The season finale of Riverdale aired tonight, setting up the second season of the dark, twisted version of the Archie Comics universe. Although we learned last week that Clifford Blossom killed his son Jason – and then killed himself and revealed that the Blosoms had a warehouse full of heroin instead of maple syrup – the show still has plenty of mysteries to keep us watching. Read on after the photo to find out if anyone died tonight and where the show can go from here.
Fred Andrews was shot!
At the center of the episode was a jubilee to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Riverdale’s founding and Betty being convinced that everyone is trying to sweep Jason’s murder under a rug. The sheriff wants to pin the proliferation of heroin in the town on FP Jones and the Serpents. The Coopers think that they’ve found heaven on earth now that Polly’s back home. Meanwhile, Archie and Veronica have decided to take their relationship to the next level – by making sure Betty’s OK with it. It’s a good thing Betty approved! Betty also wasn’t happy that Mayor McCoy wanted the kids to take part in the jubilee without Jughead on the stage.
Then the bottom fell out for Archie and Jug. Veronica’s mom Hermione fired Fred Andrews’ construction crew and offered to buy him out since Hiram is getting out of jail (he will definitely be a character to watch in season two). Then, a social worker showed up at Archie’s house to take Jug to a new foster home. Apparently since Fred had an old DUI on his record, Juggie couldn’t stay at Archie’s house. Jughead will live on the South Side and has to transfer to another school. Nothing good ever happens to poor Jughead. He really needs a hamburger. (And he finally got one, albeit a school lunchroom burger.)
Betty’s life turned into a twisted hell hole after she published a story claiming that FP was innocent. She found “Go to Hell, Serpent Slut” written on her locker in pig’s blood. It really looks like everyone is ganging up on Jughead and his friends. Betty is paying a price for being honest and her mother doesn’t want her to tell the truth. The two argue, and Betty tries to get Alice to tell all her secrets. The biggest one: Alice had to give up Betty’s older brother for adoption! Yes, Betty has a long-lost brother – “A blond Adonis, no doubt,” Veronica says.
If you think it’s tough for Betty, Cheryl’s mom is torturing her at the Blossom mansion. She can’t even go to school. Cheryl eventually escapes and tries to kill herself by falling into the frozen Sweetwater River. Jughead, Archie, Veronica and Betty scramble to save her. Archie even rips up his hand to save her, smashing through the ice. Thankfully after performing CPR, Archie saves Cheryl. Phew.
Later, Betty is really worried that her relationship with Jughead will fall through the ice now that he’s moved. Meanwhile, Veronica double-checks with Archie to make sure he’s not in love with Betty. He insists that he’s just friends with Betty and always will care about her.
Then, Josie and the Pussycats and Archie perform a song he wrote, much to Mayor McCoy’s chagrin. At the precinct, Jughead tries to convince his dad that’s OK at Southside High. FP apologizes for all of his misdeeds and tells Jughead that he’s got to be at the trial. The whole scene makes it obvious that Cole Sprouse is the best thing about Riverdale.
During her speech, Betty looks back on who is part of Riverdale. When she says that FP and Jughead are both part of Riverdale. She takes the moment to get on her high horse and tell everyone that living in a soap opera is a bad idea. “We must do better,” she tells everyone. Surprisingly, applause breaks out, beginning with Jughead and slowly spreading throughout the auditorium.
After the jubilee, Fred refuses to sell his interest in the construction project to the Lodges. He was inspired by Betty’s speech. Archie and his friends head over to Pop’s for milkshakes.
Then, Jughead tells Betty he lovers her in his father’s trailer. Veronica takes Archie up to her room for some steamy moments. Before Jughead and Betty can get very far themselves, the Serpents show up to tell Jughead that they support him because his father won’t name names. Jughead puts on the Serpents jacket, surprising Betty. Meanwhile, Cheryl burns down the Blossom mansion, hoping to re-start the family’s fortunes from scratch.
In the morning, Archie leaves Veronica to meet Fred at Pop’s. Archie goes to the bathroom and sees Pop getting robbed at gunpoint. There’s a gunshot and the camera cut to an exterior shot of the diner. Did they really kill Archie? No, but Fred was shot, on the ground. Jughead says in his narration that it was “anything but random.” It looks like finding Fred Andrews’ murderer will be the main plot for season two. Did Hiram order someone to kill Fred? We’ll have to wait until next season to find out.