Photo: Katie Yu/The CW
May 09, 2018 at 09:00 PM EDT


TV Show
run date
K.J. Apa, Cole Sprouse, Camila Mendes, Lili Reinhart, Madelaine Petsch
The CW
We gave it a C+

Have you ever thought of Riverdale as some kind of weird GothamMad MaxArrow combination? No? WELL I BET YOU DO NOW. I honestly don’t even know where to begin with this episode…perhaps we should start in the moment that Cheryl Blossom became a literal vigilante? Cool. Let’s start there.

So the Black Hood arrives at Cheryl’s house and goes full Shining as he chases her through the house with an axe. But thankfully, as Cheryl later tells Betty, she was able to “get to my archery set and hunting cape.” I’m sorry. WHAT. But Cheryl’s not kidding. Little Red Riding Hood over here climbs out a window, grabs her bow and arrow and a hooded red cape and shoots the Black Hood in the shoulder. Why she chose to only shoot him once is something I’ll never understand. Maybe because she’s new to this whole vigilante business?

By the time she calls Betty, she’s busy TRACKING THE BLACK HOOD THROUGH THE WOODS. So maybe she’s not new to this vigilante business? She warns Betty that, if this is her father, he’s a maimed animal which means he’s ready to lash out and kill. Then again, this is the Black Hood, a literal serial killer, so I’d say he’s pretty much always been ready to lash out and kill?

But the Hood isn’t the only person feeling riled up. Clearly someone put something in the water in Riverdale because everyone has lost their damn minds. The Serpents are rioting because someone shot Fangs while the Bulldogs are trying to find Reggie who swears he didn’t shoot Fangs and suddenly everyone’s holding a baseball bat and trashing the town?! If you think I’m exaggerating, you are sorely mistaken.

While all of this is going on, Veronica discovers Midge Clump’s mother out on the streets and takes her to the police station after she confesses that SHE was the one who shot Fangs. It’s at the police station where Veronica runs into her mother, who has decided that the thing this fire needs is more gasoline: She’s putting a $1 million reward out for anyone who can turn in the Black Hood, preferably dead. In other words, this show is about to turn into The Purge. Or, as Veronica tells her mom, “Are you and daddy trying to turn Riverdale into Gotham City?” And now I can’t help but view Hiram as the Penguin for some reason.

While Principal Weatherby breaks up a Bulldogs-Serpents showdown at the high school — even Weatherby is carrying a baseball bat! — Betty returns home in the hopes of finding her father. Instead, all she gets is a phone call from FP who’s looking for Jughead. FP also has some news about Hal: He was just checked into the hospital, and he was bleeding.

Kevin, Archie, and Moose eventually find Reggie at Pop’s, so he apparently thinks that the most popular hangout in Riverdale is a good hiding spot? Way to use that brilliant mind, Reg. AND HERE’S WHERE THINGS GET EVEN CRAZIER. The Ghoulies show up looking like the War Boys from Mad Max. I’m talking painted faces. I’m talking bats with nails sticking out of them. WHAT IS THIS?!

It’s Pop Tate who comes up with a plan: Archie lights some bottles of liquor on fire and tosses them at the Ghoulies to keep them back. He does it long enough for the real heroes to arrive: Fred, FP, and Sheriff Keller roll-up in Keller’s old squad car — What? These cops couldn’t keep Fangs safe, you think they remembered to ask for his car back?! — and save the day. Leave it to Kevin to title the spinoff we all want: Hot Riverdale Dads to the Rescue.

Back at the penthouse, Veronica breaks into her father’s office and discovers a file he has labeled “October Surprise,” which I honestly think is embarrassing enough for him to have his gangster card revoked. In the file are photos of Hermione and Fred kissing, along with a story Hiram wrote about the affair. And guess what? Sad little Hermione knew about it. Seeing as how Fred’s campaign is all about family values, they were planning to use it against him. It might hurt Hermione, but it would destroy Fred.

That’s the final straw for Veronica, who’s sick of her father always letting someone else take the risk. Hermione is still convinced that Hiram would never put them in harm’s way but that’s only going to last another 10 minutes or so until Small Fry, Papa Poutine’s Andre the Giant-sized son, busts down their door and nearly kills them. Thankfully, Hermione grabs Hiram’s gun and beats Small Fry to it. As for the rest of the hour, they say “October Surprise” — this week’s “make my bones” — approximately 1000 times. (Next: The Black Hood reveals himself)

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