Riverdale Ep. 11 recap “Chapter Eleven: To Riverdale and Back Again”

I find it pretty difficult to figure any of these kids out in Riverdale. I mean, I think they’re supposed to be likable. This might even be the writers trying to make the kids “complex” but basically they’re all a bunch of jerks who are all self-obsessed.

But then again, I suppose that what teenagers actually are.

“Chapter Twelve” revolves around homecoming, so you know things are going to go terribly wrong. Old Riverdale graduates return to town to help celebrate. And one of the returned in Archie’s mom, Mary. While she’s not in Riverdale to stick around forever, she is there to try and convince Archie to join her in Chicago.

And to be honest, if Chicago is looking like the safer option in comparison to Chicago, things must really be getting bad. But she agrees to stick around long enough to go to the homecoming and watch Archie perform.

Archie approaches Veronica at school to talk about their night together (in which they slept in separate beds, but it’s still cute). V blows Archiekins off when he suggests they become something more. She’s not even interested in being a part of his performance at homecoming.

Veronica has bigger fish to fry. Her father is likely to be released from prison after she and her mom testified for his character. But Veronica is still convinced that he might have something to do with Jason’s murder. Namely that Jughead’s dad, FP, was involved.

Alice Cooper asks her daughter and Veronica for help looking into FP.  Betty is insistent that she doesn’t want to help. Jughead had already told her that he didn’t think his father was involved, and she was choosing to believe him. But Veronica isn’t as convinced. She thinks because FP and her father worked together to close the drive-in, it isn’t too out of the question to ask for a hitjob.

So secretly, Veronica agrees to look into FP for Alice. She approaches Archie and asks for his help. She’ll sing a duet with him for the homecoming dance if he agrees to search FP’s trailer with him. The stupid boy agrees to betray his friend under the guise of “looking out for Jughead”.

But Jughead is planning on moving back in with FP, who appears to have changed his ways. When Jughead visits his dad’s trailer, it’s clean and even repainted. His dad compliments him on his manuscript about Jason, even asking questions (namely “who do you think did it?”). But his dad mostly encourages Jughead to give up on Jason and move on to a new story.

Jughead and FP are invited to the Cooper’s house for dinner before the dance. It, shockingly, goes horrible. It was set up by Alice as a both a distraction (so A and V can get in that trailer) and a means to question FP about the drive-in. But Betty has her own vengeful secret up her sleeve: inviting her dad around.

FP takes the opportunity to talk about his, Alice’s and Hal’s homecoming in which Betty’s parents argued about something rather serious. But Alice puts a stop to it before it can get worse. The kids head off to the dance, leaving their parents to take care of themselves.

Meanwhile, Archie and Veronica are in FP’s trailer and come up empty-handed. This is actually upsetting to Veronica. But Archie reminds her that their friend’s dad not being a killer is actually a good thing. And convinced with another kiss from her ginger friend, the two go off to the dance together.

Despite agreeing not to tell Betty and Jughead about searching the trailer, Betty quickly pieces the puzzle together when she sees them talking to her mom. She goes to confront them, but they slip away to preform their cover of “Kids in America.”

Unbeknownst to any of them (I think), the police arrive at FP’s house with a search warrant. And despite Archie and Veronica not finding anything, the sheriff discovers a revolver in a lock box.

At the dance, Betty is told about Archie and Veronica’s search party. She’s incredibly angry with them, but loses out just as badly when Jughead learns about what they did. He’s not totally convinced that she had nothing to do with it.

And things become even worse when the four are told that FP has been arrested in connection to Jason’s death. Jughead is totally broken, thinking that his dad was changed.

But the thing is, he probably has. When Betty goes to look for Jughead at Pop’s, she instead finds Veronica and Archie. They tell her that they believe FP has been set up. The gun that was found wasn’t there when they were – it was planted.

There is a small subplot in this week’s episode about Polly. She discovers a room full of red wigs that are worn by Cliff Blossom (super weird). She’s then banned from the east wing where Cliff and Rose have their rooms.

But Polly is determined to snoop anyway and gets Cheryl to go into her mother’s room where they find the engagement ring that Jason gave Polly. This to Polly screams that the Blossoms are guilty of Jason’s murder. But Rose explains that they took the ring after Jason disowned the family.

Cheryl claims to have got rid of the ring, but has actually held onto it. For sentimental reason? As evidence? She’s a girl with plenty of tricks up her fabulous sleeves.

Oh and Rose Blossom gave Polly a drugged milkshake. That happened.

Episode eleven is the first episode to be written by Archie Comics chief creative officer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa since episode 2. But I didn’t feel as much of his signature on this episode as I could hear in the first couple. But the music was fun (lots of 80’s music and covers), and the episode looked really great.

“To Riverdale and Back Again” was plenty dramatic, if a bit predictable. But it did raise plenty of new questions. For one: that gun. It has crossed my mind that it is similar to the one that Betty and Veronica found in “Ms Gundy’s” car. Mostly I’m being hopeful because I still don’t fully understand the reason for that storyline earlier in the season.

But I also think Joaquin is very suspicious. His leader is FP, but maybe the other Serpents aren’t too happy with him cleaning up his act.

Either way, kids. Two episodes to go and I’m getting a little impatient. I’m ready for some big, dramatic reveals. And I hope to God that at least some of these questions are answered.

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