Riverdale and Sabrina exist in ‘completely separate universes,’ says Riverdale’s Betty

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Feb 19, 2018

Don’t expect Riverdale’s Betty Cooper to come strolling over to Netflix for a scripted-in appearance on Sabrina, the streaming giant’s upcoming spinoff series. At least, that’s what Lili Reinhart, who plays the River Vixen over on the CW, is saying.

Why? Well, even though Sabrina owes its very existence to Riverdale, the two shows apparently aren’t coexisting in a single story universe, Reinhart recently explained to Vulture.

“I think Betty’s solely in the Riverdale world and it doesn’t make sense for a crossover. That’s why the decision was ultimately made to move to Netflix—to make these Riverdale and Sabrina shows completely separate universes,” Reinhart said.

Sabrina, like Riverdale, emanates from the Archie comics universe, although it’s looking as though Sabrina is framed within a much darker and witchy occult world than its more high-school-conventional cousin. That also means Sabrina promises to be a whole lot more mature and spooky than Sabrina the Teenage Witch, its wacky sitcom ancestor that aired on ABC from 1996 to 2003. 

Magic and the occult may prove to be the conceptual barrier that keeps Riverdale and Sabrina apart, said Reinhart, adding that Riverdale showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, who’s also writing the Sabrina pilot, ultimately holds all the creative cards.

“I don’t really know what Roberto’s plan is for Sabrina or what aspect of the supernatural or magic will be used,” Reinhart said. “I know that doesn’t exist in Riverdale. At least right now. So it wouldn’t make sense for those two worlds to collide. So, I’d say don’t expect Betty to be in that world. And that’s totally okay, because she’s got her own s**t going on in Riverdale.”

Netflix still hasn’t announced a release date for the Sabrina series, but we do know the show already has been inked for an initial run of 20 episodes spread across two seasons. Recent casting moves have filled in some of the show’s biggest question marks—including Salem the cat, of course—so stay tuned for Netflix to roll out more details soon.

In the meantime, you can catch new episodes of Riverdale on the CW, and get up to speed with the show’s first two seasons, which are streaming at Netflix.