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Riverdale – When a Stranger Calls (2×05)

Two lovers, torn apart by neighborhood rivalries; the Northside vs. the Southside.

Sounds a lot like Romeo and Juliet, doesn’t it? I hope Jughead and Betty’s love story has a happier ending, but with all the chaos that ensued this week, it doesn’t seem likely.

The Black Hood continues to reign terror down on the stick town of Riverdale. But a small town has a different version of “terror” because if you think about it, Black Hood has only actually killed one person.

Instead, he’s veered into playing mind games with Betty, who really needs to let that terrifying “Lollipop” ringtone die a slow death.

Everything that took place between Betty and BH, as I like to call him, cemented my theory that the masked killer is actually her father Hal. Black Hood called her up to tell her that he’s pretty much obsessed with her and wants her all to herself. Then, he threatened to kill everyone she cared about, including Polly, unless she removed them all from her life.

Disturbed? Yes. But think about it – how would he know so much about Polly unless he was living under the same roof as Betty. Hal sees all because he is a Cooper. Now, we must establish his motive.

First, let’s start with Veronica. Obviously, the Cooper’s have a lot of bad blood with the Lodge’s so having Betty be best friends with Veronica probably isn’t ideal. BH forced B to cut ties with her V in order to prove her loyalty and Betty did so in the meanest way possible by belittling Ronnie and basically saying she’s no better than her criminal father.

V was tripping hard on some Jingle Jangle so thankfully, she didn’t really take it to heart. But Archie witnessed it, as did most of Riverdale’s finest, and knew that Betty wasn’t acting in the right mindset. Sure enough, she revealed that BH was still making calls and testing her loyalty. It wasn’t enough that she outed her mother as a Serpent in The Register. Also, can we just say Alice is the biggest hypocrite there ever was? Yet, I’m intrigued; what did she do in her heyday, when and how did she cut ties with the serpents, who was she sleeping with, is Betty’s mystery brother actually FP’s son!?

Next up on Black Hood’s list is Jughead. Obviously, there’s some tension between them already since he’s officially transferred schools. Anyone else notice that he still hasn’t been placed with a foster family and is just living all by himself in the trailer and joining a gang? Not that it matters because we know Juggie is capable of taking care of himself, even though his decision-making skills aren’t the best.

While Betty kept her dealings with the Black Hood a secret from him because she thought she was protecting him, Jughead kept his decision to join the Serpent’s officially from her. They were both going through their own initiations; Betty to establish loyalty with BH, Jughead to establish loyalty with the Serpents.

He kept telling himself that he would join the gang to keep the peace like his father had done, but something tells me Jughead’s interested in just “fitting in” and having a group that’s ride or die for him. And that’s no joke; after you make the decision to join, you can have to be willing to die for them because they will die for you.

The final portion of the hazing includes getting the shit beat out of you by your so-called “brothers and sisters.” It’s definitely hard to see Jughead go down this path but the change has been happening for weeks now, we just didn’t want to believe it. And seeing him rep his Southside attire made him really hot.

Since BH ordered Betty to break up with Jughead, she sent in Archie to do her dirty work. He warned her that they might lose Jughead forever but she was certain that this was irreversible. After seeing him be so cold to Archie, I don’t think it’ll be that easy. Understandably so because in his eyes, Betty didn’t even have the nerve to break up with him herself. I just hate to think that the two strongest characters on the show, who trusted each other completely, are going to be feuding now.

Betty didn’t follow BH’s orders without getting something in return. Each time she did what he asked, she was able to ask a question. So while his identity is still a big question mark, at least we know Betty would recognize his face. If that doesn’t scream “Hal Cooper” to you, I don’t know what does. BH says he was at the town hall meeting but we never saw Hal there. He knew that Betty’s favorite childhood book was Nancy Drew.

Instead of revealing his identity in the final phase, BH led Betty to an abandoned house where he forced her to put the mask on and face herself. He wanted to prove to Betty that they are “the same,” and not only did she look just like Hal in the mask but it would make sense why they’d be “similar.” Although once again, what is his motive?

When BH realized or finally admitted that he knew that Betty was telling Archie everything, he once again threatened to kill Polly, in a gruesome way. As she begged to spare her sister, he asked for another name of someone who deserved what was coming. At first, Betty was hesitant — how could she just lead someone to their death to pay for their sins. But when pressured she offered up Veronica’s friend Nick St. Clair.

Now look, Fred, Midge and Moose might have been up to no good, but it was never at the level of seriousness that rape is. Nick was basically the TV version of every man in Hollywood right now. He came to town with his parents and Veronica’s initiation into a role at Lodge industries required her to butter him up so his parents made the deal.

Except things took a turn for the worse when Nick began showing his true colors. Drugs were the first warning sign, him coming on to V and calling her a tease even when she said ‘no’ was a major second sign. And it all led to him drugging Cheryl and leading her stumbling body into a room where he was going to take advantage of her.

Thankfully, Veronica and the Pussycats saw it happen and stormed into the room just in time to kick some ass. I’m usually not a proponent of violence but in this case, he had it coming. So in a sense, he was just BH bait this whole time.

Why is Veronica hanging out with these kinds of people? We know she has a bad-girl past but drugs and skeezy dudes? Come on Vee!

While I’m glad Cheryl got a storyline, I still need them to find a way to utilize her a little better.

And of course, the final nail in the Bughead coffin was when Jughead revealed that Betty broke up with him and Toni swooped right in and kissed him. I tried to hate her, I really did but she’s not a bad person. She’s a different breed than Betty; she grew up tougher and she connects with Jughead on a mental level. It’s obvious that she’s been very attracted to him since day one but respected his relationship. Seeing him become one of her own and finding out he was single finally opened the door to make her move. Do I hate that Jughead is in the arms of another woman right after breaking up with Betty without even calling her to clarify her motives? Of course but can you blame the guy? He’s been forced to become the very thing he tried so hard not to be.

Thoughts on this week’s Riverdale? Who do you think Black Hood is? If it isn’t Hal, another theory is that the masked killer is Betty’s brother Chic and she’s part of it as Dark Betty, her dissociative personality alter ego, which was saw in season 1. Remember when she told Jughead that there was this evil inside of her and she didn’t know how to control it? Well, this might be why; she doesn’t even remember switching to this alter ego! But everything that BH knows is what Betty would somehow know or things she’d have access to. And it would really explain the “we are the same” part.

I also wonder if BH ships Betty and Archie. He seemed rather upset that she was telling Archie everything they’d talked about but he didn’t really punish her for it. Therefore, maybe he wanst Jug and Vee out of the picture so these two could be?

Are you a fan of the darker, and often times, spookier Riverdale? Are you rooting for Toni and Jug?

Riverdale – When a Stranger Calls (2×05) Reviewed by on . Two lovers, torn apart by neighborhood rivalries; the Northside vs. the Southside. Sounds a lot like Romeo and Juliet, doesn't it? I hope Jughead and Betty's lo Two lovers, torn apart by neighborhood rivalries; the Northside vs. the Southside. Sounds a lot like Romeo and Juliet, doesn't it? I hope Jughead and Betty's lo Rating: 0
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