I’m happy to say that, after a rough start with Kevin Keller in the Riverdale pilot, last week's episode, "Chapter Four: The Last Picture Show," was the first really good episode for Kevin, played by actor Casey Cott. For one, the dialogue felt like a better fit. His lines are still snappy, but there’s less leaning on the "quirky gay best friend” trope and more fleshing him out as a supporting character.

Then there’s Sheriff Keller, who knows Kevin is gay and just wants his son happy and safe. When he says he doesn’t want his son “cruising” for guys at the drive-in (which makes Kevin groan in embarrassment), it’s only because one of Kevin’s male classmates was recently murdered in the woods nearby.

 

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So it’s not, “I don’t want you kissing boys,” it’s, “I would like you to kiss boys you already know, and not go near the murder woods.” Sheriff Keller is a very good dad, and his relationship with Kevin is lovely.

 

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Unfortunately for Sheriff Keller, Kevin does meet a boy near the murder woods --- and fortunately for the viewers, the boy is super cute and mostly just really wants to kiss Kevin.

I like Kevin being happy! The fact that Joaquin is a local gang member will certainly cause complications with Kevin’s law enforcement dad, and with some of Kevin’s friends, but frankly, Kevin/Joaquin is the healthiest romance the show has given us so far. I dig it.

"The Last Picture Show" suggests a very promising direction for Kevin Keller’s characterization in the future. Now I’m just hoping the "Moose is not straight" thing from earlier episodes gets the same consideration and development.

 

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