‘Riverdale’ Recap: Senior Year is Here in Season 4, Episode 2 “Chapter Fifty-Nine: Fast Times at Riverdale High”

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Camila Mendes, Lili Reinhart, and Cole Sprouse in Riverdale. Courtesy of The CW

After last week’s beautiful and emotional season opener honoring Luke Perry, Riverdale is starting senior year the only way it knows how: drama, mysteries, football, and a killer party (but don’t worry, no one dies in this one).

Find out how Archie and the gang start their last year of high school in the second episode of season 4, “Chapter Fifty-Nine: Fast Times at Riverdale High.”

Starting at Pop’s, Jughead explains that after Fred’s funeral, the rest of the summer flew by in a haze and that he, Betty, and Veronica spent as much time with Archie as they could. He said that every day, you could tell that Archie was getting better. While everyone was getting ready for the first day of school, Archie did what he did best: boxing with Mad Dog. He talks him into coming to Riverdale High with him so he could get a diploma. Mad Dog says that textbooks and cafeteria food are not really him, and Archie agrees but that his dad wanted him to get a degree, so that is what he is going to do. Archie tells Mad Dog he should try out for the Bulldogs.

Betty is with Charles, who tells her that Alice missed another check-in with him but not to worry. It is not the first time she has been late with the reports. Betty is worried that she might have been found out. Charles tells her that he will contact her if anything comes up.

At La Bonne Nuit, Veronica is talking to a lawyer, Mr. Sowerberry, about her parents’ court date. He asks Veronica if she is testifying on behalf of her mother, father, or both, and Veronica says neither. Mr. Sowerberry tells her to issue a statement of support at the very minimum. She says, “no comment,” that is her statement. She tells him she needs to do some last-minute school shopping and then leaves.

Archie, Veronica, Betty, and Jughead are hanging at Veronica’s place, spending the last night of the summer before senior year. They are reflecting: No more Blue and Gold, no more heart-to-hearts at the lockers. Bughead starts to make out, so Varchie leaves them alone and goes into Veronica’s room. *Cue steamy scenes and music*

In the morning, Veronica wakes up and notices it is getting late; she forgot to set the alarm. She wakes Archie, Betty, and Jughead, telling them they will be late for the first day of senior year. They get to the school, only to be stopped by the new principal, Mr. Honey. He says that things will be different; there will be order, discipline, and consequences and tells them to get out of his sight.

In the Bulldogs locker room, the coach talks to Reggie when Archie and Mad Dog walk in, asking if Mad Dog can join the team. The coach tells him to come out to practice, and Reggie looks worried, afraid that Mad Dog might steal his thunder on the team.

Betty is in the Blue and Gold office when Kevin comes in, wanting a spot on the paper and getting his best friend back. He says he has been working on himself a lot since The Farm. He says he has been trying to find stuff to keep him busy and wants his friends back, especially his former best friend. Kevin apologizes for everything he has done while under Edgar’s spell and that he hopes to prove to her that she can trust him again. Feeling sorry for him, Betty tells him to fill out an application for the paper.

Jughead gets called to the principal’s office and is met by Mr. Chipping, one of the judges for the short story contest that Jughead entered. He tells him that he was impressed by Jughead’s story and offers him an opportunity to study writing with him at Stonewall Prep. Jughead declines and thanks him for liking his story.

Cheryl and Toni meet with Mr. Honey, welcoming him to Riverdale High with a gift basket. He tells them that the Back to School Dance that they organized is canceled because, at the last dance, multiple students were murdered. Cheryl says that is the reason why they need it, to heal. She says that in her experience, the Back to School Dance after Jason’s death provided much-needed catharsis. Mr. Honey disagrees.

At football practice, Reggie’s father, Marty, is loudly cheering him on. Archie throws the ball to Mad Dog, getting away from Reggie and scoring a touchdown. Marty calls over Reggie and yells at him for what happened, telling him it is unacceptable and embarrassing. Archie watches the whole thing go down.

In the girls’ locker room, Veronica is getting ready when she hears the click of a camera and realizes that someone is in there taking pictures. She calls over the other Vixens, telling them he was taking pictures of them while they changed. He says that a reporter from Rumordale.com reached out and told him he would pay $500 for a photo of Veronica. She takes the camera, takes out the film, and drops them both on the ground.

In the boys’ locker room, Reggie is trying to get under Mad Dog’s skin, bringing up jail and wondering how he got his nickname. Archie gets into the middle of it, wondering what is going on. Mad Dog pushes Reggie, but Archie stops the fight from happening. When Mad Dog leaves, Archie asks Reggie what his problem is. Reggie answers by saying that he is the captain of the Bulldogs, and he does not need some ex-con who showed up last minute stealing his thunder. Archie tells him he saw his father giving him a hard time but to man up because he is the captain.

Jughead gets home to find FP talking to Mr. Chipping, who told FP what he offered Jughead. Jughead says that his answer still has not changed. FP tells him that if it is about money, he has a few extra bucks to spare, and Jughead assures him that it is not. FP wants to know why he does not want to go to a school that recognizes his writing talents. Mr. Chipping tells Jughead to tour the school and make the decision then. They all sit down to talk.

Betty goes to Charles’ office to talk to him but does not find him. She looks through files and reads a document containing Kevin’s phone conversations. When Charles shows up, she wonders how long he has had Kevin under surveillance and when he was going to tell her. Charles tells him that he was not going to tell her, but for a while, he has had his suspicions about Kevin. Kevin has been in contact with Fangs despite everything. Charles tells her they can use the relationship to their advantage and that Fangs will not meet up with Kevin unless he has something to offer in return because he can not risk it. Charles and Betty devise a plan to let it slip that they have some fake intel about the investigation in front of Kevin, which will lure Fangs out of hiding.

Toni is in the basement of Thistlehouse, looking for Cheryl. Cheryl comes out of the room that Jason is in, stopping Toni and making an excuse that she was praying. Cheryl tells Toni that since they can not have a Back to School Dance, they are hosting a Back to School Party at Thistlehouse.

The next day, Cheryl, Toni, and the River Vixens are handing out invitations to the Back to School Party. Mr. Honey comes up to them, and Cheryl tells him that his name may be Honey, but she will always be the queen bee (because, obviously) and that he has no power over her.

At Stonewall Prep, Jughead and Betty are touring the school. They meet up with a student (Bret) who shows them around. Mr. Chipping invites Jughead to sit in on a lesson, and since they are doing Moby Dick the next day, he agrees since he loves the book. Betty is also invited but she declines, saying she thinks she has got her fill of the place. Bret continues showing them the school.

Betty and Kevin are talking at Pop’s, reminiscing about everything they have been through in the past years: Kevin remembers in freshman year, Betty wanted to go after Archie and that he was getting into different hookups. Betty tells Kevin there was a break in the case, proceeding with the plan to trick him.

Kevin meets up with Fangs in the woods and tells him about the witness willing to come forward. Fangs says Edgar and the rest of The Farm think he can not be trusted. Fangs tells him to get the name, and then they can be together. After Fangs leaves, Betty shows up, grabs Kevin’s arm, and walks away with him.

At La Bonne Nuit, Veronica talks to Reggie about the Rumordale article and asks him if he has the inside source. Reggie takes off his sunglasses, revealing his black eye. That night, Veronica tells Archie about Reggie’s black eye, saying it was not the first time. She tells him that she knows that Reggie’s dad hits him.

Betty and Charles interrogate Kevin, wondering why he did what he did. Kevin is sorry for everything he did and that he truly misses being her best friend. Kevin says he was not thinking clearly; he just wanted to see Fangs. He swears he is not part of anything. Kevin says he was alone and that at least Fangs texted him back; he is all he has. Charles takes Betty to another room to talk to her and says they have to cut Kevin loose. Betty tells him that she believes him; she thinks he will help them and is lonely. Charles says he is sorry, and they will find another way to get Alice back.

At Thistlehouse, the Back to School Party is in full swing. Betty talks to Kevin, apologizing for interrogating him. Betty admits to Kevin that Alice was undercover at The Farm and that she has been sending messages all summer, but they stopped. Betty tells him that she trusts Kevin and asks him to talk to Fangs about everything to try to get more information on where The Farm is. The police end the party, FP telling Cheryl that someone named Honey called the station to complain about the noise.

At Veronica’s place, she is getting hounded by reporters outside the door. She says she will make her only press conference at La Bonne Nuit that night. At the speakeasy, she says she is no stranger to scandal; that is what it means to be a Lodge. She admits to doing the things that Rumordale accused her of, but she was under duress because her father threatened her. She did what she was told. She says she was standing up for neither of them at the upcoming trials. She is only standing up for herself from now on.

Betty meets up with Charles and tells him that she has already looped in Kevin. She tells Charles that she told Kevin about Alice, and she told him because she trusts him. Kevin comes in saying he got in contact with Fangs and found out where The Farm is. He saw Edgar, and he is armed and building something.

In a flash-forward to Spring Break, the gang is out looking for Jughead, having no idea where he could be. Almost the entire town is looking for him.

Riverdale did what it does best: Mixing in teenage drama with mystery. It is nice going between everyone’s story and not just sticking to one. Also, going forward to Spring Break makes you wonder what exactly happens leading up to that week. Catch Riverdale on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT on The CW, followed by the new series, Nancy Drew. 

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By Megan
Megan has been passionate about writing since she was little and has been passionate about all things pop culture and nerdy since almost as long. Joining Nerds and Beyond in 2019, she also graduated from the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh in 2020 with a Bachelor of Arts in Multimedia Journalism. Megan is constantly binge-watching shows and finding new things to obsess over. 9-1-1 and Marvel currently reign as the top obsessions. You can find her on Twitter @marvels911s if you ever want to discuss some certain firefighters.
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