Megan Rubenstein, E23 Reporter


The CW’s “Riverdale” returns with the season three premiere, leaving viewers questioning how the remainder of the season will look.

This review contains spoilers

On Wednesday, Oct. 10, the CW’s “Riverdale,” the dark teen-drama based off of the famous “Archie” comics, returned for the season three premiere. While I would not consider “Riverdale” the best show on television by any means, perplexing plot lines such as the gripping “black hood” murder mystery that occured in the first two seasons have kept me watching. After watching this latest episode, I can certainly say I do not plan to stop watching the show anytime soon.However I do not know if that’s because I really like it, or because I’m just so confused that I have to see what comes next.

The season three premiere began with Jughead Jones as the narrator, giving viewers a glimpse at everyone’s mundane summers in Riverdale. He then transitions to how Archie Andrews spent his summer: preparing for his criminal trial. In the season two finale, Archie was accused of murdering Cassidy Bullock, the man who attempted to rob Veronica Lodge’s lake house in season two. However, viewers saw what really happened and know that while Archie did go running after Cassidy, it was the the Lodge’s doorman who committed the murder.

The beginning of the premiere focused on Archie’s trial, however, it was put on hold before the jury could make their decision, leaving Archie free to enjoy his potential last weekend before being shipped off to jail.

Archie prepares for the worst, assuming he will be put in jail. In preparation, he gets a serpent tattoo to show he is in with the “Southside Serpents” so that he can have some protection in jail. While Archie is getting ready for the worst, his friends are spending their time trying to figure out a way to prove his innocence. Veronica goes about this by trying to convince her father, Hiram Lodge, to help Archie out, but he refuses by saying it is out of his control. In response, Veronica separates herself from her father, hopefully for good.

To the side of the trial plot line, we learn that Betty has been taking unprescribed Adderall as well as lying about seeing a therapist. Betty’s story line seems the most interesting at the moment, though it is still wildly confusing. Her mother and sister show concern for her, but Betty has refused to listen to them ever since they returned from “the farm,” a suspicious cult-like place where Alice and Polly Cooper went at the end of season two.

The most disturbing part of the episode is at the end, when Betty goes outside to see Alice and Polly throwing Polly’s twin babies into a bonfire, only for them to float above the fire. Betty then has a seizure and passes out. What I am unsure of, is whether this actually happened and Alice and Polly have some type of supernatural powers, or if this was a hallucination as an effect of Betty’s unprescribed drugs.

There was another plot line involving a disagreement between the Southside Serpents and the Bulldogs (who want to take over), but I found the plot line unimportant in comparison to the rest of the episode, which provided us many insights as to how the rest of the season will look.

At the end of the episode, the group returns to court, where the judge explains the jury could not come up with a verdict. The opposing attorney offers Archie a plea deal, which means he would go to a juvenile detention center but with a shorter sentence. Archie, self-destructive as usual, pleads guilty and accepts the deal, probably because he is ready for the whole situation to end.

Archie is taken away as Veronica cries, and the parents Fred, Mary, Tom and FP come together and decide that they are going to prove that Archie was framed by Hiram Lodge.

There were a lot of other smaller, just as confusing aspects of the episode, such as a mysterious drawing on a map and symbols spray-painted on the “Welcome to Riverdale” sign, but I am sure future episodes will unfold these smaller mysteries.

This episode was not anything special, but it was just intriguing enough and had just the right amount of mystery to make me want to keep watching. Are Alice and Polly really in a cult? Will Archie last in juvie? What are the symbols on the sign? Only time will tell.

“Riverdale” airs Wednesdays at 8EST/7CST on The CW.

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