Is CW’s ‘Riverdale’ The Next ‘Pretty Little Liars?’ Top 5 Signs It’s A Contender

If you tuned into the premiere of Riverdale, CW’s ominous adaptation of the Archie comics, then you might have found yourself feeling as though you stumbled into familiar territory. With the sun setting on Freeform’s Pretty Little Liars beginning in April, a giant vacuum will soon be left in the pop culture universe.

In its series premiere, Riverdale appeared primed to fill the void left by Pretty Little Liars. Listed below are the top five (5) signs, Riverdale is a strong contender to be the next Pretty Little Liars.

#1: Riverdale has a murder mystery.

Just as Pretty Little Liars opened with mystery of Alison DiLaurentis’ (Sasha Pieterse) disappearance, Riverdale opens on the vanishing of Jason Blossom. Jason went missing after a boat ride with his twin sister, Cheryl (Madelaine Petsch). This event serves as the catalyst for most of the action on Riverdale, as well as providing its underlying mystery.

In Pretty Little Liars‘ first episode, Alison’s body is supposedly found, shifting the series towards a seasons-long, murder mystery. At the end of Riverdale‘s first episode, Jason’s body is discovered, confirming his death, and kicking off a murder mystery.

Is CW's Riverdale the next Pretty Little Liars - Top 5 Signs It's a Contender - Riverdale Cast
The cast of 'Riverdale' [Image by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images]

#2: Everyone has a secret.

In the pilot episode of Riverdale, we learn that most everyone has a secret tie to the late Jason Blossom. As it turns out, Betty’s (Lili Reinhart) older sister was once in a relationship with Jason. The romance’s outcome proved so devastating that Betty’s sister, now resides in a mental institution.

For his part, Archie (K.J. Apa) heard a mysterious sound coming from the water, on the evening Jason disappeared. The problem is, he heard it, while hooking up with his teacher. Conflicted over sharing what he knows, and outing his secret relationship with Miss Grundy (Sarah Habel), Archie has remained quiet, for now.

#3: Riverdale features a mean girl, and a dead person, many characters had a grudge against.

Every TV town has to have a mean girl, and Cheryl Blossom is to Riverdale, what Alison was to the early days/flashbacks of Pretty Little Liars. She is a conceited, shallow, and vain bully. Her brother was apparently not much better. In the pilot, Riverdale sets up several suspects, who had an axe to grind with Jason. For instance, Betty’s mom (Madchen Amick) held a grudge against Jason for ruining her daughter’s life.

Remember when Pretty Little Liars began? Everyone in Rosewood had a beef with Ali that hinted at their guilt. As it turns out, they had nothing to worry about. Maybe the denizens of Riverdale will experience a similar conclusion.

Is CW's Riverdale the next Pretty Little Liars - Top 5 Signs It's a Contender - Pretty Little Liars Cast
The cast of 'Pretty Little Liars' [Image by Kevin Winter/Getty Images]

#4: Parental secrets.

Early, on Pretty Little Liars, viewers learned that Aria’s dad had been having an affair. That secret would generate a lot of drama for seasons to come. In the pilot for Riverdale, it is established that Archie’s dad, and Veronica’s mom, used to be an item, as in a romantic item. Insert theories here.

At any rate, Archie and Veronica (Camila Mendes) wasted hardly any time, picking up where their parents left off. This particular plot twist shares more in common with CW’s Gossip Girl than Pretty Little Liars, but Riverdale proved it is not far off from either.

#5: Teacher/student relationships abound.

It is revealed early in the pilot for Riverdale that Archie had a fling with his teacher over the summer. While his teacher tries to put distance between them, Archie believes it is true love. Sound familiar? One of Pretty Little Liars‘ core couples is Aria (Lucy Hale), and Ezra (Ian Harding).

In the pilot for Pretty Little Liars, Aria strikes up an instant connection with Ezra, initially unaware he is her high school English teacher. When they find out, both work to fight their growing attraction to each other. As Pretty Little Liars fans well know, they do not succeed. Will Riverdale‘s forbidden affair see a similar outcome? You will have to stay tuned, to find out.

New episodes of Riverdale air Thursdays at 9 p.m. EST on CW. While the seventh, and final season of Pretty Little Liars, premieres April 18 on Freeform.

[Featured Image by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images and Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Entertainment Weekly]