Veronica Lodge
Archie gets upsetting news, Veronica and Reggie get a tough challenge, and Cheryl takes on a new challenge in the ministry. 

On Riverdale Season 5 Episode 16, Archie gets news about General Taylor and decides to take it to a military tribunal. Meanwhile, Chad tips off the SEC to check out Veronica’s business, and Cheryl and Kevin come up with a scheme to spite Penelope. 

Archie

Archie Andrews

Archie’s storyline this episode focuses around his superior from his time in the army, General Taylor. General Taylor is retiring from the army with full honours and will no longer be under investigation much to Archie’s chagrin. He decides he’s going to go up at a military tribunal and advocate for the families of those that passed. 

Okay, I have been sort of disappointed by Archie’s storyline the past few seasons, it always seems like he’s trying to be a golden boy and solve a new problem every episode. I’ve felt, more than once, like the writers just don’t know what to do with him, and I felt that strongly in this episode. Of course, this storyline was important, and poignant in Archie and Eric’s story, but I also feel like it was sort of pulled out of nowhere, especially in comparison to the last couple of episodes. They sort of introduced this storyline in an earlier episode but we haven’t seen anything of it since, so why now? 

Like I’ve said before, I want to see them do a deep dive into Archie’s PTSD episodes. I want to see him work through this, and maybe that’s a part of this, but it does sort of feel disjointed in comparison. I would have much rather this episode focus on his healing again, and how he’s doing in therapy. This was sort of a bottle storyline, it doesn’t do anything for the central storyline, it doesn’t progress Archie’s story much, and at the end of it all, he’s still battling with his PTSD. If they decide to take the route of this being his way of helping his PTSD, as a sort of honour to his fallen soldiers, then sure, I like that, I think that works. But I’m skeptical if that’s what’ll happen. 

Veronica

Veronica Lodge

I can sum this storyline up fairly easily: Hiram, palladium, helicopters. That’s it, that’s like all there is to it. 

Chad, Veronica’s estranged husband, comes back to our screens in this episode, offering to help Veronica pay off his investors. But when she declines he calls the SEC on her and she and Reggie are forced to come up with a large sum of money, and quickly. Enter palladium and Hiram, because yes, once again, Veronica’s story hovers around Hiram.  

For what feels like the millionth time we watch Veronica and Hiram have the same fight they’ve had nearly every episode, and it’s just stale at this point. I will say, I LOVED the banquet idea she came up with, I thought that was fun, and I think I could’ve excused the palladium stealing part if Hiram didn’t crash the joint and force us to watch yet another battle between the two. 

Obviously, Hiram had to find out it was his palladium she stole for story purposes, but it could’ve been so much more thrilling if there was any weight to it, but they’re just… isn’t. All we get is a revelation from Veronica, a shocked face from Hiram, and a scene of him later, confirming it was his palladium Veronica stole. There was an opportunity to make that a big thing. I kind of enjoy watching Veronica sabotage Hiram, but some of the fun is taken away when it’s revealed to him in the same episode. 

I want to see her completely unravel every little thing he’s done, behind his back, and then reveal it in a big scene. I just want some weight behind these things because otherwise they just fall flat, and Veronica deserves so much more than that. 

Cheryl 

Cheryl Blossom & Kevin Keller

I have not liked Cheryl’s storylines this season, even more so in the last couple of episodes. Cheryl has been so thoroughly underused or used poorly in the last few seasons, and it’s almost hard to watch. Season 1 Cheryl would have laughed at current Cheryl. And sure, people change, but this is just such an odd note in her story. I mean, she’s already been a part of one cult, why did she join another? (Technically it’s a ministry but like… come on.) 

This episode might just be the one where it all completely hits the wall and I just have to sit there and wonder what is going on. In this episode, Kevin suggests that Cheryl perform three miracles and become a saint. And that’s exactly what she does, and at the end of the episode, she tells Kevin she believes that she is indeed a saint. 

I’m all for wacky storylines, it’s what I love about this show, but I just don’t understand this one. At the beginning of the season, Cheryl was this reclusive, shattered woman, with many issues to work out. But all of that seems to be forgotten now and I seriously just don’t understand. I liked that story for her, it made sense for her, especially after all that she’s been through, it felt like a step in the right direction. But now it feels like we’ve taken 3 steps back again. We already watched her put Jason to rest, and thus put herself at ease, so why are we bringing in a Jason worshipping ministry to derail that? 

I want more for Cheryl, I want to see her delve into her past traumas, I want to see her face all of her fears in life and love. I want bigger and better things for her, not the same storyline recycled over and over again with Jason coming back as some new, strange reincarnation. With Toni back in the picture though, I hope that will open the door for all of those things and more. Fingers crossed. 

What did you think of the episode? What did you think of everyone’s storylines? Are you enjoying them or do you crave more? Let us know in the comments or share with and follow us on Twitter!

Riverdale airs Wednesday nights at 8/7c on the CW!