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Riverdale Recap: Top Moments of “The Wrestler”

Archie’s All About Winning Over Hiram, Betty Learns Darkness Runs in the Family  & the Town Celebrates Pickens Day.

On this week’s episode of Riverdale, “Chapter Twenty-Four: The Wrestler,” the town is preparing for the annual Picken’s Day festivities and you bet the Lodges have their hands in the planning with ulterior motives of course. Veronica plans to perform at the event with Josie and the Pussycats, but she and Josie clash as they get ready for their performance. While Archie is so focused on getting closer to Hiram and winning him over, he decides to try out for the school wrestling team because Hiram loves it. Meanwhile, Jughead learns the shocking details of Riverdale’s history when he interviews Toni’s grandfather, a founding Serpent member, for an oral history report. While Betty attempts to get to know Chic better and discovers some dark secrets about him. This week’s episode uncovered even more surprising details about the small town of Riverdale. Here are the top moments from “The Wrestler.”

Awkward Breakfasts at the Coopers

Hal, Alice, Betty and Chic all sit down to have breakfast the morning after Betty rescued Chic. Hal is just downright rude to Chic. Poor guy. Hal demands how long Chic plans on staying with them and why he was all bloody when Betty brought him to their house. Chic explains what happened at the hostel that led to him being bruised and bloody. Of course, Hal isn’t satisfied with his explanation and continues harassing Chic. He wants to know about his clients. Chic stays calm despite Hal’s onslaught of questioning. Chic offers to show Hal his scars condescendingly and give details. Betty mentions she has scars too, crescent moons on her palms and Chic reveals he used to do that too. But before they can discuss it any further, Alice interrupts by offering Chic more syrup. Poor Alice. All she wanted was a nice breakfast with her family and Hal acts like an ass as usual and ruins it.

Then the morning of Pickens Day, Hal’s behavior is even worse during breakfast. He rudely points out Chic is sitting in Polly’s spot and sleeping in her room. Hal even goes as far as to tell Chic he’s only filling the void Polly left. Chic takes the insults in stride. Thankfully, Alice puts Hal in his place and threatens to throw him out of the house again. Hal’s treatment towards Chic only adds to my theory that he isn’t Chic’s biological father. I honestly think his dad is FP or another Serpent member. Alice certainly has a past with the Serpents.

Chic has Dark Secrets of His Own

Betty, Veronica, Kevin, and Jughead are hanging out in the school lounge and Betty shows them a picture of Chic. Both Ronnie and Kevin agree he’s a hottie. Kevin swears Chic looks familiar, but can’t place where he’s seen him before. Later Betty gets a call from Kevin. He did some research on his bestie’s long-long brother, Chic, and remembers where he’s seen him before. He’s a webcam boy, or cyber trick. Oh, my! So it’s more like Chic was living in a male brothel.

The next day at school, Betty confesses she went down the webcam rabbit hole after learning Chic is a webcam boy. She’s fascinated but freaking out because she discovered Chic is multiple people online and she brought him home to her mom. Yes, prim and proper Alice Cooper’s son in a webcam boy. It’s going to be quite interesting when Alice discovers this. Eek.

Jughead Exposes the Truth Surrounding Picken’s Day

For a history assignment, Jughead chooses to interview Toni’s grandfather, Thomas, a founding member of the Southside Serpents. Jughead learns the truth about Riverdale’s history. Apparently, General Pickens was ordered by Cheryl’s great-great-great grandfather to lead a raid on an innocent tribe killing 400 men, women, and children. A horrible massacre. All to lay claim to some maple trees and Sweetwater River. Jughead is furious. He decides to print Toni’s grandfather’s story in the “Blue and Gold” for all to see so they’ll know the truth behind Riverdale’s annual celebration as well as get revenge on the North Side.

Needless to say, Toni is pissed Jug used her grandfather’s story when it was not his to tell. When Jughead goes to apologize to her grandfather, he isn’t too pleased either. He has an idea to show the North Side how the Serpents really feel about Pickens Day. I am really liking Toni’s grandfather. He seems very wise and I hope he sticks around. Maybe he can also find a way to expose Hiram and his shadiness.

Archie Tries Out for the Wrestling Team

In an attempt to get closer to Hiram and gain his trust, Archie decides to try out for Riverdale High’s wrestling team after learning of Hiram’s love of the sport. Of course, Hiram is there to watch tryouts as creepy as it may seem for a grown man with no children going out for the team or a member of the coaching staff to be observing. Archie, who decided to put off basketball this year and knows absolutely nothing about wrestling, is paired with Kevin, a returning team member. You’d think Archie would be fine naturally athletic and all. Surprising to everyone, Kevin pins Archie not once, but twice as Hiram watches from the sidelines with a smirk on his face.

Chic Flips on Betty

After school as Betty’s doing her homework, Chic returns to the Coopers and completely loses it on Betty. He went back to the hostel and found out the owner sold all his stuff he needs to survive, his computer and webcam. She questions why he even went back and he just gets more upset claiming she had to know he’d return. Chic can’t believe she’d ever think him staying at her house long-term could be an option. If she did, she’s even crazier than he thought. Not nice Chic! Betty appears hurt Chic doesn’t think they could all be one big happy family and that he calls her crazy. Even after her brother’s rude, ungrateful treatment, Betty finds a computer and webcam not being used and places it outside Chic’s bedroom door. Betty Cooper has a heart of gold.

Archie vs. Hiram

The next day at tryouts, Hiram teaches his signature move when he was a champion wrestler at Riverdale. Um…since when do teams learn new moves at tryouts? Of course, he faces off with Archie and as he has him pinned to the mat he whispers creepily in his ear that he always wins. What an arrogant jerk. But after school, Archie goes to Pembrooke and confronts Hiram. He demands to know why he doesn’t like him. What did he ever do to him? Hiram immediately becomes defensive. Fred slept with another man’s wife and he unfairly assumes Archie would share the same character weakness. Naturally, Archie defends himself. He’d never do anything to hurt Veronica. Hiram shows his true feelings. Archie just isn’t good enough for his daughter or able to take care of her. Things escalate. Archie points out that he did a pretty good job taking care of Veronica while Hiram was in prison. This infuriates Hiram. Luckily, Veronica interrupts them before things go any further. I am seriously starting to dislike Hiram Lodge.

An Early Morning Run and Another Awkward Breakfast

The morning after their confrontation, Archie gets an early wake-up call from Hiram to meet him outside in five minutes. Archie does. He and Hiram go for an early morning run and then to Pop’s for breakfast. There, Hiram uses wrestling as an analogy explaining it all boils down to sheer will and that’s why Archie will never win. He doesn’t want Veronica to worry about him and Archie. So he will tolerate Archie until his daughter’s latest phase runs its course because Archie isn’t the only boy to turn Veronica’s head. Hiram tells Archie, “boyfriends, they come and they go, but fathers…fathers are forever.” Bet he’s used that little diddy on Ronnie’s other boyfriends too. Maybe it was Hiram who scared them off. Thank goodness Archie isn’t taking his shit.

Archie vs. Chuck

The last day wrestling tryouts, Hiram invites Veronica to come and watch. Of course, she’s heard the good news about her father and Archie’s morning together. She heads to the stands to cheer him on and Archie notices Hiram is over whispering to the coach. When they begin coach says they’re changing things up a bit and calls Archie and Chuck Clay on the mat first. Wait! Archie and Chuck aren’t even in the same weight class. Obviously, this is Hiram’s doing. Jerk. But Archie agrees to go against Chuck and holds his own. Ultimately Archie is able to overpower Chuck, pin him and win.  To be honest, I thought he was going to get his ass kicked with his girlfriend watching from the stands.  Instead, all of Hiram’s rudeness just fueled Archie. When he has Chuck pinned I love how Archie intently stares at Hiram in the stands as if he’s saying f*** you to him.

Veronica and the What? Pussycats?

Both Veronica and Josie planned to perform at the annual Pickens Day celebration and everything seemed to be going great. However because her mom, Mayor McCoy, is sick of getting pushed around by the Lodges, she forbids Josie from singing with Veronica. Josie demands to know why and her mom explains how she believes she is shady and manipulative like her parents. Josie breaks the news to Veronica. But at the Pickens Day festivities, poor Josie is forced to watch her former friends and bandmates perform without her and with Veronica instead. Her expression is so sad and you can see how much it hurts to see. Not to mention extremely rude of Veronica as well as Valerie and Melody. I’m kind of glad the Serpents interrupted their performance because it just wasn’t right seeing the Pussycats without Josie. Sure Veronica or Cheryl are welcome additions to Josie and the Pussycats. There just has to be Josie.

The Southside Serpents Protest Pickens Day

The whole town gathers to celebrate Riverdale’s annual Pickens Day. Everyone’s watching Veronica and the Pussycats perform, but its interrupted by the Serpents including Toni’s grandpa. Some have duct tape over their mouths and hold signs about honoring the land to point out the land was stolen years ago. Toni has a megaphone and wants everyone to know they’re here to represent the dead slaughtered to steal the land from the tribe, her grandfather’s family, who lived here before it became Riverdale. They need to be honored. Good ol’ Hiram interrupts to diffuse the situation. He’s proud to live in a town where young people stand for justice. Hiram spouts some bullshit of how he’s glad the Southside contributes to the ‘rich tapestry’ of Riverdale. Jug is about to storm the stage, but Toni’s grandfather stops him. Then Jug and Hiram just stare at each other intently. Damn, I kind of wanted Jug to put Hiram in his place. Someone really needs to.

Eewie! Really Penelope??

The evening of the Pickens Day festivities, Hal sits alone eating alone looking pretty pathetic and sad. Alice did threaten to throw him out but he earned it by the way he treats Chic. Penelope sees Hal looking all miserable and comes over to him. She takes his sno-cone and suggests they get him a proper dessert. Eew. She thinks he could use some company and she has nowhere to be… Again, eew. Penelope smiles at him seductively and Hal just smiles back. He seems somewhat in disbelief by what she’s suggesting but doesn’t appear as if he’s against the offer. We don’t see if Hal takes her up on her offer. It’s probably going to reignite the bad blood between the Coopers and Blossoms if he does. But damn! Penelope is really taking her new job quite seriously.

The Dark Education of Betty Cooper

Later while Betty is in her room, Chic comes in with a confession. He tells her he came into her room the first night while she was sleeping because he doesn’t understand why she’d go back to the hostel for him. Chic believes he gets it now. She’s all alone. He explains he not only does the webcam thing for money but to escape and pretend to be someone else. It’s a way for him to get away from the darkness he feels inside him too. Betty understands and looks down at the scars on her palms. She asks him to show her how to do the webcam thing. Betty, what are you doing? Alice is going to have a freaking heart attack when she finds out both of them are webcam-ing. Where does this darkness Betty and Chic talk about come from? I don’t think it’s Hal despite him being a total asshole because I really don’t think Hal is Chic’s father. Could it be from Alice?

Hiram’s Tempting Proposition

Like he asked at Pickens Day, Archie meets with Hiram at Pembrooke. Hiram wants to start over with a blank slate and asks Archie where he sees himself in five years. The old Archie would have wanted to go to college on athletic or musical scholarship, but now he’s thinking of focusing on business. One day he hopes to buy back Andrews Construction from him. Hiram expects nothing but the best from Archie as long as he’s dating Veronica and that means learning from the best. He asks Archie if he’d like to learn from him, like an apprenticeship. Archie’s phone rings interrupting the conversation, but he ignores Agent Adams’ call. Archie seems intrigued, but we don’t see if Archie agrees to learn for Hiram. It’s the perfect opportunity for Archie to get more info for the FBI. Or is Archie going to fall under Hiram’s spell, like almost everyone in Riverdale? It’s going to be interesting to see to whom Archie stays loyal. Let’s be honest. Could he really help put Veronica’s daddy dearest back in prison?

Off with His Head

The morning after Pickens Day, General Pickens’ statue has been beheaded and there’s red paint or something made to look like blood on his neck. Both Sheriff Keller and Mayor McCoy are there, as well as Hiram and Hermione, of course. Mayor McCoy asks the Lodges what they want to do because it’s their show now. What the hell? The Lodges really have everyone in their pocket. Hiram is all for blaming the Serpents and is cool with punishing any or even all of them. Big surprise. I have a sneaking suspicion it might have been Cheryl. She seemed disgusted learning her great-great-great grandfather ordered General Pickens to slaughter an entire tribe to take the land. Plus, when the Serpents came to protest the Pickens Day celebration, she went to stand with them. And let’s not forget Cheryl did burn down her house, so beheading a statue would be small potatoes for her. She’d have to know the Serpents would be blamed. The question is would she want that? She was not happy at all to learn the Southside would be attending Riverdale High. But she did stand with them at the protest. Could she have had a change of heart about the Serpents and Southsiders?

Steph Flasher


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