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TV Review: Riverdale (Season 3, Episode 13)


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This week's episode of Riverdale, "Requiem For A Welterweight", was somewhat of a transition episode, in that a lot happened but nothing really happened at all. There's a lot of set up for stuff to come in future episodes, but as far as the action of this episode was concerned it was a little dull.

riverdale 3x13

Photo Credit: © 2019 The CW Network, LLC.

This episode can be split quite neatly into four different storylines, so I'll talk about each one in turn, since they're largely self-contained. Usually I would complain about lack of narrative cohesion, but I actually thought that the separate storylines worked quite well this week, and it kept from some of the confusion that often arises for me during Riverdale episodes.

We'll start with Archie and his newfound desire to be a boxer. As is quite common, Archie's storyline was probably the weakest of this episode, even though it was the most normal. Once again, Archie makes stupid decisions (because you know, Archie), and decides to both enter his first fight before he's ready and throw it for $5,000. I wouldn't feel to bad for him though - he gets to have some celebratory sex later with his apparently new girlfriend, so you know, not all is bad in Archieland.

Then we have Veronica, Hiram and Gladys. Veronica is still in hot water because of her burning of the drugs that Hermione was supposed to sell to Gladys. Gladys suggests that Veronica does some spying for her as a way of repaying some of her debt, but let's face it, V is not the greatest actress, so it's not long before the subject of her spying becomes suspicious. Revelations about Veronica being the one who burned the drugs leads to her owing Hiram $75,000. Ouch.

Meanwhile Betty is rightfully getting concerned about her mother's involvement in the Farm, and this is intensified when it's discovered that Alice is preparing to be baptised. Betty arrives just in time to prevent disaster (WHY DOES EVERYONE ON TV SHOWS SEEM TO KNOW CPR WITHOUT TRAINING?) but her plan kind of backfires, because instead of being grateful to her daughter for saving her life Alice declares that she was reborn and decides that she is selling the house and moving to the Farm. So yeah not great. Oh and also Kevin is apparently joining the farm now? Which yeah, okay, that's not terrifying at all.

Finally Jughead is running into a bit of trouble, as all of his female Serpents have defected to Cheryl and Toni's new gang, The Pretty Poisons (that name does not get any less bad with time). He approaches Toni to offer her a deal to bring them all back, but Toni refuses unless Jughead makes her The Serpent Queen. Personally this seems like a reasonable request since Toni's been part of the Serpents forever, and Betty is only an honorary serpent, but of course Jughead says no.

Having failed to get the former Serpents back, Jughead attempts to approach the Ghoulies, who have now apparently been subsumed by the Gargoyles, and is anyone else finding all these gangs hard to keep track of? Jughead doesn't want to work with the Gargoyles but thanks to Gladys maneouvres, the Gargoyles are now officially part of the Serpents. I don't know what's going to happen next but from the previews of next week's episode, it's not looking good.

Riverdale Season 3 is available for streaming on Netflix, with a new episode every Thursday. 


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