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|“||Some people say a lynch mob got him. Hung him from a tree near Pickens Park. Others think he hopped a train, went out to California, started praying to the Devil. Others say he never left Riverdale.||„|
|~ McGinty to Jughead Jones on the Riverdale Reaper.|
The Riverdale Reaper is a villain from the series Riverdale based on the Archie Comics characters. He is a psychotic mass murderer who targeted victims seemingly at random and murdered an entire family save for one member before then disappearing, becoming an infamous figure in Riverdale's past.
The exact origins of the Riverdale Reaper, including his real name, are not known. Allegedly, he was a "con man" and a "preacher" passing through Riverdale. Whatever the truth, he went after an innocent family called the Conways, murdering the entire family save for the third child, Joseph Conway (who changed his name to Joseph Svenson). After this, the Reaper left, his ultimate fate unknown. Riverdale's populace went looking for him and ended up burying an innocent man alive as a scapegoat, unaware that the true murderer had evaded their clutches. Stories differ as to what ultimately became of him, and as such, he became a figure of mystery (and terror), to the people of Riverdale in the years afterwards. The Conway's home, meanwhile, became known as "The Devil's House", never to be occupied again.
Because the Riverdale Reaper was never caught, Archie, Jughead, Veronica, and Betty considered the possibility that the Riverdale Reaper was in fact the Black Hood (even though he'd have been elderly by the time of the present day), or else connected to him in some way. In fact the latter idea was true, as the Riverdale Reaper's unmotivated murders of his family had caused Joseph Svenson to snap himself and become the Black Hood, doing what he did as a means of punishing Riverdale for it's "sins".
It was later revealed that the Reaper was Louis Cooper who murdered the Conway family after they blackmailed him and had his son manipulate Joseph into pointing out the wrong man.
- His status as an infamous American mass murderer who was never caught or identified brings to mind the Zodiac Killer, who was also a mass murderer who's identity remains unknown.
- His given backstory of a "preacher passing through town", is similar to the backstory of the villain Reverend Harry Powell from Night of the Hunter, who was a brutal mass-murdering preacher making his way through an isolated American town.