Vancouver Screen Scene: From Riverdale and Bates Motel to You Me Her

KJ Apa plays Archie Andrews on Riverdale

KJ Apa goes red to play Archie Andrews on Riverdale.

In this week’s roundup of what’s shooting in Vancouver, we’ve got some TV series with dark psychological themes, one of the first TV polyamorous romcoms, and a series about a really, really big robot.

Wanna know more? Well, let’s get to it then, shall we?

A new live-action take on Archie Comics, Riverdale, got underway on Season 1 on September 7.

This dark, subversive TV series continues shooting in town until December 12, just in time for the comic’s 75th anniversary that month.

A far cry from the wholesome hijinks of the comic-book series, the TV series delves into taboo territory.

Camila Mendes

Camila Mendes stars as Veronica on Riverdale.

For starters, Archie (KJ Apa) and his music teacher, Ms. Grundy (Sarah Habel) have had a controversial, risqué relationship. But with that having come to an end, there’s chemistry between Archie and a new student, Veronica (Camila Mendes).

But will Veronica risk her new friendship with Betty (Lili Reinhart), who has a crush on Archie?

Meanwhile, Cheryl Blossom (Madelaine Petsch) has the potential to turn this love triangle into trouble—but she has secrets of her own, particularly when it comes to the death of her twin brother.

There are a number of familiar faces from former teen-based TV series in this cast as well.

Robin Givens (Head of the Class) joined the cast as Mayor Sierra McCoy, and Luke Perry (Beverly Hills, 90210) plays Archie’s father, Fred Andrews.

Robin Givens

Robin Givens

Aside from the character names and basic structure, this racy and mature adaptation may have very few resemblances to the original material.

Will it work? We’ll have to wait and see.

Vera Farmiga stars as Norma Bates on Bates Motel

Vera Farmiga stars as Norma Bates on Bates Motel.

On the topic of dark TV series, the even more psychologically twisted Bates Motel gets into gear for Season 5 on September 16, continuing until January 24.

The series is a contemporary prequel to Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 film Psycho.

Lead actors Vera Farmiga and Freddie Highmore reprise their roles as the disturbingly codependent and mentally unstable Norma Louise Bates and Norman Bates.

Will Rihanna take a shower—or a bath—at Bates Motel?

Will Rihanna take a shower—or a bath—at the Bates Motel?

As previously mentioned, the big news is that Rihanna will be coming to town to take up the role of Marion Crane.

Will Norman Bates become even more mentally fragile? Will more people be killed? Will Marion Crane take a shower? Or will Rihanna break out her umbrella—and break into song—in the shower? (Ella? Ella? Ella?)

Stay tuned—if you dare.

So with all that covered, let’s move on to some lighter fare.

Anyone up for one of the first poly-romcoms on TV?

You Me Her

Rachel Blanchard, Priscilla Faia, and Greg Poehler star in You Me Her.

Vancouver plays Portland, Oregon, in HBO Canada’s You Me Her, which starts production on its second season on September 26 and continues until November 10.

The romantic-comedy series follows the three-way relationship between assistant dean Jack Travarsky (Greg Poehler—yes, he’s the brother of Amy Poehler) and his wife Emma (Rachel Blanchard), and psychology grad student and call girl Isabella Silva (Victoria’s Priscilla Faia).



Elsewhere in the city, even though Season 1 of the live-action sci-fi series Mech-X4 hasn’t aired yet, it launches into production on Season 2 on September 19, shooting until March 14.

The adventure comedy TV series stars Nathaniel James Potvin as Ryan Walker, a high schooler who has the ability to control technology with his mind.

His technopathy awakens Mech-X4, a 120-foot robot giant.

Along with his brother and two friends, he uses the robot to defend his town against invading monsters.

Season 1 will air in November.



As for productions leaving the city, Season 1 of the Canadian sci-fi TV series Aftermath wrapped up on September 8. It began on May 9.

It stars Anne Heche and James Tupper as parents of three children who struggle to survive after a wave of apocalyptic events, including cataclysmic storms, earthquakes, meteor strikes, plagues, and the development of supernatural creatures.

The Man in the High Castle

The Man in the High Castle

Meanwhile, another production leaving town looks to an alternate past instead of the future.

The dystopian series The Man in the High Castle wraps up shooting its second season on September 20. It began shooting here back on March 18.

Based on the novel by Philip K. Dick, the Ridley Scott–produced series explores what might have happened had the Axis powers won the Second World War, and Japan and Germany overtook the United States.

The series stars Alexa Davalos, Luke Kleintank, Rufus Sewell, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, Joel de la Fuente, Rupert Evans, and DJ Qualls.

The second season will premiere on December 16 on Amazon Video.

So then, fanboys and fangirls, it appears you’ve got your work cut out for you of what to try and catch a glimpse of on the streets of Hollywood North this week. Good luck and happy star-spotting!

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