The CW loves its stunt casting, and never fails to jump at what could be a missed opportunity. With Barb fever boiling over from Stranger Things, the network has moved fast to secure the actress who plays the doomed best friend for their Archie reboot Riverdale. Shannon Purser will be playing Ethel Muggs in this new teen drama based on the popular comic books.
Shannon Purser only had a few precious scenes in this summer's smash hit series Stranger Things, playing Nancy Wheeler's best friend who gets taken to the Upside Down and killed by the Demogorgon. Barb became a breakout character and fan-favorite. Now, Shannon Purser will star in at least three episodes of Riverdale, and may appear in more later on in the series' run.
Ethel Muggs, sometimes known as Big Ethel, has a major crush on Jughead (played by Cole) in the comics. In this new version, she will be romantically tied to someone completely different. Entertainment Weekly doesn't reveal who her new paramour is, but they do reveal that she will be drawn into a somewhat shady friendship with Veronica (Camila Mendes) and Betty (Lili Reinhart) as the girls plot revenge against the school's bully Reggie Mantle, who is Archie's high school rival.
In other Riverdale news, former Head of the Class alum Robin Givens has been cast as Mayor Sierra McCoy. She will preside over the present day town in this drama, which is being called a surprising and subversive diversion from the comics. It will be weird, dark and has already been compared to Twin Peaks. Mayor McCoy is also the mother of Josie, the lead singer in the soon-to-be world famous band Josie and the Pussycats.
Givens' Mayor is said to be 'chic and driven' by Deadline. She will help get Riverdale back on its feet after the mysterious death of Jason Blossom, while also heading up the town's 75th Jubilee Celebration.
Mayor McCoy will be making her big entrance in Riverdale's second episode. It isn't known when Shannon Purser's Ethel will show up. Riverdale premieres as a midseason show on The CW, with The Flash's Greg Berlanti serving as an executive producer.