Riverdale was rocked by the rather quick return of Archie Andrews – yep, he’s not dead, but he’s got a dark hairstyle and bear claw wounds and he doesn’t drink milkshakes at Pop’s anymore, so he may as well be dead!
Veronica gets the shock of her life when Archie enters La Bonne Nuit and is elated to see her love, but has mixed feelings despite sharing a passionate kiss, being mad for Archie’s departure.
At school, Veronica is approached by a flirtatious Reggie, but she wants to put their tryst behind them and keep it a secret from Archie. Reggie understands.
Archie discovers that SATs are this week at school, and panics over what to do next. Archie does a practice test from Betty and he’s in the bottom 10th percentile of his peer group. Principal Weatherbee suggests Archie retake junior year due to all the time he has missed, but he’s not keen to be left behind.
Betty has her debit card declined at Pop’s and soon finds that all her bank accounts have been drained by Alice, making donations to The Farm to fund the patients from the Sisters of Quiet Mercy.
Sierra McCoy helps Betty find that Alice forged the imprisoned Hal Cooper’s (the Black Hood!) signature to drain her savings, meaning she will need her father’s help to get her money back.
Archie dyes his hair back to red for a homecoming party at La Bonne Nuit, and Veronica serenades him. Archie is troubled by thoughts of Hiram Lodge, however, and leaves.
Approaching Reggie with talk of "cheating", Reggie mistakenly thinks he has learned about the kiss with Veronica, but Archie meant the SAT exams. Awkward.
(Image: The CW)
Betty visits her father in prison, where he stands behind a glass-fronted cell (akin to Hannibal Lecter). Hal confirms his signature was forged and volunteers to help his daughter catch the Gargoyle King. He will give written proof of the forgery if Betty gives him a G & G manual.
On her next visit, Hal reveals that he was the original Gargoyle King who poisoned the chalices at Ascension Night. Betty is horrified and then learns from the prison guard that Alice visits Hal every Monday.
When confronted, Alice denies visiting Hal, prompting Betty to do further digging and find that Penelope Blossom had been visiting him in Alice’s name.
Betty faces off with Penelope, who reveals she has ‘conjugal visits’ with Hal and explained Ascension Night to him. Betty then realises her father was lying about his actions, and he admits it was to spend more time with her.
Jughead and FP, meanwhile, ambush a Gargoyle Gang branding ceremony after a tip-off from Fangs. The gang scatters, but the Serpents capture and unmask the Gargoyle King: Tallboy, who is then taken prisoner.
Jughead forces Tallboy to arrange a meeting with Hiram to supposedly hand over Archie, which his friend agrees to do. At the meet, however, they find Claudius Blossom and not Hiram. Blossom is now town sheriff thanks to Mr. Lodge.
FP apprehends Claudius, having dressed in the Gargoyle King get up.
Archie approaches an upset Veronica and they realise they’re over after the Reggie situation, but have a romantic romp one last time.
Struggling with his SATs the next morning, Archie flees and stares at himself in the bathroom mirror and imagines killing Hiram before punching the mirror.
At the Lodge home, Hiram is shot in the chest and taken to hospital. Veronica suggests she is suspicious of Archie, but he is offended and confirms that they are indeed over.
Hiram is stable but out of commission, while Claudius Blossom is found dead in a cell at the sheriff’s station.
Hermione Lodge summons FP and says "I think it’s time".
(Image: The CW)
Betty returns home and finds Alice having a celebration with Evelyn and other Farm acolytes, revealing that Edgar Evernever got her a job at a local TV station and that the Farm has purchases the Sisters of Quiet Mercy hospital to be their new headquarters.
Feeling isolated, Betty returns to her father in prison and begins to make small-talk with him.
Reggie visits Hiram’s hotel room to see Veronica with a blue balloon, and embraces Veronica.
In the bunker, Jughead finds Fangs and Sweet Pea in a panic as Tallyboy is dead. Jughead wants to distract the Serpents from the current disastrous situation and welcomes Fangs back into the gang with a party.
That is until the cops arrive with their new sheriff: FP Jones.
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Riverdale drops weekly in the UK on Netflix.