Riverdale: 20 most important characters on the show

5 of 21

Riverdale — “Chapter Forty-One: Manhunter” — Image Number: RVD306a_0191.jpg — Pictured: Nathalie Boltt as Penelope Blossom — Photo: Dean Buscher/The CW — © 2018 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

17. Penelope Blossom

You would think that Clifford Blossom would make the list of Riverdale’s most important characters since he shaped much of the first season’s mystery. But he’s no longer with us (and neither is his surprise twin brother Claudius), and we’re not about to call a man who killed his son important.

However, Penelope Blossom? She’s a completely different story. Yes, Penelope could be called the actual worst, but she’s a small business owner and a force to be reckoned with.

As a mother, Penelope Blossom isn’t in the running for any honorific titles. She’s no mother of the year by a long shot. Forget anything she’s done that could cause Cheryl any trauma; the things she says to her daughter just might be even worse.

Even though Penelope is an awful person, Nathalie Boltt shades her performances with a touch of irony that’s a needed reminder of how over the top these characters can be. Considering Penelope runs a brothel called the Maple Club, she needs to be a little bit over the top.

Of course, we learned in Season 3 that Penelope Blossom grew up an orphan at the Sisters of Quiet Mercy before getting adopted by the Blossom family for her red hair. She was raised to become the wife of her adopted brother Clifford, whom she later poisoned to death for murdering their son, Jason.

In fact, Penelope has made a secret habit of poisoning bad men, prompting Betty to dub her the Red Dahlia. Truly, Riverdale would be lost without its sex positive vigilante with an affinity for killing men with pufferfish poison.