Liam Hoofe reviews the twentieth episode of Riverdale season 2…
There were more twists and turns in Riverdale this week, as the net begins to close in on The Black Hood, and the town finds itself more divided than ever. The biggest mystery surrounding this year’s Riverdale has been the identity of The Black Hood. Fans have speculated for months over who the hooded murderer is and it looked as though we finally had our answer last week when Betty realised her father, Hal, had mysteriously disappeared at the same time as The Black Hood.
Well, this week’s episode soon set about throwing a spanner in the works. Firstly, Betty confided in Cheryl Blossom about her hunch, hoping that Cheryl would empathise with her after the events of season one. Sure enough, the two became a little investigating team and soon discovered a copy of Betty’s favourite Nancy Drew book at Hal’s Share BnB (seriously!?). It looked as though the case might finally have been resolved until later in the episode when The Black Hood decided to shoot up the town hall, and Hal was in attendance. The show then further suggested that Hal is not the man to blame when in the final scene, The Black Hood knocked on Cheryl’s door just as Betty was meeting with her father.
So what does all this mean? Firstly, it means that the show enjoys messing around with its audience and keeping us guessing until the very end. Secondly, it doesn’t necessarily mean that Hal isn’t The Black Hood and that there could, in fact, be of them. If that is the case, then who is the other one? We have not yet seen Chic’s body, so there is every chance they are in cahoots, and the reason Hal didn’t want him around was because of this. Penelope Blossom is another option, though, that feels like a bit of a stretch. Could Alice Cooper be a dark horse shout? It wouldn’t really make too much sense if that was the case. Whatever happens, it promises to be an exciting final two episodes for the show.
The other plot this week surrounding the impending civil war in the town. Archie reassembled The Dark Circle and set about finding The Black Hood for himself. Unfortunately for Archie, his Black Hood group was soon on Hiram’s payroll, and the group set about raging war on the Southside while his Father, Fred, is busy running for Mayor.
The growing tensions between Riverdale and the South Side finally came to a head this episode when one of the Serpents was arrested for Midge’s murder. Fang, the unlucky Serpent was spotted in Midge’s dressing room the night of her murder, leading to the town’s new Sheriff to slap him straight into jail. When Fang is proved innocent later in the episode, the people of Riverdale gather outside the prison in protest to his release, leading to a tense showdown between the townsfolk and the Serpents. A showdown that culminates with Fang being shot and the town breaking out into an all-out war.
The closing scenes of this episode were brilliantly tense and superbly directed. Riverdale may be one of the most outrageous shows on TV at times, but few shows can deliver the kind of tension that Riverdale does at its best. Other notable moments this week including Veronica finally turning face and leaving her father’s campaign, while Archie also realised how twisted Hiram is, and it looks as though the two will be set for some sort of showdown before the season is out. There was also a hint that Papa Poutine’s ridiculously named son, Small Fry, could be coming to town after Archie before the end of the season.
Overall, this was another thrilling episode of Riverdale. The show’s second season has certainly felt long- running for nearly 8 months now due to all the hiatuses, but everything is falling into place for what looks to be a thrilling finale in the next two weeks.