunner] comes in and talks about other Riverdale characters”.
Speaking at the Television Critics Association’s summer press tour, Pedowitz also named Riverdale as one of three shows – along with light-hearted crime series In The Dark and sports drama All American – that now defined the network. “We transitioned from a female-skewing network in 2010, ’11 and ’12 to more male-focused with Supernatural and now we’ve shifted back a bit with Riverdale, All American and In the Dark to something different.”
Who’s in the cast of Riverdale season 5?
While details of the next season’s cast have not yet been announced, what we do know is that Jughead’s dad, F.P. Jones (Skeet Ulrich), will not be making a return.
As he revealed to TV Line, Ulrich has decided to “move on to explore other creative opportunities”. (He is about to star alongside Tom Hanks in new film Bios.)
During a recent Instagram Live , Ulrich revealed he had quit the show because he “got bored creatively”.
“How’s that? That’s the most honest answer,” he added frankly.
His co-star Marisol Nichols, who played Hermione Lodge, is also confirmed not to be returning as a series regular.
Back in February, Riverdale creator and showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa said in a statement: “Part of life in ‘Riverdale’ — and part of growing up — is saying goodbye to people.
“I’m grateful to Skeet and Marisol for their incredible work on the show these last four years, and we all wish them well on their future endeavors. FP and Hermione will never be far from our hearts. And, of course, they’re always welcome back in Riverdale.”
Why was Riverdale season 4 cut short?
Riverdale season four ended on 19 episodes – instead of the expected 22 – because the coronavirus halted production on the show, cutting the season short.
This meant that a key prom episode, originally due to air as episode 20 in season four, will now kick things off for season five, as the high schoolers don their glad-rags and buckle up for some serious drama.
“When it became clear that we weren’t gonna be able to finish the season, the first thing I kind of did was look at episode 20 to see if we could cobble together an episode from that,” showrunner Robert Aguirre-Sacasa told Entertainment Weekly.
“Though we actually shot the prom, where a lot of dramatic stuff happened, there were so many emotional scenes with Archie and Veronica and Jughead and Betty that it felt like we just couldn’t quite do it.”
Aguirre-Sacasa’s comments hint at a possible reckoning for the ‘love square’ between the central four characters, Betty, Veronica, Archie and Jughead, after Archie and Betty shared a kiss – cheating on their respective partners – during season four, episode 17.
“We haven’t heard or seen the last of the song that Archie wrote for Betty [during season four, episode 18], and right at this moment where they should be celebrating everything, a lot happens,” Aguirre-Sacasa said. “It’s pretty dramatic what happens at prom with Varchie.”
Could this be the end of Archie and Veronica as a couple? Will Jughead also break things off with longtime girlfriend, Betty – or will Archie’s song reignite her old feelings for him, making her the one to betray Jughead?
And what will this all mean long-term for the Riverdale teen residents as they graduate high school and head off to college?
Riverdale writer Ted Sullivan also revealed in a tweet that season four was due to include a “heavy” episode focussing on Toni (Vanessa Morgan), which some fans are guessing will focus on her past sexual assault.
This episode will now also be postponed to form part of season five.
If you’re looking for more to watch, check out our TV guide.