What you expect in a finale episode is all the twists explained and all the lose ends tied up all in a large-scale production. Riverdale Chapter 13 gave the large-scale production, but had already tied it up in Chapter 12. In short, this chapter was completely and utterly pointless and was clearly a grab at securing season two. This was more of an episode that should have been a “to be continued” from chapter 12 to 13 and work the two chapters together more coherently. But what you end up with in Chapter 13 is this confusing jumble of story lines that don’t make sense. The credits start rolling and you just sit there thinking, what was that about.
The chapter opens with Jughead narrating the story line as he has done since Chapter 1. But alongside him is Alice Cooper narrating the events of the last chapter for her article she’s writing. This alone would have been a perfect closure to Chapter 12 and the season rather than throwing a bunch of story lines around the town for one final chapter.
Clifford Blossom had killed himself because the truth had got out that the Maple Syrup business was a front for his large drug dealing company. Seems Jason found out and wanted to part ways with his family, but in turn was murdered by the hand of Clifford. Board game night would have been interesting in that family. Cheryl hasn’t handled her family falling apart too well and tried to connect with her Mother, Penelope who has closed off and become cold towards her. Sadly this leads to Cheryl deciding to end her own life but before that ties off some loose ends.
Veronica gets a message from Cheryl who says she is going to be with Jason. The gang rush to the lake where Cheryl is smashing ice and eventually jumps in. Archie smashes the ice with his fist and pulls her out. Warming up at Veronica’s house, Hermione makes her feel rather un-welcomed and Cheryl ends up leaving. Cheryl’s backup plan it to burn the house down to cleanse the Blossoms of their troubled past.
Betty uploads an article to the school newspaper in support of Jughead and his Dad FP despite her Mum urging her not to out of fear of backlash. The town turns and doesn’t like that she is supporting a Serpent and send a message calling her a “Serpent Slut” written in pigs blood on her school locker. This starts to put a little doubt into her relationship with Jughead.
Social Services come to take Jughead away as Fred can’t financially afford to keep him around. Despite there being nothing he can do, Jughead has to go live with some of his family members in the South Side and change schools. He accepts his fate despite Archie and Betty doing their best to keep him around. His Dad FP however has remained loyal to the Serpents and not given any names for those dealing drugs. In return Jughead is given a Serpent’s Jacket and told he will be looked after until FP gets out of jail.
The Coopers are playing happy family and this is worrying Betty as she thinks they will implode. Betty challenges her Mother, Alice who in turn tells of her story about the time Hal had her sent to live with the Sisters while she was pregnant right after graduation. As it turns out Betty has a brother that she didn’t know about. And her relationship with her mother becomes a little stronger.
Fred Andrews is having a bad run despite being the only good guy around. Hermione Lodge fired his team of Serpents and hired a new team, as she is now a partner in Andrews Construction. Fred isn’t happy and asks to be included in major decisions like this. Hermione turns around and tells Fred they are making a bid for his share of the company. Fred doesn’t want a part of it and this frightens Hermione as she knows her husband Hiram won’t like Fred being around because of their little relationship they had.
Just when you think it’s all tied up and finally over, someone holds up the diner and ends up shooting Fred who was trying to stop Archie from getting in the way of the gunman. But it seems there was more to this little ending as the whole shooting may have been planned from the start. Organised by a certain Hiram Lodge for not being cooperative. Guess you’ll have to wait till next season.
Riverdale started off really strong and was one of those series you couldn’t wait for the next episode to air. But as the chapters went on it started to lose momentum, it started to become a teen drama that has been done a thousand times before. The show needs to get back to its roots of investigating murders and unexplainable happenings. While Season 2 has been given the go ahead, the show will need to make some major changes in the way it’s delivered to maintain a strong following. You can’t just keep viewers watching because Archie’s shirt get’s tighter and tighter with every episode.
You can catch the entire first season of Riverdale exclusively on Netflix now
Recap by Jay Cook