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TV Review: Riverdale (Season 3, Episode 22)

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Well this is it. We made it to the finale of Season 3 of Riverdale. It's been a wild ride, full of dramatic twists and turns and the final episode "Survive The Night" was no exception. The final episode wrapped up pretty much all of the questions raised in this season, whilst introducing new mysteries ready for the upcoming fourth season this autumn.

riverdale 3x22

Image Credit: © 2019 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved.

We start the hour pretty much where we left off last episode, Toni has escaped the Farm and Betty is on the operating table, with Edgar about to take a knife to her head (we assume). Toni arrives at the Blossom household, hoping to find Nana Rose, but is instead met by Penelope Blossom who after hearing of Edgar's nefarious activities at the Farm, & true to her character, proceeds to drug her. Of all the Riverdale parents to go to in this situation, I would put Penelope Blossom last, but then what do I know?

Penelope is useful for some things it turns out though, as she manages to save Betty from whatever awful procedure Edgar intended, although for unexplained reasons, she also wants to buy a large bulk of his organ harvest. Jug, Veronica and Archie are sent an invitation for dinner, from the Gargoyle King, which turns out to be at the Blossom's Hunting Lodge, in the ground of Thornhill. Betty, newly sprung from the Farm also joins the dinner, clad in a fancy pink dress. 

It turns out that Penelope has been the mastermind behind the Gargoyle King all along! She also has a few more surprises in store, as the Black Hood and the Gargoyle King are invited to dinner. Hal Cooper is revealed to be alive, which we all knew already, so that wasn't much of a shock. Before the big reveal however, she invites Jughead to guess the King's identity. Jug knows it isn't Jason (for whatever reason, the guy's corpse is missing and that's never explained) so he assumes it must be the last person the Black Hood saw before his arrest so enter.....

Chic! I have to admit, he wouldn't have been my first choice, but it does make a weird kind of sense. Penelope has deluded herself into thinking that Chic is Jason, even going so far as to dye his hair. Apparently, Hal never murdered Chic, and he instead pledged himself to him. Penelope masterminded the whole Black Hood thing during her affair with Hal, as a way to take revenge on Riverdale for selling her to the Blossoms as a child bride (which makes a whole lot more sense than Hal's reasoning) and then roped in Chic to continue it when Hal was arrested. So far, so weird.

Anyway, she brought the Core Four to Thornhill to play one final round of G&G and in her words, "reveal your true nature and prove you are as dark-hearted as the town that birthed you". Basically they have to take part in a bunch of "quests" in the wood & survive the night, otherwise, she will kill them. 

We start with Archie fighting a guy dressed in a bear costume, in some weird meta-reference to the bear attack he survived earlier in the year. He wins, and maybe kills the guy, but who knows, since that's completely glossed over.

Then Betty and Veronica have to take part in a twisted, deadly game of Spin the Bottle, in which one of the chalices is poisoned and all of them need to be drunk, so basically someone's dying. When the final bottle is spun, it's Betty's turn to drink the chalice, but Veronica downs it before her friend has the chance. She wins the challenge by proving her loyalty, and Penelope reveals that all the cups were poisoned, but the poison is slow acting rather than fast, so if they win the next challenge, they'll get the antidote. 

Jug's challenge is next and he has to fight Chic because apparently, we're reinforcing traditional gender roles this episode and all the men's challenges must be physical! He does win, but the poison is starting to set in and Archie isn't helping matters by insisting on having a heart to heart with Veronica, whilst she's literally dying. We get it, you guys love each other, but there are more important things going on right now!

Betty is handed a gun for her challenge and told that in order to receive the antidote, she must kill her father. She does shoot him, but not fatally and Penelope ends up finishing the job herself. With Archie grabbing the antidote, the four are left to run through the woods, apparently all night long because the sun is coming up when they emerge!

Meanwhile, at the Farm, Alice is becoming suspicious of Edgar's activities. She orders Cheryl to escape, taking Juniper with her, and to find Betty and save her, but she herself remains for ascension night. Cheryl and Toni show up at the woods with the Poisons and the Serpents, and fight off the Gargoyles, giving Veronica and Betty time to take the antidote.

The group then return to the Farm, after Cheryl lets slip what Alice did for her, but the entire place is empty, with only Kevin left behind, to explain "the worthy ascended", whatever that means. 

Everything seems to be semi back to normal in Riverdale, but there's still time for a few more twists before the episode's end. Alice, it appears, has been working as an FBI informant to help take down the Farm. And FBI agent who delivers the news? None other than Betty and Jughead's half-brother, Charles, who happens to be alive! Yup, Betty and Jughead share a brother....cause that's not weird at all.....

We leave things off for this season with the Core Four at Pops, making a vow to be done with crazy death cults and murders for their senior year. Of course, this isn't to be, as we see in a flashforward: Veronica, Archie and Betty, half naked in the woods, burning their clothes. Jughead is nowhere to be seen....and they are burning his bloody beanie. Things are not looking good for our favourite Riverdale detective. 

Riverdale Season 3 is available for streaming on Netflix now. 




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