While there weren’t any Riverdale crossover episodes in Sabrina season 1, but Aguirre-Sacasa has given every indication that he wants to see the two shows collide in the future. With that in mind, the terrifying figure of the Gargoyle King and the mystery of spellbinding role-playing game Griffins and Gargoyles could provide the perfect path to that crossover.
The most recent episode of Riverdale revealed that the gang’s parents had all played Griffins and Gargoyles when they were at school, and that the obsession came to an end when their school principal died after drinking from the poisoned chalice. According to Alice Cooper, she and her friends found the game in a drawer full of confiscated items, so we still don’t really know who created it – or who the Gargoyle King is. But while it’s possible that Riverdale season 3 will simply be spent running around trying to unmask a villain, that would feel a bit too much like a retread of last season’s Black Hood mystery. Instead, what if Griffins and Gargoyles is actually a tool of the Dark Lord, and the Gargoyle King is one of his agents – or even the Dark Lord himself!
There are some superficial similarities between the Dark Lord and the Gargoyle King. Both have animalistic heads with horns (though the Gargoyle King’s head is made up of an animal skull and branches), and both like hanging out in forests. While the Gargoyle King could just be another Scooby Doo-style monster, it’s so tall that whoever is wearing the outfit would also have to be wearing stilts, or some kind of shoulder-mounted contraption holding the head up. The Gargoyle King has also popped up in a hospital, which isn’t really the kind of place where you can show up in a monster costume and not attract attention – further evidence that the creature is supernatural in nature.
Thematically there are also a lot of parallels between Riverdale season 3 and The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina season 1. Both involve villains whose goal is to seduce the young and innocent over to the dark side – in the Gargoyle King’s case, pushing teens towards suicide. The Dark Lord wants to claim Sabrina’s allegiance on her sixteenth birthday, and Griffins and Gargoyles seems purposefully designed to brainwash teenagers. There’s also the ongoing mystery of Riverdale’s local cult, The Farm, and the question of whether or not they’re somehow connected to the Gargoyle King.
It’s worth noting that Riverdale season 3’s production is still ongoing, with filming in Vancouver set to continue all the way through to April 2019. The positive reception that Chilling Adventures of Sabrina has received may well have encouraged Riverdale‘s producers to plan out a crossover for later this season, and a reveal connecting the Gargoyle King to the strange goings-on in Riverdale could be the perfect way to bridge the gap between shows.