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Ready for a dark senior year

KJ Apa (left), Lili Reinhart, Camila Mendes and Cole Sprouse
Photo: Dean Buscher (The CW)
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Aaron Sorkin has this little habit of titling the final episodes of the first season of his television series "What kind of day was it?" He takes each stop point as an opportunity to take stock, to review what was happening before and to look forward to what is coming. Although Riverdale chained to intrigue obligations, the editorial team has incorporated a reflection of this nature beyond the history it must conclude in chapter fifty-seven.

The final scene in particular, which allows our central quartet to regroup at Pop's with milkshakes after all the perils of this season, favors this feeling of summation. They all mock the astonishing amount of trauma that they have been facing this year alone: ​​the cult of stealing organs, not one but two masked murderous boobies, the revelation that their friend's mother is a criminal, death in all directions as far as the eye can see – and promising to return to normal. There are probably a lot of fans sharing these same feelings, eager to return to the class routine and crush.


Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa has other projects. One has the impression that he thought of returning to the issues of the first season as a transfer of responsibilities, the fact that the series can not return to his self brighter and simpler. How else to explain the shocking flash-forward announcing that all hope of innocence in high school had been seriously misplaced? This coda, which would have been a "cooling water moment" if we still had discussions on water coolers or a monoculture, is a slap for all who hope that the show would come out of the dark phase this season. Archie, Veronica and Betty stand around a roaring bonfire in their underwear, burning their clothes, throwing the last disguised Jughead cap. There is a note of cruelty in the juxtaposition of what surely looks like an evil blood pact with the carefree happiness of the four characters in their present. Children are deluding themselves if they think they should not worry about pop quizzes anymore. U.S. too.

This scene suggests that the overflowing madness of chapter fifty-seven will be on the agenda and that we should get used to it. Determined to finish with a bang and not a groan, the editorial team breathes more intensity into the clashes that count for a duration of forty-two minutes. It is not an approximate language either; The feeling of exhaustion in this episode can be attributed to the fact that six different scenes bore the emotional weight that ended the episode, but only one did. Mastermind Penelope Blossom has launched a sadistic treasure hunt for teenage girls, inflicting a horror that changes their lives. "A bunch of crazy shit going on" could describe pretty much most Riverdale episodes, but they all allowed themselves to give up the solemnity that this episode did not have to do – apart from an inconvenient montage between an assembled Archie and Veronica, the poison running through their veins. It is not allowed to pedal smoothly, not this week.

Archie must kill a bear-man! Jughead must kill Chick! Betty must kill her father! Veronica must kill herself (or so she thinks)! In a show that flourishes too much, Aguirre-Sacasa and his writers may have finally found a way to have too much. The four accounts of life or death face each character with his deepest torment: the bear has been a recurring symbol of Archie's violent ability in addition to giving him an excuse for say "Oh, shit, not yet," jokes Jughead. the incarnation of danger for Betty in the form of Chic, Veronica's alleged guilt for putting so much danger in Riverdale dissolve when she tries to take a Russian roulette ball for her pals, and Betty does facing his dark side through his father. It all makes sense on paper, but it's just the problem. These scenes are more fun to discuss than watching, the value of the usual camp spoiled by a serious tone.

Two teenagers now holding important pieces of property Riverdale logic in the internal logic of the show, just like a scene leading to a craniotomy. We have been trained not to break the eye for the past three years, but we have no idea what to do when this show requires us to take its emotional issues seriously. It's no wonder the best scene in this episode is also the most silly, in which the Pretty Poisons' mini-archer army arrives just in time to ward off the Gargoyles threat. Of course, no one will die here (a phenomenon I've learned is called "intrigue armor"), but it's not even a concern if we just enjoy joining this show. In case the writing suddenly insists that these the homicides will be much more upsetting than the previous ones, the homicides with low stake, the fissures on the surface.

But even if Riverdale stumbles in his attempt to get into a sprint – things get dangerously American horror story Here, although Cheryl Blossom rubs shoulders with her brother's dried-up corpse, it's a delight; it's only a matter of time before the show gets back on its feet. Mama Jones will still be around, as long as the writers warn Fred's death and dispatch his own son. Charles returned to the Cooper family, muddling the family trees and bringing the show to a very different dynamic between Betty and Jughead next year. Not to mention Alice's new partnership with the FBI, another thread of potential in the third season.

But the heart and soul of this show live inside Archie, Jughead, Betty and Veronica. The final scene leaves a bitter taste, mocking the kind of high school student melodrama that initially launched this series into hit territory. The highlights of this season have come when the show most closely resembles its old self; test anxiety, school games, prom evening of students. Avoiding this could be a slippery slope, giving writers a misconception of what it means to surpass oneself. This is the constant mandate of animated TV shows: to return every year bigger, darker and more intense. But it's not RiverdaleCriterion of. For this show, going past the previous year does not require more cliff changer, nor more and more gore.

Balance was the name of the season 1 game because the show determined how much he wanted to be Twin peaks compared to how much he wanted to be An invitation to love. The third season learned more about the first (although it drifted to True detective from Lynch), and it seems that the fourth season will continue the trend. It may just be that these intrigues have largely discarded the main characters, but they draw the atmosphere. Even when this season has become dark, the club has tried to maintain a sense of lightness. Just look at the big organ harvest revealed. Have a good time, what is it? RiverdaleThe loss of contact with this represents the biggest threat to the continued success of the series. Relax, everyone! The killers have been eliminated, it is summer and a new school year is approaching. They ask students starting the high school year to savor every moment, because it will be over before they know it. I would give the same advice to the cast Riverdale: cherish every moment in which you become imperfect, accessible and friendly children. It's only a matter of time before he comes back to the blood.

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