Just when you think they had run out of ways to shock us, Archie Comics delivered some startling news last week: The latest twist in the Life With Archie series is that Cheryl Blossom, the pretty, flirty, wealthy girl of Riverdale, has run up against a problem she can’t take care of with a smile or a credit card: She has breast cancer. (Note for Archie newbies: Life With Archie follows the Riverdale characters as twentysomethings and is not part of the regular Archieverse.) We checked in with Archie co-CEO Jon Goldwater to find out what happened and how this storyline will be handled.
Robot 6: First of all, why Cheryl Blossom? Is it because her identity is so tied up with her appearance?
Jon Goldwater: Well, Cheryl’s such a recognizable character—to fans and people only loosely familiar with Archie. We really wanted this story to resonate, so it had to be an important character that fans could connect with.
Robot 6: Can you tell us a bit about how this particular plot will unfold—how did Cheryl find out she has cancer, how serious is it, how do her family and friends react?
Jon Goldwater: We’ll see how her family reacts in the coming issues—mainly her brother, then her “extended” Riverdale family, which consists of Archie and friends. Cheryl set out to become a big star in LA and gradually found out how difficult that was. In the process, she also discovered that she had breast cancer and realized she had to come home to Riverdale for treatment.