Juvie isn't going to be easy for Archie Andrews.
Riverdale Season 3 Episode 2 showcased our favorite redheaded football player's first few days behind bars. He tried to make the best of the situation, but Archie needs to face the facts: he's not in the safety of Riverdale anymore. Convicted life is a whole new reality.
Agreeing to the manslaughter plea deal wasn't the best idea. And Archie was probably realizing his mistake after the first scuffle.
With all things considered, Archie had been putting in the effort to turn things around. If it weren't for the few people who threw wrenches into his plans, his life would've been smooth sailing.
We can blame Joaquin for starting the entire domino effect. Why did he act so petty to Archie?
Based on the last time we saw him during Riverdale Season 1, Joaquin and Archie were decent friends. Sure, it stemmed from Joaquin dating Kevin, but their friendship ended on good terms.
Calling Archie out about being a goody-goody and demanding he attack a Ghoulie didn't fit their history. Joaquin had no reason to make life more complicated for Archie. The Ghoulies and the warden had at least some motivation for the evil they caused.
Joaquin's personality change didn't fit his character.
However, Archie this time around made logical and reasonable plans.
Attacking the Ghoulie would've only caused more problems in juvie and his chances to be released on good behavior. Plus, the football game was starting to achieve the normalcy the prisoners had sought. If the warden hadn't interfered, the game would've been a success.
In this case, Archie's problems were out of his hands. Anything that he could've done to defend himself would only hurt him.
He couldn't control the Ghoulies getting revenge on him for calling the cops during the drag race. He couldn't stop the warden from signaling a fake prison riot. He couldn't keep Mad Dog in his prison cell.
We can respect that Archie didn't mess things up on his own.
Betty: Juniper and Dagwood, are they alright?
Alice: Okay, here we go again.
Polly: Juniper and Dagwood are napping. They’re fine. Why wouldn’t they be?
Betty: Ummm, because I saw you and Mom throw the twins into a giant bonefire last night.
Alice: Okay, that’s enough! The only thing burning last night was the hibachi in the backyard. We were making skewers with a few friends.
Betty: From The Farm?
Alice: Yeah, as a matter of fact.
Polly: You must’ve had a hallucination from the seizure.
Betty: It was so real.
On the other hand, the foreboding words from the warden don't give much reassurance to that thought.
Archie's prison life will only get tougher from here on out. He needs to watch his back, especially when dealing with the warden, and this new "tapped" scenario. Just look at the mysterious disappearance of Mad Dog. (RIP!)
Mad Dog gave Archie the best advice to survive in the facility. Whatever the warden has planned for him, it will no doubt push him to the limit with decisions that bend the legal line. He can't do anything reckless that could ruin his chance of freedom or get him killed in the process.
Though we're talking about Archie here, and he does have a habit of making bad choices. Please, Archie, think before you react. Please!
Veronica's efforts to support Archie were noble, and just like her boyfriend, she made a big move to lift his spirits. On top of the music, she made three visits to see Archie in his short time. That's love right there.
Though similar to Archie, her outcome was completely out of her hands.
The cheerleading performance by Veronica, Cheryl, Josie, and the River Vixens was good in theory. We got treated to a nifty Riverdale-style rendition of "Jailhouse Rock," and the choreography was on point for a routine they just threw together. Based on the strange, overly-excited reactions from the guys, we can assume they liked it.
But Hiram couldn't let his daughter have one happy moment. No, he had to be his smug villainous self yet again and order a prison riot.
Why is he so dead set on destroying Archie to hurt Veronica?
He claimed it was about her betraying him, but his moves hit new levels of low even for him. He's digging a hole that will never get repaired in the future.
Veronica is going to get revenge one day, and it will be a glorious celebration.
Veronica: What are you doing here?
Hiram: Warden Norton is a friend and a business associate. He told me about this little game, and he invited me to see it.
Veronica: And you of course have nothing better to do?
Hiram: And as disrespectful as you are being to me, I won’t let you flush your life down the drain for a boy. A criminal. And I think you’ll find that after today, you’ll no longer be allowed to visit Archie Andrews.
Veronica: I get it! Warden Norton is in your pocket. Everyone is in your pocket, except for me and Archie. You won’t keep us apart. For right now, I need to go cheer my boyfriend on a victory. If you’ll excuse me!
Betty and Jughead's newest investigation is darker and creepier than anything they've faced before. This new mystery gave off major Stranger Things and True Detective vibes the deeper they looked into their leads.
I loved all of the scary elements included that heightened the darkness and eeriness of the case.
The creepy mortician, the runes on Dilton's corpse, and the darkness in the woods suited the uneasy tone. These visual elements amplified the dread and fear we were meant to feel as Betty and Jughead learned more about the Gargoyle King.
Plus, the looming figure in the costume with the bloody mask was the perfect red cherry on this scary sundae!
All of their geeky friends seemed to be connected in this tangled web of runes and cult worship.
As someone who has played Dungeons & Dragons before, it's safe to say some people do get really invested in the fake world. Ethel, Ben, and the missing scout took their devotion to a whole new level of fandom. They're either scared or brainwashed to the root of the cause.
Before Dilton died (RIP!), he had started to come around to seek help. And, after some convincing, Ethel looked ready to listen to reason too. However, someone interfered before they could tell the truth.
The Gargoyle King must be someone with deep ties to Riverdale High since most of the members of the game were students. Plus, it's someone with access to drugs that cause seizures. Maybe it's Reggie or one of the Serpents?
They have shown in the past to have access to drugs, and it's definitely a male based on Ethel's warning. So, options could be Fangs or Sweet Pea. However, it's also too early to tell at this point, so let's be on the lookout for clues.
Jughead: Is this the Gargoyle King?
Ethel: How do you know about that?
Jughead: Dilton started to tell me, but he only got so far. So is it?
Ethel: No. No, it’s the opposite. I made that talisman to protect Ben.
Betty: How do you even know Ben?
Ethel: He’s my boyfriend.
Betty: I’ve never seen you two together.
Ethel: We started dating this summer, and we spent a lot of time in the bunkers.
Jughead: What bunker?
Ethel: Never mind!
Betty: Ethel! What bunker?
Ethel: Dilton’s ... in the woods.
Jughead: Dilton Doily has a secret bunker in the woods?!
Ethel: It was our secret spot and Dilton’s too.
It's a shame that Ben won't be around to survive the case of the Gargoyle King.
Ever since Riverdale Season 1, he had been that subtle presence popping up throughout the series. He worked at the drive-in, he hooked up with Ms. Grundy, he might've also hooked up with Chic, and he fell into a D&D cult. Ben was a complex guy.
His suicide was a twist that nicely blended shock and anticipation. Once he appeared at the window frame, the next development was an obvious conclusion.
We could only sit back and watch as Betty and Jughead failed in their pleas to keep him alive.
Hopefully, Ethel doesn't make the same decision once she's out of the ICU. Her seizure equally kept us on our toes, and she showed dedication to her friendship with Dilton and game relationship with Ben. We can't lose her too!
Betty: What caused the blue lips?
Doctor: The cyanide was mixed into a sugary drink called, “Freshade.” Blueberry flavored. There’s something dimly familiar about this. If you had asked me before if I thought this was murder or suicide, I’m not sure what it is. But, whatever it is, it is darker than what happened to Jason Blossom or with The Black Hood. No, what we’re looking at here, I believe, is the true face of evil.
Speaking of relationships, Kevin's love life needs to catch a break one of these days. All of the men in his life have disappointed him one after the other.
Moose had all the potential for giving Kevin the love he deserved, and let's not forget it was Moose who made the declaration first. But, dating life baggage reared its ugly head yet again.
Moose's struggle between his dad and his happiness is understandable since it's a big change in his life. He can't rush into things if he's not ready to confront the truth. However, he shouldn't keep Kevin hanging on and ignoring him in public.
Kevin has his own happiness to worry about.
Making changes to support and be with Moose showed how much Kevin believed in his relationship. There is a lot of love between them. Though, he shouldn't lose himself by trying to make a relationship work if someone isn't all in.
Last Thoughts From Sweetwater River:
What do you think the mystery is between all of the parents? They did something dangerous as kids that ties back to this mystery. Their ominous words felt very much like I Know What You Did Last Summer!
Cheryl served her tea cold with her epic one-liners to Veronica. We need to see more of her.
Poor Mad Dog, your short time and wise words left a big mark. Hopefully, he isn't dead, and he'll return one day.
There's something creepy about Evelyn Evernever. She could be a red herring, but she knew something bad was going to happen.
- Hermione supported Veronica by endorsing the project. Maybe she really is turning over a new leaf?
What did you think of "Chapter Thirty-Seven: Fortune and Men's Eyes"? Are both cases of the seizures connected?
What trouble will be "tapped" cause for Archie?
Are you sad to see Dilton, Ben, and Mad Dog die?
If you missed the latest episode of Riverdale, you can watch Riverdale online via TV Fanatic.
Come back here and share your thoughts in the comments.
Justin Carreiro is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.