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Riverdale Drops First Season 3 Footage, Casts Penelope Ann Miller

In a small town that was "once wholesome and innocent," its teen residents once all smiles and laughter, unstoppable evils and unspeakable horrors now lurk. 

During the Riverdale panel at San Diego Comic-Con on Sunday, the CW revealed the first footage from the drama series' third season and announced that The Artist actress Penelope Ann Miller will star in the new episodes. 

The Hollywood Reporter confirms that Miller is set to portray District Attorney Ms. Wright, a woman who will pose a threat to Archie Andrews (KJ Apa), who was wrongfully arrested and charged with murder at the end of Riverdale season 2. As fans know, the suave-but-sinister Hiram Lodge (Mark Consuelos) framed Archie for killing one of the men who broke into Veronica's (Camila Mendes) lake house. (In reality, it was one of Hiram's hired hooligans who murdered the intruder.) 

At the top of season 3, Archie freely roams Riverdale, apparently having been released from prison on bond, but the terrors of the past still loom overhead as he wonders whether he'll ultimately be convicted of a crime he didn't commit. 

The season 3 footage, which punctuates a season 2 sizzle reel and only consists of a few small scenes, shows Archie, Veronica, Betty Cooper (Lili Reinhart), and Jughead Jones (Cole Sprouse) sipping on decadent milkshakes at Pop's Chock'lit Shoppe and discussing plans for a "normal" Labor Day weekend to make up for "the worst summer ever." 

The foursome then head out for a drive to a remote lake, where Archie and Veronica share a sweet kiss and Betty attempts to coax Jughead into the water. But Jughead clearly senses something is amiss, as he gazes worriedly into the distance. Is it Jason Blossom's ghost he sees? Ms. Grundy's? Just a weird-looking animal in the woods? 

What follows in the clip is shocking, even by Riverdale standards. The action cuts back to the Cooper residence — now without father Hal (Lochlyn Munro) living there, as he was revealed to be the Black Hood in season 2 – and we watch as Betty traipses down the stairs and discovers a ghastly sight: in the backyard, Betty's mother Alice (Mädchen Amick) and sister Polly (Tiera Skovbye) hold Polly's twin babies over a roaring fire. 

Yeah, Riverdale went there. 

But the series apparently won't stay there, as series showrunner and Archie Comics executive Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa explained the kids of Riverdale will focus just as much on their studies as they do on escaping various dangers.

"It's junior year, it's the first time they're thinking of college and we're going to try to infuse this season with a lot more high school stuff," Aguirre-Sacasa told THR. "We're going to talk about the SATs, applying to colleges, advisers, extracurriculars, etc."

Another big surprise? Jughead's mother and younger sister Jellybean will finally appear in Riverdale come season 3. According to Aguirre-Sacasa, fans can expect the pair to pop up "around episode 8 or 9."

All things considered, it looks like Riverdale will be just as jaw-dropping, dramatic, and binge-worthy as ever when season 3 premieres on Wednesday, October 10.