Now that was a proper reveal.
Since the Black Hood began his reign of terror on Riverdale, one thing has been clear: he needed to be a person known to the cast. Like the Clifford Blossom reveal last year, the murder’s identity needed to matter to people. When the Black Hood was seemingly revealed to be Riverdale High janitor Joseph Svenson (Cameron McDonald), the air came out of the balloon because he was only introduced two episodes prior. But even at the time, viewers and Betty Cooper (Lili Reinhart) suspected something was amiss.
But before we discuss the killer, we need to talk about the prime piece of evidence all this time: Archie’s (KJ Apa) memory of the killer’s eyes. Going back to the first episode of the season, Archie’s recollection of the shooting at Pop’s showed the shooter to have green eyes and kind eyebrows. Because of his recollection, Archie eliminated Svenson as a suspect. In fact, it kept most of the known Riverdale adults off the list and left many to suspect Hiram Lodge (Mark Consuelos) hired some outside help and orchestrated the whole operation.
Archie’s ID also kept Hal Cooper (Lochlyn Munro) off the suspect list. Then again, so did Hal’s penchant for bungling. But thanks to a helpful (and damning) family movie and Betty’s detective work, we now know the Blossom weirdness touched him and Betty’s speech last season inspired him to kill. Details may need to be smoother over — for instance, it is difficult to recall how many people knew about Ms. Grundy’s proclivities — but now that we know Hal’s grandfather killed his Blossom cousin and his father killed Svenson’s family 40 years ago, everything tracks back to what Jughead (Cole Sprouse) considers the moment everything changed: Jason’s murder. Therefore, the Black Hood had to be a Blossom.
Oh, but wait! There’s still one pesky problem: Hal doesn’t have green eyes. And he was revealing himself to Alice (Madchen Amick) and Betty just as the green-eyed Black Hood was attacking Archie at the Andrews home. That pesky inconsistency, addressed in last night’s episode, can only mean the Black Hood’s first crime was not perpetrated by Hal despite his claim to it. Does this mean an accomplice?
More than likely, it means Hiram was involved in the Black Hood crimes; albeit accidentally by hiring someone to kill his romantic rival Fred Andrews (Luke Perry). Inspired by Archie’s description of the would-be assassin, Hal took on the Black Hood and killed Ms. Grundy.
And it seems Hiram’s involvement is about to come out now that Veronica (Camila Mendes) and Hermione (Marisol Nichols) have lost total faith in him. From where things stand at this point, it is possible they’ll rat him out to the state and abdicate their claim to the mayor’s office. Which would seem to be just deserts after the chaos Hiram unleashed to build his Southside for-profit prison. And even if there is any doubt left, the sight of a battered and definitely dead Jughead might push Veronica to completely betray her father.
Also, that last shot of Jug was very grim.
For all the darkness in this weeks episode, it was still a thrill to see Cheryl (Madelaine Petsch) emerge as the Red Arrow of Riverdale. Hopefully she will be able to figure out who failed her city and mete out appropriate justice. Considering the amount of the town’s troubles stem from the Blossom curse, it would only be fitting.
But let’s ponder that possible justice as we watch a preview for the season finale. It seems Jughead is well and truly, most assuredly dead. And it will lead Veronica and Archie to find their justice there way. Meanwhile, Betty must confront her father and the Blossom darkness haunting their souls.
Riverdale airs Wednesdays on The CW.
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