Riverdale - Chapter Two: Touch of Evil REVIEW

The mystery surrounding Jason Blossom's murder continues, as more and more supporting characters come into play.

Riverdale - Chapter Two: Touch of Evil REVIEW

The mystery surrounding Jason Blossom's murder continues, as more and more supporting characters come into play.

This week's episode opens with an underwear-clad Archie Andrews (K.J. Apa) tossing and turning, unable to sleep due his guilt of keeping information about Jason's death a secret. So of course he goes for a shirtless run to Miss Grundy's (Sarah Habel) house, the teacher with which he has been having an elicit affair. I would recap what happened in this scene, but I can't because having Archie basically naked for the first five minutes of this episode was super distracting. I'm mean, come on!

Chapter Two: Touch of Evil expands on the characters that we didn't really get to meet properly in Chapter One: River's Edge, particularly 'American Beauty'-esque writer-kid, Jughead Jones (Cole Spouse). He and Archie we best of friends in the past, but have drifted since the summer. 

We also got a little more of gay best friend, Kevin Keller (Casey Cott), which I'm really enjoying. I am excited for him to evolve into more than just a GBF, however. I know it's early days, but having your only openly gay character come out (lol) with lines such as "only a gay man could have that body" is problematic. Last week he was implying that his jock hookup, Moose, was hung like a horse. Yes, I'm aware that many gay men are kinda shallow, body obsessed, size-queens, but we are also multifaceted individuals with a lot more going on -- and yes, I'm also aware I spent my first paragraph discussing Archie's near-naked body. But...shuuut uuupp!

Overall, however, this was a Betty centric episode, as she flip-flops between loving and hating everyone around her -- Archie, Veronica, Cheryl -- which had me eye-rolling until she stood up to Cheryl in her bedroom. I can't wait for Betty to lose her shit. If she is anything like her terrible mother, who this week we saw bribing the town coroner, then the fallout will be epic. Also, anyone get the feeling that Betty's sister Polly might not be as mentally disturbed as we think? Time will tell.

A follower on Instagram commented on my statements about the characters being classic teen stereotypes, pointing out that characters such as Betty and Veronica have been around since 1939 and that the shows/movies I'm referencing, in fact took a page from Archie Comics. This may be true, but at the same time, when you have characters referring to other characters as Donnie Darko, it becomes clear that the writer of Riverdale are self-aware enough to know where these characters have come from. Even the score, at times, seems snatched right out of 'Cruel Intentions'. 

In fact, I'm really enjoying the amount of pop culture references Riverdale manages to cram into literally every scene. This week we had, The Goonies, Wednesday Addams, Donnie Darko, Romeo and Juliet, The Exorcist and more! I should make like a pop culture-o-metre to keep track of these things. 

FINAL THOUGHTS:

TOTAL: 3/5 - a solid ep, but still mostly set up. (and a little too much whiny, Betty drama).