At the end of last week's episode of Riverdale, Archie (KJ Apa) decided to take the plunge into the dark business world of Hiram Lodge (Mark Consuelos) to get enough dirt on him for the FBI. Little did he know that when the time would come to use that ammunition he wouldn't be exactly sure if he wanted to pull the trigger. Taking on his new duties in The Wicked and the Divine, Archie is seen running around town doing errands for Hiram such as picking up his lunch from Pop's and getting his dry cleaning. Very amusing on how the uptown man who lives in luxury still wants his food from the local diner. Maybe that's his way of supporting his own investments since it is HIS diner.
Veronica (Camila Mendes) herself is busy because she is in the process of getting ready for her upcoming confirmation ceremony. She's getting a fancy new dress and tells Archie how important it is that her relatives are coming into town. Veronica is not the only one trying on a new look as "Dark Betty" has made an appearance by putting on a black wig to do her webcamming in the morning. Before school? What a strange way to start your day.
On the other side of the tracks, Jughead (Cole Sprouse) and his dad FP (Skeet Ulrich) are having to deal with yet another visit from Sheriff Keller (Martin Cummins) who has been on their case about the Pickens statue getting decapitated. Jughead tries to tell the Sheriff that he should be looking elsewhere for his vandals but Keller brings up how the article he wrote is the reason behind the Serpents showing up to protest Pickens day. Or he could've just said how it's just easier to blame the Serpents for everything.
That article would continue to cause problems for 'ol Juggy for when he gets to school, him and Betty (Lili Reinhart) get called into Principal Weatherbee's (Peter Bryant) office. He is furious because the school is now being threatened with a lawsuit from Hiram Lodge for the article he wrote. Because of this Weatherbee suspends Jughead and Betty from any more activity on the paper. So I guess Kevin (Casey Cott) just got promoted to Editor in Chief? Later when they are talking about what has just happened, Jughead clues Betty in on how the Sheriff thinks that he and his dad are responsible for the beheading of the Pickens statue. Somehow Betty finds a way to turn it into asking about if Jughead has ever messed around with Toni (Vanessa Morgan). The first word out of his mouth should have been 'no,' but they weren't. He tells her about the time they hooked up after he did the gauntlet. Jughead, of course, turns around and asks her the same and she says, "No, of course not!" Right answer.
When Jughead got home that evening, he would again run into Sheriff Keller but this time he wasn't there just to talk. Instead, he was putting up eviction notices around the trailer park. The mayor was applying pressure to the Serpents by kicking them out of their homes because of delinquent rent payments until she got someone to confess to the Pickens statue.
This would cause FP to call a meeting of the Serpents to try and calm down his furious members. He gives a speech about how they won't let the mayor beat them but he has to ask if anyone is actually responsible for messing with the statue. No one speaks up about that but Tall Boy (Scott McNeil) takes this opportunity to blame Jughead for causing all the heat on them with the article he wrote. He even takes it one step further and says that maybe that protest they did wasn't enough so they vandalized the statue. Jughead makes quite the weak comeback and tells Tall Boy it was actually probably him because of his height making it an easy task. Thankfully, FP comes in and breaks up this argument on the playground.
Because Jughead is never good at just sitting on his hands and waiting for things to happen he goes and visits Mayor McCoy (Robin Givens) to "talk" to her about the eviction notices. The talk turns into more of a shouting match as Jughead accuses the mayor of someone controlling her behind the scenes and forcing her to go after the Serpents. McCoy has no rebuttal to his accusation and instead tells him that he really needs to "Back Down!" Well, the saying has always been that if someone keeps quiet there must be some truth to what they're hiding. In this case, we know this to be very true.
Feeling he has no other options left, Jughead turns to Betty and asks for her help in trying to fix his problem. Betty brings up how the base of the problem is the beheaded statue so if they can just figure out who is responsible then maybe it will give the mayor a reason to back off. "Find the head, save the trailer park," Jughead states. Looks like the former couple is back to working together again. While Jughead was pairing back up with Betty, the exact opposite was happening at the Cooper household as Hal Cooper (Lochlyn Munro) was packing up a bag and leaving because as he puts it "either Chic (Hart Denton) goes or I go." Happy trails, Hal! Say hello to Penelope Blossom for us.
In the middle of Archie being Hiram's gopher, Special Agent Adams (John Behlmann) decides that he needs a moment of Archie's time as well. He knows of Veronica's confirmation ceremony and he wants Archie to help him since Hiram's "crime family" will be there. Well as luck would have it, Hiram finds out about Archie's visit to Nick St. Clair and how he roughed him up. He is impressed with Archie's character in defending Veronica so now he seems to trust him a little bit more. He asks Archie to help out with a poker game he has planned for some of his business friends that are coming into town. He just needs someone who will "keep the drinks filled and the cigars cut." Archie gladly accepts the offer and now he has a possible "in" to get some good info on Hiram.
The person that is most happy about this is Agent Adams who after finding this out wants Archie to wear a wire for that night. But Archie is strongly against it and refuses to wear one saying that it's too much of a risk for him. When Veronica learns that Archie is working her dad's poker game she goes to him and says that she doesn't like it because she knows he must be up to something. Hiram confesses that he wants to see how Archie handles himself around his business partners because if their relationship continues then he might have to consider bringing Archie into the family business. Veronica knowing what a good and kind-hearted guy Archie is, doesn't like the idea of him possibly changing by being brought into the business. Hiram lets her know that at some point she is either going to have to bring him in or let him go entirely. Isn't this supposed to be just a high school romance?
This whole situation with Archie begins to really take a moral toll on Veronica. So much that she actually goes to church and talks to the Monsignor (John Innes) in confessional about how she feels she's "leading him down an unrighteous path." Back at the Pembrooke, she visits with her mother Hermione (Marisol Nichols) and her relatives in from out of town. Her aunts tell her how they pray to God about their husbands and that gives them peace of mind. Once Veronica finds something like that, she will be able to deal with her daily life easier. Sounds more like burying your head in the sand to me.
When Jughead goes to the Whyte Wyrm he is met with an unfortunate surprise as the Snake Charmer herself Penny Peabody (Brit Morgan) has returned! I called this before that I knew someone who was burned that bad would definitely make her way back. She tells FP how Jughead violated their rules by "hurting one of their own kind" when he cut her Serpent tattoo off her arm. But she says she'll let it go and help them with their eviction problem if they kick Jughead out of the group and let her take his tattoo in the same fashion. Yeah, she's quite pissed off. But she's not the only one as FP has had it with his son causing so many problems for them. He tells Jughead there is going to be a vote to decide if he stays or not and when Jughead tries to say that Penny is the problem his dad loses it. He really lays into Jughead and tells him that his article is the one that started all this and then he just kept going by what he did to Penny. Even though he thinks he is doing so much to help the Serpents he is actually doing the opposite. "You will be the death of us," FP says. That's some harsh words to hear from a father.
At Hiram's poker game that night, Archie does his best to impress the guests but one in particular named Poppa Poutine (M.C. Gainey), a man so sour it's like he's on a weekend pass from the retirement home, just uses his name to cause a stir with his colleague. Learning his last name is Andrews Poppa says to Hiram, "Doesn't your wife know a guy named Andrews?" Hiram looks at the man in front of him as Poppa gives a sly smile of contempt for Hiram allowing his wife to stray on him. When you deal with criminals there's definitely going to be a lot of guys with some serious attitudes. One of the guests lets Archie know the toilet is clogged (that's Pop's fine cooking!), but it would turn out to be a blessing in a very gross disguise. Archie would overhear Poppa Poutine talking to one of the other guys outside about how Hiram has "lost his mojo" and "he's weak." So they decide they are going to "remove him" after Veronica's confirmation. Well, Archie, what do you do with this gem of information?!
Next day at Veronica's confirmation, Josie (Ashleigh Murray) and Veronica do a duet of "Bitter Sweet Symphony" by the Verve (which apparently is only referenced as 'from the Cruel Intentions soundtrack' because of random reasons?) which I'm sure only happens in Riverdale. When the Monsignor gets to point in the ceremony where he asks Veronica to renounce Satan her world around her grows dark but she looks out to the crowd and sees Archie's smiling face. This reminds her of the good he brings to her life and the darkness is replaced by a warm, bright light. It's pretty difficult to NOT roll the eyes at such a sappy moment but the message of what Archie brings to Veronica's life is the important part.
And with that everyone can trade in their bibles for champagne glasses because it's time to party! Archie is very distracted because he keeps eyeing Poppa Poutine every time he sees him having a conversation in a corner. The ceremony seems to have really given Veronica a realization and she tells her dad that she has made a decision about Archie-she doesn't want him being brought into the business. Hiram accepts her wish but before he gets to tell Archie he's fired, Archie asks for a moment alone with him upstairs. He tells Hiram about what he overheard Poutine talking about and he wanted to let him know so he could protect himself. Hiram doesn't even as much as flinch a facial tick and just thanks Archie for the information, "You can go back to the party now," he says. But he picks up that black phone on his desk and we all remember what happened last time he did that.
Betty finds Jughead being his usual sulking self and when she asks what is bothering him he gives her the whole story about Penny Peabody, the drugs he was running, and how the Serpents are voting on whether to let him stay. That's a whole lot of content to digest right away but Betty would never even get the opportunity because she would get a call regarding the flyers they had put up around town about the Pickens statue. And leave the party? What kind of teenagers are these? They would make their way to a junkyard where an older man (who looked like the storyteller of old legends from every horror film) would give them the bronze statue head he found in his scrap yard and describe the "low-life" who was wearing one of the Serpent jackets he had seen there. When Jughead asked if the man was tall, he answered "Yes." Well there you go, right? There can only be one TALL person in the Serpents. Tall Boy is behind the beheading because that's how easy it is for these "meddling kids" and how bad the Riverdale Sheriff is (I thought he wanted to bust the Serpents?).
Jughead takes this information to his father, FP, and when they publicly interrogate Tall Boy he is proud to spill the details. He reveals that Hiram Lodge gave him the idea to take the head so it would bring a whole lot of heat down on the Serpents. His plan was hoping to get rid of FP and Jughead so he could take over. But now his plan is ruined and his punishment is stripped of his Serpent membership and exiled. He was annoying anyway so not sad to see him go.
When Archie gets home he finds Agent Adams in his garage again, (he could at least send a text or something), and he tells Archie that they found Poppa Poutine, shot dead in his hotel room. When Adams brings up that Poutine was a guest at the confirmation and if Archie knows anything about what happened? He protects his girlfriend's father and says, "No." There it is, folks. Our golden boy has fallen down the dark hole of the crime world.
All this crime investigating has apparently really got Betty and Jughead's hormones going because they end up hooking up and actually going all the way this time. I'd say they're acting like horny teenagers but that's kind of the point. Her joy we would be very short-lived though because when she gets home her mother is busy cleaning up a massive pool of blood from a random guy's body that had shown up at their house earlier.
Finally, Veronica opens up a package that she thinks is for her but turns out to be for her parents. It's the head of General Pickens statue that the Serpents have sent as probably a message to Hiram saying that they know what he did. Guess he should've picked a smarter Serpent to do his dirty work. Things are really escalating in this town! Do you think Archie is going to fall victim to the criminal life? And what the hell happened with that stranger who came to the Cooper household? Find out on next week's Riverdale episode on The CW Network.