Despite the multitude of weird things that happen on Riverdale, the series has never attempted a full-on Halloween episode, leaving the spooky stuff mainly for the town of Greendale on Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. That all changes this season as Wednesday, October 30 The CW will be broadcasting “Chapter Sixty-One: Halloween.” And as teased in the episode’s just released official synopsis, things are about to get real weird, real quick.
Here’s the official synopsis for the episode, and keep reading for our breakdown of what it all means:
HALLOWEEN IN RIVERDALE — When ominous videotapes begin appearing on doorsteps across Riverdale, widespread fear quickly returns to the town. At Stonewall Prep, Jughead (Cole Sprouse) learns about a series of mysterious disappearances that have occurred to former students at the school. Meanwhile, Archie’s (KJ Apa) plan to create a safe space for the town’s kids gets derailed when some unwanted visitors crash their Halloween party. Elsewhere, Veronica (Camila Mendes) comes face to face with trouble, while Betty’s (Lili Reinhart) past comes back to haunt her. Lastly, a haunting at Thistlehouse rocks Cheryl (Madelaine Petsch) and Toni (Vanessa Morgan) to their core. Madchen Amick, Skeet Ulrich, Casey Cott and Charles Melton also star. Erin Feeley directed the episode written by Janine Salinas Schoenberg (#404.) Original airdate 10/30/2019.
Let’s start with those videotapes. That line brings together a lot of info we’ve gathered about this season, including the first teaser poster which came complete with the tagline, “Sex. Lies. Videotapes.” A riff on the title of the movie that essentially kicked off the indie film movement, Sex, Lies and Videotape, it seems like — as with most things Riverdale — the show is getting extremely literal.
Some fans have theorized that these videotapes could be confessions taped by villainous cult The Farm. I’d venture they come from another source, as The Farm mystery left over from last season will reportedly get wrapped up in episode 3, “Dog Day Afternoon.” Also of note, it seems like Lochlyn Munro, who played serial killer The Black Hood, was on set during this episode — which suggests that perhaps he appears in a flashback, or more likely on one of these tapes.
Turning to Jughead, come episode 2 “Fast Times at Riverdale High,” he’ll get recruited by Stonewall Prep’s elite writing program, thanks to teacher Mr. Chipping (Sam Witwer). Though we know the preppies will be like Dead Poets Society meets Gossip Girl, it’s pretty reasonable to think they’ll lean on the “dead” and “girl” parts of those titles. It’s also possible they may have something to do with the scenes glimpsed in the Season 4 trailer showing Jughead seemingly buried alive.
Then there’s good ol’ Archie Andrews. Inspired by the memory of his father, Fred (Luke Perry), he’s turning his gym (yes, he owns a gym) into a community center for wayward youth. As noted, that goes wrong, so of course he decides to be a superhero. Yes, really: Archie will be donning the cape and tights of Pureheart the Powerful, his superhero alter-ego from Archie Comics. Really. For real.
We already touched on the Betty note a bit — her father Hal was the Black Hood — but we’ll also see kids in town dressed up as the serial killing Black Hood and cult figure The Gargoyle King, in a morbid turn for the children of Riverdale. And as for Veronica, could the trouble be her new older sister Hermosa (Mishel Prada), who will be siding with her incarcerated father Hiram (Mark Consuelos) in the next episode, “Witness for the Prosecution”? And could that lead to Hermione Lodge (Marisol Nichols) and Veronica finally bonding again, something that will also crop up during “Halloween?”
…and then there’s Cheryl and Toni, a.k.a. Choni. Not only will the duo be dressing up as the canonically queer DC Comics couple Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn, but as glimpsed in the show’s New York Comic Con trailer, they’ll be having a weird Ouija board session with Cheryl’s grandmother Nana Rose (Barbara Wallace), and a sailor doll named Julian. Julian, of note, is the name of the third Blossom child in the comics, along with Cheryl and Jason (Trevor Stines). With Jason’s corpse hanging out in Thistlehouse having conversations with Cheryl, could Julian turn out to not be a doll at all, but an actual third Blossom? We’ve got some theories on that front.
Oh, and two things not mentioned in the synopsis: during the episode, keep your ears and eyes peeled for a big reference to upcoming CW show Katy Keene; and also, someone is gonna die. Bum ba BUM.
Riverdale airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on The CW.
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