Based on the classic Archie comics, Netflix's latest show, "Riverdale," is a creative step forward in the teen soap opera genre, infers Constance Grady of Vox. Drawing comparisons to Dawson’s Creek and other shows, Grady underlines how smartly "Riverdale" built on their accomplishments and successes. In her opinion, the show’s only flaw is that it accomplished too much in its first season, by launching more relatable side characters to the forefront, firing up romantic tension and solving its central mystery. Grady wonders whether "Riverdale" will be able to maintain the high standard it set itself in its second season.
"Riverdale" fails to break taboos or innovate in a meaningful way, which is disappointing because it comes frustratingly close to doing so, writes Miranda Reilly of Oxford Student. She highlights how the show has no problem sexualizing originally asexual characters from the Archie comics while seeming awfully cautious of introducing queer relationships. "Riverdale" uses gay tropes but lacks the courage to go through with them; similarly it presents intriguing nonwhite characters, only to confine them to the sidelines. Reilly suggests that the show ends up imitating several common TV themes, failing to add flavor to its vanilla story.