Prom Night: The Aftermath
Police tape lines the halls of Riverdale high. Sheriff Skeet and Sheriff Jr. Jughead check out the scene of the crime. Jughead declares it the deadliest prom night since Carrie. Skeet and Jughead pay a visit to Dr. Curdle Jr. Based on the incision marks on the hand, the good doctor theorizes that Hal cut off his own hand to fake his death on the prison bus.
Hiram is looking to buy the town of Riverdale, like the literal town. Hermione isn’t down with her estranged husband’s plan and tells him so. Hiram counters that he has the backing of Governor Dooley and that she should start clearing out her office. Am I the only one who finds Hiram’s desire to own all of Riverdale weird? This just seems like chasing good money after bad.
Veronica plans to take down her dad by hanging him out to dry for all the illegal activities she’s been running out of La Bon Nui. I’m no legal expert, but wouldn’t these crimes that Veronica planned and executed take her down as well?
Archie’s mom brings in another friend from her Sarah Florence (silliest college name) days. This one is an FBI agent. The agent tells Veronica that she wants to catch Hiram in a crime in real time. Veronica is down and has ideas.
You don’t know what MAOA CDH13 is?
Cooper Family Farm Meeting! Alice reveals to Betty that when Betty was 8, a doctor found the MAOA CDH13 gene in her. What’s the MAOA CDH13, you ask? Glad you asked! Well, it’s none other than the serial killer gene. Not only that, but it means she has a predisposition towards violence. Alice and Polly go on to say that no one else in the family has it but Betty, not even their serial killer dad. Betty and I make the same face upon hearing all this news.
Farm Dad Edgar offers to help Betty with one-on-one counseling. He’s more annoying than those EST people on The Americans. Farm Dad hypnotizes Betty into telling him her fears. She’s afraid that she has another person inside her, someone capable of doing dark things. Farm Dad wants Betty to confront this Dark Betty.
The Dark Betty Saga
Suddenly, Betty sits alone in a darkened room and confronts her dark side. Dark Betty reveals that Betty drowned her pet cat and pushed Polly down the stairs when she was a kid. Are these actual repressed memories or is this Farm Dad messing with her? I’m leaning heavy on the latter. Dark Betty says she’s the real Betty, and Betty knows it. After Betty comes out of hypnosis, Farm Dad asks Betty how she feels. Regardless of what Betty feels, I feel that my theory that Betty is being groomed to be the villain of the final season of Riverdale is getting stronger by the minute.
Betty calls Jughead to fill him in on her session with Farm Dad. Jughead is on the hunt for the court jester who gave Betty the envelope from the Gargoyle King last week. It doesn’t take him long to find out the chain of possession on the envelope and question that kid. Jughead really is the best police detective in this town. It turns out the envelope originated from everyone’s favorite seedy street urchin, Ricky.
Is it me or is the Farm is really big on pastels this week?
Everyone is getting it
At the Farm Gang table, Fangs talks about a minor procedure he had done. Farm Dad transforms their emotional pain to physical pain, so that they can deal with it better. Betty is rightfully suspicious. Kevin had the same procedure. Betty lifts his shirt and sees that Kevin has a huge scar on his side. That’s no minor procedure scar. Either Kevin had major surgery or someone attacked him with a machete! Kevin warns her to never do that again. Oh boy.
Veronica stops by Archie’s to fill him in on her plan and enlist his help in taking down her dad.
Hiram is hanging out in his boxing gym sweat lodge, and Archie barges in because there’s no way a bunch of dudes are going to be hanging out shirtless on Riverdale without shirtless KJ Apa making an appearance. In case you weren’t sure this steam room is in a boxing gym, it’s laid out in giant subway tile lettering on the wall behind them. Archie questions Hiram’s manhood and challenges him to a boxing match. Loser leaves town. Riverdale is now pulling its story lines from 1980s WWF pay-per-views.
How to play Hiram in 1 easy step
The next day, Veronica tells Hiram that the the odds are against him. He’s not happy about that but is excited for the news of gambling happening. Veronica plays Hiram perfectly. He wants all betting to to run through La Bon Nui, exactly like Veronica planned.
Polly casually mentions to Betty about the time Betty pushed her down the stairs. This isn’t confirmation that really happened as much as it is confirmation that Polly is in deep with messing with her sister.
Jughead asks JB about Ricky. He’s in Fox Forest, getting ready to ascend. Jughead feels the need to save him. She draws Jughead a map and he bolts out the door.
Lesson: always carry earplugs
It’s day 2 of Betty’s hypnosis sessions. Betty sneaks some earplugs into her ears before Farm Dad starts his routine. She pretends to fall under his spell. Farm Dad sits her in a room alone and closes the door. Dark Betty speaks from the shadows, but when she emerges from the shadows, Dark Betty is really Polly sporting Betty’s sweater and signature ponytail. Dark Betty/Polly tells Betty she’s a killer just like dad and it’s time she embraced that. Why would the Farm want to turn Betty into a killer? And just how crazy is Polly? I don’t know the answer to the first question, but the answer to the second is “very.”
Out in the woods, Jughead breaks up Ricky’s ascension. He tells Ricky he’s going to save him, but Ricky doesn’t want saving, he wants ascending. Ricky is speaking in the plural, talking in “we” instead of “I.” When Jughead questions that, a bunch of junior scouts emerge holding spears, and chase down Jughead Lord of the Flies style. Jughead runs and drops down the hatch Lost style. Waiting for him in the hatch is Ethel, who tells him, “Help me Jughead Jones, you’re my only hope.”
Inside the hatch
Ethel is hiding from the Gargoyle King. She’s terrified he’s going to kill him for failing her quest. She talks about the Sisters of Quiet Mercy’s false king and that she serves the true king is in the woods. So, let me get this right. There are definitely two Gargoyle Kings? And that doesn’t count the unmaskings we already had earlier this season, I presume? Jughead demands to know the identity of the Gargoyle King. Ethel can’t/won’t tell. Jughead wants to save her but she sounds as gone as the Farm folk.
Veronica recruits Reggie in the take down of Hiram. He seems a little too eager to sign on. Has Hiram gotten to Reggie?
Betty tells the Farm gang that Farm Dad is hypnotizing them. They don’t care. Cheryl basically responds with “hypnosis is all the rage.” They’re all in way too deep and dismiss Betty.
Ethel gets the Lost Boys to stand down. Ricky is gone, and some kid named Jack disappeared too. Ethel doesn’t want to leave him behind because he’s the youngest. This stinks of setup, but Jughead agrees to go with her to find him.
What blood type is she?
Betty confronts Farm Girl/Wife about Farm Dad/Husband. Farm Girl is hooked up to a medicine drip. Holy cow, Farm Dad is harvesting organs! Are they taking organs for the black market or are they all for Farm Girl? Are they only recruiting kids who are her blood type? Does she have Kevin’s kidney?
Betty sneaks around the Farm some more and comes across a fridge of organs and boxes labeled “human kidney” and “Farm harvest program.” Ha, get it? They’re called the Farm but what they harvest is organs. This could be a Twilight Zone episode.
Ethel leads Jughead to the bus. Jack is there. But before they can get off the bus, they spot The Black Hood outside! He drags his hook along the outside of the bus and bangs on the bus’s hood. The Black Hood enters the bus. They try to escape out the back door, but it’s stuck. Jughead kicks it open and blocks it with some junk to keep the Black Hood from following. Jughead sprints to the front and blocks that door too. The Black Hood rages at being trapped on the bus. Is it me or does it seem like there are about 30 other ways out of that bus? Come on, Hal! You just fled from a bus, this should be easy! …if that is you under the hood.
There’s a big crowd that night at the gym for fight night. And the money is flowing at La Bon Nui as people bet on Hiram and Archie.
Veronica sings at La Bon Nui while Archie and Hiram fight. Archie is taller but Hiram looks like he significantly outweighs Archie. Archie quickly gets Hiram in the corner but doesn’t land anything of note. Before long, Hiram is dragging Archie around the ring, like literally dragging him. It’s not long before both boxers throw off their gloves. This can’t be okay. If Archie is trying to rope-a-dope Hiram, why bare fistfight him? That just seems like a way to end the fight faster.
Some guy makes a call. The feds raid the club. Veronica sells out her dad immediately. Last minute bets are coming in that Hiram kills Archie in the ring. Oh boy. Hiram Dragon Punches Archie and then headbutts him. Why is there even a ref here?? The guys agree, because when the ref tries to intercede, they both throw him away. Archie is down and out, and Hiram is going in for the kill. But before he can hit Archie with his Riverdale meets Mortal Kombat finisher, Skeet and company raid the boxing gym. Hiram brags to Archie that he beat him, but Archie tells him that he was just keeping him busy. Skeet arrests him, with Veronica reading the crimes.
After that beating, I’m worried that Archie has brain damage. I mean more so than before.
Take a drink every time someone on Riverdale talks to their dad in jail
Move over Betty, now it’s Veronica’s turn to talk to her jailed dad. Veronica explains why she did it, basically she found out her dad screwed her in his fake selling of Pops to her and she wanted revenge. Amazingly, he still calls her m’hija, despite being in jail because of her. Veronica announces she won. A furious Hiram grips his jail cell bars and pulls angrily. I half expect them to bend.
Archie’s mom asks Archie about Veronica and him. She says she thinks they’re endgame. What’s up with the Riverdale writers and this endgame phrase?
Ethel offers Jughead a reward for his bravery. She whispers the identity of the Gargoyle King in his ear and he responds with “But that’s impossible?” Betty calls Jughead. He tells her that Jason Blossom is the Gargoyle King! Jason Blossom! But he’s dead! Betty is sneaking organs out of the fridge during this phone call. Betty shows the organ box to Cheryl, who isn’t buying it. But when Betty shows her an actual kidney, Cheryl is shocked back to reality. Side note: Opening that cooler like that can’t be sanitary or sterile. Side side note: is that Kevin’s kidney? Toni is about to have “the procedure” done. They have to save her!
Cheryl runs off to save Toni. She takes a scalpel to the throats of the nurses prepping Toni, frees her and runs. Betty tells Kevin and Fangs about the organ harvesting. They’re both in deeper than Cheryl and hold her down, saying they’re taking her to Farm Dad. They’re tired of her being a hater. I won’t lie, Betty kneeing Kevin in the nuts as she escapes might be my favorite part of this episode.
Unfortunately, Kevin and Fangs get the better of her and call for help. Toni escapes through a window and Cheryl fights off some orderlies so that Toni can makes a break for it.
Archie visits Veronica at home. He wants to get back together. Uh oh, there are two glasses of champagne already poured when he gets there. Reggie beat him to it. Reggie and Veronica got back together right before Archie arrived. Oh boy. Season 4 love triangle here we come. Veronica wants Archie to stay to celebrate Hiram’s take down, but he takes off. Who can blame him?
At the Farm, Betty is strapped down and about to go under the knife. Hey Farm Dad, clean that smock! This can’t be sanitary in the slightest. A nurse puts Betty under. This can’t be good. At the end of the season, I need to make a tally sheet of everyone who died or lost body parts through three seasons of Riverdale. Looking at that smock, there’s no way Betty makes it through surgery without infection. Paging Dr. Curdle Jr.!
Over at the cemetery, Jughead digs up Jason Blossom’s grave. It’s empty!
Billy Henehan writes for The Beat. In his free time, he likes to hunt down foreign language reprints of Todd McFarlane Spider-Man comics.