I have a theory on who killed Jason and why. But you’re going to have to read to the end to hear it. This week’s episode handed us a murderer wrapped up in a pretty little Skeet Ulrich bow, smoking gun in his closet, and nefarious partnerships with a well-known biker gang and an evil millionaire to cap it all off. Could Riverdale be so bold as to hand us such an obvious murderer? In a word … No. No they could not. Because in one single episode we’re led to believe that FP is Jason’s Killer but before the credits roll, the whole thing is washed down the drain.

Let’s discuss …

Molly Ringwald as Mary Andrews is just pure gold. Kudos to whoever casts this show because they do a fine job, not necessarily of matching the actors with the source material, but in the way they match the actors to the characters that Riverdale needs them to be. Archie’s Mom is in town to … hang out? It’s not really explained other than as a reaction to Archie’s drunk dial in the last episode. Either way, she sticks around to hear Archie play some music (that doesn’t suck or make you want to staple your own genitalia to a chair) and invites Archie to move to Chicago with her. Clearly he won’t. He’s Archie. The way she handles Hermione, even with the knowledge that her and Fred have been fooling around, one would suspect that Mary is a bit of a player herself. Even cooler is how she puts Alice Cooper in her place. Something not many people do successfully on this show. It’ll be a shame to see Mary go when the time comes.

The through line of this episode is the theory that FP was hired by Mr. Lodge to kill Jason Blossom out of some sort of retaliation over Clifford Blossom getting Ronnie’s dad thrown in jail. It’s plausible. FP is known to be sinister and Mr. Lodge is in prison so nuff said on that matter. It makes sense, if it wasn’t too obvious. Alice Cooper, determined to prove the theory, enlists the help of Veronica and Archie. The former is enticed as she wants to know the truth about dear old daddy, the latter is enticed due to Veronica’s enticements and Archie can’t resist a damsel in distress … especially an enticing one. They search FP’s trailer while Alice brilliantly distracts FP at a dinner for Jughead and Betty. Nothing is found in the trailer and despite us, the audience, knowing that FP had Jason’s jacket, we’re led to believe he’s innocent.

That is until the cops show up on an anonymous hint, search FP’s trailer, and find what is believed to be the weapon that killed Jason Blossom. This is all wonderfully spliced with Archie and Veronica’s cover of ‘Kids in America’.

Meanwhile, Betty begins to realize that things are being kept from her and I have to throw some credit at Lili Reinhart because she plays a very subtle crazy and she play it very well. You can clearly see Betty is upset before the water works begin but as she watches her mother speak with Veronica and Archie, and then the same pair talking to Jughead, you can practically see the wheels of paranoia spinning out of control. Here’s hoping we see ‘Dark Betty’ emerge from the shadows in the near future.

We get some rapid fire line-crossing at the end of the dance with Betty confronting Archie and Veronica, Jughead finding out his friends went behind his back, Jughead blaming Betty even though she’s clearly not at fault, and Betty confronting her mother about the anonymous tip. Conflict is what makes this show great and we all thrive on it. It’s like watching a car accident, we’re just waiting for the blood. Jughead runs off into the night and throws a bit of a tantrum that’s emotional and dark, and Cole Sprouse continues to deliver these great emotional moments with sincerity. I do kinda wish we could see more of the lighter side of Jughead but I don’t think it’s meant to be. At least not in season one. He really wants his dad to be a nice guy and for his family to get back together but it may be that we’re simply destined to see the ‘broken’ version of Jughead and we may never see the whimsical burger-munching side of him. I can live with this as long as we get to see Hotdog at some point. Take note Riverdale writers, we want Hotdog!

Why was Cheryl angry at the dance? I couldn’t figure it out. Was it because she was jealous of Veronica being with Archie? Was she upset because her pregnant date was unconscious? Did she not like the song? After storming off, she does two things … 1) She checks to see that Polly is alive. 2) She sees her mother freaking out while her father consoles her. These are important, bear with me …

The final twisted reveal … (on a side note, has anyone else noticed that the narrative has gone?) A dangerously angry Betty runs into Veronica and Archie at Pop Tates where it’s revealed there was no gun in the closet when Archie and Ronnie searched the place and that FP is being framed. Dun dun duhhhhh!

WHO KILLED JASON BLOSSOM - A THEORY

It wasn’t FP. We can get rid of that altogether. He’s a patsy, that’s his job. Now, it’s entirely feasible that FP planted the gun in the closet to implicate himself as the murderer. Why? Maybe he’s being paid to take the fall. BUT I don’t think that’s what actually happened, even though it doesn’t change who the murderer(s) is/are. And sure, maybe Alice Cooper had her husband plant the gun so they could get a good story out of it but it seems too contrived.

While Polly’s digging revealed nothing except the presence of her engagement ring, there was a clear absence of some people at the homecoming dance. This is important because someone had to plant the gun in the closet and they had to do it between Archie and Ronnie leaving and FP getting home. Everyone was at the dance at this point. Except two people: Penelope and Clifford Blossom … and maybe one other.

Cheryl nonchalantly checks to see if Polly is still alive when she returns home. This indicates that even their own daughter wouldn’t put it past the two senior Blossoms to commit murder. Penelope even recounts to Cheryl how Jason had turned away from the family which gives Cliff Blossom the motive to take out his own son. BUT, I don’t think he pulled the trigger. I believe Cliff Blossom hired Joaquin to kill Jason and then frame FP to take the fall. But wait, Joaquin was at the dance! True, he was, but not at the beginning of the dance. When Archie and Veronica show up, Kevin is alone. It isn’t until the duet that we see Joaquin. Where was he before that point?! Planting a gun maybe, while Clifford Blossom phones in an anonymous tip?

The plot thickens. And with only two more episodes to go, it’ll be interesting to see how everything gets tied together so Riverdale can move on and become the idyllic little town it’s supposed to be. Who are we kidding? Imagine how boring that would be. Not to worry, dark and twisted Riverdale won’t be going away anytime soon.

 

STRAY THOUGHTS OF AWESOMENESS …

- Cheryl wins the award for best insults. She calls Polly ‘Gollum’ after she makes a snatch at the ring. But the one that made me laugh out loud was when she called Betty ‘Nightmare Smurf’. I don’t even know what that means, but it’s hilarious.

- Joaquin could easily pass for FP’s kid. Same bone structure. And he has that same ‘I’m handsome yet potentially extremely unstable’ look about him.

- I LOVE that they made fun of Archie’s original songs in this episode. “Your songs make people want to slit their wrists,” says Jughead, “In a good way!” Classic.

- Cheryl is extremely flexible. And that’s all I’m going to say on the matter. Also, this picture …