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Riverdale

Riverdale – The Tell-Tale Heart (2×13)

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Riverdale has been all over the place as of late. It’s latest obsession? The mob movie genre. Just the right amount of noir elements mixed with the beloved teen drama tropes.

And these teens? They’re less worried about math class and more about whether or not someone will find the dead body they just helped their mom bury and if the FBI agent will dig up something to incriminate their parents.

In other words, it’s another day in this deliciously bad town.

The series thrives on unexpected, out of control, almost lunatic twists, which is one of the main reasons we love it so much.

Without dragging on the mystery of FBI agent Adams any longer, the series revealed that he wasn’t a government agent but rather a capo working for the Lodge’s to test Archie’s loyalty.

Finally, some sense to the out-of-place storyline. Archie’s still the dumbest of the group, but at least he acted accordingly and saved both his and his dads’ ass.

The reveal wasn’t entirely shocking, although my jaw did drop because THEY DID THAT. Let’s forget about it being a set-up for a minute though, the real question is what do they have planned for Archie now that he’s proven to be worthy?

More shocking than the obvious reveal that Adams is a fake-out was that Hiram wasn’t the mob boss in charge, it was actually Hermione.

All those looks and glances? It’s been her.

The call to take out Poppa Poutine? Probably also her. We’ve been vilifying the wrong person this whole time because Hiram is so outspoken and commanding. Instead, he’s her puppet. This is definitely not the same Hermione from season one.

We assumed it was because Hiram was back calling the shots, it seems like we never truly knew her to begin with.

There have been numerous, plausible theories that kept the viewers in the dark about the shady, now fake, agent; some thought he was a figment of Archie’s imagination (I blame his pale skin), some guessed he was working for the Lodges (close), still some thought he really was just trying to bring justice to the corruption by harassing a teen (unlikely).

The episode threw a wrench into that imaginary agent theory when Adams paid Fred a little visit to really motivate Archie into giving him something credible. If Fred can see him, he must be a real person. /

But a real agent? We were always skeptical. I’d assume the FBI had better ways of handling an informant, they probably wouldn’t go after a minor without his father’s consent and they’d never actually attempt to blackmail someone to get their way.

Seeing how the series revealed such a minor mystery further proves my theory that we have not found the actual Black Hood. Every other mystery personally affects multiple residents of Riverdale, yet the Black Hood was wrapped up into a tiny neat boy and the town never spoke of it again. I’m with Archie here — I’m not too sure we actually got the guy. Based on that promo for the next episode, the Black Hood finally strikes again. He laid low enough for the residents to feel safe again before coming back to finish what he started.

Except since his last attack, everyone has committed more sins and gotten themselves into way more trouble. Archie is no longer just running a retaliation gang at school, he’s been welcomed into the Lodge family and getting training under two of the biggest mob bosses in town. And he’s loyal. Veronica may have wanted to keep him out of the shady business dealings so he’ll remain her “light,” but that light is getting snuffed out.

Betty is a murderer, sort-of. We’ll get to that. Veronica is looped into the family business so she’s been manipulating nearly everyone in school, including Mayor McCoy. And Juggy? He’s pledged his allegiance to a gang that puts family over everything. And the Serpent’s, well, they fight until the last moment.

This group isn’t the same, cowardly and easily manipulated group of kids that the Black Hood first encountered. They’re a force to be reckoned with.

Bloody-murder. There is really no other name for what happened at Betty’s house, which is what the relatively unhinged, yet forcibly sweet blonde dealt with throughout the episode.

Betty will do anything to save her loved ones; her fiercely protective side is one of the things we love most about her. So when she stumbled upon Alice cleaning up blood in the kitchen, she didn’t think twice before getting her hands all dirty.

Should Alice have involved her in any of it? No. Should Betty have called the police right away? Of course. Should they be protecting someone named Chic that they know an scare amount about? Hell no!

But logical decisions have never made for good television you guys!

Before Hal arrives to pick up some “toiletries” because there’s clearly no 24-7 Walgreens in town, the ladies get down to cleaning. He’s suspicious of the bleach smell, but Alice chalks it up to some tomato paste she didn’t want to stain. Alice, girl, that makes no sense.

Betty may have a dark side, but she also has a conscience. The act of murder understandably haunted her dreams and invaded every crevice of her brain so she was barely able to function let alone eat a bowl of cereal without flinching.

Her inability to forget and move on actually saved them because it allowed her to find “shady dudes” phone, which led to the discovery that “shady dude” was Chic’s drug dealer, who he called that night.

Don’t judge me on this but I don’t trust Chic for one second. He’s become way too comfortable with becoming a Cooper and going from motel web-camming to nightly dinners with mommy just aren’t normal.

There was one moment where Chic seemed a little too pleased with the fact that Betty and Alice were so tortured by the murder and fighting. It’s almost as if this was his plan, part one of some epic takedown. Considering Alice gave him away and made his childhood hell, while deciding to keep Betty and give her a comfortable home, I can’t say I blame the guy. But trying to ruin someone who is making an effort? That’s deranged, even in Riverdale.

Betty crumbles under the pressure and tells Jughead now making him an accessory. She may have only told him because she felt bad for completely forgetting about their first time together and making him feel inadequate. Jughead’s reaction is of pure terror; he loves anything to do with serial killers but this is too close for comfort.

He’s adamant that Betty should tell the police, but quickly realizes just how easy it is to get caught up in all the illegalities.

Also — covering up a murder takes a lot of work. Just don’t kill people!

Jughead proves to be ride-or-die as he helps her dispose of the “shady dudes” car and phone.

By that point, everyone, including Alice, is cracking as they realize they’re in way over their heads and don’t actually know a damn thing about covering up a murder.

They turn to someone with a little more expertise in the field: F.P Jones.

He isn’t pleased with Alice bringing the kids in on all of this, but he won’t let them all make the same mistake he made with Jason Blossom. Let’s just allow that to sink in. This dude is helping people clean up a murder because he learned from his first go-around.

Maybe the Black Hood really was onto something when he came to rid this town of sins? Y’all a damn mess!

I’m not going to lie, I learned a thing or two from F.P. who covered the whole body in some sodium hydroxide. Enjoy your milkshake.

Riverdale is the only show that can get away with Pop’s being a place that people come for milkshakes, first dates, late night studying and murder scheming.

We all saw F.P grabbing Alice’s hand to comfort her right? They are totally getting back together. It won’t be long before Alice is sliding into her Serpent jacket again. And F.P will really put Chic into place — unless he’s his real father — unlike Hal.

Hal is such a hypocrite, who is most likely unsure of what he’s really doing with his life. He’s sleeping around with Penelope and not even being discreet. Cheryl figured it out and it wasn’t long before she told Betty who in-turn used it to get him off of Chic’s back.

I need him to give me a valid reason for constantly harassing Chic other than not trusting him. None of us trust him Hal, but you think leaving your wife and daughter with him alone in the house while you go sleep with Penelope (ew!) is going to keep them safe? Boy, bye.

Mayor McCoy found out the Lodge’s wanted to speed up their development on the Southside and since she was becoming an obstacle, threatened to expose her affair with Sheriff Keller to have her discredited.

Veronica has fully embraced her role of her parents secret weapon and warned McCoy beforehand so she could gracefully step down.

Seeing Veronica dig her way in deeper into the family business is concerning, but at least she’s doing everything to minimize the potential fallout.

This show is a delicious mess, right down to its core. There’s scandal, murder, mob dealings, a town feud, and that’s just a Wednesday afternoon.

 

 

 

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Riverdale

Riverdale – The Midnight Club (3×04)

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Riverdale The Midnight Club

This is how our parents came to be.

It all goes back to a dangerous and unexpected game that has weaseled its way back into the halls of Riverdale high and forced Alice, FP, Ciara, Hermione, Fred, Hiram and Tommy to re-live what was known as the age of “The Midnight Club.”

Understanding the origins of Griffins and Gargoyles simultaneously answered many questions we had about the parents’ past.

For starters, Alice was already pregnant with FP’s baby when they all landed in detention, FP was a jock with a promising future but his father was abusive, and much like Archie, Fred carried the burden of the world on his shoulders since his father was gravely ill.

However, the most surprising revelation was that Penelope isn’t actually a Blossom. As the teens were all sharing secrets, she revealed that she grew up at The Sisters of Quiet Mercy before getting adopted by a couple who groomed her to go from being Clifford’s sister to his life companion.

Gross, right? I never thought I’d say this but you actually have to feel bad for Penelope.

As for Hermione, we’re more understanding of her decision to spend the rest of her life with Hiram Lodge because she didn’t want to clean toilets like her mother. She thought Hiram had it all figured out, but little did she know, she’d have to give up her freedom for this life of luxury.

I had my expectation set pretty low for this episode, but I’ll gladly admit that it exceeded them all and then some!

Everyone did such a phenomenal job getting into the roles of the parents. Yes, there were moments where I had to remind myself that I was watching Alice Smith and not some dark version of Betty again, but otherwise, it was great fun seeing them in these reimagined roles.

Biggest props go to Cole Sprouse for really nailing FP’mannerisms and swag. Also, the wardrobe department definitely knew what they were doing!

As G&G spreads through the halls of present-day Riverdale High, Betty becomes increasingly curious about what her mother knows about it. Especially since she and FP were so triggered by Jughead having the rule book.

It’s going to take a lot more than Hermione making a plea for everyone not to play the game to stop them from playing the game.

Doesn’t she know that telling someone they can’t do something only makes them want to do it more? That’s like psych 101.

Therefore, Hermione just ensured that all the kids were going to be playing it.

After a call from the morgue, Betty finally had concrete proof that someone died with blue lips when her mother was in high school and so Alice has no choice but to fess up to what really happened during a year that “smelled like teen spirit.”

Cue the flashbacks.

The game was found in a teacher’s secret drawer and served as their escape from a grim reality.

What started out as innocent fun soon turned into a full-on addiction. Before they knew it, they had ditched the board and began role-playing characters and quests, even joining forces with an opposing team which included Hiram and Tommy. Who knew those two would ever be on the same team?

Eventually, they received mysterious invites to an ascension party which turned into a Fizzle Rocks induced party.

It’s important to note that none of them fessed up to organizing the event nor did any of them know ascension meant “dying for the cause.”

Alice was the only sober one the whole night because, you know, she was pregnant.

Therefore, she’s the only one who saw the chalices filled to the brim with blue liquid, which they later found out killed Principal Featherhead, and she was the only one who saw the terrifying Gargoyle King in the flesh.

Fearing that someone would blame them for the crime if they knew they were doped up and trespassing, they made a pact never to talk about what happened.

Those of you that guessed the parents’ secret would be a darker take on “I Know What You Did Last Summer,” you were pretty accurate.

That night is also what changed them and formed them into the people — the strangers — they are today.

Fred gave up music after his father died to work at the fam business, the Catholic school girl went against her mother’s wishes and began a lifetime of compromises with petty criminal Hiram Lodge, Romeo and Juliet aka Tom and Ciara took their curtain call because they were too “different,” game master Penelope became a pawn and grew a liking to Thornhill and Clifford (hey, Jason!), high school MVP FP became a greaser gang member, and Alice traded in her Serpent jacket for a Betty pink blazer and a jock named Hal Cooper.

Ah, so many decisions they were going to regret one day! Don’t you wish you could go back and try to stop them?

While the G&G backstory is illuminating, it still doesn’t tell us who is responsible for resurrecting the game in the present day nor does it reveal who tried to poison one of their own when Featherhead became an unintentional victim.

Based on Betty’s assumptions, someone from the Midnight Club had to be responsible then and could very well be responsible now.

This brings us to our latest mystery — who is the Gargoyle King?

I have to point out that in the flashbacks, I didn’t see much of FP Jones running amok in the halls. However, given how terrified he was of the game returning, I don’t think he’s responsible.

However, Hiram Lodge was a petty criminal then and he’s certainly only gotten worse. Not to mention, he was the one who brought the drugs in the first place.

For someone who is constantly trying to keep his reign on Riverdale and incite fear, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was behind the resurrection of a game that preys on impressionable minds and induces paranoia, delusions and violence.

How is any of that different than what he did to Archie last season?

Not only are we trying to figure out who is behind the game, but as we see, Betty now has a problem with Jughead being addicted to the game.

If the scene we saw towards the end was real and not a hallucination on her part then Jughead is a goner.

The deranged look in his eyes paired with talk of getting to the third level, ascending and beating “him” shows us that he’s in too deep.

Will Betty be able to save him?

And let’s not forget that The Farm is still in Riverdale and could very well have played some part the spreading of the game.

Other Thoughts

  • Fibes instead of Forbes. Riverdale’s twists on everyday objects and places is always hilarious.
  • I need adult FP and Fred to recreate that streaking scene. Pretty please.
  • I really love that what’s old is new again. I didn’t know Ciara and Tommy dated back in the day but the revelation makes their relationship so much more logical now.
  • FP tries to hook up with Hermione! Weird.
  • Fred and Alice hooked up while she was pregnant! Scandalous!
  • The old school version of the game allowed the cast to become versions of their comic book characters! Did you see Juggie’s crown?

What did you think of the flashback episode?

Did it give you some insight and a better understanding of the parents? Were you hoping for more? Are you a fan of the G&G storyline? Were the parents always monsters? Did the game turn them into monsters?

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Riverdale

Riverdale – As Above, So Below (3×03)

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Riverdale As Above, So Below

The Farm and a deadly game of Griffins and Gargoyles have to be connected in some way.

And, although, it might take Jughead and Betty a little longer to prove it, one thing is for certain: Evelyn Evernever is not to be trusted!

Betty pointed out that game started around the same time that the Farm rolled into town, a farm she believes to be a cult.

She wouldn’t be too off the mark either as The Farm operates just like other famous cults including Scientology.

In an effort to find out more about the connection, and Evelyn’s newfound relationship with Ethel Muggs, Betty decided to express her interest in The Farm, which opened up a chapter on campus.

Evelyn immediately assumed that Betty was ready for her first session which included confessing your deepest darkest secrets so they could, without a doubt, use them against you in the future.

Betty wasn’t into it, but it didn’t really matter because Alice had already told The Farm everything including how they murdered Shady Man and buried the body.

Alice assures Betty it’s alright because The Farm would never use her testimony against her which further proves just how brainwashed she really is.

She trusts The Farm more than her own daughter and believes they have her back on everything when, in fact, she’s now their prisoner.

She’s given them enough ammo to use against her so she never leaves.

They also want to cut off Betty because she’s the voice of reason — the only logical person who might throw a wrench in their plans.

It’s infuriating that in a fit of rage, Betty revealed exactly what she thought about The Farm thus not being able to dig deeper into them.

There’s also something to be said that Betty and Ethel both having seizures in the presence of Evelyn that they will hopefully delve into further.

Furthermore, both The Farm and the game of G&G operate in similar ways in terms of prospects proving trustworthiness.

Betty had to share her secrets to earn her way in while Jughead needed to prove his worthiness by playing the game and drinking a chalice filled with Gargoyle’s blood aka the Fresh Aid mixed with the poison. Yep, exactly the kind that killed Doiley.

Jughead’s desire to secure the rulebook was greater than rational thought so she drank the chalice and hoped for the best.

His was poison free, thankfully, but Ethel drank the remaining juice thus ingesting the poison purposefully.

Jughead rushed her to the hospital where they successfully reversed the effects and put her on suicide watch. It’s necessary because Ethel has those “victorious” crazy eyes.

The one good thing about this dark storyline is that dear old Ethel is guaranteed more screentime.

At this point, I don’t know who is more brainwashed Ethel or Alice. It’s disturbing that a young woman would be so brainwashed she’d willingly kill people in the name of the game, think that her death will ascend her to some greater level and leave her fate in the hands of some coin.

However, whatever or whoever this Gargoyle King is — he looks pretty real — he’s proven to be stronger than any psych hold because, in the end, Ethel is freed from the straps and bows down to the tree-like figure assuring him she’s already somehow spread his gospel.

Did she have help?

The addition of G&G not only makes for an unpredictable season, it forces the parents to pay for their sins. There’s a reason FP and Alice are so adamant about Betty and Jughead not digging into this game any deeper; it implicates them!

When FP found Jughead with the manual and noticed his blue lips signifying that he played the game, he freaked out which in turn proved Betty’s point that the parents aren’t being upfront with information.

Don’t they see how dangerous this has become and that they need the full story to stop it?

I’m disappointed in FP for being oblivious about the dangers of The Farm, as well. Has he not seen a change in Alice’s attitude?

Their sex scene, hot as it was, was also bittersweet because it was a recommendation from The Farm. What do they want from FP? Are they hoping Alice recruits him eventually?

I wonder how FP would feel if he found out Alice was going around airing out her business, business that would implicate him, Jughead and even Betty.

Elsewhere, Hiram continued declaring war on Archie and Veronica.

He’s after Ronnie’s speakeasy by sending the Ghoulies and Minetta to do his dirty work.

There’s no easy way to defeat Hiram because he’s stacked with supporters at every corner.

His gang-like presence in the city ensures that he’s untouchable.

It doesn’t matter that the Serpents and Ronnie were able to break into the Whyte Worm and prove he’s running a rogue Jingle Jangle operation when the minute she told him, he moved it to a different location.

And even if he hadn’t, what would Ronnie do? Take the pictures to the authorities? Minetta wouldn’t care, and while the FBI may seem menacing, he probably has someone on his payroll there too.

Therefore, while her chic speakeasy opening went off without a hitch, it probably won’t be that seamless every time.

As for Archie, he basically became the Warden’s new bitch.

Regardless of Archie’s strategy for human cage fighting, he was constantly shooting himself in the foot because the Warden is Hiram’s man which means there is no winning.

When he ended the fight with one punch, he found out that the Warden didn’t like short fights because there was no entertainment factor.

When he extended the fight and took all the punches before finally nailing down the last hit, he found himself impressing the Warden so much he inadvertently did what Mad Dog warned him not to do.

And apparently, he didn’t come to the realization beforehand that Hiram is the mastermind behind his lock-up and he has everyone, including the Warden, in his pocket.

I bet Archie is really regretting thinking that Juvie would make him repent for his sins. All of his decisions let the Lodge’s win; he was doing exactly what Hiram wanted him to.

Little did Hiram know, everything that transpired between him and Archie last season was actually preparing and toughening him up for this very test. Archie is way stronger than anyone believes.

Instead of feeling defeated, Archie devised a plan to help all of his cage fighting teammates, Joaquin included, escape.

Will they get away with it?

Obviously, Fred knows something is awry especially when the Warden told him he couldn’t visit his son.

What are your thoughts? Will the Ghoulies prove to be a problem for Ronnie?

Will Archie find a way to escape? He doesn’t even know about the darkness that is G&G looming over Riverdale right now.

We’re really missing him at all the school-related functions.

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Riverdale

Riverdale – Labor Day (3×01)

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Riverdale Labor Day

Riverdale has a knack for finding an even balance of light and darkness within every episode.

Following the summer hiatus, the series picked things up with Archie’s arrest for the murder of Cassidy Bullock, the lakehouse teen we presume (cause we never saw a body) was murdered by Hiram Lodge’s lackey, Andre.

Mary returned from Chicago to defend her little boy from the monster that is Hiram Lodge. Basically, everyone in Riverdale knows that Hiram is framing boy-next-door and yet, they can’t do anything about it. Sounds like what’s happening in our country right now.

My biggest gripe is with Veronica because her father basically confessed to doing all of it to spite her because she disobeyed him and chose Archie over family. Why is she still sticking around the house? Doesn’t she own Pops? Doesn’t she have an inheritance? Can’t she move in with Betty?

Ronnie confronted her mother for staying by her father’s side and finally, Hermione admitted to what we’ve all known — she’s stuck in a loveless marriage and she’s terrified of her husband.

Hiram may be punishing Ronnie by putting Archie behind bars, but he would never hurt her; the same cannot be said for Hermione.

We knew Hiram was dangerous, but for his own wife to fear for her life is she doesn’t obey him? That’s a new level.

How long before she joins Fred, Sheriff Keller, and FP Jones in the takedown of Hiram? There’s strength in numbers.

Can we talk about how great that team-up is? The hot dads of Riverdale coming together to free Archie may be the most exciting revelation of the season. Don’t worry Mary, ya boys got this.

Archie taking the lawyer’s plea deal may have seemed stupid on the surface because, you know, he’s not actually guilty, but of all people in this town, he knows how Hiram operates.

He knows that there’s no winning against Hiram without outsmarting him. Hiram wouldn’t stop until he got what he wanted and he has the means to get away with it so taking this cop-out may have been the only way out.

Plus, his guilty admission now allows us to experience a new, edgier side of Archie in lock-up.

At least the teens spent the last few moments of Labor Day being carefree together.

Archie being framed for murder also united the Southside Serpents with the Northside. There’s nothing like going against a common enemy which in this case is Hiram and the Ghoulies.

The gang wars are intensifying but again, there is strength in numbers and the Southside Serpents are no longer the outcasts thanks to Betty becoming the Serpent Queen and Cheryl and Toni becoming the new “it couple.”

Wherever Archie is going, it has a tie-in with the new mystery enveloping Riverdale: a real-life Dungeon’s and Dragon’s game called Griffins and Gargoyles.

Jughead was immediately drawn into the new big bad when Dilton Doiley inadvertently came to him for help.

When the writers said the new season would be much darker, I didn’t expect the new mystery to be ritualistic in nature. Though after having a masked murderer terrorize the town, what else is there to explore?

Jughead followed the devilish symbols to a human sacrifice, but who is responsible for this game?

It’s only a matter of time before he loops in real-life Nancy Drew, Betty.

Does this also mean the mystery of the Black Hood is completely over? Are we to accept that her father was the masked murderer?

The devilish symbols also appeared when Archie was on the bus to lock-up so it’s to be expected that somehow, his arrest and this new town mystery are somehow connected.

And if that wasn’t enough weirdness for you — hey, at this point, it’s expected — there’s Alice’s new Farm-like outlook on life.

After finding out her husband is a serial killer, Alice has been seeking out therapy from Edgar Evernever, the man Polly credits with helping her cope with Jason Blossom’s death.

The farm hasn’t really been explored but it’s definitely some kind of cult that poison’s a person with their beliefs.

Off the bat, Betty realizes that her mother is feeding into what this cult leader is telling her and she’s having one of it.

On a certain level, Alice is right telling Betty that she has to “deal” with what happened instead of trying to pretend it didn’t which is what she’s been doing by throwing herself into Archie’s defense team and popping Adderall like it’s Smarties.

Polly has never seemed too menacing and she’s always had a sisterly bond with Betty but during this episode, it seemed like she was out to get Betty. Like the Farm taught her the “you’re either with us or against us” mentality.

Based on Polly selling her sister out for making up the therapy sessions, the Farm doesn’t appreciate when members form their own opinions.

Polly didn’t tell Alice about Betty’s lies because she worried, she wanted to strain their relationship.

It’s only a matter of time before Polly and Betty have a falling out.

However bad “not dealing” with your father’s murderous ways may be, satanic circles and human sacrifices are way worse.

Or at least that’s what Betty thought she was seeing right before she fainted.

This storyline can go one of three ways: Betty is really going overboard with the Adderall and she imagined Polly and Alice sacrificing twins Juniper and Dagwood, Alice is a witch who is tapping into her powers, or Betty is a witch whose powers enacted when she almost saw her nieces die in the fire.

Knowing Riverdale, it will probably be the more extreme version.

There have been rumors of more supernatural occurrences in Riverdale and with the addition of The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina in Greendale, the next town over, I wouldn’t even question it.

Riverdale is now a town that’s much more than it’s maple syrup and murders.

What are your thoughts on the premiere season 3 premiere?

Will FP save Alice from Edgar? Will Betty finally be forced to confront her inner demons? Will Archie be okay?

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