Are we returning to ships of the past, or was that Veronica-Archie kiss truly platonic?
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Chapter Thirteen: The Sweet Hereafter
S6 E14
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The TL;DR version of this recap would go something like this: So Veronica is a spider now, Archie has been forged, and I can't tell if we're paying homage to old relationships or if the core four are about to swap partners again! But okay fine, we can get into a few more details.

This week's Riverdale is all about the downside of having powers as Veronica, Archie, Betty, and Jughead try to figure out exactly how their new skills work.

Veronica wants to know what is going on with her and this whole secreting venom thing, but first, she has to buy some black lipstick and a black veil because who cares about a power if you don't look the part, amirite? Once she has the look down, she tries dialysis to remove the venom, but it only increases the toxins in her body. At one point, she yells at Reggie — who's being a real jerk about making her sell the casino — and makes his nose bleed with her breath. Then, she experiments with some of Cheryl's poisons and learns that her theory was correct: The toxins in her body make her immune to all poisons.

Then there's her real problem: The last person she kissed before her kisses became deadly was stupid Reggie. So, to solve that problem, Betty suggest she kiss Archie, who's invulnerable. It all seems very platonic but I have to say: If they made her kiss deadly so that Archie's the only person she can kiss because they want them back together, I'm not going to be happy.

Anyway, Veronica then performs "Toxic" by Britney Spears at a shareholder meeting because that's how you do business in Riverdale!

Riverdale -- “Chapter One Hundred and Nine: Venomous” Camila Mendes as Veronica Lodge
Camila Mendes on 'Riverdale'
| Credit: Jack Rowand/The CW

Let's jump to Archie, who spends the entire episode obsessed with palladium. Percival now has a ring made out of the stuff, and Archie hates a weakness! So, he decides to expose himself to palladium until it no longer affects him. (No, the superpowers haven't made him any smarter.)

When the palladium nearly kills him, Cheryl suggests something else: Instead of wearing palladium around his neck, she makes him a watered down "soup" that he can drink. But even that doesn't work: Archie hits 135 lbs. and starts to lose his hair. (Not the hair!) He's dying. So, Cheryl comes up with a better solution, and I think you should sit down for this one.

I'm not going to bother trying to explain how they did this, but basically, Cheryl thinks she can use witch fire to turn the palladium in his system into iron and therefore, forge him. "Forge me now," is a sentence Archie Andrews actually says. But first, he asks for one more night with Betty, and again, I'm not liking where this is going.

So yeah, Archie is "forged" in a cave and now palladium no longer affects him. Cool cool.

As for Betty, she spends the episode working with Jughead to uncover traumatic memories, by doing what he calls "deep mind reading." But when he dives into her brain, all he does is remember every time they kissed? Had he forgotten about those? Either way, again, I'm not into this but I'll stop saying that now.

What Betty and Jug discover is that her father was grooming her to be a serial killer from a young age, and that Alice also has the serial killer gene. She once helped Hal hide the body of a dead deputy under the floor boards of their dining room. Imagine of all the places to hide a body, of all the floorboards in your home, to choose to put a rotting corpse under the place where you eat!!! These people really are crazy.

Betty confronts her mom and Alice swears that her plan was to counteract whatever Hal did to her. She thought that she could undo Hal's influence on Betty, which is why she was so controlling with Betty growing up. But now it's too late, the evil is still there, and Betty is done with this conversation.

Meanwhile, Jug can't stop thinking about all those times he kissed Betty, and I genuinely can't tell if this was a fun nod to ships of the past or if we're going there again.

Last but not least, we have Cheryl, who spends the entire episode helping everyone and overthinking this Heather situation. First she emails her, then she calls her and hangs up. (Turns out Heather is a librarian in Greendale now.) Then she has to take a break to forge Archie in some fire and, at the end of the episode, Heather shows up on her doorstep.

And that's it. That's the episode. I'm not entirely sure what this show has become, but now Archie is forged, so do with that what you will.

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Chapter Thirteen: The Sweet Hereafter
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