Riverdale – Body Double
By: Jay Smith
Cheryl (Madelaine Petsch) is being taken down to Weatherbee’s (Peter Bryant) office by him and Sheriff Keller (Martin Cummins) as Jughead (Cole Sprouse) narrates about the current revelation. Cheryl finally tells the truth. Jason (Trevor Stines) had wanted to leave Riverdale so they staged an accident so their parents wouldn’t find them. They both made it to the other side of the River and Jason promised to call Cheryl as soon as he made it to his destination and every day after that. Cheryl waited for his call or email, but received nothing. The sheriff is interrogating Cheryl and she remembers there was a gunshot that morning saying maybe the person who shot it the first time missed and tried again later. The Blossoms (Nathalie Boltt and Barclay Hope) come into the room and then take Cheryl out of school.
Alice (Mädchen Amick) throws the next’s morning’s paper on Betty’s (Lili Reinhart) bed and is a little too excited to be getting these Jason’s updates out to the public. Betty tries to convey to Alice that Jason is still a person regardless of what he did to Polly. Alice doesn’t care and reiterates, “You reap what you sow.” She also makes the comment to Betty that she should work for her and her father since she’s so full of questions and calls her Lois Lane. Archie (K.J. Apa) sees Grundy (Sarah Habel) in the music room practicing her cello and then goes to Weatherbee’s office. He confesses to hearing the gunshot like Cheryl, but instead of saying he was with Grundy when he heard it he says he was writing his music with his dog Vegas. In the student lounge Kevin (Casey Cott) tells everyone his dad, the Sheriff, thinks everyone is a suspect. Veronica (Camila Mendes) doesn’t include herself because she knows no one. Kevin invites the gang over for “Netflix and Chill,” but Betty and Veronica decline. Veronica admits to having a date with Chuck Clayton (Jordan Calloway), the football coach’s son. Betty calls him a player and Kevin compares a date with Chuck to dating a Kennedy. Jughead meets Betty in the old newsroom and with him writing a series on Jason’s death she wants Jughead to write for “The Blue and Gold” with complete freedom with strings. She sends him on his first assignment and that’s to get Dilton Doiley’s testimony on the events. Archie gets home and Fred (Luke Perry) and Vegas are waiting for him. He states why he’s late and Fred recounts his conversation with the Sheriff and is upset with Archie for lying again and not telling the truth. Furious and not liking the change that has taken over Archie since the summer, Fred grounds him.
After taking a picture on their date, Chuck tells Veronica he had a different vision of her before they actually went out. They compare stories on being the new kids in town and she gives him for his praise. They kiss and we can only assume more happened. Archie is with Grundy and she’s upset he told Weatherbee about hearing the gunshot. He tells her he did it because Cheryl was getting crucified during her interrogation. Again she only cares about herself and what could happen if anyone finds out about their relationship. In the hall Veronica tells Kevin and Betty about the date and how Chuck is only something to look at and not have conversations with. Two girls pass them and ask Veronica if she enjoyed a “sticky maple” from Chuck. Confused she tells them they had a brownie sundae but that’s it. Phones go off and it’s the picture of Chuck and Veronica with maple syrup down her face of the photo. Kevin says it’s a Riverdale thing, but Veronica knows it’s a slut shaming thing. Betty comes up with solutions to deal with this problem, but Veronica wants action right then and there. They head into the boys’ locker and bump into a naked Archie before finding their target. Chuck makes a quip about Betty and Veronica propositioning him with a threesome and Veronica proceeds to tell him to take the photo down. He says it’s a badge of honor and Veronica isn’t actually “virgin territory” because of her kiss with Archie. Betty says he has no right to shame any girl regardless of activities. Again Chuck makes an inappropriate pass and Veronica has had enough. She demands one more time for him to take the photo down and he refuses. On the field, Jughead approaches Doiley (Daniel Yang) with his troop and starts asking questions if he heard the gunshot that Archie and Cheryl also heard. While Doiley is telling Jughead what he heard, he looks over to see a nervous scout in ear shot of their conversation.
Back in class, Cheryl wants to thank Archie for standing up for her and telling the truth. She offers him one wish and says Jason would want him to be rewarded. Archie is tuning his guitar and Josie (Ashleigh Murray) walks into the room. She’s only doing this favor because Cheryl is her friend. She informs him that her and the girls are practicing every day this week for her mom’s, the mayor, event at the end of it. At home, Veronica is reading the hateful comments under the inappropriate photo that’s still up for the world to see. Hermione (Marisol Nichols) comes into the room while getting dressed for work and asks Veronica about her date with Chuck. Under her breath she says he’s handsome on the outside and rotten on the inside. Perplexed, Hermione asks what does she mean, but Veronica takes a call from Betty before having to fully explain. Veronica arrives at the school and it’s Betty in a room with other girls who have been in her shoes. Ethel (Shannon Purser) is the only girl that will go on record about her story. She recounts that she helped him with a math question and he spread the rumor that she did inappropriate things with him. Either him or a team mate wrote “sloppy seconds” on her locker soon after. Cheryl hears the conversation and tries to make it about her stating her being a murder suspect in her brother’s death is more tragic than a rumor going around. Ethel is crying while explaining that the boys think it’s a game and keep score of their conquests with various girls in a playbook. Cheryl is dismissive of the playbook because Jason was co-captain with Chuck and believes he would never allow that to happen. Veronica has had enough and plans to seek justice for her and the girls. She also dares Cheryl to call the girls out of their names again.
At the diner, Jughead sees the nervous scout (Adam Swain) from earlier and asks him questions. He admits that Doiley was lying about the gunshot. Doiley was the one who shot the gun while teaching the boys how to protect themselves. Archie sneaks out of the house and heads to Josie and the Pussycats’ practice session. While talking to Val (Hayley Law) and Melody (Asha Bromfield), Archie wants to write music and thinks the girls would be great playing them. Josie explains to Archie that yes the town might be slightly progressive, but it’s not completely for women of color. She explains that they’re named The Pussycats because they have to claw their way into the same rooms he can just waltzed into and that’s why he can’t really write for the girls.
In the newsroom, Betty is there and Ethel brings in Trev Brown (Adain Bradley), who used to be on the football team and knows where the playbook is. Kevin, Veronica, Betty, Ethel and an uninvited Cheryl are sneaking around the school when they discover the playbook. They go through the book and see all the girls listed with scores next to their names. Betty sees Polly’s name and Jason’s name next to hers as the one who wrote it. Even with evidence Cheryl still tries to defend Jason and his actions. Cheryl starts to realize she really didn’t know her brother while Betty wants more justice for the girls than just exposing them in the school paper and telling Weatherbee. Betty wants to go “full dark no stars,” a phrase Veronica used to describe not holding back and has a plan.
Archie helps with the song writing process and is happy how his contribution is accepted and sounds amazing. Betty gets ready to execute her plan with Veronica. She’s trying on Polly’s old red lipstick and Alice doesn’t approve. She makes the comment that Polly grew up too fast and doesn’t want that for Betty. She wipes the lipstick off after Betty tells her she isn’t going to the mayor’s event and is instead studying with Veronica. Again Alice disapproves of Veronica because she’s a “bad girl.” She gives Betty a soft pink lipstick explaining it’s more her color and leaves the room. Betty heads into Pop’s Diner and spots Chuck. She tells him she wants to be more like Veronica, the bad girl, and he proceeds to tell her that Polly was also a bad girl. Jason told the guys that she was “prissy prude by day and a freak in the sheets by night.” This is unsettling to Betty because she didn’t know this side of her sister, but keeps her composure. She invites him to Ethel’s because she has a pool. Archie sneaks back in to the house and Fred is waiting for him. Archie explains to him where he was and really wants to hear his song live so he haggles for his punishment. Fred isn’t here for it, but Archie makes him reevaluate the situation and brings up football. Archie makes the point that if Fred is going to ground him it has to be from all avenues not just from doing his music.
Chuck arrives at Ethel’s and is taken aback when he sees Veronica. She makes a seductive comment on how her and Betty agreed to stop fighting over Archie and will learn how to share. Betty comes out in a black wig and red lipstick taking Chuck and Veronica’s breaths away. At the Taste of Riverdale event, Fred sees Hermione working and offers her a drink. Before she can accept Grundy shows up to the table asking for food. Fred realizes who she is, introduces himself and asks to talk. You can see Grundy is very nervous about this. The Mayor (Robin Givens) and Sheriff spot The Blossoms and asks how are they doing. Penelope can’t hide her frustration and is gives them a slight lecture on the lack of work they’re doing on the investigation. Alice butts in and without tack asks for a quote for the paper. Before she can finish Penelope punches her in the face and cries about what Alice has published so far about Jason. Josie sees the altercation and takes the stage with the Pussycats to take the attention off that to themselves. Archie and Jughead have snuck into the party and Archie is proud to hear his song live. Jughead leaves and Archie looks for crowd reactions and see Ms. Grundy and his dad talking. Fred asks if Archie’s music is a thing he has real talent for and not just a pipe dream. Grundy assures him Archie has real talent for it and could possibly make a living from it if he tries. Fred also asks what made her take an interest in Archie. She admits that he’s a special kid. Alice walks up to the table where Hermione is and in a passive aggressive tone asks about Veronica. She tells Hermione that Veronica is being slut shamed and suggests she be watched more. Back at the hot tub, Betty and Veronica and making drinks and Betty mixes a muscle relaxer in Chuck’s. Veronica thinks Betty should slow down and she ignores her. She asks Chuck if he wants to slow down, but of course with his raging hormones he doesn’t want to. Jughead finally sees Doiley and corners him. He tells him he knows about the gun and suggests Doiley tell the real story to him or to the Sheriff. The girls handcuff Chuck and turn up the heat in the hot tub. While recording they get him to admit all he did with Veronica was make out and then take her home. Not thinking he’s learned his lesson or realizing who she really is, Betty pushes him further into the hot tub wanting him to apologize for what he did to Polly. After he apologizes, she gives him a “sticky maple” while calling him Jason. Veronica is scared and tries to get Betty to stop. After one last final plea Betty does stop and seems to be back to normal.
Archie is heading to school when he hears power tools going off in the shed. He sees Fred sound proofing the garage for him to practice in. He talks about meeting Grundy and with a retro reference states that teachers didn’t look like her in his day. A little nervous, Archie asks about what they talked about and Fred tells him they talked about him. Betty drops off the newest exposé for “The Blue and Gold” and Veronica asks when did she have time to write it. Betty admits to not sleeping. Veronica thanks Bett,y but is concerned about what happened to Betty during the hot tub plan. Veronica tells Betty about herself and she refuses to believe it. Betty says she’s just tired of the way guys treat girls like her, Veronica and Polly.
Weatherbee finally takes action, with the help of Hermione, and has Chuck with his friends cut from the football team in order for the coach to keep his job. Jughead narrates that this punishment will have repercussions for the school for weeks to come. Ethel thanks Betty and she thanks her for coming forward. Betty and Cheryl take the playbook and burn it in a trash can. As it’s burning, Cheryl says she thinks the person who killed Jason wanted to hurt him because maybe he hurt people too. She apologizes on Jason’s behalf for hurting Polly. Archie goes to the music room and thanks Grundy for her kind words. He asks if this means she will tutor him again in music. In the newsroom, Doiley pleads not to have his testimony published and promises a better story. Betty and Jughead promise to keep the gunshot info secret in exchange. Doiley admits to seeing Grundy’s car at the river’s edge. As Jughead narrates on not being able to save Archie, Archie and Grundy are back to being intimate in the music room.