Riverdale: Chapter Nineteen: Death Proof
November 17, 2017 7:41 AM - Season 2, Episode 6 - Subscribe

After the St. Clair afterparty debacle, Mayor McCoy threatens to further escalate tensions between the North and Southside; Jughead and Archie try to stop a dangerous alliance between the Serpents and a long-time rival from forming, but each try their own way; Betty turns to Veronica for help.

Riverdale Recap: Riding in Cars With Boys (Vulture recap by Molly Fitzpatrick)

"Riverdale" Recap Season 2 Episode 6: Who Is the Sugar Man? -- Start your engines! (Teen Vogue review/recap by Jessica MacLeish)
This week, Riverdale is a little less horror movie and a little more Rebel Without a Cause and/or The Fast and the Furious (to be fair, both are great movies worthy of homages). The episode opens on a still-beat-up Jughead typing away at his computer and voice-overing about the masks we all wear and the times that they slip…as Toni walks out around his trailer wearing one of his signature “S” T-shirts. #Bughead shippers, look away!
Riverdale Season 2 Episode 6 Review: Chapter 19 - Death Proof -- A timely episode of Riverdale mixes the serious with the supremely goofy. Our review of "Death Proof" is here! (Chris Cummins reviews for Den of Geek)
Tonight's episode began with another obvious yet still true observation from Jughead - that we often wear masks that cover who we really are. Although this episode was written and filmed before the Harvey Weinstein/Louis CK/et al stories broke, its impossible to view this episode outside of the context of that news cycle and how it gave rise to the #metoo movement. There's a lot going on in this week's episode - and we'll get to it all - but the most important element here is far and away the Cheryl/Nick/Veronica storyline.
With Nick St. Clair out of commision for the time being, my new least-favorite character is Malachi, leader of the Ghoulies. He speaks entirely in dialogue snippets cut from Anthony Kiedis' character in Point Break like "chaos is how we thrive" and "evolve, baby, evolve." I don't know his backstory, so I came up with one:

While doing a remote for Diners, Drives Ins, and Dives in Philly, Guy Fieri got some goatee sweat into a three-pound cheesteak he was making. Once the cameras dimmed, someone threw the remains of the steak into whatever shitty South Street back alley they were filming in and a Mummer pissed on it. Then a surprise lightning storm hit the concoction of grease, urine, and misguided civic pride and Malachi was born. Taken in by some trust funded crust punks, he rode the rails, doing cut-rate Bozo Texio art on boxcars until he wound up in Riverdale with only some David Lee Roth castoffs from a thrift store and a desire to be the worst thing on TV to his name.
- Tonight's episode seems to be loosely inspired in part by Mark Waid's recent "Over the Edge" storyline in the Archie comic, although in that one things turned out much darker.

- The name of the bridge that Jughead and Malachi are approaching during their race is Herk Harvey Bridge, named after the director of Carnival of Souls - a wonderfully spooky movie that chronicles the experiences of a woman who is involved in a drag race gone wrong.

- Reading in fundamental! Betty checks out Thomas Harris' Silence of the Lambs at episode's end while Veronica plunks down at Pop's with Donna Tartt's 1992 effort, The Secret History.
posted by filthy light thief (6 comments total)
Go Betty! I also liked that she actually told Veronica and Jughead (offscreen apparently) what was going on. Yay for Not Having Secrets.

What kind of badassed gang names are "Sweetpea" and "Tallboy?"

I hate to egg on Hiram's evil, but I did enjoy it here.

Oh, Archie.
posted by jenfullmoon at 4:36 PM on November 17, 2017 [1 favorite]

I mean, what kind of hard drug name is "Jingle Jangle"?

Cheryl was A+ all episode. I loved her calling Betty "cousin".
posted by vibratory manner of working at 1:53 AM on November 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

Also, I love how Riverdale cops think the Ghoulies were drag racing all by themselves and therefore to blame for all the ills of the Southside. And drag racing warrants higher attention than drug dealing, because it happened more recently.
posted by Suffocating Kitty at 2:35 PM on November 19, 2017

I keep forgetting to post my hare-brained theory for this season, so let me state here for the record: I'm pretty sure Riverdale Public Library is the key to the Black Hood murders.

I feel there've been lots of clues laid in plain sight, most notably the self-reflexive intro for episode four, The Town That Dreaded Sundown, that literally shows the Black Hood transition into a blonde, bespectacled librarian who condemns the Red Circle while stamping Jughead's books.

Who else would be aware of Betty's favourite childhood book, the one she used to 'check out obsessively' from the library? Who else would have access to the newspaper archive, where Alice Cooper's front page mug shot is to be found? Well, ok... maybe lots of people, but still.

There have also been a few scenes in which characters are seen conspicuously reading books. For example, when Betty approaches Cheryl in S2E6 to ask about the Sugarman, Cheryl is sunbathing and reading a striking burgundy and gold hardback, and at the end of the same episode we see Betty snuggle up with Jug on his sofa, book in hand.

We've seen the Black Hood a couple of times, and the person we've seen is clearly a green-eyed man. But when the Black Hood has spoken with Betty over the phone, the voice is clearly modulated. Sheriff Keller also sent Black Hood's notes to two different handwriting specialists who determined each letter was by a different person. So I wonder if the Black Hood isn't, at the very least, in cahoots with Riverdale's Most Homicidal Vigilante Librarian.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 6:33 PM on November 29, 2017 [1 favorite]

So my guess - the killer is the older brother that The Cooper's gave up for adoption. He would be obsessed with his sister's and their lives growing up. Betty would "recognize" his face, since they would look alike. He is cleansing the town of "sin" because he had a terrible, neglected childhood because he was a product of "sin" and wants to cleanse the town. He even threatens the older sister because she is committing the same "sin" that got him punished and exiled.
posted by Suffocating Kitty at 1:27 PM on November 30, 2017 [2 favorites]

Interesting - I'd thought perhaps Polly had snapped and the Black Hood was her.
posted by duffell at 4:12 AM on December 3, 2017 [1 favorite]

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