Riverdale Fans Were Robbed of Season 7 Alternate Ending

Riverdale Fans Were Robbed of Season 7 Alternate Ending
Image credit: The CW

At least the ending might not have been so abrupt.

On August 23, fans of the absurdist surrealism mixed with drama, romance, and mysticism that was Riverdale said a final goodbye to the beloved (or not so beloved) show. The Core Four remained in the 1950s, living quieter versions of their lives, only to reunite as teenagers in the afterlife. And so ended the wild seven-year saga.

But what on earth was that? The 50s arc was undoubtedly enjoyable, it had its fun parts. But many of us still wanted to see a cohesive story that didn't take away from the events that took place before Riverdale was destroyed in the original timeline.

Well, according to the series creator and showrunner, the finale could have been a little different - closer to what we wanted, but still in an alternate reality.

Original Concept

The Season 7 finale was somewhat rushed: characters were taken out of context, existing in an entirely new reality that had nothing to do with the original timeline. This should not be too surprising, since filming finished a few weeks before the SAG-AFTRA strike and ran parallel to the writers' strike.

Whether or not the Hollywood disputes were a major factor in changing the approach to the finale is unknown. What is known is that the last six episodes were originally intended to bring the story up to the present.

'Originally, when we pitched the season, one of the ideas that we pitched was that the first 13 episodes would be in the 50s, and then starting around Episode 14 or so, we would start moving in time. So Episode 14 would be set in the 60s, Episode 15 would be set in the 70s, and then the 80s, the 90s… kind of working through to the present day,' Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa told TVLine.

Why it didn't work out

The ending would have been pretty much the same: The now-older characters would have met up in an alternate 21st-century Riverdale to say goodbye to the audience and each other forever, and hopefully meet up in the afterlife. In the meantime, though, we probably could have seen a more engaging approach to what ended up being an unconvincing time jump.

The reason it didn't happen was that the show's budget didn't allow for such an ambitious transition. Not surprising, considering how much money could have been spent on new costumes and sets for each episode.

'The writers and the cast and the crew, we were having such a fun time in the 50s…' Aguirre-Sacasa continued. 'We thought we would just continue telling the domestic, personal, romantic coming-of-age stories that we tell, and then move everyone back at the end.'

Source: TVLine.

Should the Core Four have returned to the original timeline?