Move over season one #Bughead, because season two #Choni has captured our hearts.
RIVERDALE SEASON 2 SPOILERS TO FOLLOW.
Cheryl Blossom, Riv High’s resident queen bitch with a secret vulnerable side, and Toni Topaz, South Side gangster-with-a-heart-of-gold bi angel were the two voted ‘least likely to have any from of chemistry’ at the season’s start, but wow do they rock our socks off every week as of late. Every interaction, from the early-in-the-season insults like ‘queen of the buskers’ or ‘move over, Cha-Cha’ to the gentle loving glances and touches, are now actively (or retroactively) adorable as chapters and prologues to this opposites-attract story as old as time. The fan-favourite mean girl meets the one-time most-hated character.
Everything about their story is poetically romantic, from Cheryl weepily coming out after the two end up at a movie date by pure happenstance, or Toni rescuing her from conversion therapy and kissing her in front of the whole asylum. You know, normal teen drama stuff. While other ships this season (like on-and-off Bughead or tumultuous Varchie) have been on rocky shores, their fledgling romance is pure because it’s so forbidden, with Cheryl’s horrendous mother being staunchly homophobic. Cheryl’s great-great-grandfather led the slaughter on Toni’s great-great-ancestors, and the two refuse to get impossibly hung up over things like this — like any other couple in this show apparently would, to their own doom.
I think what makes their relationship so especially sweet — aside from the showrunners’ bold and rightfully unapologetic choice of putting one of the central five main characters in a lesbian relationship out of of the blue — is their unrelenting support for each other, to the core of who they are. Cheryl is notoriously catty when it comes to fashion, but she accepts Toni’s mesh-‘n-flannel chic without the tiniest care in the world. Toni learned of Cheryl’s past borderline-psychopathic obsession with Josie, and instead of letting it faze her in even the slightest, she led the charge in rescuing her boo from the Sisters of Quiet Mercy.
They have sleepovers. They have each other over for dinner. They hold hands, or are handsy, or kiss in public. They do all these things, knowing full-well that their social statuses — both of which are carefully manicured on different ends of the ‘popular vs. cool spectrum’ — and that their images are on the line. They do this knowing that the Blossom family will tear them to pieces over it, and that they run a higher risk of that the higher-profile it becomes. Varchie broke up over an unrequited ‘I love you’. Bughead has broken up over less. Guys, Choni is the ship this fandom deserves. (Plus, Madelaine and Vanessa have been BFFs in real life since the Riverdale screen test, so the chemistry is instant.)
Long live Cheryl Blossom and Toni Topaz; may you never break our hearts.
Riverdale may not be back until April 18th on The CW, but don’t forget to peep The Game of Nerds for all your fandom fun stuff until then!