RIVERDALE 3×13: Requiem For A Welterweight

Previously, on Riverdale

The Midnight Club reunited, Gladys and Jellybean returned to Riverdale to raise a little hell, and we got to spend some quality time with the supporting cast as their problems took center stage. Read our recap here.

The Rundown

Welcome back, fellow Riverdalers! It appears much hasn’t changed during our brief hiatus–Archie’s still making bad choices, Betty’s uncovering the truth behind The Farm, and Jughead is learning that heavy is the head that wears the crown. This week’s episode felt a bit lacking, with the main characters sort of scattered to the wind while they handled their own issues. Anyway, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty…

The Teens

I…I think I like Josie and Archie together? I like how she calls him Andrews, and I like how she’s sweet enough to think he could get a scholarship to college for boxing. At least he’s honing his craft by training with her new stepdad, “Mr.” Keller. While he’ll always be Sheriff Keller to us, I like this new Coach Keller, and I like his tracksuit. Archie’s mad that Sheriff Keller says he’s not ready for his first fight yet, so he fumbles his way into a rigged one with an undefeated opponent. They agree to pay him $5000 to throw the fight. He’s so stupid.

Toni and Cheryl’s new gang is stealing members from the Serpents. I love it! Jughead knows he’s made some pretty bad decisions in banishing them, and says he’s gonna make it right. But Toni refuses to come back unless she makes him Serpent Queen, and of course he wouldn’t do that to Betty. He’s super demeaning and dismissive of the Pretty Poisons gang, calling it Cheryl’s “vanity project,” and it’s a terrible look for him. He deserves whatever repercussions are coming his way.

Which, as it happens, involves the Poisons beating up Sweet Pea and Fangs. Toni’s pissed Cheryl orchestrated it, and also that she sort of took over her gang. Are we seeing more trouble in Choni paradise?

Josie is such a grounding force and voice of reason. Thankfully, Archie listens when she’s like “this is a very dumb idea, getting beat up on purpose for money.” He tries to get out of it but he’s got no choice. Elio threatens that if he doesn’t show up, or tries to win the fight instead of throwing it, he’s dead. Archie basically begs Sheriff Keller to help him stay alive and, good man that he is, of course he agrees. While the parenting in this town can often be lackluster, there’s definitely something to be said for still helping someone who didn’t take your (correct) advice.

Josie sings “We Don’t Need Another Hero” over the sound of Archie’s body getting macerated. She shows up to cheer him on, and he gets his second wind. He just might win this thing! But of course, this guy is playing dirty. Archie loses, but he definitely puts up a good fight. While he may not be victorious in the ring, he does get lucky in the bedroom, so, mixed bag? Broken nose be damned!

The Grownups

Gladys coerces Jughead into making the leftover Ghoulies into Serpent recruits to bolster their numbers now that several Serpents have defected. He cuts a deal with FP to have immunity and increase their allure, and sets off to find them. Apparently, all the Ghoulies that remain had already joined another gang: the one and only Gargoyles. Jughead talks to their leader Kurtz but gets MAJORLY weirded out by how into Griffins and Gargoyles everyone still is. No kidding! I thought we’d moved on from this G&G stuff. Kurtz says some stuff about how G&G isn’t a game, and how they are living a prophecy, and how everyone else is just sacrifices to be made. Jughead takes a hard pass on recruitment, only to be railroaded by Gladys as she goes above his head to invite them into the gang.

Gladys also convinces Veronica to turn spy against her father. She seems quite busy these days in Riverdale, no? Veronica agrees, partially to protect her mother, and partially because she’s tired of her family’s involvement with drugs. Notice she didn’t say she wanted her family out of crime altogether…just away from drugs. Light embezzlement? Underground speakeasies run by minors? Not a problem! It’s just the drugs. She attempts to pivot Hiram to a respectable business–the prison he was so keen on in earlier seasons. He doesn’t take the bait until she sweetens the pot by offering to be his right-hand woman, leaving Gladys wide open to take free reign of Riverdale’s booming “candy” business.

Despite V’s espionage, Hiram catches Hermione red-handed in her stealing of his drugs after he was shot. Veronica takes the fall for her. Which, I mean, she did burn them. But she’s really confessing to keep Hermione (who orchestrated the plan) safe. He says she owes him $75K, and she says she can live with that. The Lodge Family Detente lives to see another day, but I have no idea how Veronica’s going to come up with money like that, considering she’s still paying back Gladys for those same drugs.

Lordt, Alice is getting baptized into The Farm in her old wedding dress. We’ve officially reached Miss Havisham territory. Betty freaks out when she sees the waiver Alice has to sign, which notes that The Farm is not liable in the case of her death. Who said anything about death??? In a move that makes me feel ~seen~, Betty handles her anxiety the best way she knows how: research. She finds the names of 30 people who escaped The Farm and can confirm its cultish tendencies. She can only get one source to agree to speak with her, but it’s all she needs. A woman named Martha shares that The Farm believes that one must survive dangerous circumstances in order to prove her worth and achieve “ascension.” What’s worse, Martha’s sister drowned during her very own baptism. Betty hightails it to the Sisters (where The Farm now resides) just in time to see Alice stop struggling underwater.

Good news/bad news situation here. Good news is, thanks to some timely CPR (of course Betty’s certified), Alice lives to see another day. The bad news? Alice has really “bought the farm” (yuk, yuk, yuk). She says she’s reborn from the experience, and the first change she wants to make is selling their home. Poor Betty!

Outfit MVP

I guess Alice decided to modernize that wedding dress a bit after all! I looooooooove it. She’s had some great outfits on this show, but this is definitely the best she has ever looked. Who knew glowing skin and shiny hair were only a cult away?

A Fine Line

“Josie, I’m an ex-con who walked out of the SATs.” Hey, maybe Archie is more self-aware than I give him credit for!

Burning Questions

What exactly is the purpose of all these gangs around town? Toni mentioned protection and companionship, but it really seems like overkill. Especially now that Cheryl is training all the Poisons in archery. Just how useful a skill is this? Couldn’t they be learning Krav Maga or something?

When do we get to see Edgar Evernever? My body is ready! Especially with the recent casting news that the enigmatic cult leader will be played by none other than Teen Heartthrob Chad Michael Murray.

What’s Coming

It looks like The Ghoulies will be causing some problems for Jughead and the Serpents, and Evelyn Evernever drops the hint that The Farm is in on a few of Betty’s secrets. Geez, Alice! Way to spill the beans!

 

Was this week’s Riverdale worth the wait, or did it leave you wanting? Let me know in the comments!

 

   

 

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