With Polly still missing, Betty puts all of her efforts into investigating her disappearance, and in the process, uncovers multiple more. Meanwhile, Archie starts a fire department, Cheryl comes out of hiding and Jughead and Tabitha investigate a decade’s old mystery.
On Riverdale Season 5 Episode 7. Betty is still searching for her sister, and in the process uncovers a slew of unsolved disappearances in the town. But with Hiram on her tail, it’s going to be difficult to find anything. Meanwhile, Jughead and Tabitha are told of a strange encounter from decades prior, and find themselves in the middle of it.
Cheryl Blossom has spent the last seven years cooped up at Thornhill, with all of her past heartaches leading her to believe that she is cursed. So when it was revealed that she’d be coming out of hiding, I was excited. However, that excitement quickly dwindled as the episode went on. From the moment we saw her in the first time jump episode, I had a strange feeling about her storyline. It felt lacklustre to me compared to the other storylines, but I just assumed as the season went on that would change. Unfortunately, it hasn’t.
My issue lies in the fact that she doesn’t seem to have grown much as a character, or rather we haven’t seen much character growth. There have been a few moments in the last few episodes where Cheryl has shown her heart and helped out the town, but all of it feels forgotten in this episode. She’s so callous with her peers, which isn’t necessarily out of character, but when comparing it to the Cheryl we saw in previous episodes, it is.
The first scene she has in the gym could’ve been handled a lot differently, and better, in my opinion. Rather than suggesting a dance battle, I would have loved to see her and Toni talk it out, still sassily but less cringe-worthy. It could’ve helped to show that Cheryl has grown as a character, rather than re-route to her old ways when we were just starting to see a new side of her. One that I personally really liked.
It’s just a little disappointing since Cheryl is a character that I believe has a lot of potential to grow and become a better person, and it feels like we keep being teased with that. In one episode she’s someone completely different and so helpful and kind, and the next it feels like we’ve put pre-time jump Cheryl in more mature clothing and called it a day.
That all being said, there were moments of her storyline I did enjoy. Like the angst with Toni. The two of them have always been very headstrong characters and could’ve been the pivotal angsty ship in previous seasons had they been given the chance. However, I’m happy that we’re seeing it now. I love seeing the two of them challenge each other, especially given their history together, and the fact that they know each other better than anyone. It just makes every face-off between them so much more riveting, and I hope we see it more.
Battle of the Lodge’s
Given how the last episode pre-time jump ended, I was expecting Veronica’s storyline to be Hiram-free. After all, nearly every one of her storylines throughout the series has come back to him in some way, and it’s felt like she’s had the same plot for three years. But alas, here we are again.
It isn’t an outright battle between them like previous seasons, but for every move Veronica makes, Hiram seems to be right there ready to interrogate and belittle it. I would have loved to see Hiram have a character makeover this season, and maybe even see him be helpful to his daughter rather than try to destroy her.
When it comes to Veronica, I feel like there is so much that can be done with her character, and yet it feels like the writers just sentence her to a different rendition of the same storyline she’s had for five years. The same goes for Hiram, he’s constantly the villain of the season, which was fine in his first season, but 3 seasons later? It’s gotten stale at this point, and I hope that there will be more to them in the coming episodes.
A New Type of Mystery
The last episode ended on a cliffhanger that included Alice, Kevin and Betty finding a body at Swedlow Swamp, leading us to believe that it’s the missing Polly. This is proved to not be the case early on in this episode, which is a relief to many. However, it kicks off an intriguing new mystery as it’s revealed that 21 girls are missing. I hadn’t expected the plot to take that turn but in a sense, I’m kind of glad that it did, as it opens up a bigger and more sinister mystery.
Plus, having a more realistic mystery like this is a nice addition to the show in my opinion. Sure the wacky storylines are fun to watch but I find storylines like these much more intriguing. Plus, Riverdale has never dealt with a storyline like this before, so I’m really curious what they’ve got up their sleeves. I feel like it’s going to uncover more of the town’s deepest and darkest secrets, and I can’t wait.
It’s also quite refreshing to see more than just Betty and Jughead investigate mysteries around the town. And it’s even better that the more sidelined characters are helping instead. The only qualm I have is that I want to see more of Alice investigating. After all, it is her daughter that’s missing, and we know she’s distraught about it and searching for her day in and day out, so why don’t we get to see it more?
Either way, having her and other sidelined characters like Kevin and Sherriff Keller involved, really makes me excited. I think it brings a much-needed breath of fresh air to the series. And it juices up a plotline that could easily be bogged down, had it been handled by just Betty and Jughead. Sure it’s fun to see them sleuth around, but I love hearing the other residents of Riverdale comment on the newest mystery in their town.
A Strange Encounter
When it was first hinted that Riverdale would dip their toes into the extra-terrestrial side of things, I was very apprehensive. I don’t tend to be very interested in that kind of plot, but surprisingly, I’m enjoying it a lot. I’d even go as far as saying it was my favourite storyline of the episode. It’s being handled in a way that, while it’s still cheesy, isn’t outright laughable. And the shot of the diner going into complete chaos was so mesmerizing to me. I loved it!
I’m also really loving Jughead and Tabitha as a duo and it’s been nice seeing their friendship grow over the last few episodes. I hadn’t expected to see them as an investigative duo but I think they balance each other out so well that it works amazingly.
I also really loved that they’re dipping into mysteries from the past. The town is so strange, there was bound to be some kind of crazy story. And what’s crazier than a potentially alien-related encounter happening at the local diner? It feels like there is still a lot to uncover with this storyline, and I think it might play a big part in the rest of the season. Which surprisingly? I’m quite excited about it.
What did you think of Riverdale Season 5 Episode 7? What did you think of the newest mysteries? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or share with us on Twitter!
Riverdale airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on the CW!