Operation save Riverdale High (and Riverdale) is officially in motion!
On Riverdale Season 5 Episode 5, Toni Topaz and Archie Andrews led the charge to save their small-town from Hiram Lodge’s grasp.
With Archie, some things never change. With Toni, thankfully many things did.
While they couldn’t do much about Hiram’s desire to un-incorporate the town, thanks to Cheryl’s donation, they successfully launched a plan to privatize the high school and make it a place where parents would want to send their kids.
Or, as Toni put it, a place where kids were no longer “at the mercy of Hiram’s destructive whims,” which, admittedly, has been a long time coming.
Hiram destroys everything he touches, and he’s messed with too many Riverdale teens to count. This is a good first step to regaining control of the town.
Incorporating Toni into the central storyline has been very beneficial for Riverdale. Her character was sorely underutilized in previous seasons, but coming out from Cheryl’s shadow and into her own as the town’s champion and Serpent Queen fits with her personality so well.
She’s always been a caretaker, mainly to Cheryl, but now it extends to everyone she cares about.
It’s also great to see others getting extra screentime including Sweet Pea, Fangs, and Kevin. It’s about time they were more involved with all the shenanigans!
Admittedly, I’m not a fan of what’s going on with Cheryl and how little interaction she’s having with the rest of the characters. Can she put this whole “I’m cursed” thing behind her already?
Since Riverdale High became a private institution, Weatherbee was able to hire personnel without education degrees — Betty, Veronica, and Jughead.
Who would have thought that the foursome would reunite several years down the line to work as faculty at their Alma Mater?
Though, I can’t think of anyone better to teach the youth of Riverdale. They may technically be “unqualified” because they lack teaching degrees, but if you think back to some of your best teachers (especially in college), many of them had degrees outside of teaching and yet, added value to the classroom through real-life experiences.
For the core four, their biggest asset is that they’re all passionate about helping students and serving as mentors in a town all too eager to swallow them up.
The positions are only supposed to be for a few months as they look for qualified replacements, but something tells me many of them are going to want to stay.
I guess you can go home again after all.
And somehow, it seems like this is what they all need to restore their souls and find themselves again. When we first met them post-time jump, everyone seemed to be looking for a sense of purpose and direction.
In a twisted way, the town that once drove them away might be the one that brings them back and reminds them who they were and what they stood for.
In terms of relationships, I’m sorry to say, but it doesn’t seem like Bughead fans are going to get their way anytime soon.
Betty and Jughead’s post-break-up talk at the beginning of the episode indicated that while there are no hard feelings between them, they’re both on different pages at the moment.
Jughead, especially, needs to get his life back on track, which includes paying off his debt. He’s a prime example of why credit cards are dangerous!
However, I’m glad that Jughead wasn’t “above” taking a job at Pop’s to make some extra cash while he worked on his novel.
He may be a published writer, but he’s not letting his ego get the best of him.
And somehow, Pop’s seems like the perfect place for our burger-lovin’ friend. There’s no better inspiration for writing a novel based on Pops’ life and a dying small town than being right in the thick of things. Not to mention he’s always done his best writing at the diner.
But considering the backlash he got for his first novel, which “loosely” referenced the Serpents, it might not sit well with his friends and acquaintances in town.
Do you think Tabitha Tate will have a problem with Jughead’s upcoming literary work?
I would hope Jughead would do it justice considering Pop’s was always a “safe haven” for them whenever they needed it.
That steamy hook-up between Betty and Archie is also not working in Bughead’s favor. Yes, the hook-up Barchie fans have been waiting for finally happened. And IT. WAS. HOT.
It’s been a long time coming, yes, but I also don’t think it was the only time Barchie will hook up this season. The chemistry and sparks were there!
The fact that Archie and Jughead are now roommates might make things a bit more complicated, but I think Archie and Betty owe it to each other to explore those feelings that started in high school and clearly exist in the present.
Plus, they’re adults so they don’t owe anyone an explanation.
Betty was so into it that she forgot she had a boyfriend. Even when she decided to stay in town, she didn’t let her beau know!
In her defense, she did have a lot on her plate. She made amends with her ex, finally hooked up with the boy next door, helped him get his house back from the Ghoulies’ grasp, and had a lot going on at home with her sister, Polly.
Riverdale has not been kind to Polly, and it looks like she may be at the center of the new mystery that also involves Lynette Fields aka Squeaky.
When we saw Squeaky last, she was hitching a ride with a truck bearing a glowing skeleton as Jughead’s narration warned that “she would never make it to California.”
It was a little strange that her disappearance would be the mystery that would keep the foursome in Riverdale, but the fact that Polly was being chased down by the same truck and may now be one of the missing girls definitely changes things.
Betty will do anything to save her sister, especially if this new mystery is connected to the Trash Bag Killer!
Betty may have been a little out of line by judging Polly’s lifestyle when she hasn’t been around, but she was simply trying to help as she noticed her sister was going down a destructive path.
I’ve never understood why family members get upset and blame those who are trying to create a better life for themselves.
Why make Betty feel guilty for pursuing a career with the FBI? Polly could have just as easily left Riverdale and made a better life for herself and the twins. And even if she couldn’t, she didn’t have to get wrapped up in the wrong crowd. Toni has managed just fine.
Riverdale will only destroy you if you let it. Then again, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen Polly get swooped up in a questionable lifestyle. We all remember what happened at The Farm!
Veronica decided to stay put in Riverdale for the time-being because she felt like she owed it to everyone considering her father was the one responsible for singlehandedly destroying the whole town.
But what I can’t seem to understand is why Veronica keeps running back to Hiram to fix her problems when she’s quite capable of standing up for herself and getting the job done on her own?
She’s a grown woman who doesn’t have to play daddy’s game anymore. If she never told him about her marriage to Chadwick, why would she want him meddling in her relationship now that he’s become possessive?
If she truly is the “She-Wolf of Wall Street,” she should have no problem handling Chadwick and telling him to fall in line, which she eventually did.
Why couldn’t she take that approach to begin with? Nobody puts Ronnie in the corner!
The fact that Chadwick froze their assets and had some goons spying on her means that there’s absolutely no trust in their relationship, but Veronica’s reaction means that she’s not surprised by his insecurity in the slightest. At this point, she seems more fed up, and I don’t see Veronica putting up with it for much longer, especially cause she doesn’t need him.
Just like Hermione and Hiram’s relationship, this one isn’t rooted in love, but it’s not even a solid business arrangement.
There’s nothing about this marriage working in Veronica’s favor. She’s capable of taking care of herself and making her own money — she’s got that Lodge independence.
I wouldn’t be surprised if she does run back to Archie sooner rather than later!
- Can someone knock some sense into Reggie? There’s no reason he needs to be playing lackey to Hiram Lodge. And that hair, honey, no.
- Poor Sheriff Keller. Riverdale never had a great police force, but now he’s the only one running the show? How is that even allowed?
- Jingle Jangle still exists… ahh, just like the old days.
- I hope we find out more about Tabitha because she’s a little firecracker! I snorted when she called the debt collectors “pumpkin.”
- Why is there no mention of FP? Is he still with Gladys and Jelly Bean? Does that mean he’s been separated from Alice for several years?
While I wasn’t a fan of the time-jump on Riverdale Season 5 Episode 4, this episode really changed things around for me. Seeing these characters as adults is refreshing; it’s reinvigorated the show in a way that’s fun and surprising again.
Everyone is being challenged and pushed in new directions, and while they’re still the characters we love, it allows them to play with new emotions, relationships, and experiences.
And let’s be honest, the fight to save the town and Riverdale High may be the most realistic and normal thing to happen on the series in quite some time.
What did you think of the episode?
Riverdale Review – Dance of Death (5×17)
The mystery of the Mothmen finally came to an end, along with the mystery of what happened to Polly Cooper.
Jughead, Betty, and Tabitha closed in on the truth on Riverdale Season 5 Episode 17 as another young girl named Britta went missing while Lynette Fields aka Squeaky was confirmed dead.
Is anyone else a bit bummed that the Squeaky mystery didn’t have too much meat to it?
The Mothmen mystery also wasn’t supernatural in the slightest, which isn’t exactly shocking when it comes to Riverdale.
The series always hints at the supernatural before elaborating on a story of serial killers.
In this case, the serial killers picked up women on the Lonely Highway because they enjoyed the hunt.
When compared to all the previous mysteries, this one was definitely the weakest.
Jughead’s former student, the sleepwalker who turned up after a week, is the one who clued them into the location of the Mothmen’s lair.
Turns out, it was none other than old man Dreyfuss, the one who told Jughead all about the Mothmen in the first place.
Dreyfuss was a Starkweather, a member of a family of Blossom offspring that were given away and raised in the woods. Yes, this is a true story straight from Nana’s mouth.
Another Starkweather brother included the man Betty captured that bit off his own tongue.
They were all in cahoots working the Lonely Highway and protecting each other.
They assumed they were preying on women that no one cared about — that is until Polly came along.
Eventually, Betty was able to get the location of Polly’s body out of Dreyfuss, and while it provided her family with some closure, it was far from the outcome Betty wanted for her sister.
And it was even more disturbing that it was an act of crime on Betty’s family by her own family.
On the plus side, it was nice to see Betty and Jughead team up for yet another mystery. There hasn’t been one that these couldn’t solve.
Toni was back, and she joined the crusade along with Fangs, who is helping her raise baby Anthony.
There hasn’t been much of a storyline for Toni, but it was sweet that she went to bat for Britta, a student who confided in her about being gay and asked her to be there to come out to her parents.
But all of this was maple syrup under the bridge because the most shocking moment came when Veronica killed Chadwick and turned on Hiram Lodge.
I know she’s turned on her father plenty of times before, but this time felt different.
This time, she took Archie’s side 100%.
And she didn’t even seem phased to shoot Chad as she zenned out in a tub with Archie just hours after.
This whole show is bonkers.
Chad deserved everything that came his way after he plotted to kill Archie and then attacked Veronica in her own home.
Clearly, taking advice from Hiram Lodge wasn’t a sound solution.
Veronica also realized she could never forgive her father for drumming up a mine explosion to kill Archie.
It’s honestly insane that this adult is still so hung up over a man half his age.
Archie may have been collateral damage in Veronica’s beef with Hiram over the palladium, but it was still very a very childish decision on his part.
Will this be the final straw in Veronica’s relationship with Hiram?
I feel like after all that has transpired, she either abandons her father or faces the consequences of losing Archie.
Will she pay to price for what happened to Chad? Or will self-defense hold up considering he tried to ambush her?
Cheryl may have found her calling as the divine.
Though her friends, including Kevin, had little faith in her religion, Cheryl seemed to believe in herself after seeing her prayers to Mother Earth aka Gaia answered as Archie emerged from the mines.
Will Kevin return to stand by Cheryl’s side?
And am I the only one completely annoyed with this church storyline?
What did you think of Riverdale? Are you enjoying the fact that it gets crazier by the week?
Let us know in the comments below!
Riverdale Review – Band of Brothers (5×16)
Riverdale is slowly trudging along toward some kind of resolution for the varying stories it introduced throughout season 6, including the Moth Men, TBK (Trash Bag Killer), the Trucker Killer on the Lonely Highway, the Church of Cheryl, and Hiram’s obsession with palladium.
As of right now, none of these things seem to intersect, but we’re all still watching hoping that it all feeds into some bigger picture.
Otherwise, this may go down as the most random season of Riverdale to date.
Archie continued to deal with the ghosts of his past by attempting to get justice for his men and putting General Taylor in his place. Seeing how Taylor threatened Archie, I anticipated that we would see Archie and Eric testify at the tribunal. At the very least, I expected to see some form of retaliation from Taylor, but the storyline wrapped up almost as quickly as it ended.
Are we to believe that Archie finally found peace? And that Taylor went down without a fight?
Jughead was making amends with an apology tour. Mr. Weatherbee made the cut, as did Tabitha, and, eventually, Betty.
He needed to apologize for the voicemail he left the night of his book release.
But for Betty, it was all under the bridge as she admitted to willingly choosing her obsession with serial killers over him.
I’m glad Betty and Jughead worked it out and found themselves on good terms, but I’m even happier that Jughead came clean about the fact that he submitted Cora’s novel as his own.
While he may have found himself in a tough spot with his writing career hanging in the balance, it’s never okay to pass someone else’s work off as your own.
Not meeting deadlines is bad, but plagiarism will get you canceled.
Thankfully, he knew better and took the hit.
Jughead’s first novel was born from spontaneity, and clearly, forcing another best-seller isn’t how it works.
Though, if he really wanted to, I’m sure he could find plenty of inspiration right in Riverdale.
He could always take inspiration from Betty, who admitted that she would rather investigate serial killers than socialize with other people.
It’s weird, yes, but Betty has always had a darkness about her that made her different from everyone else. It’s not exactly surprising.
Her work on the Lonely Highway is proving to be fruitless, and that’s probably because word of the truckers disappearance got around.
Unfortunately, the episode ended with an ominous warning from Jughead about something bad happening to both Betty and Tabitha.
Cheryl has gone off the deep end, I’m convinced of it.
She teamed up with Kevin to gain authority over the church, but while he thought they were simply punking the general public, Cheryl seemed to believe that she was really a gift sent from the divine.
Kevin’s face when he realized what he’d gotten into was priceless.
I don’t really understand the storyline with Cheryl, and to be honest, I feel like it’s a wasted character.
And finally, no one messes with Veronica Lodge.
In one fell swoop, she freed herself from Chad’s grasp and undermined Hiram Lodge. Win-win!
I’d expect plenty of retaliation from both parties, but when Chad sent the SEC on her company, she pushed back by stealing the palladium from Hiram Lodge, auctioning it off for a hefty price, and paying back all the investors he screwed over.
And then, as he celebrated his company going public, she tanked his stocks to ensure that no one ever messed with her again.
Petty Veronica is my favorite Veronica.
What did you think of the episode? Let us know in the comments below!
Riverdale Review – The Return of the Pussycats (5×15)
As the title of the episode revealed, Josie and the Pussycats returned to Riverdale.
Well, to be honest, I have no idea where Val and Melody have been this whole time, so it’s possible they’ve been thriving in Riverdale and it was just Josie who rolled back into town.
Regardless, Riverdale Season 5 Episode 15 saw their overdue reunion of the girl group and even sparked a reconciliation.
If memory serves me, Riverdale takes place roughly two years after the events of the now-canceled Katy Keene, which is when fans last saw Josie living in New York as a struggling artist.
It’s safe to say that her efforts paid off; By the time she arrives back in her hometown, she’s a global superstar!
Josie the pop icon has a nice ring to it, even if it does feel slightly forced.
Her return to Riverdale is personal as we find out that she ditched a show in Berlin after finding out that her father died of a heart attack unexpectedly.
It doesn’t take long for Josie to be reminded that Riverdale is a dark place when a man named Mr. Sweets approaches her and her mother to inform them that her father was mixed up in some bad stuff in New Orleans and may have been murdered.
Normally, one would question such an accusation made by a random man, but again, this is Riverdale; Josie and her mom simply get on the tour bus and decide to make NOLA their first stop in order to investigate.
The whole episode basically felt like a backdoor pilot to yet another spinoff, which should’ve happened long ago.
While I love Josie and I love that she finally got the recognition she deserved throughout most of the series, I don’t see this working simply because Katy Keene failed.
And what would it even be? A musical series hinged on a murder mystery? The CW sure loves those, so I’m not putting it past them.
Everyone on that tour bus would surely appear on the spinoff, including Sweet Pea (Josie’s new-again lover) and Alan Mayberry, Val’s boyfriend. Yes, Alan Mayberry, just like character from the comics who also appears in Scooby-Doo. Now, I’m convinced there’s going to be a murder mystery, detective-aspect to the spinoff!
The only way I’ll be fully behind a Josie spinoff is if they cast a live-action Scooby-Doo, too!
While Val and Melody were even more sidelined on Riverdale than Josie, the episode tapped into their backstories, and it turns out, they’ve both been pretty successful.
Val is an artist and a political activist, while Melody wrote a book that was optioned by Tyler Perry.
Both of their trajectories make me think that they were able to get far, far away from Riverdale considering the rest of their peers haven’t seen even a sliver of their success.
As Josie navigated her old stomping grounds, she made it clear that she wasn’t someone to be messed with.
When Hiram Lodge tried to file a noise complaint, Josie proved that she had way more pull than he did, and it was the icing on the cake that she called him out for still being a “little b****.” Don’t mess with Josie!
However, the episode felt very disconnected from what’s been happening on Riverdale this season, which, in its own right, has been all over the place. There was no mention of Archie’s PTSD, Betty was somehow totally over the fact that she’s been hunting down creeps on The Lonely Highway, and Jughead’s Rat King story seemed like a very faint, faint, faint memory.
It almost seemed normal…. almost.
Coincidentally, Alexandra Cabot also happened to be in Riverdale at the same time Josie returned. A little refresher: Josie dated Alexandra’s brother, Alexander, on the brief spinoff, so the two are rivals.
Alexandra confronted Veronica in hopes of getting back the money she invested with Ronnie’s husband, Chadwick, whom we know put her in a really tight financial situation.
Instead of paying out, Veronica took the opportunity to present Alexandra with an investment into Pop’s as Tabitha explained that she wanted to franchise the business.
Small town vibe at a diner with delicious food? Alexandra would be a fool to pass up on this opportunity!
Since Riverdale can’t pass up on a musical number, Alexandra, Tabitha, and Toni joined forces up for a little choreographed performance to sweeten the deal.
Was anyone else as surprised to see Toni as I was? I thought the show forgot about her!.
Thankfully, her presence was felt as she went into labor during Josie’s set, once again upstaging the Pussycats.
In true small-town fashion, everyone stuck around to be there for the birth, which happened in a backroom of Pops’…. I can’t imagine that’s sanitary!
Cheryl and Fangs teamed up to deliver the baby, which is also strange. I wouldn’t want my ex to deliver a baby, but weirder things have happened in Riverdale.
And finally, Toni, Fangs, and Kevin introduced their baby boy, Anthony a.k.a. Tony, to the world. Yep, Toni and Tony. That’s bound to get confusing.
Tony’s birth was a glimmer of hope and light in an otherwise dark and twisted town!
What did you think of the episode? Would you watch a Josie-centered spinoff?
It takes courage for a series to acknowledge the missteps it made with characters, particularly characters of color, Riverdale did more than acknowledge as it seemingly tried to make amends. Let’s hope the sentiment is extended to Toni as she was promised so much screen time but hasn’t had much of a storyline all season!
Sound-off with your thoughts in the comments below!
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