Thursday, September 23, 2021

‘Riverdale’ Recap: Season 5, Episode 14 “Chapter Ninety: The Night Gallery”

This week’s episode of Riverdale, “Chapter Ninety: The Night Gallery,” is a little different than most. Rather than tell intertwined stories, each one is told one by one, thanks to some new paintings courtesy of Cheryl that she calls The Night Gallery. Archie is still heavily dealing with PTSD, Betty is dealing with the supposed Lonely Highway Killer, and Jughead recounts his time after college and what happened in New York. Buckle up because it is about to get wild.

Keep reading to find the three chilling tales told in the newest episode of Riverdale, “Chapter Ninety: The Night Gallery.”

Archie’s PTSD

The CW

“It’s about a hero, haunted by his past and plagued by the trauma of his present.”

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The first painting that Cheryl shows off to Minerva is of military man Archie Andrews. He is finally focusing on himself rather than others. I never thought I’d see the day. Following last week’s episode, Archie’s PTSD from the Army has finally caught up to him. He’s decided to get help by seeing a therapist, Dr. Winters. He’s opening up about his dreams, how vivid they’re getting.

After the session, Archie seems to be doing a lot better. Though that could change. Cheryl shows up at the Andrews household, as she has finally found out about the palladium underneath her maple groves. She naturally thought of them and Andrews Construction but Archie’s not so sure since he doesn’t have any experience mining.

“Archie, you’ve been a soldier, a fireman, a football coach, a teacher and a bounty hunter. Is a miner so outside your purview?”

Everyone is in and Cheryl asks them to start immediately.

The Mines Bring Out the Worst in Everyone

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While working the mines seemed like a great idea at first, it soon turns dark. Archie is hesitant to walk into the mines but he pushes forward.

After another session, Archie asks Dr. Winters for some anti-anxiety meds, but since he has a crew depending on him now, he tells her he can’t get squirrely on them. Dr. Winters gives Archie some drugs, but soon he is hallucinating some pretty heavy things in the mines. He goes back to Dr. Winters’ office and accuses her of doing something to his head. He tells her current patient that she cannot be trusted, she is doing experiments on them.

He tries to tell Eric that seeing Dr. Winters is a mistake. And Eric understands. Losing that many men out there is not easy. He’s surprised it didn’t break him. Archie stays behind from the mines, as the guys thought he should take it easy. It’s soon found out that everyone is hallucinating and having violent outbursts. It turns out that it was carbon monoxide poisoning, not the pills.

Archie returns to Dr. Winters and apologizes. He admits that at first he was only seeing Private Bingo but now he’s seeing all the men who died. And he’s seeing them behind her. But Dr. Winters is terrified of being alone with him. She also doesn’t think it’s safe for him to be alone with anyone right now. It’s heartbreaking what Archie is going through and he’s definitely not alone in the situation. But just what can he do?

How Does Betty End Up in These Situations?

The CW

“Inspired by my poor, dear cousin, wrestling with the question, ‘Who is the true monster? The ghoul our girl is hunting or the girl herself?'”

The next painting Cheryl shows off to Minerva is of Betty, a truly terrifying and beautiful sight of her with a chainsaw as a monster is behind her. Now, how could I forget the fact that Betty knocked out a guy who might be the Lonely Highway Killer and she and Tabitha kidnapped him? The two of them talk at Pop’s and Tabitha is not as used to this as Betty is. But really, who honestly would be used to this? They just caught the man who might be the Highway Killer. Betty doesn’t want to hand him over to the proper authorities for fear she could be cut off from the investigation. She knows she could get information out of him. Betty, though, tells Tabitha it’s time for her to bow out and Tabitha reluctantly agrees. On the one condition if she needs help, she calls.

Betty has taken the supposed killer to the auto shop at Riverdale High. She gets straight to the point and tells him to tell her about the women he’s killed along the Lonely Highway.

You’re not in the United States anymore. You’re in Riverdale.”

The True Killer

As Betty is standing her guard, the guy talks back to her. She gets flashes of when she was held captive by the Trash Bag Killer, which just motivates her even more. Betty leaves him be and finds files of all the missing girls, including Polly. She shows him the photos, trying to get any reaction out of him. He soon gives in and tells Betty where one of the girls is buried, but it turns out to be dog bones.

Betty interrogates him, but it just makes her more upset. She goes back home and tells Alice that she captured a trucker who might be the man who killed Polly and all the other women on the highway. Betty talks her mother into talking to him to try to get him to confess, but it’s no use. Betty tells Alice they have to push harder. Maybe if he believes that he’s going to die, it will work. Why doesn’t she just kill him? Mama Cooper isn’t playing around. Betty does want to try one more thing first.

“I’m not going to kill you because I want you to suffer. So, I’m going to start carving pieces off of you.”

Everything Betty is telling the guy what she’ll do to him is exactly what the Trash Bag Killer told her when she was captive. Betty grabs a chainsaw, fully prepared to kill him. Before she has a chance to, though, the guy has already killed himself. She tells Alice he bit off his own tongue, swallowed it and choked to death. Whether he was scared of Betty or finally felt all this guilt they’ll never know. But at least lives will be saved. Though Betty thinks that there’s actually a family out there, hunting together.

Will this ever end?

The Curious Case of Forsythe Pendleton Jones III

The CW

“Portrait of a young writer, caught betwixt fact and fiction, memory and madness, truth and trauma.”

The next painting Cheryl has is of Jughead, on a throne, looking not like himself. We finally catch up with him after he left Riverdale to face his demons in New York and where is he? Why but an AA meeting, of course. He starts his story at the beginning, at least after high school and where he went. Life at Iowa wasn’t exactly peachy keen, but he wrote a lot and soon he sent pages out. He got a response, which is when he met Sam. Jughead moved to New York to become a proper writer, where he was hit with a lethal case of writer’s block. Luckily, girlfriend Jessica knew where to get the best maple mushrooms.

Thanks to the shrooms, The Outcasts was born. He was still talking with Betty, hanging on to the past. When it came time for his book release party, it was not a great night. Derailed after Betty called to tell him she couldn’t make it to the book release, that is when Jughead got drunk and left her that voicemail.

“And then I vanished. I was swallowed up by the dark.”

Literally, one moment Jughead was drunk and the next he woke up in a hospital room three days later. Jughead then recalls what happened when he came back to Riverdale, drinking, finding himself in a dark place yet again. After he found himself on Skid Row he went back to New York to figure out what happened.

All Hail the Rat King

He saw Jessica to find out what happened and he was not okay when he was found, to say the least. Jughead was yelling about a Rat King, a man that lived underneath the streets of New York City. He had fallen through a sinkhole that opened up in the pavement and he decided to live there for a bit. That is when he showed up, a Rat King in the form of Jughead’s agent, Sam. He read The Outcasts for him and he ate it up. Jughead was very eager to join the Rat King’s domain. That night, Betty visited him to save him. She tells him that the city floods the drains every two weeks and it is soon. Somehow, Jughead made it back to civilization, a back alley in the East Village. And he was taken to the hospital.

When Jughead went back to New York, he went back to the alley, the sinkhole that was paved over and a sewer gate that he pried open. He entered the abyss. Jughead found a copy of his book and scribbled in was a story about the Rat King and his captive. What really happened? Jughead was angry and drunk. He fell through a sinkhole and he was unconscious. When he came to he was covered in rats. He didn’t speak for fear of one crawling into his mouth. The whole thing made Jughead realize how alone he was. The best night of his life to celebrate his greatest triumph and he fell into a dark hole. No one missed him. Jughead admits he needs to get his drinking under control. It’s a story of heartache and desire, loneliness and despair. Hopefully this will be a new beginning for Jughead, because God knows he’s been through enough.

Wait, What?

The CW

There was just too many … wild moments to not include, so instead of “Out of Context,” welcome to the weirdest moments on this week’s episode of Riverdale.

  • Archie sees a creature that is really his fallen comrade who isn’t really there.
  • Thanks to carbon monoxide poisoning, Archie and everyone working in the mines experienced hallucinations and violent outbursts. But Cheryl still wants them to work.
  • Betty captures and interrogates the Lonely Highway Killer.
  • Alice tells her daughter to kill the man. But instead, Betty tells him what she’s going to do to him, which is exactly what the Trash Bag Killer did to her.
  • Highway Killer ends up biting off his own tongue, swallowing it and then choking on it before Betty has a chance to kill him with a chainsaw.
  • Jughead fell through a sinkhole in the pavement after getting drunk and leaving Betty a terrible voicemail.
  • Jughead tells the story of the Rat King whom he met while in the sewer who turned out to be a figment of his imagination. He was actually covered in rats.

This episode was definitely one for the books. But next week, Josie & the Pussycats will be making their triumphant return to Riverdale! Don’t miss it this Wednesday, September 8 at 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT on The CW, streaming the next day on The CW app!

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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 @marvelstaylena if you ever want to discuss some certain firefighters.

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