If you were to type the word “Choni” into the Twitter search bar right now, you would be met with countless tweets hailing today, March 7, as a type of holy day in the Riverdale fandom. The fanfare is for good reason, since the CW teen soap's star Vanessa Morgan recently posted an eye-grabbing photo from tonight’s episode, “The Hills Have Eyes,” featuring her own character, season 2 breakout Toni Topaz, and the beloved Cheryl Blossom (Madelaine Petsch) at Pop’s diner. While that kind of image would seem pretty run-of-the-mill for a fictional town as obsessed with burgers as Riverdale, this photo is special; in this photo, Cheryl and Toni are so close they’re holding hands.
For the legion of fans who have been waiting for a Cheryl-Toni pairing since the duo initially crossed paths in season 2 installment “Death Proof,” this is the first major scrap of evidence the long-hoped-for romance might become a Riverdale reality in the near future. Toni’s portrayer Vanessa Morgan is all for a possible relationship, whatever that connection may be.
“Who knows what it’s going to end up blossoming into,” the actress told Refinery29 of the prospective pairing, no pun intended. “But I definitely think it’s two powerful girls who can help each other out and that would be really awesome to see on screen.”
Although both Southside Serpent Toni, who is vocal about her bisexuality, and syrup heiress Cheryl, whom portrayer Madelaine Petsch recently confirmed is bisexual, are “powerful girls” they couldn’t be more different, right? After all, one is a proud biker gang member and one is a syrup heiress. However, Morgan begs to differ. “You might think they’re opposites, [but] I think that relationship would make sense,” she explained. “They’re both strong independent young women.”
While Morgan can’t confirm exactly what kind of bond Toni and Cheryl will begin to “develop,” to use her word, during “Hills,” any type of relationship does feel like a long time coming. “People started writing fan fiction about Toni and Cheryl as soon as they saw me pass by Cheryl and rhwy said I looked at her butt during the [‘Death Proof’] race,” the actress, who describes “Choni” as the official winning ship name, recalled.
That ship-starting scene was splashed on our screens eight episodes ago, which is an eternity in Riverdale. Serial killers were (supposedly) tracked down and killed in that time. Couples broke up and reunited in that time. The Cooper family murdered someone and hid the body in that time. That’s why these hours of fan-perceived chemistry give the upcoming episode so much tension. As creator Roberto Aguirre Sacasa said on Twitter, the hiatus-ending installment will be the “sexiest episode of Riverdale ever.” Morgan agrees.
“From the teaser pictures that Roberto just posted, there’s a picture of Jughead and Veronica kissing and then Toni and Cheryl have a moment of hands touching,” Toni’s real-life counterpart said. “I definitely think it probably is the actual sexiest episode yet … It lives up to the hype. I haven’t seen the episode yet, but based on filming, it lives up to the hype.”
Though we can all celebrate Riverdale reaching a new plateau of sexy filled with Vughead kisses — “At the end of the episode you kind of know what’s going on [there],” Morgan promises — and Choni “developments,” it sounds like things will only get wilder as we approach the second half of everyone’s favorite twisty teen soap.
Morgan is “sure” season 2 will get even friskier, saying, “With Riverdale, the writers are always one-upping each episode, you know what I mean? There’s no way they’re going to end with [“Hills”] being the sexiest episode.”
Raise your hand if you can't wait to find out what's sexier than a Varchie hookup, a Bughead hookup, and (at minimum) a Vughead kiss. Oh, it's everyone? Good thing there are nine episodes left of Riverdale season 2.
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