The CW’s Riverdale is keeping the momentum going strong with the third episode of Season 2, “Chapter Sixteen: The Watcher in the Woods”. The shocker from Chapter 15 gets resolution, new characters are introduced thanks to Jughead starting a new school, and characters not the core four are beginning to get more depth. Let’s dive into this week’s episode, shall we?
Riverdale Recap: Chapter Sixteen: The Watcher in the Woods
Airdate: October 25, 2017
Moose and Midge are ALIVE! I repeat… Moose and Midge are alive! Even though according to Reggie, Moose was shot multiple times, he didn’t go through an episode long life hanging in the balance arc like Fred did and seemed fairly unscathed from his hospital bed… but that’s fine, let’s dig in.
Speaking of Moose, be still my MoosVin loving heart! Moose and Kevin had this moment in the hospital where they discuss “guys like us” who just hope to find 2 minutes of happiness in their little close minded, option-less town. I’m still rooting for this pairing. Kevin goes through it this episode; ending with a rift in his relationship with Betty no thanks to Cheryl being Cheryl and exacerbating an already tenuous situation.
While Betty is trying to be a good friend, she misses a huge component of what makes her best friend tick. It speaks heavily to her do-gooder nature to just want him to be safe, not wandering around the woods when a masked vigilante is running around– wait what CW show is this again?.. Anyway, Betty absolutely does the right thing in harping at Kevin to stop putting himself in danger, and Kevin is absolutely right when he reads her the riot act for not getting it. We tend to compartmentalize things in terms of ourselves and Kevin is quick to point out that it’s not the same for him. It’s a lesson Betty needs to learn, a lesson we all need. Stop trying to fit everyone into a box. Life doesn’t work that way. Also, while I truly enjoy the idea of referring to Sheriff Keller as Sheriff Killer, I hope he’s as good of a guy as he seems to be a father. That scene with Kevin was heartbreaking and I was sobbing.
Elsewhere, the Lodge women are engaged in this uncomfortable pas de deux over Hiram and I don’t know how I feel about it. This power struggle between mother and daughter keeps Hermione and Veronica at odds; a relationship I very much enjoyed last season is being burnt to the ground.
Hermione is chugging back glasses of wine and taunting Veronica with her sinister eyes, while Veronica is doing all she can to woman-up her mother over Hiram. It’s all a little… incestuous and awkward. But this is all part of Hiram and who he is and what he does, right? He plants seeds and lets them fester. Almost in a Charles Manson type way…. He’s just suggesting, not doing. So when he give Archie the idea to really go balls to the wall with his little watch group, you can’t help but cringe at the prospect of the outcome.
Speaking of Archie’s watch group, he takes a page from Archie Comics, literally, and inspired by a Red Circle comic book he finds in his gun box, creates…. Yes… The Red Circle club to act as watchers of the town, specifically Riverdale High kids. Archie and a group of boys, mostly the football team and Dilton Doiley, take up arms to fight this masked man terrorizing their town. I won’t complain about hot NuReggie and his vintage mustang being front and center of this little crusade. I am so enjoying what Charles Melton is doing with this role. And I will admit… I swooned just a little when Archie came to Ethel’s rescue. He’s getting better guys!
The Black Hood… self-titled vigilantes are so irksome; every good hero knows you don’t name yourself. Come on guy! So Black Hood dude sends Alice Cooper an envelope containing Grundy’s sunglasses and Fred’s wallet accompanied with a statement of intention. He confesses to “getting the adulterer at Pop’s, the child predator at Greendale, and the drug and sex addicted teenagers”. So this is a misguided do-gooder thinking he’s ridding Riverdale of sinners? This creates the perfect opportunity for Polly to reappear, terrified of being next. She is an unmarried mother carrying her cousins children; aka poster child for sinner. And so we dispense with pregnant Polly until further notice. Which, admittedly, is totally fine with me, I didn’t really miss her on screen. Sorry Polls.